10 Last-Minute Christmas Gifts That Are Actually Thoughtful

This article is sponsored by RedBalloon.

Hands up if you’ve had one of your busiest years yet? And hands up if *gasp* you’ve been too busy to get a present for some of the most important people in your life - including your mum?

Although mums would be happy if we just picked up the phone every now and then, they do love a thoughtful gift too - especially if it means spending more time with you.

Here are our 10 favourite last-minute presents that you can do with your loved ones - it’s bound to make you the favourite this Christmas!

1. A day spa package

Find us a mum who doesn’t want a relaxing afternoon at a day spa or hot springs bath house. It might take seconds to purchase, but it shows you know how hard that person has been working and how much they mean to you. Plus, they get a relaxing day to themselves where the hardest decision they’ll have to make is hot stone or shiatsu.

2. Some quiet time

Who among us feels like we’re short on time in the modern world? There’s always somewhere to be, something to do, whether it’s at home or at work. So what’s a better gift than a little me time? Oceanfront yoga is a perfect way to calm the mind, or for something more adventurous, you can gift a centring spell in a floatation tank, or mimic the calming effect of a waterfall with a vichy shower experience.

3. A romantic meal

What’s the very worst part of any meal out? Easy, right? It’s when the bill arrives, pin-pricking the cloud of happiness that had, moments before, been floating above the table. And that’s where you come in. The thoughtful gift of a romantic meal out removes any bill shock, because everything has been taken care of before the night even begins. And for extra thoughtful bonus points, offer to babysit or look after pets, so that the lucky diner has even less to worry about.

4. A cooking class

While we’re on the topic of food, let’s talk cooking classes, which will transport your special person from an Australian city to the Italian Alps or the streets of Shanghai, where they can spend an afternoon rolling dough, pressing dumplings, and, perhaps most importantly, drinking wine. Better still, if you live with the person this gift is for, then it’s kind of a gift for you, too, because all those delicious new skills are going to make their way home.

5. Photography classes

What with all these new-found experiences your special someone will be going on, they’re going to need a way to capture those memories, right? That’s where a photography class comes in. Arguably the world’s most romantic art form, photography skills follow you on every holiday you ever go on, making your photo albums the envy of everybody.

6. A studio photo shoot

Let’s stick with photography for a moment, because Christmas could be the perfect time to create a literal lasting memory with a professional photo shoot for your special someone. It could be a couple shoot, a new family photo or even a shoot dedicated to a four-legged friend - either way, you’ve got a meaningful gift, and one that will remind the recipient of your gift-giving awesomeness every time they walk past it on the wall.

7. Take to the skies
You can give the gift of flight - at least temporarily - this Christmas, sending your special someone soaring high above some of this country’s most stunning landscapes. For a spectacular way to welcome a sunrise, a hot air balloon experience is the answer, with flights over wine fields and beaches. But for a pulse-racing experience, try an acrobatic stunt flight over Sydney.

8. Get back to nature

Who doesn’t love animals? Strange people, that’s who. But for the rest of us, we’re spoiled for choice when it comes to opportunities to get up close and personal with the animal kingdom.

From horse riding to whale watching, shark diving to koala cuddling, RedBalloon has heaps of options that will make the animal lover in your life happy.

9. Share time together

One of the best things about choosing an experience as a Christmas gift is that it’s often something you do together, meaning you’re not just there for the giving part, but for the experience part, too.

One of our favourite options is glamping (think camping, but without the whole erecting a tent in the dark part). Instead think five-star tents, luxury bedding and easy access to kitchen facilities. And better yet, it’s all set-up and waiting for you when you arrive.

10. Capture their essence

Here’s one way to ensure your perfume gift is utterly unique. RedBalloon is offering perfume making classes in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane which see your special someone not just learning about the craft, but blending their own signature fragrance to take home with them.

The best thing is it includes bottles of your own personalised fragrance to keep.

For more gift inspiration visit www.redballoon.com.au