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When I travel, I am a firm believer of collecting souvenirs of my journey along the way and it doesn’t matter if you were in an exotic locale or backpacking in Yellowstone Park. It’s my way of recalling what made the trip special in the first place.
The only caveat is that the souvenir doesn’t have to be extravagant, just special to you. It should allow you to reminisce about the things you did, the people you saw and the way that part of the globe made you feel.
Of course, the most obvious is digital pictures or videos taken by your camcorders. That is the surest way to capture special moments that you can store lovingly in a menagerie of colorful photo albums or archive in your video library. If you bring nothing else on your trip, this is a must in order to collect souvenirs.
Remember to bring memory cards with adequate storage. These days, the price of those cards has decreased significantly. You can get a great deal for a couple of dollars per gig. Buy the largest size that you can afford because you will never know how many pics you will end up taking, so better safe than sorry. You don’t want to end up visiting the local Walgreens to buy an overpriced card simply because you didn’t plan well.
Another tried and true type of souvenir are items that proudly display your vacation locale on various kitschy goods like keychains, shot glasses, bumper stickers, fans, pencils, mugs, and plates. They are the most logical choices for tourists seeking to document their trip, so much so that people end up collecting such items from everywhere that they travel. Some, like my daughter, Carisa, specialize in specific souvenir types. She collects snow globes in every port:
There is one souvenir that we are never remiss in taking advantage of. We like to buy postcards whenever we visit a city. We visit the local post office and write a brief synopsis of the previous day’s activities on the postcard and then we mail it back to our home. If at all possible, we try to do this every day. If we do it every other day, then we try to cover the previous two days’ activities. It acts as a mini diary and a nifty souvenir at the same time:
One of my favorite type of souvenirs is a bottle of alcohol from the region that I visit. While visiting Italy, one may want to buy a bottle of Limoncello. If you are in Prague, you may want to purchase some of their Pilsner Urquell beers. Or splurge on a fine french wine from the countryside when you visit Paris or indulge in a 100% agave Tequila from Mexico. It’s not out of the question for vacationers to purchase large quantities of these spirits and ship them home via postal services like FedEx or UPS. Typically, I do not open these, I store them safely on my wine rack to opened at an undetermined time. ;-D
If you fancy yourself a connoisseur of edible delights you would be wise to visit foreign grocery stores like Tesco or Monoprix. Often, you will find a variety of delectables that would cause any self-respecting foodie to blush with jealousy. There are some items that are not available in the states that you can find on foreign soil at quite reasonable prices and if you are smart, you can ship these items back home with the aforementioned liquor. Give it a try:
Whatever your preference, just remember that these souvenirs act as a wonderful reminder of your sojourn to one of the special corners of the world so make sure that you purchase items that you are sure to treasure for years to come.