Most of us love to travel. There’s nothing like a vacation to get away from the daily grind–and it’s a bonus if we can take in some new scenery by visiting a city, state, or country we’ve never been to before.
And, if you’re like me, you like to bring home at least one souvenir to remind you of your trip.
The go-to choices when it comes to souvenirs seem to be magnets, postcards, and maybe t-shirts, but today, we’re going to give you some more creative ideas.
Here are 10 souvenir ideas that will not only remind you of your adventures, but that you’ll value long after your vacation has ended.
And remember, souvenirs aren’t just tokens to help you remember your latest trip. If you want to share your love of travel, souvenirs can make great gifts for friends and family, especially the souvenir ideas we’re showing you today.
Unique Souvenir Ideas for Your Next Vacation
A Photo Canvas
Having a photo canvas created from a favorite vacation photo is probably my favorite way to remember a special trip. What better way to relive those memorable moments than to make them part of your home?
We took an incredible trip to Luxembourg and Belgium recently, and when we returned, I used Photowall to order a few canvases of my best photos. They’re now a beautiful part of my decor, and I smile every time I look at them remembering my amazing vacation!
You could also use your own special photos to create a poster, or even your own custom-made wallpaper. Photowall also has some gorgeous designs of their own too–many travel-related!
Artisan or Handmade Crafts, Decorations, or Clothing
I always love anything handmade versus the mass-produced knick-knacks you’ll find in many souvenir shops.
Anywhere you travel will have artisan-made crafts, decorations, and clothing you can buy, even if you have to get off the beaten path a bit to find them.
And, buying from small, family-run businesses is a terrific way to support the local economy.
If you want to buy something you can wear, skip the generic tees with the city or country’s name across the front. Instead, why not choose something like a handmade scarf or handwoven sweater? It’s something that you’ll have for a lifetime, and every time you wear it, you’ll think about where you got it.
If you’re buying a gift, and you’re not sure what to look for, most countries have their own unique holiday ornaments with a special meaning behind them. For example, Germany has the Christmas pickle ornament, red apple ornaments are popular in France, shell ornaments adorn Christmas trees in Australia, and in Japan, you’ll find origami bird ornaments.
I think collecting an ornament from each place you travel would be a wonderful tradition to start!
Local Foods or Cooking Ingredients
Trying the local cuisine is one of the best things about traveling. Whether you find a favorite restaurant or discover a tasty new snack, sometimes it’s the new foods you’ve discovered that you miss the most when you return home.
Luckily, you can almost always find shops that sell your favorite goodies in boxes that are made specifically for touriststs to take home. Or, shop the local stores yourself to put together a box of everything you love.
Think olive oil and pasta from Italy, salt water taffy from the East Coast, and chocolates from Belgium to name a few. And, any of these would make unique gifts, especially for your foodie friends and family.
Another way to remember a special trip is with art. There are so many beautiful places in the world, and wherever you visit, you can usually find local artists who create paintings, photographs, or sketches of those memorable scenes.
If you don’t find what you’re looking for while you’re on vacation, you could even pick up artwork when you get home. I sometimes use Etsy to find local artists from around the country and the world. A bonus in getting artwork of your favorite places after you come home–you don’t have to pack it and take it with you on the plane.
For most of us, paper maps aren’t something we use anymore, but they can be useful if you don’t have a wi-fi connection or cell signal.
Maps can be really beautiful too! A map of a city, state or country you love makes a marvelous souvenir, and it will look terrific in a frame.
You can even buy vintage maps online, or for a slightly different take, how about a map you can use to document your travels, like this world scratch-off map or this US one? There are push-pin maps too.
Jewelry is one of the best souvenir ideas for a few reasons.
First, it’s something you can wear and enjoy every day.
Secondly, jewelry is lightweight and easily packable. Or, if you wear it home, you don’t have to pack it at all.
You may also be able to get a great deal on jewelry depending on where you’re traveling. Sometimes silver or certain gemstones are less expensive in certain regions of the world, so you can pick up a bargain.
If you’re shopping for jewelry on your travels, look for something unique to the area, something that will always remind you when and where you bought it.
Wallets, Purses, and Bags
Unique or handcrafted wallets, purses, and other kinds of bags are also good souvenirs.
As with some of the other souvenir ideas on our list, these are things you can use every day. And, each time you do, you’ll remember your travels.
Again, skip the factory-made items, and look for locally-owned shops to find those unique, high-quality pieces.
If you’ve traveled out of the country and exchanged your currency, you have a ready-made souvenir–yes, cash!
If you’re in the US, you know our paper money is all green and all the bills are the same size. Our money is a little boring, but that’s not the case in other countries.
So, if at the end of your trip, you’ve got a few extra euros, or pesos, or pounds left over, why not save them as a fun souvenir.
Wine and Spirits
Even if you don’t drink often, wine (or other spirits) brought home from your travels can make a wonderful souvenir, as well as a unique gift. Many locations have a signature wine or liqor. Think wine from California or France, sake from Japan, chianti from Italy, or the local scotch from Scotland.
And, unlike most food items you might pick up on vacation, wines and spirits don’t have to be consumed right away, so you can save it for special occasions.
Skin Care, Cosmetics, and Fragrances
Depending on where you’ve traveled, you might have noticed that high-end skin care products and fragrances are far less expensive in other countries. If you love to try the latest and best in skin care or fragrance, your vacation abroad might be the perfect opportunity to stock up or to try something new.
You’ll think about where you bought your perfumes and skin care products every time you use them.
There you have it, 10 of our favorite unique souvenir ideas. The next time you travel, don’t just bring home a refrigerator magnet or a mass-produced trinket, keep these souvenir ideas in mind instead.
Can you think of any other interesting souvenir ideas we missed? Leave us a comment below.10 Unique Souvenir Ideas for Your Next Vacation | #gifts #travel Click To Tweet