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Maille Paris, which sells lovely souvenir gift boxes

Memorable Souvenirs to Purchase in Paris

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With souvenir shops on nearly every street in Paris, it’s easy to become overwhelmed when deciding what to bring home. After 3 trips to the French capital, the following are what I consider to be the best and most authentic souvenirs to purchase in Paris.


Must-Have Souvenirs to Bring Back From Your Paris Vacation


Escargot Serving Set

Escargots by Marianne Casamance on WikiCommons

In Paris, you can buy all the escargot serving items you need at E. Dehillerin. Opened in 1820 in the Les Halles district, this gourmet cookware and kitchenware shop was made famous by famed chef Julia Child. 

Hoping to enjoy some escargots in Paris? Check out the following post which will tell you how to find, order and eat the best escargots in Paris.


Reusable Shopping Bags

Souvenir shopping bag from Paris
Souvenir shopping bag from Paris

One of the most practical, easy-to-find souvenirs to purchase in Paris are reusable shopping bags. Not only will they remind you of the places you’ve visited, but they will also help the environment! 


Scarves

Souvenir scarves in Paris
Souvenir scarves in Paris

Scarves are one of the most popular souvenirs to bring back from Paris. Not only are they fashionable, but they also make fantastic gifts.  If you’re wondering where to buy scarves in Paris, check out the extensive collection at Diwali Paris or the one-of-a-kind scarves in museum gift shops. I’ve also purchased some beautiful scarves at the Bastille market. Word to the wise, check the labels if you want to buy something that was actually made in France. 


Perfume

Perfume from Paris which makes a great souvenir
Perfume from Paris makes a great souvenir

Paris is home to some of the world’s best perfumeries including Guerlain, Fragonard and Diptyque. Visit their flagship stores to find your perfect scent and buy gifts for your loved ones. 


French Lingerie

French lingerie, a popular souvenir purchased by women travelling to Paris
French lingerie is a popular souvenir purchased by women travelling to Paris

Whether you’re shopping for yourself or for buying a souvenir for your lady, French lingerie is a classic item to purchase in Paris. Brands like Simone Perele, Empreinte and Aubade have stores in Paris that sell elegant, sexy, delicate, yet comfortable collections. 


Stamped Book from Shakespeare & Company

Shakespeare and Company
Shakespeare and Company

The perfect souvenir for any book lover is a stamped book purchased at one of the most famous bookstores in Paris, Shakespeare & Company. Located not far from Notre Dame, this bookstore was once frequented by famous writers such as Joyce, Hemingway, and Fitzgerald.


Items from Les Bouquinistes

Souvenir items for sale by Les Bouquinistes in Paris
Souvenir items for sale by Les Bouquinistes in Paris

Les Bouquinistes are booksellers located along the Seine which sell old books, vintage postcards, posters and more. Recognized as a Unesco World Heritage site, this is the ideal place to pick up a souvenir that will always remind you of Paris. 


A Portrait or Painting from Place du Tertre

Souvenir paintings from Paris
A painting from Place du Tertre in Paris is a great souvenir

While in Paris, be sure to take a stroll through Place du Tertre in Montmartre. Here amateur artists sell their paintings and sketch portraits of eager tourists. Purchase one of these paintings or have your portrait drawn in what is sure to be one of your all-time favourite souvenirs from Paris. 


Museum Entry Tickets / Metro Tickets

Paris Metro Ticket Souvenir
Paris Metro Ticket Souvenir by clogsilk on Flickr

When I travel, I always make a point to keep museum and attraction entry tickets. The first time I went to Paris I combined these items along with metro tickets and photographs into a beautiful souvenir scrapbook.  When I look back on this album it brings back incredible memories and inspires me to revisit the French capital.  


Eiffel Tower Souvenirs

Eiffel Tower souvenirs in Paris
Eiffel Tower souvenirs in Paris

Who can resist a tacky mini replica of the Eiffel Tower? Not me! In fact, on my last trip to Paris I purchased several Eiffel Tower souvenirs. Not only did I buy a few small replicas, but I also bought an Eiffel Tower lamp and a bottle of perfume shaped like the Eiffel Tower!  


Fleur de Sel de Guerande 

Fleur de Sel de Guerande by Andrew on Flickr

Hand-picked from the coast of Brittany, Fleur de Sel de Guerande is coveted around the world. Although this gourmet salt can be found abroad, it’s more economical to buy it in France. This souvenir which is sure to impress any chef or foodie is sold at most gourmet food stores and some grocery stores around Paris.

To learn more about Brittany, and the other regions in France, click here.


Parisian Chocolate

Chocolate, one of the popular souvenirs to bring back from Paris
Chocolate, one of the popular souvenirs to bring back from Paris

A great souvenir to bring back from Paris is artisanal chocolate. Some of the best chocolate shops in the city include Pierre Marcolini which is known for their rare cocoa and signature chocolate raspberry heart bonbons, and Patrick Roger, a revolutionary chocolate shop with unique flavours such as vinegar and raisin caramel (Rafale), honey and salted butter caramel (Mistral) and lime caramel (Amazone). 


Parisian Tea

Parisian Tea by Jim Sackton on Flickr

Over the last few years, the popularity of tea has risen greatly in Paris. Whether you are looking for plain tea, artisanal tea, herbal tea, or fragrant tea, you are guaranteed to discover something both delicious and high-quality. Some of the best tea shops in Paris include Dammann Frères, a pioneering tea company offering more than 200 varieties of teas and Mariage Frères which hosts several “Tea Clubs” and sells souvenirs including cups, teapots and other tea accessories. 


Coffee

Coffee in Paris
Coffee in Paris

Paris is known for its charming cafes and outdoor patios which are perfect for that early morning cup of coffee. Their specialty coffees are one of a kind, and while you can’t replicate them at home, you can purchase their cups and saucers as a souvenir. Some coffee shops even sell souvenirs like espresso spoons with handles embellished with the Paris landmarks.  


Mustard

Maille Paris by Eric Parker on Flickr

Established in 1747, the French mustard company Maille produces some of the most unique flavours of mustard imaginable. While in Paris, pay a visit to their retail boutique which sells premade souvenir gift boxes and mustard collections that are guaranteed to impress your foodie friends back home.   


Caramels

Jacques Genin caramels by Joy on Flickr

Paris is not only famous for chocolate, but for caramels as well. Thrill your friends and bring back some buttery handcrafted caramels from shops like Jacques Genin, Pierre Hermé and Ladurée. 


Honey

Souvenir honey from Paris
Honey from Paris

Tourists are often surprised to learn that urban beekeepers raise their colonies on the rooftops of Paris’s most famous buildings. While the honey is a little pricey, it makes a fantastic souvenir unique to Paris. These unique kinds of honey are sold in specialty shops such as La Maison du Miel, Les Abeilles, and in the gourmet food section of the Galeries Lafayette department store. 


Absinthe

Absinthe, a souvenir to buy in Paris
Absinthe, a souvenir to buy in Paris

Nicknamed the “green fairy” absinthe is an anise-flavoured spirit with a high alcohol content. It is said to have psychedelic effects due to the chemical thujone which occurs naturally in the drink. Associated with artists and writers from the Belle Epoque, Absinthe is best purchased as a souvenir in Paris as the levels of thujone are capped in the US and Canada.


Souvenirs from Paris For Kids


Books

Tintin souvenirs from Paris
Tintin souvenirs from Paris by Mills Baker on Flickr

On the hunt for a souvenir from Paris for kids? Consider purchasing a French children’s book. The stories about French characters such as Astérix, Tintin and Babar are sure to spark curiosity in any little reader. Alternatively, you could purchase a book they already know translated into the French language. 


Fridge Magnets

Paris fridge magnet souvenirs
Paris fridge magnet souvenirs by Ajith on Flickr

Since I was a kid, one of my favourite souvenirs have always been fridge magnets. Whether I purchased them for myself or received them as a gift, they are great reminders of all the places I have been and the places I have yet to go.  


Currency

Currency from Paris, a great souvenir to give kids
Currency from Paris is a great souvenir to give kids

Kids love to collect things, so why not help them start an international coin collection! This is by far the easiest souvenir you can get from your Paris vacation, and also one of the most interesting. 


Tips for Buying Souvenirs in Paris

Before you purchase your souvenirs in Paris it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the customs regulations of the country to which you’re travelling. Rules vary and there are often restrictions in place regarding both agricultural and animal products.


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