Best advent calendars for a stylish Christmas
The 1st of December has become one of the most exciting days in the festive season. It’s Advent Calendar day!
In the past, this meant a different Christmas-inspired picture or chocolate disc for each of the next 25 days. But thanks to the introduction of the luxury advent calendar, containing anything from gin to jewellry, December has got a whole lot more exciting.
But as well as including 24 special items, we also want our calendars to look gorgeous. So here’s our selection of the best advent calendars for 2023 to get your home looking stylish for the festive season.
For the elegant home
First up, our roundup of the best advent calendars that look gorgeous on the outside, and offer a daily homeware treat in the lead-up to Christmas.
Advent In the Farm Shop
From Fattoria La Vialla £152
This advent calendar is perfect for foodies, or anyone who needs a little dose of Tuscan sunshine to brighten up their December.
Advent in the Farm Shop is stocked with delectable delights from Fattoria La Vialla, a family-run, organic and biodynamic farm and wine estate in Tuscany. The farm has selected the very best of its hand-grown and home-made wines, olive oil, tomato sauces and pasta for this advent calendar, which will bring a taste of an authentic Italian Christmas straight to your door.
The large box is beautifully illustrated with a picture of La Vialla’s farm shop painted by family friend Rosaria, with its stone building and russet red roof tiles adorned with festive lights, garlands, presents and a Christmas tree.
On the inside are 24 Italian full-size products from the farm, including red, white and sparkling wines, oil and vinegar, sausages, sauces, biscuits and chocolates.
In a lovely touch, once you’ve emptied out the calendar of its 24 treats and remove the lid of the box, it turns into a miniature version of the farm shop. The advent calendar comes with a booklet containing cut-out images of peppers and tomatoes, bread and eggs, to hams and cheeses that you can stick onto cardboard to decorate your shop. So once you’ve enjoyed all the fine wines, pastas and truffles, you can pass the casing onto the kids to keep them occupied once all the presents are opened.
You also get a Handbook from the farm, which includes a wealth of information on all the different products, including ingredient details and recipe ideas.
If you’re after something a bit sweeter, Fattoria La Vialla is also offering The Mini Advent. This advent calendar is packed with 60 Italian sweet surprises made in the farm’s bakery-workshop, from candied peel and chocolate-coated nuts to walnut and almond biscuits.
The box is decorated with a cute Tuscan woodland theme, and each of the 24 windows contains a painting of local wildlife on the inside, along with its Italian name, so you can brush up on your language skills while enjoying your daily sweet treat.
Both calendars are shipped directly from the farm to the UK, but they arrive at a central UK warehouse so there are no import duties to dampen your Christmas cheer.
A V&A Christmas museum facade advent calendar
From V&A Shop £12
Where better to take inspiration for a stylish festive season than the UK’s home of art and design, the V&A Museum.
This advent calendar features a beautiful image of the V&A Museum’s facade, in rich purple, red and gold hues.
Each window opens to reveal an item from the museum’s collection, along with background information on the object, giving you a daily dose of design inspiration in the lead-up to Christmas.
Tealight Advent Calendar
From St. Eval £39.95
The cute winter woodland theme of this calendar will perfectly match any nature-inspired festive scheme.
Inside, you’ll find 24 St. Eval tealight candles that will keep your home beautifully scented every day during advent. Each tealight burns for up to 6 hours.
The 24 different fragrances, ranging from forest to ocean breeze, will bring warmth and happiness to your home.
You’ll need to be quick to order this one. The calendars have already sold out once this year. But St. Eval assures us they are getting more stock in, and you can pre-order one now for delivery in late November.
Papier Advent Calendar
From Papier £120
This is the first advent calendar from stationary brand Papier.
The stylish emerald green box has an art deco vibe with its geometric swirls, and opens like a briefcase.
Inside are 24 individual gift boxes in shades of blue, green and white. Each contains an item that will smarten up your home office, from elegant notecards and pens, to washi tape and paperclips, bookmarks and journals.
Wooden Christmas Mantel Village Advent Calendar
From Balsam Hill £259
This wooden advent calendar with its 24 pitched roof houses will look fabulous on a mantlepiece, dresser or dining table. It has the look of a warm and cosy Christmas market, transporting you to Cologne or Vienna during advent.
The calendar is made from plywood, hand painted, and features amber LED lights. You can mark the countdown to Christmas by turning on the light for each day with the remote control included. There’s also a built-in timer, which leaves the lights on for 6 hours and off for 18 hours.
This is ideal for an eco-friendly Christmas as you can pack the advent calendar away and use it year after year.
For the sweet tooth
Next, the best advent calendars with edible treats, which are delicious inside and out.
Pierre Marcolini Frosty Christmas Advent Calendar
The Frosty Christmas Advent Calendar from Belgian chocolatier Maison Pierre Marcolini is one of the cutest designs we’ve come across. We’re sure it will prove popular with children and adults alike, and will look gorgeous in a bedroom, living room or kitchen.
Remove the candy cane-themed red and white striped cardboard wrapper from the calendar, slide open the two doors and you’re greeted by 24 dinky boxes. Each contains a special treat, from Christmas truffles and Petits Bonheurs to crunchy pralines and chocolate animals.
The outside packaging is decorated with a snow scene with Santa’s elves, and each mini box is decorated with a festive image, from baubles to holly and stars.
Better still, all the packaging is made from cardboard, with no plastic wrappings, so you’ll be doing your bit for the environment while enjoying the run-up to Christmas.
Luxury Chocolate Truffle Advent Calendar
Love Cocoa £25
This gold-embossed calendar will certainly brighten up any home at Christmas. With fun festive images depicting typical UK scenes, from a traditional telephone box and London double decker bus, to dogs, cyclists and families round the dinner table, this will give you a warm glow wherever you put it in the house.
Love Cocoa was founded by James Cadbury, great-great-great grandson of the original Mr Cadbury, and he is certainly keeping the family traditions alive.
As a certified B Corp company and a 100% plastic-free calendar, you won’t be added to Santa’s naughty for the planet list.
On the inside, there are four handmade truffle varieties: Hazelnut Praline Heart, Giant Hazelnut Rocher, Salted Caramel Truffle and Spiced Gingerbread Truffle. And an extra special large treat for Christmas eve.
VistaPrint Personalised Advent Calendar
If you’re after an advent calendar with a truly personal touch, VistaPrint has just the thing. It’s offering a range of chocolate advent calendars that you can customise with your favourite photo. S
Pick a suitably festive image, maybe a family photo from Christmas dinner last year or a snowy scene. Or you could follow or lead and choose pictures of your cherished pets or sunny holidays to warm up a cold winter day, and impress your loved one with such a personal gift.
Once you’ve chosen between A4 or A5 size, horizontal or vertical format, and classic or vegan chocolate, you can add any picture of your choice. You can crop the image in the editing tool so it displays exactly how you want, and you can add a Christmas message, too.
Lindor Pick & Mix Advent Calendar
Swiss chocolate maker Lindt is always a firm favourite for kids and adults alike come Christmas. They’re offering a wide range of advent calendars this year, including a bespoke Pick & Mix calendar, where you can either visit a Lindt shop or their website to choose 24 of your preferred chocolates and truffles for your loved one.
In its deep red box with a wreath design studded with Lindor truffles, this will add a glow to your home, and give you a delicious daily treat.
Or there’s the Lindt Festive Selection Advent Calendar, in a deep blue box with a Christmas tree design made up of all your favourite festive chocolates. And they’re all included inside too, with 24 treats from a gold foil reindeer, Santa and Lindor truffles.
Gourmet Marshmallow Advent Calendar
This cute winter scene is bound to get you in the mood for festive activities in the run-up to Christmas. Its box is decorated with people ice skating and tree decorating, skiing and sitting round a roaring fire toasting marshmallows.
With 25 squidgy mallows to try, you’re in for a sweet treat.
With flavours ranging from Strawberry Cream and Candy Floss to S’mores and Mint Choc Chip, there’s nothing standard about these marshmallows. And the larger central door for Christmas Day hides a special treat with a chocolate-covered delight.
If you want to add a marshmallow toaster to your calendar, it’s an extra £3.95 for a tin with gel you can light each day and bamboo skewers.
The Shortbread Advent Calendar
For some of us, Christmas wouldn’t be the same without a tin of Walker’s shortbread. If you’ve got someone in your life who feels the same, this advent calendar is perfect.
With its design of red and green tartan overlaid with snowflakes, you’ll bring a touch of Highland Christmas cheer to your home with this calendar on display.
The calendar opens up like a book, depicting a festive scene of Aberlour in the Scottish Highlands, the home of Walker’s Shortbread. Inside, it’s filled with all-butter goodies like shortbread stars and hearts, salted caramel squares and chocolate chip rounds.
And it’s cardboard-only packaging means its fully eco-friendly and recyclable.
Best drinks advent calendars
Our roundup of the best advent calendars for tea lovers and those who love a festive tipple.
Christmas In Love Tea Advent Calendar
Mariage Frères £48
The Mariage Frères advent calendar has been designed as a tribute to Paris, and is perfect for any tea afficionados in your life.
Encased in a vibrant red box, it’s studded with small white dots evoking drops of snow and embossed with gold design and text.
The calendar is styled like a book and opens by untying a white satin ribbon on the side. It will certainly look elegant in your kitchen and add a festive glow.
France’s luxury tea emporium has filled the box with 25 different blends, including a Mariage Frères new festive tea for a very merry start to Christmas Day.
You can purchase the calendar at the brand’s Covent Garden store or via its website.
25 Spirits for 25 Days Christmas Advent Calendar
From The Whisky Exchange £145
In its stylish green casing embossed with a festive gold design, this advent calendar will look gorgeous on your kitchen counter or bar.
The lucky dip calendar will take you on a journey of discovery, with its mix of familiar tipples along with some more unusual ones. With 25 fine spirits and whiskies from around the globe, it will certainly make the run-up to Christmas that bit more exciting.
The calendar includes all kinds of spirits from whisky and rum to amaro and Calvados. And there’s an extra special treat on Christmas Day.
If you prefer sticking with just the one spirit, the same company offers a whisky advent calendar.
The Whisky Exchange 25 Whiskies of the World Advent Calendar also retails at £145. The deep purple box and silver box encases 25 different whiskies, including exclusive bottlings, under-the-radar choices, and favourites from around the world.
Fever-Tree Ultimate Gin & Tonic Advent Calendar
From John Lewis £65
For those who prefer gin to whisky, the Fever-Tree Ultimate Gin & Tonic Advent Calendar is a great choice. With its nature-inspired festvive design, with mellow greens, blues and pinks, the box will add a stylish touch to your home come December.
Behind the 24 doors is either a Fever-Tree mixer or a premium craft gin mini. We love the idea of combining craft gins with a premium mixer, so every other day you have a gin and tonic. Ideal for those who like a tipple but not necessarily every day.
Ranging from classic London Dry to Pink Pepper and Sloe, and gin makers like Sipsmith and Hayman’s, the 12 gins have been paired with a mixer specially selected by Fever-Tree experts. Whether it’s Spanish Clementine or Ginger Ale, it’s guaranteed to go perfectly with your gin that day.
Whisky Tour of Scotland Luxury Advent Calendar £179.95
From Master of Malt £179.95
The carved, hand-made wooden cabinet alone is reason to splash out on this advent calendar. You won’t want to throw this case out with the post-Christmas rubbish, and you could definitely find a good use for it as a storage unit around the home.
The calendar contains 24 rare and aged single malt and blended expressions from five Scotch whisky regions. It’s ideal for Whisky enthusiasts or as an introduction to the range.
And there’s a special aged whisky behind the door on Christmas Eve. You also get two nosing glasses and a colour gold-foiled brochure with tasting notes.
Japanese Whisky Advent Calendar from Drinks by the Dram
From Master of Malt £249.95
If you’re a whisky fan but after something a bit different, the Japanese Whisky Advent Calendar could be just the thing. This ornately decorated calendar offers 24 Japanese whiskies, each bottled in a hand-waxed 30ml glass dram.
Ranging from Mars Maltage Cosmo, Nikka Days and Hakushu Distiller’s Reserve, these daily tipples will make your Christmas countdown a real adventure in whisky.
Housed in a choice of two designs – Original or Kintsugi – we particularly like the latter, with its geometric shapes in shades of blue and red. A stylish addition to your Christmas décor.
That Boutique-y Gin Company Advent Calendar
From Master of Malt £59.95
This is another calendar with looks to match what’s on the inside from Drinks by the Dram and That Boutique-y Gin Company.
The calendar’s purple brick design with windows showing a glimpse of different festive scenes will bring that cosy Christmas feeling into your home.
With 24 wax-sealed 30ml bottles, you can try out a different flavour each day, from Moonshot to Cherry.
Newby Tea Advent Calendar
From NEWBY £85.00
For those who love a cuppa, the Newby 2023 Tea Advent Calendar – the Tea Palace will be a real treat. The calendar is housed in a purple box with pops of neon organge, purple and green, and shaped to evoke the grandeur of Rajasthani palaces.
The Tea Palace is a tribute to India, the home of so many well-loved teas, and is illustrated with depictions of chaiwalas, Rajasthani dancers and palace residents.
With 96 teabags – 4 teabags per drawer – you won’t be restricted to just one cup per day. There are also three loose-leaf tea pouches.
From Assam to Masala Chai, Green Tea to Herbal Tea, this calendar will transport you from a dreary December morning to the lush landscapes of India.