Before a trip, I google what the area is known to produce and what they are known for. Guatemala is known for textiles and we certainly brought back several amazing blankets and scarves. We try to purchase functional souvenirs, although we also bring back a magnet and shot glass from each area as well. Functional souvenirs we have purchased: potholders from Portugal, vases from Nicaragua, coffee spoons from Egypt, beautiful silk table linen from Vietnam, handmade coffee mugs from Costa Rica and brass key holders from London. Blake and I both enjoy art and love our handmade limestone statues from Egypt. We did purchase plates from Egypt, but when we arrived home, we realized they were made in China. LOL! We do not purchase items made from animals.
Since we backpack, purchasing souvenirs can be cumbersome. We typically purchase an inexpensive suitcase to hold our souvenirs/gifts and then carry that suitcase as a carry on and check our backpacks on the way back. This ensures our souvenirs/gifts are not broken. Needless to say, we have a great deal of luggage in our closets. If we have checked out of our hotel and not sure where we are staying next, we ask the hotel desk to hold our suitcase for us so we don’t have to carry it with us that day. We then return and retrieve the suitcase once we know where we are going. We brought the most souvenirs back from Egypt and the least from Galapagos. Our photos are our favorite souvenirs. For Christmas, Blake purchased me a great Sony NEX-3NL/B camera. This way, we both are able to take photos during the trip. I prefer to be behind the camera. Our upcoming Panama trip will be the first trip where we both have great cameras with us. Looking forward to taking better shots than him!!!
Stephanie Burgess January 30, 2014