5 Last Minute Gift Ideas

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Posted 2022-12-19 by Andrea Penzefollow
Have you left your shopping until the last minute? Or do you just want to avoid the crowds this time of year? Perhaps you are buying a gift for a new friend or family member, and you don't know what to get them. Despite my best intentions, Christmas seems to sneak up on me. One minute, it's November 1st, and I am rationalising that I have almost 2 months to prepare. Next, it's days before Christmas, and I realise I've done it again, and I must succumb to the last-minute gift dash.

If you're like me and find yourself highly stressed, let me take some of the stress out. I have compiled a list of last-minute gift ideas that are thoughtful, require minimal effort and don't scream "I wasn't organised!" to the recipient. I'm looking at you, grocery store gift cards. Assorted into sections according to gift type, peruse the list below for the ultimate gift.

1. Give the Gift of Recovery
The festive season can take its toll on the best of us. Overeating, sleep deprivation, copious amounts of sugar... Wellness centres are popping up across the city and include recovery therapies like Float Therapy, Infrared Saunas, Cryotherapy, and Hot and Cold Spas.

City Cave has various locations across the city, and an Infrared Sauna for singles starts at just $44, while a single float will set you back $79. Buying for a couple? They also do couples floats, saunas and massages. Find out more here .

Nature's Energy is the answer for those seeking hot and cold spas, steam rooms, and saunas. Offering three locations across Sydney with prices starting at $45 for 30 mins access to the aforementioned facilities. Oh, you can also gift a Turkish scrub or a massage. Pop on their website for more information.

The Slow House Bondi offers recovery options of ice baths, infrared saunas, coal saunas and light therapy. Prices start from $25 for an ice bath and $55 for a single infrared sauna. Find combination treatment options on their website , such as Fire and Ice, the ultimate hot/cold therapy which will speed up the recovery of even the most hedonistic among us.

2. Give the Gift of Adventure
Sydney is teeming with things to do. But living here a while can make anyone quite jaded. Give the gift of adventure to your adrenaline fuelled friends and remind them Sydney is packed with adventure.

The ultimate adrenaline gift has got to be the skydive. Sydney is blessed to have some great options. Sydney Skydivers is located in Sydney CBD and Picton. Skydive Australia has locations in Bondi, Wollongong and the Hunter Valley. Prices start over $300.

For those of your friends who do not wish to throw themselves from a plane at 14,000 feet but are curious to experience the feeling, iFly in Penrith is the southern hemisphere's largest indoor skydiving facility. iFly is safe for ages 3 and up, and is fun and accessible for people of any ability. Priced at $114 for 2 flights, iFly is currently offering a Christmas sale, and you can nab 2 flights for just $94.50 here .

Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb should be on the bucket list of those with moderate fitness and no fear of heights. There's something indescribable about climbing one of the world's largest steel arches with views of arguably the most beautiful city in the world. Climbs start at $328 per person. Find out more at Bridge Climb, Sydney .

Have you got a friend that's really into cars? Give the gift of V8 race cars at Sydney Motor Sport Park Eastern Creek. Your friend can passenger in the front seat at the hands of a seasoned professional for $220. Or, from just $340, they can take the car for a few exhilarating laps themselves. Find out more here .

For the theme park thrill seekers that don't live in Queensland, give the gift of Luna Park. No, really, Luna Park has come a long way in the last few years with new adrenaline-fuelled additions such as the Big Dipper, the world's first inline seating launch rollercoaster with 360-degree loops, the Sledgehammer — a spinning, pendulum-style ride with G-force, and the Hair Raiser, a 50m high 80km/h drop. Day passes start around $40, and yearly passes will set you back just $125. Buy tickets here .

3. Give the Gift of the Great Outdoors
These options are for the active, but perhaps not adrenaline fuelled among us. If you know your new friend likes adventure but you aren't sure how much, I suggest one of these options.

Sydney is blessed with a stunning harbour and well over 100 beaches; however, many of these are secret coves and boat access only. Why not give your mate a chance to discover Sydney's exclusive beaches with a boat or kayak hire?

Sydney Harbour Kayaks is located on the east side of the Spit Bridge, and an hour of single kayak hire will set you back just $25. All Day hire starts at $90. You can buy a gift voucher through their website , and your friend can decide on a time/date that suits them.

Gift a memory that will last a lifetime with a unique sunrise and coffee kayak tour on Sydney Harbour, departing from Lavender Bay with Sydney by Kayak. From November to January, kayakers can paddle under the harbour bridge and enjoy the sunrise from the middle of the harbour. Prices start at $155 per person for this experience of a lifetime. Head to their website to browse other options.

Cottage Point is a hidden paradise . Tiny in size but with so much to offer. Boat and kayak hire is available here, and the local tackle shop facilitates the needs of those who enjoy fishing (just make sure to get a fishing licence!) With a plethora of boat access-only beaches dotted around Cowan Creek and surrounds, your friend will likely discover a side of Sydney they've never seen. Gift vouchers are available at the Cottage Point Kiosk website .

Life's an Adventure has outdoor adventures from the land to the water. Kayak Sydney Harbour on a guided tour and indulge in a feast on Shark Island. Situated in the middle of Sydney Harbour and accessible only by boat, lunch alone makes this tour worth it.
Do your friends prefer to stay dry? Gift a guided walk and show them there's more to Sydney (and beyond) than meets the eye. Explore gift options here .

For your land-loving friends, a Mystery Picnic is a fun-filled gift. This scavenger hunt style picnic combines adventure and food (and caters to dietary requirements). You'll discover new places and collect delicious local food to take to your final destination. Prices start at $70 per person. Browse their website for gift options.

4. Give the Gift of Indulgence
For your friends who love food and exploring without exerting effort, gift a food cruise around Sydney. Sydney Harbour Lunch Cruises offer an array of cruise options. With prices starting at just $63 for a brunch cruise and $69 for a classic Australian BBQ, proving food cruises don't have to be outrageously expensive. You'll have to call between 11am-9pm to make a reservation. Discover more here .

If you prefer the ease of online booking, Magisitc Cruises offer lunch and dinner cruises starting at a reasonable $79 for a buffet lunch cruise around Sydney Harbour.

Take food cruising up a notch with a progressive dining cruise experience. Cruise around Sydney and arrive in style at some of Sydney's finest waterfront restaurants. From Doyle's on the Beach at Watsons Bay to the Public Dining Room at Balmoral Beach. This unique experience comes with a price tag of $595, so perhaps reserve this gift for a very special someone. Buy it here .

For your foodie friends prone to seasickness, I recommend sticking to dry land and trying a high tea. Forget connotations of up-tight service and stale sandwiches; Sydney has high tea experiences to suit any palate. For a delicious vegan high tea in a seriously funky setting — think pendant lights, colour-themed rooms, and fairy lights — book in at Alibi , Woolloomooloo. For sky-high dining with extensive harbour views, then the Shangri-la is for you. Prefer a classic high tea inside a beautiful and historic building? Then the tea room at the QVB is for you. Think stunning chandeliers, plush velvet chairs and high ornate ceilings. Venture outside of Sydney and experience a decadent high tea with gorgeous views of Megalong Valley at the Hydro Majestic . Most places cater to dietary requirements with notice.

5. Give the Gift of Pampering
Give the gift of a pamper session at one of Sydney's numerous salons and spas.

Located on Sydney's north shore, Gillian Adams is the ultimate destination for relaxation. From facials to massages, hair treatments to nail treatments, a Vichy shower, a stunning Aquamedic pool and a beautiful courtyard where gourmet breakfast, lunch and cheese boards are served, Gillian Adams has it all. Hot tip: For great value, choose from one of their packages. Starting at $100 for afternoon tea and an Aquamedic pool session, while a facial and Aquamedic pool session is $220. This is a gift you may want to tag along for.

Urban Spa offers locations across Sydney and a variety of indulgent pampering sessions. Facials, massages and beauty services are on offer here. The service is consistently good across their Sydney locations (I have tried half a dozen salons!), so you can rest assured your friend will be pampered into a state of total relaxation. Mix n' match 2 treatments with their summer specials option for just $99. Find more gift options here .

The Day Spa by Chuan at the Langham Hotel is decadent. Featuring an award-winning Roman-style pool at its centre with a roof painted to look like the night sky, your friend will want to set aside a whole day for this one. Book in for any treatment and enjoy the pool, jacuzzi and fitness facilities. Packages are available online, or you can fully customise a package to gift to your friend from $150 for a 30-minute experience. Browse packages here .

So, there you have it! A list of last-minute gift ideas to suit any recipient that demonstrates your thoughtfulness, conceals disorganisation, and arrives on time for Christmas day.

138064 - 2023-06-13 14:17:23


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