Top Norfolk Christmas gifts you don’t have to wrap
PUBLISHED: 10:58 03 November 2019
It’s that time of year when thoughts turn to Christmas gifts. But if they’ve enough socks, sweaters, bubble bath and general stuff, maybe they’d love a treat or an adventure. If you want to do different, we’ve some top Norfolk ideas – and none of them require wrapping!
Maybe a brother or sister, niece or nephew, godchild or your own child needs a new challenge. Why not book them an intro to boxing? Sport England Club Mark accredited Attleborough Boxing Club offers a full range of classes and fitness training for all abilities and is open to everyone from age five - plus it's one of the less expensive, energy channelling activities to try.
Petrol head treat
The Junior Double Supercar Thrill with High Speed Passenger Ride at RAF Honington, near Thetford, or Norfolk Gliding Club at Tibenham Airfield, gives youngsters between 10 and 16 years old the chance to pick two supercars and drive them around the track alongside an expert instructor. The package includes an instructor-driven high-speed passenger ride too. Usual price £149, look out for £99 offers.
A brilliant gift for your brother's family or a thank you to the friends that host New Year fun. Buy a voucher for venues such as Fakenham Superbowl, which is suitable for age four and up and has a fun play area for children, plus a separate one for toddlers. A family ticket for two games for two adults and two children is £25.
If they've never felt the adrenaline of racing, give them a taste and blast around one of Norfolk's go-kart tracks. Try the friendly welcome at the 500m tarmac all-weather track at Karttrack Cromer, open to children from age eight upwards, teenagers and adults.
Walk on the wild side
Free entry to the many NWT nature reserves and visitors centres across the county and cut price admission to events with Norfolk Wildlife Trust membership - plus the feel good factor of supporting its work.
A pony present
Sponsor a horse or pony from Redwings for £15. It includes an adoption pack containing a special certificate, photo of the adopted friend and their story, plus an online blog. Visit Redwings at Aylsham and Redwings Caldecott at Fritton to see what the charity does and meet some of the adoption stars. www.redwings.org.uk
Fun days out
A season ticket to an attraction they would love to visit more always goes down well. Season tickets give them the chance to visit as many times as they'd like, for no additional cost. Try venues such as Thetford Forest, www.forestryengland.uk; Africa Alive! and Banham Zoo (one season ticket covers entry to both zoos), www.banhamzoo.co.uk / www.africaalive.co.uk; Roarrr! Dinosaur Adventure, www.roarrdinosauradventure.co.uk; Snettisham Park, www.snettishampark.co.uk; Thrigby Hall, www.thrigbyhall.com; Amazona Zoo, www.amazonazoo.co.uk; Pensthorpe Natural Park, www.pensthorpe.com
Several venues have partnership deals giving season pass holders money off admission at other wildlife parks and attractions.
The floodlit swan feeds at Welney, near Wisbech, are one of Britain's best wildlife watching spectacles. Book an exclusive Floodlit Swan Supper (January 10 and February 7 - book online) to watch a commentated floodlit swan feed and a three-course dinner overlooking the wetlands - £27.95 per person.
For a day time treat, there is swan feeding at 3.30pm daily from now until March 8, with additional 12noon feeds from Boxing Day.
Animal or bird lovers may relish the chance to get up close to some of the animals at Africa Alive! or Banham Zoo. Pre-bookable animal experiences include meet the rhinos, feed the giraffes or sealions, big cat and bird of prey experiences, to name a few. There are minimum age restrictions on some experiences, but there are options for children, such as the Big Keeper/Little Keeper for one adult and one child (minimum age 8) to be keepers for half a day, £180.
Treat them to a surprise stay at Richardson's Hemsby Beach Holiday Park, where accommodation includes chalets, caravans, studios, apartments and lodges - some with hot tubs! A three-night stay in a platinum lodge, sleeping up to four people, from April 17 starts from £619 (price correct at time of going to print). Your furry friend can come two if you book one of the pet-friendly options.
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If they love the outdoors but aren't keen on walking or climbing, book them a guided off-road adventure with the Suzuki ATV quad bike trek along the trails in the woodland at Extreeme Adventure near King's Lynn. For age 16 up.
Offer to take the toddler to a Dough Disco - moulding play dough to music for one to four year olds. Or book children or adults into one of the many classes from clay to watercolours at the Start-Studio in Wymondham.
Everyone loves an afternoon tea voucher, but how about brunch instead? Eateries such as William and Florence in Unthank Road, Norwich have a bottomless brunch each weekend from 10am-2pm for £30 per person. Enjoy pastries, a cooked brunch and unlimited prosecco and cocktails.
Food to their door
Order them a weekly or monthly box or one-off box or hamper packed with products and produce from the farmers and growers of Norfolk. Look for a local business such as Great Ellingham-based Norfolk Veg Box, www.norfolkvegbox.com and Broadland Veg Boxes, based between Reepham and Aylsham, which also has festive hampers.
We love a free treat - book them a free taster air rifle or air pistol target shooting at the range at Wensum Lodge in King Street, Norwich, with Norwich City Target Club. It offers 12 lanes with electric target changers, two with fully electronic Olympic level target systems, biathlon targets and a turning target system for rapid fire events.
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