Special Mother's Day Experiences and Gifts for Travelers

By Sky Fisher, Epicure & Culture Contributor

Mother’s Day is just a few days away here in the United States. And if you’re looking for a unique way to celebrate the holiday, you’ve come to the right place. Below you’ll find some truly special Mother’s Day experiences — that also give back to local communities around the country.

Many of the offerings can even be booked beyond this weekend. Which is great because moms deserve to be celebrated every day!

Photo credit: Hawaii Mermaid Adventures

1 ) Become A Mermaid  (Maui, Hawaii)

Did you ever dream of being a mermaid when you were a kid? Now you and your mom can make this childhood dream come true with Hawaii Mermaid AdventuresThe Maui-based business puts the environment and local community at the forefront, with a monthly give back plan and ocean education initiatives in every mermaid lesson.

In 2016, employees completed over 552 volunteer hours and raised over $33,000 for local nonprofits, including Hawaiian Islands Land Trust, Sustainable Coastlines, Whale Trust, Maui Youth and Family Services, Maui Cultural Lands, Maui Nui Marine Resource Council, Hawaii Wildlife Fund, and more.

Their love for the environment, however, goes beyond donating money. At the beginning of each two-hour mermaid lesson, guests participate in a mini beach clean-up before learning more about the conservation issues and the impacts of marine plastics and debris. One important educational point is the negative effects of sunscreen on coral reefs with safer alternatives provided.

Did you ever dream of becoming a #mermaid? Here's how to make that dream come true! #travel #bucketlist Click To Tweet
Special Mother's Day
Photo Credit: HarbourView Inn

2) A Southern Retreat With Purpose (Charleston, South Carolina)

Mother-daughter pairs can escape for a soul-rejuvenating weekend, explore historic Charleston and give back to the local community through the B&B-style HarbourView Inn’s Southern Retreat PackageWhile this package was created with solo travelers on an “Eat, Pray, Love”-type journey in mind, HarbourView Inn welcomes mother-daughter pairs to the program.

The program includes everything needed for a rejuvenating weekend, from a complimentary bike for exploring to artisanal breakfast service and exclusive rooftop bar access. Do Good Bonus: guests spend the day volunteering at One80 Place, Charleston’s community kitchen that serves approximately 185 meals each day.

Special mother's day
Photo Credit: Lynfred Winery

3) Sip Wine In Roselle (Roselle , Illinois)

Wine tasting is one of the classiest Mother’s Day activities out there — so why not do it where your tip makes a difference? Three years ago, the staff at Lynfred Winery in C decided to start an Employee Charity of the Month program, where all tips were donated to a local organization. In 2016, they raised over $10,000 for 14 charities.

The winery is continuing the tradition with REACH Rescue, a local cat and dog rescue, during May 2017. While there’s never a bad time for wine tasting, heading to Lynfred Winery on Mother’s Day is the perfect opportunity to give back while getting something for yourself. In fact, ladies receive 50% off a bottle of wine with the purchase of a tasting or bottle.

Check out these special experiences to share with your mom on Mother's Day! #MothersDay #travel Click To Tweet

4) Have An Immersive Culinary Adventure (New York City)

Cooking is something often shared between mothers and daughters around the world. Through Visit.org’s partnership with League of Kitchens, you can continue this bond with one of their immersive culinary experiences. League of Kitchens works with immigrants from around the world who open their NYC homes to guests for hands-on cooking classes. These lessons offer an opportunity not only to learn about new foods and recipes, but to also be introduced to new cultures through food and shared stories.

special Mother's Day
Photo credit: Provenance Hotels

5) Experience English Tradition (Portland, Oregon)

Afternoon tea is an English tradition that Hotel deLuxe offers through three tea sittings every Thursday-Sunday. These 90-minute sittings are complete with custom-blended teas, sandwiches, scones and pastries.

As a celebration of families and the powerful role that women have in raising strong communities, Hotel deLuxe will be donating proceeds from their sparkling wine to the Immigrant & Refugee Center of Oregon (IRCO) from Mother’s Day through June 14th. IRCO provides assistance to immigrants and refugees, particularly families and children resettling in Portland.

Special Mother's Day
Photo Credit: Bhakti Fest

6) Celebrate Divine Feminine Spirit (Joshua Tree, California)

Why celebrate Mother’s Day with one activity when you can celebrate with a weekend-long festival? Shakti Fest began seven years ago as a springtime celebration of divine feminine spirit, with world famous yoga teachers, Kirtan music stars, wisdom workshops, sound baths and a healing sanctuary.

Of this year’s festival, founder Sridhar Silberfein says, “It’s wonderful that we are able to honor the spirit of the universal feminine to align with Mother’s Day this year.”

Shakti Fest is the perfect opportunity for mothers and daughters to connect with themselves and each other — and give back at the same time. Shakti Fest benefits several organizations, including Food for Life, Love Serve Remember, Ramana’s Garden and Seva Foundation.

7) Eat Your Way Through Washington DC

What’s the best way to get to know a city? Exploring the local food joints! Carpe DC Food Tours takes guests beyond the most famous eateries to where the locals go, all while infusing local history and culture into the tour. A food excursion may not seem like the most traditional Mother’s Day experience, but it’s one that’s guaranteed to be memorable.

Carpe DC Food Tours is the first one-for-one food tour in Washington DC, partnering with Bread for the City to feed local residents in need.

Special Mother's Day

8) Create An Impact In Tropical Hawaii

There are few things more relaxing than a tropical getaway, and Hawaii is the perfect destination for mothers and daughters to kick back. Now guests at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa can spend a few hours of their tropical getaway giving back to the Oahu community. Guests can now contribute to the voluntourism program at Wai’anae, a rehabilitation program that focuses on using Hawaiian culture as part of the recovery process. Volunteers participate in the gardening and reforestation program at Wai’anae. Planting a tree at the program and returning each year to plant another is a great mother/daughter tradition to begin.

What’s your favorite special Mother’s Day experience that gives back?


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Sky Fisher is a small-town country girl with a passion for travel. She has a love affair with Central America and currently calls Costa Rica home. Follow her adventures at Sky vs World.

Sky Fisher

Sky Fisher is a small-town country girl with a passion for travel. She has a love affair with Central America and currently calls Costa Rica home. Follow her adventures at Sky vs World.

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