What are Experience Gifts for Kids?

Experience gifts are presents that involve providing someone with a memorable, often interactive, and enjoyable experience rather than a physical object. 

These gifts focus on creating lasting memories and can range from activities like spa days, cooking classes, concert tickets, and adventurous outdoor excursions, to cultural events like museum visits or theater performances. 

The idea behind experience gifts is to offer the recipient an opportunity to explore new interests, learn something new, or simply enjoy a unique and special moment. They’re often appreciated for their personal touch and the opportunity they provide for shared experiences.

5 Benefits of giving non-toy gifts

Giving non-toy gifts can be a thoughtful and enriching alternative to traditional toys. Here are five benefits of choosing non-toy gifts:

  1. Encourages Creativity and Imagination: Non-toy gifts like art supplies, musical instruments, or books stimulate creativity and imagination. These gifts provide children with tools to express themselves and develop their talents, fostering a love for arts, music, and reading.
  2. Promotes Learning and Skill Development: Educational gifts such as science kits, puzzles, or language learning materials help children acquire new skills and knowledge. These gifts make learning fun and engaging, supporting cognitive development and critical thinking.
  3. Fosters Quality Time and Bonding: Experiences like museum memberships, zoo passes, or cooking classes encourage family time and bonding. These gifts create opportunities for shared experiences and memories, strengthening family relationships and providing lasting joy.
  4. Reduces Clutter and Environmental Impact: Non-toy gifts like subscriptions (e.g., to a magazine or online learning platform) or contributions to a child’s savings account avoid adding physical clutter. Additionally, they often have a lower environmental impact, reducing waste from packaging and discarded toys.
  5. Teaches Values and Responsibility: Practical gifts such as gardening kits or personalized stationery can teach children responsibility and the value of taking care of their belongings. Gifts that involve activities or experiences can also teach children to appreciate the intangible aspects of life, like knowledge and time spent with loved ones.

Best non-toy experience gifts for kids

Experience gifts can create lasting memories and provide enriching experiences for kids. Here are some of the best non-toy experience gifts:

  1. Museum Memberships: A membership to a local science museum, children’s museum, or art museum can provide endless hours of educational fun. Kids can explore exhibits, participate in workshops, and engage in interactive learning.
  2. Zoo or Aquarium Passes: Annual passes to a zoo or aquarium offer opportunities to learn about animals and marine life. These visits can be both entertaining and educational, fostering a love for nature and conservation.
  3. Amusement Park or Theme Park Tickets: A day at an amusement park or theme park can be an exciting adventure for kids. Rides, games, and shows provide thrilling experiences and create wonderful memories.
  4. Outdoor Adventure Experiences: Gift a family hike, camping trip, or a visit to a national park. These outdoor adventures promote physical activity, exploration, and an appreciation for the natural world.
  5. Art and Craft Classes: Enroll kids in art, pottery, or craft classes. These classes encourage creativity, teach new skills, and allow children to express themselves through various mediums.
  6. Cooking or Baking Classes: Cooking or baking classes can be a fun and practical experience. Kids learn how to prepare meals or bake treats, which can be a rewarding and useful skill.
  7. Music or Dance Lessons: Music lessons for instruments like piano, guitar, or violin, or dance lessons in ballet, hip-hop, or tap, can nurture a child’s artistic talents and provide a creative outlet.
  8. Sports and Physical Activity Classes: Sign kids up for swimming lessons, martial arts, gymnastics, or team sports like soccer or basketball. These activities promote physical fitness, teamwork, and discipline.
  9. Theater or Concert Tickets: Take kids to a children’s theater production, a musical, or a concert. These cultural experiences can inspire a love for the performing arts and provide a sense of wonder.
  10. Science or Tech Workshops: Workshops or camps focused on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) can be incredibly engaging. Robotics, coding, and science experiments can ignite a passion for learning and innovation.

These experience gifts can provide enrichment, learning, and enjoyment that far exceed the temporary excitement of a toy. They also create cherished memories and opportunities for personal growth and development.


Experience gifts for kids offer a unique and enriching alternative to traditional toys, providing lasting benefits that go beyond momentary enjoyment. These gifts foster creativity, learning, and physical activity, and they can cultivate a child’s interests and talents. 

Whether it’s a membership to a museum, a pass to the zoo, or lessons in music or sports, experience gifts create opportunities for meaningful engagement and cherished memories. 

They also promote family bonding and reduce the environmental impact associated with material gifts. By choosing experience gifts, you invest in a child’s personal growth and happiness, offering them invaluable experiences that will resonate throughout their lives.

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