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It’s the topic that’s top of mind! Christmas is fast approaching and it’s time to start deciding what gifts you want to buy for your friends and family. We’ve put together the ultimate gift guide for you to make this year’s shopping a breeze. You’ll find everything and anything that an outdoor lover would love in the list below. From experiences to hiking gear, and even pairs of underwear, we’ve thought of it all this year.
We have raved about this jacket on multiple occasions now. A jacket that looks like a “lifestyle” jacket but performs like a outdoor rain jacket. The pack-away hood is functional, the front pouch pocket is exceptionally useful due to it’s massive volume. It will easily fit; a bunch of bananas, a litre of oat milk, a packet of carrots, 2 tinned tomatoes and a tub of peanut butter. We know this because we tested this on our last grocery shop when they didn’t fit in our shopping bag! Jokes aside this jacket performs very well on the mountains in spite of it’s casual design. That being said, if you are after something more technical and performance orientated we would recommend reading our review of the Helly Hansen Verglas Shell
Read our review of the Craghoppers Anderson Cagoule
Shop Now: Craghoppers
Price: Prices vary
A pair of socks might seem like a gift lacking in imagination but we guarantee a good pair of hiking socks will always be gratefully received, and more importantly, well used. Great Outdoors has a wide range of technical hiking socks that will wick away sweat while keeping your feet warm and dry. A good pair of socks will also play a crucial role in blister prevention too. When it comes to items like socks where there is so much choice we like to ask the experts, so we would advise visiting Great Outdoors and asking their experts to find out what model would be best for your gift!
Shop Now: Great Outdoors
We’re all sick of the amount of plastic that surrounds us nowadays, and cutting out plastic bottles just doesn’t cut it for most of us. Klean Kanteen has developed a plastic-free alternative for you to keep your lunch fresh and free from BPA’s. The full set is perfect for dinner, lunch, or snacks and is sure to become a staple in any adventurer’s backpack.
Read our review: Klean Kanteen Food Set
Shop Now: Earth Mother
The Ortles Down from Salewa is our go-to winter jacket. This is a predominantly Down jacket that has a few baffles that are filled with TirolWool. This is because wool will not take an insulative hit if it gets wet, unlike down. With this in mind the areas that are most exposed to getting wet i.e. the wrists, the hood, the shoulder, and the waist of the jacket are filled with wool. This jacket is warm. We have used it in 5-10 degree weather with just a baselayer underneath and felt nice and warm while hiking.
Shop Now: Salewa
If the person you are shopping for already has a pair of big hiking boots but would benefit from having a pair of lighter, everyday walking shoes that offer good protection from the elements then we would advise you to consider the Cascade shoe by Helly Hansen. With a soft yet durable mid-sole, HellyTech waterproofing and a comfortable protective upper, these are a great option for day-to-day walking as well as longer days on the trails.
Read our review: Helly Hansen Cascade Shoe
Shop Now: Men’s and Women’s
Honestly, we love this product. It is one that we use on nearly every camping trip (or even an Airbnb trip when the coffee setup provided is not up to scratch!) We bought ours in Great Outdoors in Dublin and have not looked back. You simply sprinkle in your favourite ground coffee (course grind is fine), and pour in your hot water, we love to brew straight into one of our very own enamel mugs or into a flask (see our next item) if we are on the go. Within 4 minutes you’ll have a warm brew to enjoy! Pair the Stanley Pour Over with one of our enamel mugs and a bag of great coffee for an all-in-one gift!
Shop now: Great Outdoors
A flask is a great gift for the outdoor enthusiasts in your life! Believe us when we say that outdoor enthusiasts love to go off the beaten track. This is often challenged by our equally strong pull towards a good coffee shop on our weekend hikes. Thanks to the Kmbukka Etna flask that we have been using during these colder months, instead of going to a café to meet a friend we began bringing our own coffee to our favourite outdoor spaces. The Etna Flask was excellent for this. It keeps your brew warm enough for you to enjoy it mid-hike!
Read our review
Shop Now: Kambukka
These are the perfect gift for anyone involved in or interested in trail running. They are a relatively lightweight pair of shoes but also offer fantastic durability. This is a shoe that will take you from the muddy trails of the Wicklow Mountains to the rocky outcrops of the Dolomites and everything in between. If you want to read more about our experiences training and racing in the Dynafit Alpine check out our review below!
As we get older, boxers, just like socks, they become a lot more desirable at Christmas! You genuinely can’t beat a pair of SAXX. A good pair of boxers is essential to staying comfortable during long days on the go thanks to their soft, breathable material, and unique “ball-park” technology which keeps everything in place, if you know what we mean! There are some amazing designs to choose from as well! A pair of SAXX is our most underrated recommendation of what to get your loved one this Christmas!
Shop Now: Portwest
Read our review: Saxx Underwear
Electric bikes may not be the most obvious of Christmas gifts, but they are a great investment and means of transport. If your partner is forever moaning about being stuck in traffic then an e-bike might actually be the perfect gift for them. They are the perfect bike to avoid long daily commutes as well as explore nature with ease. And don’t tell the person you’re gifting but if you tell GreenAer that Outsider sent you, you’ll receive 10% off of any electric bike.
Shop Now: GreenAer
The changing robe is somewhat of a cult product, they are everywhere. And with so many brands to choose from, it can be difficult to figure out what to get your loved one. Luckily we have done the hard work for you and can highly recommend the Coucon. An Irish brand, the Coucon offers the softest fleece lining, couple with the coolest range of colours out there. You may even have spotted the range on the recent series of Bad Sisters.
Shop Now: Coucon
Price: €140-100 (currently discounted)
Over the years camping chairs have been exclusive to those who camp out of their car. Multi-day hikers have often had to settle with rocks, tree stumps, and the ground for comfort. Well, not anymore! The Helinox Ground Chair has changed the game, weighing in at only 600g, it folds up into the size of a 2l milk carton making it the perfect luxury addition to anyone’s hike.
This is the perfect gift for anyone hoping to spend more time on the water in 2023. These inflatable kayaks are the perfect holiday companion for all levels of kayaker from total beginners to seasoned paddlers.
Price: €16.99 – €20.00
These hard-wearing enamel cups are the perfect companion in any swim bag or hiking pack. Equipped with fun inspirational quotes and John Short’s Dry Robe Sketch, they make the perfect gift.
Shop Now: Outsider.ie
Price: €300 on sale
In Ireland, we are spoilt by the sea. We get some of the best surfing in Europe yet surfing somehow remains a relatively fringe sport. It is our firm belief that much like a good pair of hiking boots or a good GoreTex jacket, everyone should own or have access to a surfboard in Ireland. Some of the best craic is to be had in the surf!
Shop Now: Great Outdoors
During 2022 we had the pleasure of visiting Thermarest’s European HQ in Midleton in Co.Cork. While there we experienced the team making a Neo-Air Topo Luxe sleeping mat. Later that day we slept on one! Therm-A-Rest’s mats are at the pinnacle when it comes to camping gear and this sleeping pad is no exception. It is lightweight, compact, and keeps you warm with an R-value of 3.7 and a thickness of 10cm, you’ll never know comfort when you camp until you try out this Therm-A-Rest sleeping mat.
Explore Now: Great Outdoors
Price: €85 – €140
We genuinely think that these are the best running vests on the market. If you are shopping for a running and are not sure what to get them we would say look no further. With capacity varying from 4L to 12L I the Advance Skin range there is something for shorter runs all the way to long ultra races. They fit excellently and all come with 2 soft flasks.
We have been using Nuasan’s products for the past year and have really enjoyed them. We have particularly enjoyed the Active body moisturizer and the Active Body wash. We have genuinely noticed a difference in the way that our muscles feel after using them as part of our post-training routine.
Read our review: Nuasan Active Body Moisturiser
Shop Now: Nuasan
Price: From €33.00
We love these products. A great way of visualizing some potential future adventures and letting the mind wander. These two maps showcase the best surf and swim spots around Ireland, this map will put a smile on any water lover’s face this Christmas.
Shop Now: Malin & Mizen
Price: €180 on sale at Great Outdoors
The Salewa Mountain Trainer Mids are an excellent “all mountain” boot for Ireland and Europe. They are as supportive as a conventional mountain boot but feel like a mid thanks to the flex collar design and light construction. Definitely a brilliant present for the serious hiker!
Read our review: Mountain Trainer Mid
Shop Now: Men’s
Shop Now: Women’s
These stay in our kit bag at all times! Living an active lifestyle, especially one that involves a lot of time outdoors often means you may have to spend more time than you would like with muddy legs, sweaty skin or boggy feet. These Biodegradable Active Body Wipes from Nuasan are a game changer! They are the perfect way to freshen up straight after your training, so you can “puick up some milk on the way home” without stinking up the whole supermarket! The Nuasan Active Body Wipes are also a perfect way to freshen up after a quick cycle to work or as an alternative to showering on those long multi-day hikes in the mountains.
Read more about Nuasan
Price: €42.00 per person
City Kayaking offers this unique experience called “Music Under the Bridges”, where you basically kayak along the River Liffey in the City Centre behind a boat filled with musicians who will play for you under the bridges along the Liffey. It’s probably one of the most unique activities in Dublin, combining both exercise and a concert so you get the best of both worlds. The experience lasts about two hours.
Shop Now: City Kayaking
Price: €45.00 per person
These SUP lessons are available for anyone aged 8 and up and are the perfect introduction to the world of SUP. You will take to the calm waters of the Grand Canal Dock for 1.5 hours where you will learn basic techniques while having a whole lot of fun in the process. If the lessons make you fall in love with paddleboarding the expert team in-store or your instructor will be more than happy to advise you on what boards to buy and what gear you need.
Shop Now: Surfdock
Price: €35.00 – €65.00 per person
The Grand Canal Dock is where many Dublin windsurfers learned the ropes. These sheltered waters offer the perfect place to practice and learn this fun sport. Surfdock teaches in small groups of four so you’ll get plenty of 1:1 time with your instructor. The class is around 2.5 hours long as well, giving you plenty of time to pick up as much of the basics of windsurfing as possible. This is the perfect gift for a water lover who’s yet to try windsurfing.
No Christmas gift list is complete without a cozy beanie and the range of Barts Amsterdam never disappoints. The Barts beanies are stylish and warm. Many of them are even hand-made! Great Outdoors stocks a wide range of Barts beanies so there is something to suit all tastes!
At Outsider we spend a huge amount of our time in the Dublin and Wicklow mountains. The Dublin Wicklow Mountain Rescue Team are a voluntary group of trained mountain rescue experts. They are on call 365 days a year to help ensure that we stay safe when we are out and about in the Dublin and Wicklow hills. The team are unpaid and they receive very minimal funding from the government. Because of this they get a large amount of their financing from events and their DWMRT shop. Why not get the outdoor lover in your life something from the DWMRT shop this Christmas?
Read Top Safety Tips from DWMRT
Shop Now: DWMRT
Price: €79.99 – €179.99
Shopping for a scout, a tradesperson or an outdoor worker? We advise you consider getting them a Leatherman tool! We have spent some time with a few different models over the past year and have come to the conclusion that everyone should have a multi-tool, especially when they are in the outdoors. Here is a brief overview of the tools we have tested:
The Leatherman Skeletool is an excellent everyday tool. Definitely our top pick for a scout.
The Leatherman Surge is the ultimate multitool. Packing a huge 21 tools into 1, this is one for the professionals.
The Leatherman Signal is our top pick. Packing some incredibly useful tools for an outdoor lifestyle into one, we highly recommend checking it out!
Price: €120 – €135
While entering someone into an adventure race without consulting them may seem a bit mean, we think entering an adventure race with someone is a perfectly acceptable thing to do! If they have expressed an interest in giving an adventure race a go we would advise you take a look at the Quest Adventure Series and enter on of the many races and distances that are on offer!
Book now: Quest Adventure Series
Price: €69 +
During the summer, we went on a road trip along the stunning Wild Atlantic Way. On the first day of the trip, in order to fully reset we went to Salt Float and Recovery in Galway. It was amazing, an excellent way to destress and get fully in the holiday mood. When we attended SALT we got to experience all of the services on offer. The Finish Sauna and cold plunge, the float tank and the Normatec boots. The combination of these 3 services left us refreshed and ready to hike, camp, and swim our way along the Wild Atlantic Way.
Our pals at Great Outdoors know a thing or two about outdoor gear and with over 45 Christmases under their belt they also know what people buy as gifts for their outdoorsy friends! With those expertise, they have come up with the “Great Gift Box”. This is a 6in1 gift that has an overall value of over €100. It includes: A Stanley flask, portable phone charger, multipurpose bandana, pack of hand-warmers, a Petzl headtorch and a Columbia beanie with Omniheat.
By Killian Andersen
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