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Holidays not toys

Instead of toys for Christmas this year give the gift of a holiday abroad. Take a look at our top suggestions.


Holidays not toys


With all the excitement of Christmas, it's easy to get swept up in the hectic rush and find yourself panic buying gifts. This can leave your home feeling swamped with toys that are then left behind collecting dust. Instead, give a gift that will stay in the hearts and minds of both you and your children for years to come and plan a Christmas holiday abroad. 

Scientists have, in fact, proved that experiences and holidays are valued more by Children both in the moment and in the lasting impact they have on memories compared to the short term happiness created by material gifts such as toys. 

So, if you are getting tired of stepping over discarded toys already, why not plan a Christmas holiday abroad next year for you and your family. Take a look at our five holidays not toys for a memorable family holiday at Christmas time... 

Celebrate the festive season like an islander in Mauritius 

Friendly locals, shallow lagoons, safe beaches, and no jet lag to worry about, Mauritius is a fantastic destination for families looking to discover their own slice of Indian Ocean paradise with a Christmas holiday abroad. 

Learn a new sport together as a family by choosing between a plethora of land and water sports from golf to sailing. And you can relax whilst your children are kept happy and entertained by the attentive Artisans at the complimentary kids club (for 3-11-year-olds) throughout your family holiday at Christmas. Housed within each of the eight hotels gardens or directly on the beach, days spent at the kids club are action-packed and non-stop fun. There is even plenty to keep boredom at bay for your teenagers too!

Food loving families are spoilt for choice with a variety of cuisines available to try at the resorts, from fine dining Italian specialties and fresh seafood to traditional Creole recipes and Indian dishes. Creating specifically for children the restaurants offer kids menus, early dining and homemade purees for infants, so you can rest assured no one will go hungry on your Christmas holiday abroad in Mauritius. 

After you've spent time sinking your toes into the soft sands during your family holiday at Christmas, prepare to tear your little ones away from all the activities and the beach in exchange for the adventures that await you outside the resort. Embark on an excursion or try an activity to enhance your holiday further. The whole family can relish in the chance to experience a true taste of the island lifestyle with a holiday abroad at Christmas in Mauritius. 

Swim with Turtles in Oman 

For a memorable family holiday at Christmas, book a snorkelling trip to the Dimaniyat Island Nature Reserve. Just a 45-minute boat journey from the Al Mouj Marina, the nine islands of this nature reserve act as a popular nesting site for green and hawksbill turtles and the crystal shallow turquoise water are perfect for up-close encounters with a vibrant array of marine life. UNESCO protected the Omani's fiercely protect the Dimaniyat Islands and the surrounding waters as the diversity of marine life here is the highest in the region, with almost 1,500 species. Home to several kinds of rare coral reefs it's likely that during your family Christmas holiday abroad in Oman you'll spot turtles, reef sharks, rays and moray eels just like Michelle, our Reservations Consultant did on her visit. If you're lucky you might even spot dolphins and Nemos (clownfish) too! 

Whilst family-friendly resort Shangri-La Al Jissah Resort & Spa Al Waha offers you and your family the chance to learn about conservation projects and what steps you can take to protect the endangered turtle species for the future. Each day the Turtle Ranger holds a talk which is a fun and immersive way for you all to discover about the turtles that head to the resort beach to lay their eggs each year.

Have a splashing good time in Dubai 

The best way to cool down from the glorious sunshine in Dubai is to take your kids for an action-packed day at one of the thrilling water parks. There are plenty of rides and slides across the city, but our favourite spots are guaranteed to create hours of non-stop fun for the whole family on your Christmas holiday abroad. 

A very popular water park for families is the Wild Wadi as Mary, our Senior Reservation Consultant says "its so much fun, plodding along in the lazy river or daring the tallest and fastest free-fall water slide outside the United States - Jumeirah Sceirah, it really is a fab day out." Across the park, you'll find 100 water activities to keep you and your little ones entertained including slides, water guns, and climbing frames, Wild Wadi is even home to Breakers Bay - the largest wave pool in the Middle East.  

Of course, the world-famous Aquaventure is definitely worth a visit during your Christmas holiday abroad and it comes with good accreditation too! Voted the No.1 water park in Dubai by TripAdvisor travellers this park is a thrill-seekers paradise, set across 42 acres the park has over 30 slides, offering something for everyone from the Leap of Faith with its 27-metre near-vertical drop to a soothing 2.3km long lazy river. Guests staying at Atlantis, The Palm can even enjoy complimentary access to Aquaventure during their stay. 

For families looking to unleash their creativity and burn off excess energy the 20 themed LEGO water slides and attractions at LEGOLAND Waterpark Dubai has been specially designed for children aged 2-12 years. Build your own raft from LEGO bricks as you journey along the lazy river or grab your mat and race against your loved ones on the LEGO Slide Racers. 

Enjoy an adrenaline rush in Abu Dhabi or Ras Al Khaimah

Head to the largest indoor theme park in the world Abu Dhabi's Ferrari World. Buckle up and enjoy an adrenaline rush on Formula Rossa, the world's fastest roller coaster or let your children experience the thrill of driving a Ferrari at the Junior Auto School. 

Or for an exhilarating and unique experience, take flight on the World's longest zip line the Jebel Jais which stretches 2.83km. Fly 1,680 metres above sea level and whiz in superhero position through the beautiful mountain landscape at speeds of up to 93mph. You can even enjoy the chance to fly side-by-side on which makes for an unforgettable experience on your family holiday at Christmas. 

Of course, the family fun isn't just reserved for the theme parks as the sweeping deserts in Ras Al Khaimah and Abu Dhabi offer a world of adventures and a mix of fun and education for the whole family during your Christmas holiday abroad. From dazzling desert activities to horse riding there are plenty of opportunities for adventure during your Christmas family holiday in the Middle East.     

Wander through a vibrant souk in Marrakech 

For a unique cultural experience take your family for a Christmas holiday abroad in Morroco. Swap the turkey at home for an enticing blend of aromatic tagines and flavoursome couscous. Watch your children's eyes light up in delight as you witness the acrobats and snake charmers in Djemaa El-Fna Square. Or gain a fascinating insight into traditional Moroccan life as you pay a visit to a local Berber village. 

If you would like to book a memorable Christmas family holiday, give our Reservation team a call.