4 best experience gifts for kids

Lizzie DragonSeptember 2, 2021

4 best experience gifts for kids

If the pile of toys in your kid’s room is nearing the heights of Mount Everest, it might be time to gift them an experience. That’s right; we’re not talking about the new Frozen castle playset or Star Wars legos. Studies have shown that the benefits of experience gifts exceed that of the material alternative. So why not try thinking outside of the toy box this year?

In this blog, we’ll discuss a few of our favorite experience gifts for kids:

  • Family vacation or staycation
  • Subscription boxes
  • Season passes
  • Extracurricular classes

Family vacation or staycation

Get out of the house and into the world! According to a global education specialist, Dr. Robin Hancock, the most rapid brain development occurs within the first five years of life, and travel can play an important role in a child’s growth and development. Exposing your children to new places and different people is a gift that’ll keep on giving as they grow into the world.

Family road trip

What better way to see the world than in an RV? Both RV and airplane travel have their pros and cons, but one of the biggest benefits to a family RV trip is the bonding time. It’s just you, your kids, the open road, and endless sites to see. We may be a bit biased, but this is one of the best (if not the best) experience gifts for kids that money can buy!

You can have an RV road trip booked and ready to surprise your little one with at Christmas, or if they’re old enough and you want to involve them in the planning, you can give an Outdoorsy gift card. From Florida to Washington to Colorado, there are plenty of kid-friendly adventures waiting for you.

A night away

You don’t have to go too far for some quality family time. If you don’t have the time or budget for a full-on road trip, a night away at a hotel or Air BnB is a great option! Find some family fun at a hotel with a pool near you or a unique Air BnB. You can even give your child a few options and let them pick their perfect night away from home!

Subscription boxes

Explore all of the world’s wonders without leaving the house. Subscription boxes are a perfect way for kids to learn new things and develop new skills each month.

Little Passports Box

Ages: 3+

Price: $13+ monthly

Image Source: littlepassports.com

A Little Passports Box will spark your little one’s curiosity for the world and its cultures. This gift offers opportunities for them to learn about everything from music to dinosaurs and gives families the chance to connect over the shared experiences.

Young Chefs’ Club

Ages: 5+

Price: $20+ monthly

Image Source: americastestkitchen.com

This one is for our Ratatouille fans out there! Sign your youngster up for America’s Test Kitchen Young Chefs’ Club, and they’ll get monthly kid-tested and approved recipes. They’re easy to follow and provide an excellent chance for family bonding over delicious food!


Ages: 6-14

Price: $25+ monthly

Image Source: bitsbox.com

Have a future coder living in your house? With a Bitsbox subscription, the family’s future coder will receive instructions for an app to build each month that they can then play on a phone or iPad! You can get the digital version of the box for $16.95 a month.

Season passes

A pass for your kid to visit their favorite place whenever they want is a great gift and great on the wallet, as you won’t have to pay for a ticket every time you choose to go. Budget-friendly, year-round family fun? Sign me up!

Amusement park / waterpark pass

What kid doesn’t love a good wave pool or spinning ride? A season pass to an amusement park or waterpark may just be what your kid wants and needs, especially if that park is Disney World. That place is HUGE!

Zoo, aquarium, or museum Membership

Zoos, aquariums, and museums are awesome places to learn while having fun. Many locations will have programming designed specifically for kids, and may even host classes or workshops. Check your local spots for prices and kid-specific offerings!

Extracurricular classes

Childhood is the time to try new things, to figure out your interests. There are many benefits to extracurricular activities for children, including:

  • enhanced social skills
  • more confidence
  • better teamwork skills
  • time and stress management

Group classes

There are classes for everything nowadays. Theatre, archery, and gymnastics, oh my! Notice what hobbies have piqued their interest this year and gift them the chance to try it out. Who knows? They may fall in love with hip hop and grow up to be a background dancer for the next rising pop star or at least discover their life’s passion.


Having kids, you know they may change their minds at any point. Last week their favorite color was teal, and now it’s magenta. With KidPass, your child can try over 10,000 different activities to figure out what they really enjoy! You’ll find live classes, private tutoring, and video courses on the site that fit their hobbies, interests, and schedule.

Take your mind out of the toy box

Whether it’s Christmas or their birthday, give your child a gift that’ll last longer than any Barbie doll or toy truck. Give the gift of an experience to your favorite little ones and make memories that’ll last a lifetime!

Beyond these experience gifts for kids, check out our other gift guides:

Happy gifting!

Lizzie Dragon, Outdoorsy Author

Ready to get started.

Be the first to get doses of destination inspiration, and discount codes.

We care about the protection of your data. Read our privacy policy