24 Advent Calendar Ideas for Everyone

It’s the most wonderful time of the year– full of festive holiday cheer! Here are some of our favorite Advent calendars for kids and adults to help kick off the Christmas countdown.

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What Is Advent?

Celebrating Advent involves spending time in spiritual preparation for the coming birth of Jesus Christ at Christmas. In Western Christianity, the season of Advent begins on the fourth Sunday prior to Christmas Day, or the Sunday which falls closest to November 30, and lasts through Christmas Eve, or December 24.

This year, Advent begins Sunday, November 29th, and ends Thursday, December 24th. 

Whether you’re looking for a thoughtful Advent calendar for your significant other or a toy calendar for the kids, we’ve got all the ideas so you can count down to Christmas with a new surprise each day!

What Are the Best Toy Advent Calendars for Kids?

  • Playmobil Advent Calendar: Playmobil makes many varieties of Advent calendars, including a Christmas Ball, Farm, Christmas Toy Store, Horse Farm, Heidi’s Winter World, and my personal favorite: Back to the Future.
  • Barbie Dreamtopia Advent Calendar: Kids discover a Barbie doll on day one, then for the next 23 days they open a new present that could be doll clothing, an accessory, or a storytelling piece!
  • Hatchimals CollEGGtibles Advent Calendar: With over 50 surprises hidden behind 24 tiny doors, there’s something new to discover each day – including exclusive characters!
  • Elf on the Shelf Holiday Countdown Calendar: Everyone’s favorite helper can bring sweet milk chocolate treats–one for every day! We can’t imagine how they have time, you know, between all the high jinx they have going on.
advent calendar elf on the shelf
A “Elf on the Shelf” Advent calendar from Five Below
  • Play-Doh Advent Calendar: Perfect for the creative kid in your family– with 24 cans of play-dough and accessories, kids can open new accessories and tools until Christmas.
  • Disney’s Doorables: How could anyone resist these aDOORable figurines? Your child will love checking behind 24 days of doors for these classic character figurines.
doorables advent calendar
Doorables advent calendar at Lidl
  • L.O.L. Surprise #OOTD Outfit of the Day With Limited Edition Doll: L.O.L. Surprise Dolls have been one of the hottest toys of the holiday season for a couple of years now. Kids will love “unboxing” a new accessory each day!
  • Barbie Advent Calendar (Dreamtopia): With this advent calendar, you can open a stylish new accessory every day!
barbie advent calendar
Barbie advent calendar at Lidl for $24.99
  • Slime Advent Calendar: Slime will go down as one of the most iconic toys of the 2010s. With a new “fluffy” slime for each day, your kids will be slimin’ right into the new year.
calendar for advent stockings
puffy slime advent calendar
  • D-FantiX Animal Advent Calendar: Perfect for any animal lover, kids will love opening up a new figurine to add to their collection. By Christmas, they’ll have enough animals to fill an entire zoo! This brand makes lots of other kinds of calendars, so there’s sure to be one that’s perfect for your kids.
  • Harry Potter LEGO Advent Calendar: This adorably festive lego set features one of the most iconic and whimsical scenes from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire– the Yule Ball. Kids (and adults) discovers new pieces each day, so by Christmas, they have a full set! If your kids like LEGOs but not Harry Potter, you can also get a LEGO Star Wars Advent Calendar or City-themed set.
  • Mandalorian: This was one of the hottest shows of 2020–and continues to gain popularity today. It’s hard to miss all the Grogu-themed merch everywhere. 
advent calendar ideas
Mandalorian advent calendar at Five Below

What Are the Best Advent Calendars for Teens and Tweens?

  • Jewelry: Why not commemorate each of the 24 days in Advent with a special charm? This charm bracelet calendar is sure to be a big hit with the jewelry-loving girls in your life!
  • Brain Teaser: With so many of us spending more time at home these days, this brain teaser calendar is a great way to keep your mind sharp and active.
  • Make-Up and Beauty: There are so many fun options for teen and tween girls, whether you’re looking for options for those who aren’t quite ready for “real” make-up or older teens.
  • Nail Polish: Why not celebrate the season with a new bottle of nail polish to commemorate each day of Advent? Though it’s not officially a calendar, this 24 mini-polish set by Shany is a great option for winter manicures!
  • Squishies: For the kids and kids-at-heart! There are lots of adorable mochis and squishies your kids and teens will love in this Advent calendar!

What Are the Best Advent Calendars for Adults?

  • Wine: No better way to settle in for the holiday season than with 24 (mini) bottles of wine! You can find these at Target and Aldi. From a deep Malbec to a light Riesling, there’s something for every wine-lover.
  • Mixologist Advent Calendar: For the connoisseurs and amateurs alike, this calendar is sure to be a win.
mixologist advent calendar
Mixologist Advent calendar sold at Lidl for $39.99
  • Beer: Is the man or woman in your life a huge craft beer fan? Stop by Total Wine and build your own 24-pack (4 6-packs) with all their favorites! Or, you could also do a “12 Beers of Christmas” pre-packaged gift, sold at Lidl.
  • Hot Sauce: Do you need some extra spice in your life? Check out this amazing hot sauce calendar on Amazon, and they’ll have 24 days of spice all the way until Christmas!
  • Beef Jerky: This one is out-of-the-box, but any beef-jerky lover will be delightfully surprised. With this savory advent calendar, ManCrate offers 24 unique flavors—from Honey Bourbon to Sesame Ginger.
  • Estee Lauder Advent Calendar: For the woman in your life who loves perfume, especially this luxury brand, an Estee Lauder advent calendar is perfect to sample all the different iconic fragrances. 
  • Coffee Advent Calendar: Okay, we know it says “12 Days of Christmas,” but who doesn’t love a coffee moment? Or twelve of them?
christmas advent calendar ideas
A “12 Coffees of Christmas” calendar at Lidl for $3.99

Advent Calendar Gifts for Anyone

Chocolate Advent Calendar: You can’t beat the classic! With a little chocolate treat for each day, you and your family will hardly be able to wait for the next day’s surprise!

advent calendar fruit and honey
  • Fruit Spread and Honey: I was in Lidl the other day when I found this amazing-looking fruit spread and honey calendar. What could be more perfect than a new spread each day for your toast?
  • Fancy Cheese Advent Calendar: This is the one I’m most excited about. Whether it’s a sharp cheddar or a mild muenster– grab a pack of crackers and you’re all set! 
  • Dog Treat Advent Calendar: Okay, we know that dogs don’t understand the concept of Advent. Or do they? No, they don’t. But that doesn’t mean they can’t celebrate with us with an advent calendar. 
dog advent calendar
  • Candle Advent Calendar: This is great to set the mood in the evenings leading up to Christmas. Just cross off each day as you light the candle. You can pick one of these up at Aldi!
  • Go Classic with a Garland:  This adorable advent calendar that works perfectly as a decoration. You can fill this classic garland-style advent calendar with goodies and hang it anywhere around your house! You can find them on Amazon, too!
  • Tea Advent Calendar: This is something you can make yourself (stores like Whole Foods have great selections, or even Amazon). DavidsTea also makes a “24 Days of Matcha” Advent Calendar with all things matcha!

Let the Countdown Begin!

Whether you choose to celebrate each day of December with toys, sweets, or even an adult beverage, there’s sure to be an Advent Calendar that your family will love. Be sure to share pictures of your advent surprises each day with the people you love on FamilyApp!

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