• You don’t have to spend Christmas day over-indulging
  • More and more of us are choosing to spend our Christmas Day in a non-traditional way
  • LV= bring you a list of our favourite alternative ways to celebrate Christmas

For many of us, Christmas is a time of over-indulging, spending several days inside watching the Christmas specials on the tv and generally being pretty unproductive.

However, is this the only option available? We explore the possibility of breaking from the norm and having an alternative Christmas Day.

Head overseas

Although booking holidays over Christmas is not uncommon – four million Brits headed abroad last year – many will opt to go somewhere they can have a snowy white Christmas.

But how about Christmas in the sun? Why not head to Australia and enjoy Christmas Day sunning yourself on Bondi Beach, or Bora Bora where your Christmas day could be spent in a hammock overlooking idyllic clear water with a cocktail in your hand.

And instead of making the sofa your second home for the holiday, how about visiting Scotland and hiking up one of its mountains, like Ben Nevis?

With options like these available, you can really break the norm and have a Christmas to remember.

Visit Edinburgh Zoo

Edinburgh Zoo is one, if not the only zoo open on Christmas Day in the UK, a fact that few of us probably know. Keepers need to be on hand to feed and water all the animals at the zoo, and have to work 365 days a year.

Edinburgh Zoo first opened its doors in 1903 and includes Europe's largest outdoor penguin pool and the Giant Panda Experience (Tian Tian and Yang Guang are the only two giant pandas in the UK), all of which are open throughout the day.

And best of all, every Christmas they host an amazing Christmas Day lunch either in the elegant surroundings of the Mansion House or a carvery lunch in the Jungle Café.


Christmas is a time for giving. Sure, we love receiving gifts and eating with friends and family, but consider taking that one step further this Christmas and dedicate the day towards helping others out. Volunteering is not only rewarding, it also helps charities and other organisations give those less fortunate a Christmas to remember.

From lending a hand at a soup serving kitchen for homeless people to carrying out a shift for a helpline charity and/or providing company to older people, there's a cause close to your heart worth looking into. For more information, check out the website for national volunteering organisation TimeBank, which can help you get you started.

Get your wet suits out

What better way to celebrate Christmas than to plunge yourself into icy water? Not everyone’s idea of fun, however more and more of us are doing it every year. Whether you are doing a sea dip in Bournemouth, Brighton or Tenby, getting the surf board out down in Cornwall or going for a dip in the Serpentine in Hyde Park, there’s bound to be somewhere near to you if you feel the need to dip your toes into the water this Christmas.

Go to work

Spare a thought for those people where Christmas Day means just another day to work. The police, ambulance crews, firefighters and nurses are just a few unsung heroes that all work hard to make sure that should any of us need them, are there for us.