The British, with their love of sweets, are well-known for making delicious candy that is craved worldwide (there is a reason most large American supermarkets have a dedicated British sweets section). I thought I knew British sweets pretty well– after all, on each visit to the UK I make sure to raid a local British […]
Top Souvenirs to Buy in London
**NOTE: I’ve updated this as of 4/17 see the most current post filled with photos and souvenirs here The Top 17 London Souvenirs and Experiences (below is archival only).**
It’s hard to put together the top souvenirs to buy in London because there are just so many great things to shop for, some in unexpected places. Some of my favorite top London souvenirs are food items— whether that’s tea and Cadbury candy bars from the Tesco supermarket or biscuits from Fortnum and Mason.
I love London markets and one of the most convenient London markets to find quality handmade souvenirs is right in the hear of the city in Convent Garden.
London has some pretty spectacular department stores that are a great source of top souvenirs. You might be surprised that Marks and Spencer is known for its underwear, Primark (aka Primani) has some cheap tourist finds, Liberty London is known for its prints and haberdashy and Fortnum and Mason is fabulous for well, everything.
Of course as home of one of the world’s most fascinating monarchies, London’s top souvenirs have to include any and all things royal— and the Buckingham Palace gift shops are a great source for high quality royal souvenirs (even bone china!).
Other London top souvenirs include anything we think of as quintisentially “British.” The London Transport museum is almost universally praised for their amazing gift shop and even British kitsch, with its long history, can be fun to buy.
Remember that souvenirs don’t have to be bought in a shop. One of my top souvenir tips is to participate in a local activity and the souvenir really just becomes part of the experience. If you love football/soccer (any indication of the world cup coverage would indicate most of you do), then why not spend an afternoon at a Barclays Premier League match? The “souvenir” scarf should be bought before the match so you can join in the fun!
Poppies and Remembrance Day in England If you visit England in the month of November, you will notice red poppies pinned to the lapel of many residents– especially the older generation. These red poppies were originally a symbol of commemoration of British soldiers who died in World War I (and now include the fallen from […]
European Sunscreen– the Most Useful Souvenir? Sunscreen is bulky, messy, and not particularly interesting, so you may be wondering why I would suggest picking up some tubes on your next vacation outside the US. It’s simple– the sunscreens available in Europe, Japan, Australia and many other parts of the world blow our sunscreen away. Foreign […]
Take the Buckingham Palace Tour then Hit the Queens Gallery Gift Shop Admit it– you always wanted to be a princess (or prince). Perhaps you aren’t shooting as high as second to the throne (spots are pretty limited after all) and a distant royal will do? For the girl or guy who loves all things […]
If you live near a large city like New York, the idea of visiting another country’s department stores probably doesn’t hold that much appeal. We all get the same international designers, and what you can’t find back home you can almost certainly find easily online (usually with free shipping both ways). So when visiting another […]
Where I live in New York City, the shelves of my local supermarket are well-stocked with British food imports. I don’t need to book a flight to pick up Marmite, Heinz salad cream or HP brown sauce. My corner store even stocks my favorite British candy bars. Given the wide availability of British grocery items, […]