17 of the Best Souvenirs to Bring Back from Portugal

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Last updated on June 14, 2024 | Est. Reading Time: 4 minutes

When it comes to capturing the essence of Portugal in a souvenir, fridge magnets and T-shirts simply don’t do it justice. The country’s vibrant culture, rich history, and delectable gastronomy offer a treasure trove of unique gifts that are a departure from the commonplace. Here is a curated list of exceptional Portuguese mementos that you can bring home from your trip.

Port Wine

Port wine is synonymous with Portugal, particularly the city of Porto. But rather than settling for a basic ruby or tawny, why not explore something more distinctive? An LBV (Late Bottled Vintage), a Vintage Port, or even a White Port would make an exquisite choice. Each offers a unique tasting experience that sets them apart from the more familiar varieties.

Cork Artifacts

Portugal is the world’s leading cork producer, and the material is used innovatively to create wallets, bags, yoga mats, and various other items. These cork accessories, besides being environmentally friendly, are durable, stylish, and a testament to Portuguese ingenuity.

Customised Sardine Tins

While not traditionally Portuguese, this quirky souvenir – a tin of sardines bearing the recipient’s name – is a fun and unique memento of your trip.

Gourmet Tinned Fish and Seafood

For food enthusiasts, Portuguese tinned food is an unexpected delight. The quality far surpasses your average can of tuna, making it an excellent souvenir for anyone who appreciates the subtleties of seafood.

As these are tinned, they won’t leave your clothes smelling – unlike bacalhau, which tends to permeate even tupperware containers.

Fado Guitar

This is a big-ticket item, but if you know a guitar lover, a Fado guitar is a unique and significant gift. Fado music is central to Portuguese culture, and this instrument is its heart.

You could also get them a fado CD, but make sure they have a CD player. These days, a lot of people don’t.

Portuguese Linens and Towels

The quality and craftsmanship of Portuguese textiles make them a great choice. Whether it’s bed linens or towels, these are items that will last and bring a touch of Portugal to your home every day.

Ginjinha

This traditional Portuguese cherry liqueur is a sweet and unique beverage. Bottles of Ginjinha are a great souvenir for anyone who enjoys trying new drinks.

Portuguese Wine

Beyond Port, Portuguese wines are earning their place in the global wine scene. Pico Island wine, with its distinctive volcanic soil growing conditions, or the ever-refreshing Vinho Verde, are wonderful choices to bring home. Failing that, a good red from either Douro or the Alentejo is always a good choice.

Portuguese Pottery

From olive pots to spoon rests, Portuguese pottery combines functionality with aesthetic beauty. It’s a perfect keepsake or gift that can add a pop of colour and a dash of European charm to any kitchen.

Portuguese Tiles (Azulejos)

The beautiful tiles you’ll find around Portugal make a lovely souvenir. However, be cautious to ensure you’re not buying tiles stolen from historic buildings.

Pasteis de Nata

This popular Portuguese egg tart is a must-try delicacy. A box of pasteis de nata is sure to please anyone with a sweet tooth, though they’re best enjoyed fresh.

A Book by Pessoa

Fernando Pessoa is one of Portugal’s most celebrated poets. A book by Pessoa gives the reader a glimpse into the Portuguese soul, especially if they’re a literature lover.

Portuguese Tea from the Azores

The only tea plantations in Europe are in the Azores, making Portuguese tea a unique and appealing gift for tea enthusiasts.

Claus Porto Soap

This brand is renowned for its luxurious soaps, beautifully packaged in Art Deco-inspired wrapping. It’s a slice of Portuguese luxury that anyone would appreciate.

Portuguese Cheese

For gourmands, the Queijo da Serra da Estrela is a delightful and unique Portuguese cheese. This creamy, slightly tangy cheese is a culinary experience in itself.

A Portuguese Cookbook

To recreate the flavours of Portugal at home, a Portuguese cookbook makes a great gift. Livraria Bertrand, the oldest still-operating bookstore in the world, is a good place to look.

Ceramics from Rafael Bordallo Pinheiro

Famous for their unique designs, such as the cabbage bowl or a swallow, these ceramics are a beloved part of Portuguese home decor.

And if you’re in Caldas da Rainha, there’s are also very grown-up pottery to consider as well.

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