Give the Gift of Experience

Nov 22, 2019
With the holidays fast approaching, it’s time to start choosing the perfect presents for your friends and family. In recent years, we’ve started to hear a new refrain—your hard-earned money is better spent on experiences than things. Do those on your list really need another pair of socks or the latest tech gizmo? Or would a new experience ultimately hold more value? BruceGreySimcoe is home to a wealth of unique experiences. Learn to cook with wild edibles, sky dive over the world’s longest freshwater beach, take a cycling tour through Simcoe County or catch a concert or play at one of our many local theatres. We’ve put together a great list of experiences—divided by outdoor, cultural, food and bucket-list—that we hope will help you find the perfect experiential gift for the special people on your list.

The Great Outdoors

If those on your list are lovers of the great outdoors, these experiences are for you. From afternoons spent on Georgian Bay to mornings spent hiking along the Niagara Escarpment, there’s an outdoor experience in BruceGreySimcoe that they’ll be happy to see under the tree.

Bruce Peninsula Boat Tours

Bruce Peninsula Boat Tours offers cruises of the Fishing Islands in Oliphant as well as sunset cruises of the Sauble River. You can purchase gift cards online as well as book tours. The cruises have a great informational and historical component, and The Stewarts are now offering several books and videos to complement their various tours. Why not surprise your loved with an Underwater Sketching Tour?

Eco Adventures on the Bruce Peninsula

With a range of tours available that feature knowledgable guides and the added perks of benefitting the Bruce Peninsula Biosphere Association, Eco Adventures are a great gift idea. From snowshoeing to the grotto to skiing the Lion’s Head, find all their tours right here and check out their gift shop for more ideas.

Golf in Ontario Packages

BruceGreySimcoe is home to some great golf courses and our friends at Golf in Ontario have made it super easy to pre-book golf packages in our region. Instead of more golf balls this season, why not treat the golfer on your list to a round or two? Book online right here.

Buy Them a Bib in a Local Cycling Event

Do you have a cyclist on your list? BruceGreySimcoe is home to some premiere cycling races and you can pre-purchase an entry for your friends and family so they can test their limits next summer. Choose from the Lake Huron Gran Fondo, the Blue Mountain Gran Fondo or in 2020 only you can take part in the Great Waterfront Trail Adventure along the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail in our region.

Give them a Humdinger Cycling tour

The crew at Humdinger Bicycle Tours made a huge debut in 2019 offering some great tours across the region. Booking them a tour with Sarah and her crew is sure to put a smile on their face. Book online right here.

Take them to Woodview Mountain Top Skating at Blue Mountain

Treat your sweetie or your family to an afternoon of outdoor ice skating at the top of Blue Mountain. You can book online for the Woodview Mountain Top Skating loop right here. Grab dinner in the Blue Mountain Village and then take a stroll through Blue’s signature festive light experience—Blumination.

At Last Adventures Paddles and Pints Tour

Sure, you’ve been to the Festival of Northern Lights but have you ever thought of touring them from the Sydenham River aboard a voyageur canoe? Surprise your friends and family with this unique Paddles and Pints adventure from At Last Adventures.

Why not Wye Marsh?

For outdoor lovers, a membership to the Wye Marsh is a great gift. This beautiful nature preserve offers trails year-round for snowshoeing and hiking as well as abundant wildlife viewing opportunities. Purchase a membership online right here.  

The Gift of Skiing and Snowboarding

Whether they are looking for downhill skiing and snowboarding or cross country, there are some great resorts across the region you can treat your loved ones to. Consider buying them a season’s pass, a gift certificate or even rentals at a local resort. Hardwood Ski and Bike, Scenic Caves Nordic Centre and Highlands Nordic all offer memberships. For downhill consider Blue Mountain Resort, Horseshoe Resort, Mount Saint Loius Moonstone or Snow Valley Resort.

Fabulous Food Experiences


For the foodies on your list, we’ve put together some of the most delicious experiences across the region. From sampling local beer wine and cider to learning to cook with wild edibles, there’s something for every food lover on your list.

Pair your Outdoors with some Delicious Aprés with Free Spirit Tours

Free Spirit Tours offers some great tours that combine the outdoors with local beer, wine and cider. Their Hike and Wine Tours and Snowshoe and Wine Tours make great gifts. For an even more unique option, gift them The Wild Edibles Experience with Barefoot Brian—a foraging experience that will have teach them a ton about eating off the land.

Gift the Gift of an Ace Transportation Tour

With some very stylish shuttles and great guides, the folks at Ace Transportation now offer some great local food and beverage inspired tours for the foodie on your list. Consider their Snowshoe, Waterfall and Wine Tour, their Winter Wines Tour, their Brews Brothers Tour, their Cheese Please Wine Tour or their Axes and Ales Tour.

Treat them to a Cooking Class

The Shoreline Cooking School in Saugeen Shores offers some great classes that will take them from blasé to gourmet in no time. Get all the details right here.

Buy them a Sumac and Salt Dinner Experience

A truly local food experience, treat your friends to a dinner prepared by Sumac and Salt on a local farm. This farm to fork approach is sure to thrill the food lovers in your crowd.

Let Them Eat Scones!  

The Milk Maid fine cheese shop in Owen Sound offers monthly scone making workshops. From sweet to savoury, they’ll love learning to bake the perfect scone—and they’ll likely share them with you too.

Give Them a Corkscrew City Tour

The perfect blend of history and libations, Owen Sound’s Corkscrew City Tour would make a great gift for the history/local spirit lover on your list. The tour gives insight into the city’s bootlegging and prohibition past while visiting local breweries along the way. Find out more right here.

Dinner and a Skate at Fern Resort

Fern Resort is well known as a summer destination for families, but their winter offerings are pretty awesome too. Why not treat them to dinner at Fern Resort and some laps of the outdoor skating loop (lit by tiki torches)? That’s one experience that definitely trumps new socks!


Cultural Treats


Give Them a Show

For the culture lovers on your list, BruceGreySimcoe is home to a wealth of venues offering live music and theatre. From Clarksburg’s Marsh Street Centre to Collingwood’s Simcoe Street Theatre and the Midland Cultural Centre, the options are vast. There’s also Heartwood Hall and The Roxy Theatre in Owen Sound, Casino Rama near Orillia, Meaford Hall and Talk is Free Theatre in Barrie. Owen Sound Little Theatre puts on productions and the Orillia Opera House also hosts live theatre and music shows as does the Gayety Theatre.

DIY Bath Bombs and More

This refillery inspired outlet, Nakd Basics, offers a DIY approach to making soaps, creams shampoos and bath bombs. Gift them a workshop or a visit and they’ll love you forever.

For the Artist on Your List

For those who’d like to get creative themselves, give them the gift of an art class. The Imagination Studio in Clarksburg offers some amazing workshops from batik to painting. The Southampton Arts Centre also offers a wide range of opportunities for them to embrace their inner artist. The Tom Thomson Art Gallery also offers classes.

The Gift of Cinema

Do you have a movie lover in your midst? The Collingwood Cinema Club shows films every Monday. Gift your loved one an annual membership and they can see a new film each week.

Bucket List Experiences  

If you still haven’t found the ultimate experience on our list, we’ve saved some truly bucket list items for last.

Fly the BruceGreySimcoe skies

For the person on your list who’s done it all, consider a Tobermory helicopter tour with Blue Heron Tours, a sightseeing flight with Owen Sound Flight Services or a new direct flight from the Wiarton Keppel International Airport to Toronto Island in 2020.

 Take them Skydiving in Wasaga Beach

Last but not least, give them a gift they will never forget: A skydiving experience above the world’s longest freshwater beach with Skydive Wasaga Beach. Get all the details right here.