If you’re anything like me, you love to collect momentos while you travel: keepsakes of all your adventures! And then there’s the souvenirs and gifts you bring back home for friends and family. If you’re travelling down under, here are some of the best things to buy in Australia, the unique souvenirs and gifts worth spending your money on!
Banksia Pods: A Unique Australian Souvenir
Yes, I know these look a little weird, but a banksia pod is one of the best things you can buy in Australia if you’re looking to bring home something truly unique.
So just what are these alien-looking things? Banksia trees are native to Australia and the seed pods look, well, like a hair brush. Not the prettiest thing, I know. But when the seed pods drop to the ground and dry out, they make for a wonderful natural oil diffuser. Simply put a few drops of essential oil – for a truly Australian gift, opt for locally-sourced eucalyptus oil – in and you’re good to go. The banksia pod diffuses the oil to leave your room smelling fresh and clean.
The best thing about banksia pod diffusers is that every single one is unique – no two look exactly alike. So, prepare to spend a fair chunk of time choosing which one to buy! These unique souvenirs aren’t too expensive – anything from $10-15 dollars each – and really are my top choice for things to spend your money on in Australia. You won’t find these anywhere else in the world, making them a perfect gift to bring home.
Australian Animal Plushies: A Huggable Gift
Australia is home to some of the cutest – in my humble opinion – native animals there is. I mean, who can argue with the cuteness of a sleepy koala? And don’t even get me started on quokkas…! So, while I know it might seem a cliche, bring one back with you. As much as I would have loved to bring a real-life quokka home in my case, of course that isn’t possible. But a cuddly, plushie version is just as good when it comes to giving cuddles. These make a great gift for those young friends, or simply friends who are young at heart, and are great things to buy in Australia.
P.S. You can even pick some of these furry friends up on a trip to Taronga Zoo…
Dinosaur Designs: Unique Australian Jewellery
I have a bit of a problem when it comes to jewellery… I love rings and wear at least five every day, sometimes more. I also like to buy a new ring every place I go. If you’re also looking for unique jewellery for yourself or as a gift – and jewellery always makes a great gift! – then Dinosaur Designs is the place to go.
Started by a couple while they were still in art school, Dinosaur Designs is Australian-grown and offers unique, handmade jewellery and homewares made from resin and precious metals. You can buy online or, if you’re in Sydney, pop to their beautiful little boutique store in the gorgeous Strand Arcade on George Street.
Bonds: The World’s Comfiest Underwear
Yes, I know underwear isn’t most people’s go-to souvenir of choice. But everyone needs underwear, right? Right. And Bonds, a famous Australian brand, makes the comfiest in the world. I had never heard of Bonds before I went to Australia, now I want to tell everyone about them! There are two reasons I really like Bonds… 1) They are comfy without being frumpy. You know what I’m talking about! And 2) They use models of all body shapes and sizes. Bonds make comfy, appealing, colourful underwear and leisure wear that just about anybody can wear and enjoy. So if you’re looking for things to buy in Australia that will stand the test of time, do yourself a favour and stock up on Bonds!
Other Unique Things to Buy in Australia…
Macadamia Nuts: Macadamia nuts are grown in Australia and you can find some of the best tasting macadamias down under. They sell them in everything from packs of raw nuts, to chocolate covered, chili-flavoured and even butters and oils.
Ugg Boots: A quintessential Australian brand, if Ugg boots are your thing you’ll be spoilt for choice.
Opals: A true Australian gem, opals are a great Australian souvenir to bring back if you’re willing to spend a few more dollars.
Emu and Eucalyptus Oil: These oils are another Australian-grown speciality, so keep your eyes open for these.
Aboriginal and Indigenous Art: The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples create some truly magnificent art which makes for wonderful keepsakes. Just be sure to buy where the original creators will benefit from the purchase.
Haighs Chocolate: Now, I’ll be honest: as a Brit I was mightily disappointed with the chocolate Australia had to offer. Note to self: Cadburys is not the same everywhere! But Haighs restored my faith. Head to one of their shops in Sydney and stock up; their peppermint frogs have the all the necessary healing power to recover from even the worst dementor attack.