This year, forget about the novelty socks, Michael Buble’s new album or scented candles. The most beautiful gift you can really give someone is an experience they’ll never forget.
Offer an unforgettable experience to your loved ones this Christmas. Give something he or she will never forget and makes for a great story to tell their friends. We’ve selected some activities, some more extreme than other, but all for less than 200 euros, that you can offer to someone special this Christmas.
In addition to the thrills and unique experience provided by these activities, the sports practiced below also allow you to excel, go beyond your comfort zone and push the limits of what you thought you could ever do. Trust us, the person to who gets one of these gift is going to be eternally grateful!
Board sports are a fantasy for many, but few people dare to take the plunge if they don’t have a little help to motivate them. So maybe you can be the trigger and ignite a passion that lasts a lifetime. Let’s be honest, once you’ve tasted adrenaline, it’s hard to stop looking for it. Climbing, kayaking, bungee jumping, canyoning, free fall, snowboarding … dare to test yourself and get out of your comfort zone for a day… because this gift can also be for you, I mean a gift is always better shared, right?
Climbing in the gorges of the Ardèche
Take part in a day trip that has you climbing upto about 200-metres high on the limestone walls of the gorges in Ardèche, or the granite of the Ardèche mountains. The vertical and aerial hike at 1200-metres up, overlooks the Besorgue valley and offers breath-taking panoramic views which will stained engrained in your memory for years to come. The compact and sticky rocks make the ascent easier and allow this activity to be accessible to all.
Price: Starting from €120
The highest bungee jump in Spain
Breath in… question if you’re totally insane… breath out… JUMP! Take a leap of faith off the highest platform in Spain and face your fears in a solo descent. Bungee jumping is always a top pick for adrenalin junkies who want to try an extreme sport, feel the rush as you jump from 70 metres high and let go of all the stresses from yesterday as you fall through the sky. The instructors in Puenting Barcelona are waiting for you in Lloret del Mar, with all the equipment and experience you need to have a memorable, yet safe, adventure.
Price: Starting from €50
Paragliding over Lake Annecy
How about something for your loved ones who aren’t afraid of heights? A tandem paragliding experience over Lake Annecy! The Airmax Paragliding instructors are masters at taking you on the flight of your dreams. Choose the experience which suits you best, from a 15-minute taster flight for adults or children, to a 45-minute flight for the full paragliding thrill.
Price: Starting from €100
Private snowboard lesson in Les Angles
If you’re more into the new school style and are keen to try your skills with some big jumps and tricks, then you’ll probably be a fan of freestyle snowboarding! Les Angles has a great snowpark with a large choice of modules, such as bordercross, big air, wooden modules, air bag, rails and tables. It’s also equipped with a professional team, specialised in freestyle, whose aim it is to help you pull off all the tricks you never even dreamed you’d be able to do! Beginners will be able learn their first grabs and rotations, while more experienced riders can try their skills in tackling a corkscrew or even a backflip!
Price: Starting from €180
Free fall simulator in Paris
All the sensations of free fall without having to jump from an airplane thousands of metres up! Contained in an impressive glass tube 14-metres high, 4.3-metres in diameter (the highest in the world) and visible from all the balconies of the mall, this new attraction aims to recreate the conditions and sensations of a flight in the sky but in a controlled environment. Behind the big renovated greenhouse of La Villette in Paris, this indoor free fall simulator is the first step for people hoping to try a parachute jump. Each session contains 12 passengers and each of you takes turns embarking on two 1-minute flights accompanied by an instructor. The flight is equivalent to 3 jumps at 4,000 metres from an actual airplane!
Price: Starting from €65
Snowmobile trip to Tromsø in Norway
Sign-up for a snowmobile excursion that gives you the rare chance to venture deep into the snowy wilderness. Discover the mountains of the Northern Hemisphere and the spectacular northern lights in this fabulous country while riding your snowmobile. Embark on an outing that will take you beyond the picturesque mountains and through the spectacular snow-covered Finn Valley, from 250m up to 900m above sea level. The trail covers 15 km in each direction and allows you to cruise on your snowmobile for about 2.5 hours.
Price: Starting from €94
Ice diving in Val Thorens
Here’s one for those not afraid of the cold. How about immersing yourself in some ice diving in Val Thorens? The school is located at the edge of Lake Lou, a mountain lake situated 2,035 meters above sea level, perched on the top of a small, well-hidden, valley. Dive to a depth of one meter and don’t worry about getting too cold, your waterproof drysuit, gloves and full-face mask will keep you nice and dry. There’s no previous experience required, so people of all levels can experience this breath-taking and slight unusual adventure under the ice.
Price: Starting from €180
Rafting down the Verdon Gorge
Discover the Gorges du Verdon from a different perspective. Rafting is a perfect family-friendly day out, accommodating everyone from 6 to 66 years and guaranteed to provide a few laughs and some unforgettable moments as a team! Depending on the size of the raft, it can occupy teams of 4 to 8 people with a guide. The aim of the game is to descend the river by paddling from one check point to another, all the while trying to navigate through rapids and slaloming between the rocks and waterfalls. To top it off, you’ll have the chance to cool off in the river and leap off rocks 2-metres high for an extra rush, just like canyoning!
Price: Starting from €40
Skateboard and longboard lessons in Bordeaux
From freestyling on the ramps to speeding downhill on the roads, learn to master your skateboarding skills with Eric de Bordza, an experienced and versatile teacher. For the skateboarders, kick-off in Darwin skatepark and fine-tune the disciplines of street skating, the ramp and the bowl. In terms of longboarding, Eric’s favourite site is the Rocher de Palmer bike path, ideal for beginners and those wanting to progress. He also organises occasional events at Rigalet and teaches all disciplines of longboarding, including cruising, dancing and downhill.
Price: Starting from €25
Dog sledding in Andorra
Pack your warm winter clothes and embark upon an authentic snow trip to La Caubelle in Andorra. There’s nothing like being pulled along by a pack of sled dogs while you take in the snowy and magical landscapes in the mountain valleys and forests of Andorra! Dog sledding is ideal for families, as its doesn’t require much physical excursion and you can just sit back, snuggle up and admire the spectacular landscapes. The sled is captained by an expert musher and powered by impeccably trained, athletic dogs, who are very well looked after and thoroughly enjoy the outings. Soak up the sights of La Caubella Valley during this 1.5-kilometre hike, located 2000 meters above sea level, and don’t worry about getting lost, your professional musher knows the area like the back of his hand.
Price: Starting from €25
Top picture : Airmax Parapente