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Raves & Faves

22 Experience Gifts to Give this Holiday Season

If you, like me, have too much stuff and don’t want more things piling up this holiday season, you might consider giving experience gifts instead of tangible items this year!

Many of us have more than we could possibly ever need. Therefore, giving the gift of a memorable experience could be just the ticket for the loved ones in your life! Less clutter, yet just as (if not more) thoughtful.

Here are 22 different experience gift ideas to help check off the people on your list. Pick and choose as you might like to meet the needs of the folks in your life!

This post includes businesses I’ve partnered with in the past, or currently collaborate with. However, all opinions and recommendations are my own!

Lounge chairs at a spa overlooking the mountains

For Spa Goers

Sundara Inn & Spa – A spa day is always in order. Especially for the busy moms in your life! This is a great idea for couples as well. Or anyone who has been busy and stressed out and could use the gift of relaxation. Gift a visit to Sundara Inn & Spa in Wisconsin Dells. Now through December 31st, for every $250 in gift certificates you buy, you will receive a $25 gift voucher as well. Learn more and snag the deal here. The Wellness Passport would be the ULTIMATE gift. However, it is pricey and not within everyone’s budget.

Kneaded Relief Day Spa – A bit closer to home, right here in Fitchburg, WI, spa services at Kneaded Relief are just what the doctor ordered as well! Your gift recipient can choose from a massage, facial, nail service, waxing, hydrotherapy, and more. Be sure to check out the Black Friday Sale to get 20% off on gift cards and products between 6:00-8:00 a.m., and 10% off after that to get a bit more bang for your buck.

The Nail Collab & Beauty Bar – A gift card to use for a mani/pedi would always be welcome for a stylish gal who wants to keep her tips and toes looking good all year round. The Nail Collab is located in Hilldale Shopping Center, a convenient, central location in Madison, WI. You can purchase gift cards in any amount here.

Arch Apothecary – Located up on the Capital Square, Arch offers a wide variety of services including facials, makeup application, hair styling and blowouts, lash lifts and tints, brow waxing and more. Treat her to a pampering service where she will walk out looking and feeling her best. E-gift cards are available here.

Waiter holding two plates of food

For Foodies

Food Fight Restaurant GroupFood Fight gift cards make amazing gifts, because they can be redeemed at many different restaurants around town, including Cento, Bar Corallini, Everly, Basset Street Brunch Club, DLux, and more! They are having a holiday gift card sale as well, where now through December 31st, for every $100 gift card you purchase, you will receive a $25 bonus certificate FREE! Learn more and buy online here.

Madison Originals – Similar to Food Fight, Madison Originals is a consortium of local restaurants here in Madison. Local favorites like Buck & Honey’s, Tornado Steak House, and Quivey’s Grove are included. You can snag discounted vouchers to use at various locations as part of their Quarterly Discount Sale.

Amara – Gift them dinner at the hottest new restaurant in town! Amara at Hilldale Shopping Center recently opened and has been an instant hit! My son and I dined their recently and it was one of the best meals I’ve ever had. The ambiance is spot on. As are the drinks and food. You can purchase gift cards in store. E-gift cards will be available soon.

The Globes at Café Hollander – My family had so much fun in the Globes at Café Hollander at Hilldale Shopping Center last winter. It is such a unique and special experience! With add-ons like specialty cocktails and snack boards, hosting your family or friends in a Globe this holiday season will create memories for years to come. Book early, as prime dates do fill up.

DelecTable – I’ve never been but DelecTable appears to have several amazing experience gifts! From cooking classes to chef’s tastings and wine dinners. Give them the gift of a culinary experience they’ll remember for a lifetime! You can purchase gift cards to use for any special event, dinner, or class. They can also be used at VomFass.

Band on stage performing at an indoor concert

For Music & Performing Arts Appreciators

Broadway at the Overture Center – My mom bought us tickets to see Hamilton at the Overture Center for Christmas in 2019. It was such an amazing performance and gift! For your show-loving friends and family, tickets to a Broadway show, or a gift certificate they could use to buy them, would make a lovely holiday gift. Overture Center gift certificates never expire and can be redeemed for any show!

Children’s Theater of Madison – For the special kiddos in your life, tickets to a show through Children’s Theater of Madison is an excellent experience gift. I took my son to a few shows last season, and we loved them all. So much that we purchased a subscription this year, getting tickets to each of the four shows they offer for the 2022-23 season! While one has already past, there is still an opportunity to see three more, including Peter Pan, A Christmas Carol, and Finder & the North Star. Check out the calendar here.

The Sylvee – Gift tickets to a show at The Sylvee! It’s an excellent concert venue here in Madison, offering both general admission and balcony seat options. My husband surprised me with tickets to see Trampled by Turtles for Valentine’s Day, which was such a thoughtful gift. Especially since that was the same band we saw to celebrate our first anniversary! Check out the incredible line up of upcoming shows. Including Modest Mouse, G. Love & Donavon Frankenreiter, and Fitz & The Tantrums.

Immersive Van Gogh exhibit in Milwaukee

For Artsy Types

The Immersive Van Gogh Experience – This incredible exhibit is finally coming to Madison! My husband and I went to see it in Milwaukee and found it absolutely mesmerizing. What an awesome experience! The Madison show opens November 24th, so get tickets now for the best holiday dates. It’s set up at Greenway Station in the former DSW space and scheduled to run through January 8, 2023.

Beyond Monet – Similar to the Immersive Van Gogh Experience, Beyond Monet is taking place at the Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee right now! Treat your family to a day trip for a full experience, and get tickets to visit the exhibit while you are there. Or gift tickets to your Milwaukee area friends and family instead!

Wine & Design – Gift an art lover a custom gift card to Wine & Design Madison that they can use for a paint night, open studio, or other workshop or class! I have attended two events there myself, and thoroughly enjoyed myself each time. I went once as a date night with my husband, and once with a friend. There are tons of different projects to chose from, so this would be a wonderful gift to feed a creative soul.

Kids sliding down a water slide

For Active Kiddos

Kalahari Resorts & Conventions – Treat your family to a fun day or stay at the Kalahari Resort in the Wisconsin Dells! Enjoy the water or adventure parks, arcades, spa, live entertainment, restaurants, and more. Plus now through December 9th, get up to a 20% bonus on gift card purchase of $250 or more! Receive a 10% bonus gift card for purchases between $250-$999, and a 20% bonus gift card on purchase over $1,000. Get more info and purchase here.

Urban Air Adventure Park – Both my husband and son LOVE going to Urban Air Adventure Park over by West Towne Mall. So, any active kid, I’m sure would love to receive a gift card, membership, or day pass to visit and play all day! They have climbing walls, trampolines, a ropes course, bumper cars, a Ninja Warrior course, and more. Plenty of things to keep them busy during the dead of winter when they need to get out of the house and burn off some energy. We have a family membership and have used it several times since purchasing. I’m sure it will get used even more as the temps turn frigid and we are looking for more things to do indoors.

SkyZone Trampoline Park – Similar to Urban Air, Sky Zone is a great place for kids to blow off steam. Trampolines freak me out, but if you and your kid are the risk taking type, I’m sure they’d love the gift to go. They are even offering a Holiday Punch Card right now, which is good through May 2023, that would make great gifts for kids! (Or stocking stuffers). They also offer day passes, and memberships.

Madison Children’s Museum – For families with children under 10, a membership to the Madison Children’s Museum would be a welcome gift I’m sure! There are a variety of memberships available that will allow free admission, along with 50% off admission to other children’s museums they partner with. Check out memberships here. BONUS: The museum gives FREE memberships to first-time parents and caregivers for children under 18 months old! Score! Apply here if you meet those requirements.

Goldfish Swim School – Give the gift of life saving swim skills that will last a lifetime! Goldfish Fitchburg is offering holiday packages that make gift giving easy this holiday season. Choose between the Serious Swimmer or Big Splash packages which include group lessons, the annual membership fee, and a few fun gifts (like a Goldfish beach towel, goggles, and/or snack cash). Or, give a gift card in increments of $25 that can be used anytime. If you go the gift card route, tell your gift recipient to mention MADTOWN MOMMA for free registration for each new child they register at Goldfish Fitchburg! They would just need to call to register: 608-807-4949 vs. doing so online.

For Movie Lovers

Marcus Theaters – A gift card to Marcus Theaters is the perfect gift for the movie buffs in your life. The recipient can take the whole family out for a flick. Or enjoy a few shows in solitude. Plus, right now, you can get $5 in snack cash with a $25 gift card purchase. This would make a great teacher gift as well! Treat them to a movie, and throw in the popcorn as well.

Flix Brewhouse – Flix sells gift cards as well that can be used for dinner and a movie at the Brewhouse. This is our preferred movie theater in the Madison area. You can order and have food and drinks delivered right to your seat. Plus they aren’t usually super busy so it’s often more chill than the other theaters in the area.

I hope this list inspires you to give an experience gift this holiday season! If you have other ideas you think should be included, let me know in the comments below.

Happy Holidays!

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