Remember travelling the world, collecting memories and even sometimes little trinkets to remind you of your adventures? What great times they were.
Souvenir shopping is a spectrum. At one end you have me, who stopped buying souvenirs the more I travelled, and when I do it has a very particular story attached. On the other end, you have my Auntie who barely sees her surrounds because she’s so busy shopping for — well, everything.
Still, no matter where you sit on that spectrum, certain items will always represent certain countries, so it makes sense that some souvenirs stand out from others. Club Med took it upon themselves to find out exactly which souvenir that was from each country. If there wasn’t a clear winner, then the country was just left out (sorry about it).
In news that surprises no one, the most popular souvenir for travellers to take with them from Australia is a boomerang, make of that what you will.
Our little brothers in New Zealand are still really pulling that Lord Of The Rings crowd, with travellers hunting down that One Ring. There’s a lot of cultural arts and crafts themes happening with all the surrounding islands.
Patterned textiles are all the rage for travellers around Africa, and who could blame them. The striking colours in many fabrics around this continent are irresistible — like the woven twig rugs of Malawi and the fabrics of Zimbabwe.
Besides fabrics, there’s once again a clear trend for local, hand crafted wares. With the exception of items like beauty favourite, Argon Oil, from Morocco and soccer shirts from Burkino Faso.
Firstly, can we all take a moment to acknowledge that harem pants are the most popular souvenir to buy in Thailand — probably entirely thanks to the German backpacker population.
Everywhere else, the most popular items from each country seem to either speak to the unique cuisine — like spices from India and Beer Lao shirts from Laos— or the unique culture — like origami paper from Japan and matryoshka dolls from Russia.
Personally, I’m loving Lego as Denmark’s top souvenir. Considering it was invented b a Danish carpenter the 1930s, and is apparently much cheaper here, this isn’t as surprising as it seems.
Everyone grabbing an umbrella from the UK made me chuckle. I can also confirm that I personally own a Venetian mask, and they’re so incredibly beautiful who could blame us travellers for getting in on the action when they head to Venice.
North/ Central America
Look, having live in Canada for a couple of years (yes, like most Aussies) I can confirm that their maple syrup just hits different — if you’re ever there you should absolutely stock up.
I also definitely went to the Luche Libre wrestling in Mexico, and bought a mask for my nephew, and the whole thing was a delight. Central America seems to really be about the local delicacies though.
Ok I bought a hammock for my brother in Colombia, so now I feel like I did it wrong. South America in general really seems to step up the souvenir game though — from local delicacies like coffee in Ecuador, to leather goods in Argentina and Lapis Lazuli jewellery in Chile.
(All Images: Provided / Club Med )
Kassia is the Editor of AWOL, and a straight-up travel addict. She was born without a sense of direction, yet an intense desire to explore the world. As such, she's lost 90% of the time but she's learned to roll with it. You can catch her latest adventures on Instagram @probably_kassia.