Give your true love something to really sing about with one of these classic gifts from your favourite Christmas carol.
On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…
A partridge in a pear tree (UK)
Partridges are part of the pheasant family and can be found running wild all over the UK and the rest of the world. As for getting one in a pear tree – sadly it’s highly unlikely; you’d probably have to shoot it first. Failing that, give your true love an Alan Partridge DVD and a bag of pear drops instead.
Two turtle doves (UK)
Turtle doves form strong pair bonds, normally mating for life, hence why they have been a long time symbol for love. A quick search on BirdTrader.co.uk revealed several for sale, however, unless you have a dove house, we don’t advise giving doves as gifts, unless you think your lover would be impressed by copious amounts of bird doo in the house.
Three French hens (France)
There is no specific species of chicken called a ‘French hen’ so we recommend buying your lover flights to France and taking them to a fancy restaurant to eat poullet basquaise – a delicious dish of chicken, ham, peppers and smoky paprika. Find cheap flights to France
Four calling birds (USA)
It’s thought that the word ‘calling birds’ derived from ‘collie’ bird, meaning black, which means that the calling birds in question are in fact: Blackbirds. Quite why you would want to give your true love four of these is beyond us (it would make more sense to give them four and twenty blackbirds, the exact amount required for Blackbird pie).
However, if your lover is a plane spotter, grab flights to New York where you can visit the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum and see Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird – the record breaking supersonic aircraft. Find cheap flights to New York
Five gold rings (South Africa)
Ok now we’re talking. Forget raiding the local aviary for gifts, impressing a lover is all about the bling, right? To really show your other half how much you care, take them to Kromdraai Gold Mine just outside of Johannesburg in South Africa where you can go deep into the heart of the mountain to learn about the traditional methods of mining gold ore. Find cheap flights to Jo’burg
Six geese a-laying (Canada)
The world’s most famous type of goose is the Canada Goose which is native to arctic and temperate regions of Canada and the USA, and if you want to see them laying – spring is the best time to visit. The other option is to cut out the middleman and just give your true love six goose eggs which can be purchased from farm shops and markets all over the country. Find cheap flights to Canada
Seven swans a-swimming (UK)
Many myths surround swans including one about them all belonging to the Queen. The truth of the matter is that only swans along a certain section of the Thames come under the protection of Her Majesty. However, swans just don’t make great gifts; they hiss, they eat all your bread, and they can break a man’s arm with one flap of their wings.
Eight maids a-milking (England)
Skyscanner does not advocate the kidnapping of milk maids to give away as gifts, but you can witness cows being milked at various working farms around the world. Forge Mill farm within Sandwell Valley Country Park in West Bromich offers you the chance to watch the milking process every afternoon from a viewing gallery.
Nine ladies dancing (New York)
A trip down to your local nightclub on a Saturday night would no doubt allow you to see nine, or quite possibly more, ladies dancing. However, we put it to you that your lover might be more impressed with a trip to see the New York City ballet in the Big Apple instead. Find cheap flights to New York
Ten Lords a-leaping (London)
Lords – the home of cricket – in London is the best place to see men dressed in whites, leaping, jumping, bowling and batting. The other option is a trip to the Houses of Parliament, in which you’ll find the House of Lords. Sadly, Lord Sugar and his buddies are not likely to be leaping around, and even if they were, visitors are not permitted to enter the chamber whist the Lords are in session anyway. Find cheap flights to London
Eleven pipers piping (Scotland)
There’s only one place to come to find the finest pipers piping, and that’s in Scotland. A stroll down Princes Street will normally reveal one or two pipers playing, but if you want to up the numbers, check out the Red Hot Chilli Pipers who spread their bagpipe love to audiences across the world.
Twelve drummers drumming (Japan)
The remote island of Sado off the west coast of Japan is home to the legendary Kodo drummers. Living communally, these hardy folk dedicate themselves to a tough regime in order to train in the ancient art of taiko drumming. Their shows are said to convey ‘primal power, infectious excitement and heaven-shaking sound’. If you can’t make it all the way to Japan to see one of their amazing drumming shows, don’t worry, Kodo tour the world every year. Find cheap flights to Japan