With Christmas only 5 days away the streets of inner city Melbourne are bound to provide more foot-traffic jams this weekend than the Eastern Highway on a Monday morning.

While online shopping can let you beat the queues and get all your shopping done from the comfort of your own living room (or bed, or office chair), one minor oversight from the sending company could mean your loved one will be left present-less on Christmas morning.

So how do you skip the foot traffic, order from home AND get a thoughtful gift they’re bound to love?

Tickets to an amazing event, of course!

Melbourne comes to life in the summer with a wide range of kid, adult and family-friendly events from budget to extravagant. Here’s a list of my top 5 for which tickets can be found, purchased and printed at home ready to be placed in a card for Christmas morning!

Top 5 Christmas Gifts

1. Take them to the Cricket

Melbourne Cricket GroundThere’s nothing more Australian than heading to a cricket match on a hot summer’s day to cheer on the guys in the baggy greens – and there’s no better place to do it than Melbourne’s MCG. Whether you think they can stand an entire test match or their attention span is more suited to a One-Dayer or a Twenty20, the MCG will be host to a full schedule of international matched this January. With tickets starting from around $30, this is an easy gift that the sports-lover will thank you for. Tickets available from Ticketek.

2. Visit the Theatre

Melbourne Theartre

Curtain Call Photo by Matt Watson

Looking for something a little different? You’ll certainly find it at Her Majesty’s Theatre this December/January with the Aussie star-studded musical A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. Starring Academy, Emmy and Tony-Award winning actor Geoffrey Rush as well as a whole host of other familiar faces (Hugh Sheridan, Magda Szubanski to name two), A Funny Thing is nearing the end of its limited season here in Melbourne with the final shows on the 5th and 6th of January. Closing weeks tickets start at a mere $49.50, so jump online and snatch some up! Head to www.funnything.com.au for more info and tickets.

3. Cirque du Soleil’s OVO

Cirque Du Soleil OVOCirque du Soleil is back yet again with another show packed full of awe-inspiring acrobatics, creative costumes and amazing acting. The newest instalment from the internationally renowned group is OVO, a stylistic adventure inside the world of insects. Blowing people’s minds under the Big Top at Docklands, if you’re yet to see the spectacular that is Cirque du Soleil this Christmas could be the perfect opportunity. Performances span January 17 to March 24, 2013, and tickets start at $84 for an adult, $64 for children and $74 for concessions. Tickets and info at https://www.cirquedusoleil.com.

4. Family Fun at Luna Park

Luna Park is a Melbourne icon, and with the park having just had its 100th birthday there’s no better time than this summer to take the family down to St Kilda and see for yourself why the iconic park has stood the test of time. Located right by the water, the Park is perfectly located for a fun-filled day with the kids, and with the Melbourne weather the way it is you can easily seek solace from the heat in the waters of St Kilda Beach. Gift Vouchers are available online and are available as Unlimited Ride or Family passes. The kids will thank you!

5. Keep Cool with Ice Skating

Ice Skating in Melbourne

The Melbourne heat can be unbearable, and while the local pool may cool you down momentarily, there’s little escape from the harsh sun. The solution? Grab the kids (or just your loved one!) and head down to the Medibank Icehouse at Docklands for some mid-summer ice skating fun! With two full rinks you’ll be sure to find a spot that will let you work on your skating skills at a speed you feel comfortable, and they even offer free helmets and safety wear to make sure no-one gets hurt. Tickets are available online from www.icehouse.com.au.

Happy Holidays!

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