Over the last 15 years my wife and I have gone on many trips to Europe, some on RS tours and some on our own. We like to “pack light” and each of us uses a 45L backpack that works perfect for storage in the overhead bins and giving us enough room for our clothes and we really enjoy traveling this way. The one down side what to do if you decide to bring back “souvenirs”?
I have never been a fan buying keychains, mugs, frig. Magnets, etc that seems to fill the stores of major tourist attractions, but we would like to bring something back that always reminds us of the wonderful time we had, so this is what we do:
1) We try to find a Tea Towel represents the area of where we have been. I know this sounds silly but we rotate the towels and every time I walk into the kitchen (way to frequently) I’m reminded of the trip! (Easy to pack)
2) We try to find one article of clothing to buy, my wife and I bought merino sweaters made in Ireland, we wore these on the plane home (always cold on the flights) and still wear them every winter.
3) We try to find one piece of jewelry on each trip that represents something we experienced, like a necklace from one of the Greek Islands, ear rings purchased at Versailles Palace, France, a bracelet from the Galleria in Milan, etc. Jewelry takes up very little space!
4) I like to buy drawings or watercolor prints of the area we visited, I bring clear plastic sleeves in my backpack and put the prints in the sleeves so they stay nice until they get home, then I frame them and they are on our walls at home and in my office.
I would like for others to share their stories of souvenirs that they bring home!!