It’s the week before Christmas. You’re zig-zagging around a packed mall, desperately searching for a present for that impossible-to-buy-for brother. The handles of the 14 bags you’ve been lugging around for hours are digging into your hands. You’ve just realised you have no idea what you’re going to eat on the big day. And your bank balance is hurtling towards zero.

Relax. Stop what you’re doing and have a flick through the festive issue of What’s On – we’ve got all the answers.

Let’s start with the food. We’ve got festive brunches, lunches and dinners at some of Dubai’s best-loved restaurants. If you haven’t got the energy to put on your glad rags and go out, why not stay home and order in a takeaway hamper for dinner? We’ve got lots of those too. On the other hand, if you do want to get dressed up and paint the town red, you might get some inspiration from our party pampering guide.

We’ve also picked out some of the loveliest afternoon teas in Dubai that are running special Christmas editions of the traditional combo of tea, sandwiches and cake – your mum will love it. If you want to get your hands dirty in the kitchen, why not try our baking recipes – or have a crack at making Marco Pierre White’s recipe for cranberry sauce.

Take the stress out of buying those last minute presents by browsing our gift guide. We’ve rounded up some gorgeous gifts ideas for all the family, even that awkward brother.

If you’re looking for stuff to do, take a peek at our previews of two Christmas pantomimes, read interviews with the cast of hit musical Chicago and find out about the spectacular Michael Jackson tribute show, all of which are coming to the UAE this month.

Looking ahead to the arrival of 2014, check out our guide to New Year’s Eve: what to do and where to see the largest firework display in the history of the UAE.

Elsewhere, we’ve got an exclusive interview with Andy Murray as he warms up for the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi, there’s a look at the paradise island of the Maldives, plus all the winners and party pictures from the What’s On Awards.

And if all that present-buying has left you short of cash we have news of a great free dessert offer. Yes, free dessert.

The new issue of What’s On is available to buy right now.