Whether you’re bringing back gifts for your friends and family, or hunting for some new coffee table trinkets, returning from a holiday without souvenirs would be like forgetting to take photos.
Jamaica holidays are ripe with souvenir-grabbing opportunities. Ditch the tacky and generic — nobody, including you, needs another flimsy pen. Instead, hunt for locally produced items that you really can’t get anywhere else. If you need some inspiration, here are five souvenir ideas that will always remind you of your trip to Jamaica.
Frozen Jamaican beef patties
Once you’ve tried Jamaican beef patties you simply have to bring some home. Similar to empanadas, these flaky pastries are traditionally filled with beef, but street vendors and shops sell all kinds of alternatives, including lobster, shrimp, curried chicken and vegetables.
Sound good? You might even feel inspired to make them once you get back home. Keep your eyes open for a Jamaican cookbook from the island itself. There’ll never be a dull mealtime again!
Blue Mountain Coffee Candle
You might have heard of Jamaica’s famous Blue Mountain Coffee. Considered one of the best in the world, Blue Mountain is a must-try when you travel to Jamaica and are a coffee drinker. Starfish Oils have also captured the coffee’s amazing scent in candle form — take one of these home and you’re guaranteed to bring the scent of Jamaica home.
Blue Mountain Coffee is named after the mountain range where the beans are grown. You’ll be intrigued to discover that nestled in these mountains is a place called Irish Town. This is one of several lasting connections between Jamaica and Ireland, dating back to the 19th century, when Irish immigrants settled there.
Bob Marley trinkets from Nine Mile
It would be a shame to go to Jamaica without visiting the birth and burial place of the island’s favourite son. Nine Mile is where Bob Marley lived until he was a teenager, and if you visit you’ll be able to tour his childhood home. The Bob Marley Mausoleum is where is was buried along with his guitar.
Daring drivers might brave the winding rural roads to Nine Mile themselves, but bus tours also run to the village. Either way, don’t journey all the way here and return empty handed. The gift shop is overflowing with Marley memorabilia, so bag yourself a souvenir or CD.
Jamaican artwork from the Harmony Hall Gallery
If you’re staying in Ocho Rios, you should definitely visit the Harmony Hall Gallery and see some of Jamaica’s finest artwork and crafts on display. Across its three galleries, the pieces range from prints to ceramic sculptures.
Harmony Hall is dedicated to supporting Jamaican artists. It’s the perfect place to find a unique piece to bring back home. You’ll be able to commemorate your trip and improve your home décor.
Cuba might be king of cigars, but Jamaica is a close runner up. The fact that Jamaica’s brands are lesser known is only a good thing, because quality Jamaican cigars won’t cost you half as much as Cuban ones.
Jamaica’s tobacco industry is on the rise and the country is home to some excellent varieties of cigar. Santa Cruz cigars are remarkable for their rich flavour, while Montalvo cigars are hand rolled in Kingston.
These are only five of countless original souvenirs you’ll come across when you go to Jamaica. With so many available, there’s no excuse for lazy shopping!
Images by Thomson Holidays and taken from iStock