While Christmas shopping can be fun, some of our peeps already have enough stuff. And others are just impossible to buy for ~ whenever they want something, they just buy it for themselves.

If that’s the case with someone on your list, consider gifting them an “experience gift” instead. We’ve hand-picked a collection of experience gifts in or near Charlotte, from outdoor adventures to staycations and food tours, that are sure to impress this holiday season and entertain long after the tree comes down.

Classes & Workshops

Flower Arranging at Nectar Flower Workshops

Throughout the year Nectar offers two-hour flower arranging classes that will have even the most novice students creating impressive arrangements to take home. Workshops are $145 per person and all tools will be provided.

Create Your Own at The Candle Bar 

Upgrade the typical candle gift this year by gifting a one-hour candle pouring session at The Candle Bar. During the experience your loved one will get to pick out her own candle vessel and create her own original scent for $35.

Insta worthy Creating with Sweet Spot Studio

Guests will learn how to make French macarons, elaborately decorate cookies, or create impressive cocktails at one of the many classes offered at Sweet Spot Studio. Workshops cater to all levels from beginner to professional bakers.

If you’re a scoop reader, you probably know about some of the other QC class experiences we’ve written about, like Skillpop, BeadsInc Jewelry Making, and Anders Ruff crafting but don’t forget these make awesome experience gifts for your girls.

Food/Beverage Tours

Discover new restaurants — or try new dishes at old favorites — around town on one of the city’s various food tours. Popular options include: FEAST Food Tours, and Taste & Glide Segway Tour. 

It’s Charlotte, so we can’t forget about the craft brewing scene. Two tour companies that offer designated brewery tours are Charlotte Brews Cruise and Charlotte Brewery Tours.

Looking for something a bit more special for your honey? A trip to a nearby foodie town like Asheville Charleston for a food tour and night’s stay is an awesome gift that you both will enjoy. A few we love are the Greenville BBQ Trail Food Tour , TasteCarolina’s Asheville Food Tour and the Charleston Culinary Tours.

But the food tour highest on our Gift List?

The Foraging Food Tour in Asheville from No Taste Like Home.

Spa & Beauty

MudbuM for Affordable Skincare

For the busy lady in your life that loves skincare, but doesn’t have a lot of spare time to spend on lengthy spa treatments, consider gifting a MudbuM facial or two. MudbuM is popular for their 30-minute (or less) facials that will leave skin immediately refreshed and glowing. Gift cards and monthly memberships which start at $44 are available.

For Uptown Girls (work or play) a Series Card from The Daily Details is an awesome idea.

These girls know what an Uptown Girl needs, whether that’s a quickie lunchtime manicure and blowout or special $25 Holiday Hair. Service Series are available in 3 | 6 | 12 options to be gifted and used as she needs. (PS there’s also a location in Ballantyne for the South CLT beauties on your list)

And of course, a day full of relaxation at any deluxe local spa such as The Spa at Ballantyne or The Ritz Carlton will be appreciated by even that hardest person to shop for. Services range from aromatherapy massages and mani/pedis to body wraps. For a truly indulgent gift, a day of beauty for two, for her and her bff, is an ultimate QC Girls Gift.

Outdoor Experiences

These are some of our favorite and ULTIMATE experiential gifts you can give this season.

Primland for Sport in a Spectacular Setting
Sporting Clay Shooting and so much more in the stunning Blue Ridge Mountain setting at Primland in Meadows of Dan VA makes a perfect weekend getaway for you all ~ book a room for two, a treehouse or cabin OR a mountain home for up a group of friends or family.

If your idea of a deluxe get-away involves less sport, but still plenty of beautiful nature and fine accommodations and dining, look no further than The Swag for your gift giving. Open from April through November, (so closed for winter now) this gift will be something to plan and look forward to this coming spring, summer or fall.

When in Rome ….Fly Fishing in the NC Mountains seems like a must do for a sport-loving local, but many only daydream about exploring our nearby nature and scenery. So many lessons and experience guide companies, a few to check out:  Appalachian Anglers, Headwaters Outfitters and FlyFishNC.

Also on our give list is the Land Rover Experience Tour at the Biltmore, which combines driving a Land Rover on some challenging terrain with expert instructors with stunning views of the Blue Ridge mountain at Biltmore. Learn several driving techniques while navigating ascents, declines, water crossings, side tilts and book (separately) your tour and / or stay at the property.

Need to stay closer to home?

Don’t forget the U.S. National Whitewater Center

Have someone on your list that loves being outdoors or is an adrenaline junkie? Then a U.S. National Whitewater Center Adventure card is the ultimate gift. Annual passes are also available starting at $169.

Xtreme Xperience for the speed demons on your list

An Xtreme Xperience gives people the opportunity to drive their dream cars around the track at Charlotte Motor Speedway. We’re talking DREAM cars like Ferraris, Lamborghinis, and Porsches on the famous NASCAR track going full speed. Who wouldn’t want to knock that off a bucket list?

Also popular for Experience Gifts are Balloon Rides, Helicopter Tours and Tandem SkyDiving.

Staycations

Sometimes it’s nice to be able to ‘getaway’ even when you can’t go too far away. And, just about anyone can appreciate a night or two in a luxurious hotel. Luckily, the Queen City has several options when it comes to posh accommodations, including the Duke Mansion, The Ivey’s Hotel, Ritz-Carlton, and Ballantyne Hotel. Plus two of our favorite hotel stay gifts from the Hampton Inn & Suites Southpark at Phillips Place ~ The American Girl Stay and the Date Night Getaway.

Season Tickets

Season seats for two are a deluxe gift to be sure, but also sure to please, and to help fill out his or her 2019 social calendar.  Broadway Lights Season Tickets are perennially on our list, and this year’s season includes both Dear Evan Hansen and Betty Buckley in Hello Dolly.

Other ideas: the March Peter Pan Ballet, January’s CARMEN at OperaCarolina, an annual membership to the Mint Museum with its amazing calendar of monthly events, activities and exhibitions. And of course, season or sought after sports tickets ~ this year’s Belk Bowl would be fun to give a Wahoo or Gamecock, and of course the Hornets, the Hounds, etc.

For an unexpected and unique twist, gift a year-long membership to Music With Friends 2019 Season which kicks off with Lyle Lovett and his Large Band on Tuesday, April 23, 2019.