Having the opportunity to go on a world cruise is truly once-in-a-lifetime. Affording you with the chance to visit a plethora of incredible locations, from remote corners of an untouched island to some of the best-known cities across the globe, finding the perfect souvenirs to commemorate your trip is essential.
It can be had to find the perfect gift to take home from your cruise; after all, it is likely that you’ll be inundated with locals trying to sell you small mementoes to remember your trip by and gift shops offering a variety of trinkets. However, it is important to look beyond these tourist traps and find something small that perfectly summarises your time in a particular location.
We spoke to travel bloggers to ask them what their favourite souvenirs that they’ve picked up from their travels are to provide you with some inspiration for your around the world cruise, whilst including a few suggestions of our own. Take a look below to find out more.
A handmade vase from the Netherlands
Buying local handmade products are not only a wonderful reminder of your trip but a great way to support local communities and shop sustainably whilst on your cruise. Travel blogger My Ticklefeet revealed they have recently been consciously shopping only for souvenirs made by local artisans and has some tips on how to find authentic mementoes: “Look for fair trade stores for local handicraft near you when you travel or ask your hotel staff for recommendations. Some of these stores can surprise you with the variety of handmade souvenirs they offer.”
Colourful ceramic tiles from Portugal
Ceramic tiles, or azulejos, are everywhere in Portugal, you will see them lining the inside and outside of almost every kind of building, from bars and shops to churches and public buildings. The fantastic travel blog The Backpacker Co suggests that “buying a tile item in one of the many souvenir shops around the country would be a perfect way to bring back a little bit of Portugal” and we have to agree! You could even bring back tiles numbers or letters to create a plaque for your home, giving you a fantastic reminder of your cruise whenever you see your front door!
Fair-trade precious gems from Colombia
Sometimes, on a once-in-a-lifetime holiday such as a world cruise, you want an extra special souvenir and what better way to remember such an amazing holiday than with a piece of precious jewellery. You may not know this, but travel blogger Chimu Adventures revealed that “gem traders travel to Colombia to purchase the best emeralds in the world which, in the largest producing country, also happen to be the cheapest” and recommends that precious or semi-precious stones are a wonderful memento from your time in Colombia.
A bungy Jump T-shirt from New Zealand
With many of the souvenirs in this list, it’s unlikely you’ll be the only person to own them, but how about taking home a particularly rare memento in the form of a commemorative t-shirt to celebrate an epic bungy jump? In an interview with travel blog I’ve been bit, Stacey of The Wandering Bajans revealed that her favourite souvenir is from a special t-shirt she received from doing a 134m bungy jump in New Zealand known as the Nevis Bungy. On why it is her favourite souvenir, she says “It is so special to me because I did something I never thought I could do…Every time I put on that shirt it makes me smile and brings back the memories of that day.”
Sweets and snacks from Japan
When visiting Japan on your cruise, one of the first things you will notice when browsing the shops is that sweet treats and snacks are everywhere and are available in every flavour you can think of. You won’t be able to keep these mementoes forever, but they make great unusual gifts for friends and family.
If you would like a more traditional gift, try picking up some matcha green tea to take home with you. Matcha is a very common flavour in Japan and The Backpacker Co include matcha in their roundup on some of the best souvenirs to buy around the world: “matcha is everywhere…Pick some up at a speciality tea shop, supermarket or even at the airport and get your loved ones hooked”.
Tea from China
It may seem cliché, but the selection of speciality tea in China makes for the most versatile souvenir. We all have experienced when a taste or smell can take you back to a treasured memory, so why not relive your cruise with a taste of China in the form of a cup of tea? A great suggestion from The Backpacker Co is to also bring home a painted teacup or mug to drink it from.
Sand art from Cambodia
When walking through the many market stalls of Cambodia, you’re likely to spot a talented stallholder carefully designing these small works of art. In their roundup of the best souvenirs from around the world, Sapna fromMy Simple Sojourn said that this little bottle was the most interesting souvenir they’d bought from their trip: “I noticed a guy was doing something under a bulb on the table. On closer look, I noticed that he was pouring sand into a bottle and making sand art in it...He closed the bottle with a cork and tied a small square cloth on it and the whole thing looked beautiful”. These intricately designed bottles take over an hour to make and if you speak to the stallholder, they can even be customised.
An ethical gift from Thailand
An amazing way to ‘give back’ whilst on holiday is to support local worthy causes in each destination you visit. Tourism is of course very profitable to a county’s economy, but certain tourist attractions can be harmful to the local environment or native animals. In Thailand, for example, elephant rides have been very popular in the past. Thankfully, they are now being offered less and less, and they have even been banned in Cambodia’s Angkor Wat temple. Speaking to I’ve been bit, travel blogger from Travel and Tash received a handmade water carrier after she spent a day volunteering at an elephant sanctuary. Gifts like this are not only totally unique reminders of your trip but you also know that the money spent on it is going towards a worthwhile cause.