One of the best ways to remember your next epic trip is to pick up a meaningful souvenir. A souvenir will serve as a constant reminder of the memories that you made on your travels. Especially if you are tight on luggage space, you want to pick up a memento that is easy to transport. Here are three ways to find meaningful and thoughtful souvenirs when you are out exploring the world around you.
The most meaningful souvenirs and gifs are the ones that are a direct reflection of the place that you visited. For this reason, it is a good idea to focus on picking up local gifts. Locally sourced crafts, paintings, jewelry, and clothing and accessories are all ideas that will represent the area that you visited.
Some of the best gifts and souvenirs are of the edible variety. A classic souvenir is a bottle of wine made in the region that you visited. This is particularly relevant if you are traveling in an area known for its wine production, such as Northern California, France, or South America. Or pick up a six-pack of craft beer from a local brewery for that beer snob in your life.
Food is another great souvenir item. Ideas to consider include maple syrup from New England, quality olive oil from Italy, lavender from France, spices from Morocco, and huckleberry jam from Montana. Be sure to pack gifts that will travel well and not spoil along the journey back home.
As a bonus, you will also feel good about supporting the local economy and being a responsible traveler.
If you are picking up souvenir gifts for children, you need to make sure that you keep playtime as the focus. Kids of all ages and interests delight in receiving stuffed animals. You can make this particularly thoughtful by picking up a stuffed animal representative of the area that you visited. For example, an alpaca fur stuffed animal is a great gift after a trip to South America. Or consider a bison after a trip to Colorado or a dolphin from Florida.
Kids also love collectibles. If you have not already started a travel collection for your children, consider ideas such as snowglobes, pressed pennies, and magnets. Regardless of whether your child is along for the trip or waiting for a gift when you arrive home, they will love building their global collection of mementos.
Educational gifts will also provide hours of entertainment. Books that are related to the destination are a great way to expand a child’s horizons. Stickers, puzzles, and maps are also fantastic ideas if you are looking to provide entertainment while also piquing your child’s natural curiosity about the world around them.
You can choose a gift that is both thoughtful and functional if you think creatively. The goal is to find a souvenir that is equally reflective of the culture of the destination while still providing practical value when back home. Regardless of if this is a gift for someone back home or something that you are going to keep for yourself, emphasizing both sentimentality and functionality will ensure that the souvenir is well-loved for years to come.
For example, if visiting Japan, consider bringing back a ceramic tea kettle. If your travels take you to Italy, a genuine Italian leather belt or wallet or a piece of Venetian glass is a great idea. Anyone will appreciate a bottle of French perfume from the streets of Paris or a gorgeous rug from Morocco. By choosing something that will be used often, the recipient will never forget the thoughtfulness of this special gift.
Holiday decorations are another good souvenir idea that also serves a practical purpose. Perhaps you want to start a tradition of picking a Christmas tree ornament from every trip destination? This makes for great fun when you decorate the tree each year and reminisce about all of the travel adventures that you have shared with loved ones.
Do not waste precious luggage space on gifts that do not have special meaning. When looking for the perfect souvenir, be sure to focus on items that you cannot find anywhere else.