What to buy in Portugal? 29 Best Portugal Souvenirs
Looking for the best Portugal souvenirs? We got you covered! Portugal is one of the most beautiful countries in Europe, and it’s easy to see why you would want to take a piece of it back home with you. The country boasts lots of stunning beaches, medieval architecture, and delicious food. So, if you’re planning a trip and wondering what to buy in Portugal, this guide is just what you need.
But with so many quirky and authentic Portuguese souvenirs to choose from, you may find it challenging to decide on the best souvenirs to buy. But we’ve got you covered!
We’ve compiled this extensive list of the best Portuguese souvenirs you could buy for family and friends (or yourself) as you take on your Portugal itinerary.
29 Best Portugal Souvenirs to buy: What to buy in Portugal
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Portugal is a great place to buy amazing souvenirs. The country boasts an array of both non-perishable and perishable mementos. From ceramic tiles and cork products to delicious port wine and traditional Portuguese cheese, you’re sure to find something you’ll love.
Here are 29 of the best Portugal souvenirs you could buy:
1. Portuguese ceramics (azulejos)
Ceramic tiles (or azulejos) are arguably the best souvenirs from Portugal. Not only can you find these intricately decorated ceramics as spoon rests, mugs, bowls, and other pottery, but you’ll also find azulejos on churches, houses, bars, benches, and fountains.
You see, ceramic tiles are a crucial part of Portuguese culture. Local artisans have been making azulejos in Portugal since the 14th century, and they still do at artisanal workshops in places like Alentejo and Coimbra.
Originally, Portuguese tiles were blue, yellow, green, and white. But by the 17th century, they evolved into the signature blue and white we find today. You can find azulejos in every souvenir shop across all of Portugal’s beautiful cities, so you will be spoiled for choice.
Note: If you’re renovating your house or you know someone that’s working on renovating or building a house, Portuguese tiles are a no-brainer.
2. Barcelos rooster statue & related products
The Barcelos rooster (Galo de Barcelos) is one of Portugal’s most iconic national symbols. Based on a 12th-century legend, the Barcelos rooster represents a happy and love-filled life, making it one of the most meaningful souvenirs from Portugal.
You’ll find these colorfully decorated figurines on various products, from ceramics to woodwork and embroidery.
You can get the Barcelos rooster on t-shirts, postcards, aprons, toys, carved wooden products, and other little trinkets, but you’ll especially find it as figurines and statuettes.
3. Portuguese jewelry
When it comes to buying souvenirs, jewelry is always a top contender. But not because it won’t take up much space in the suitcase, but rather because it’s an amazing work of art, and Portuguese jewelry is no different.
This finely woven jewelry with its intricate patterns is yet another display of Portuguese craftsmanship dating as far back as medieval times. The most common accessories you’ll come across are silver and gold filigree jewelry.
4. Cork products
Portugal is the largest producer of cork in the world, and the country’s Alentejo region contributes nearly half of the world’s supply. So it’s no surprise that you’ll find handbags, wallets, shoes, umbrellas, and many other products made of cork across souvenir shops.
Cork is a fantastic material. It is lightweight and waterproof, making it one of the most sustainable Portugal souvenirs you can get.
Be careful, though, as some of the cork products in souvenir shops and street vendors are made in China.
5. Handmade Portuguese soaps
Portuguese soaps are authentic souvenirs that you may never want to unwrap.
These beautifully packaged products are made of natural ingredients like olive oil, animal milk, fruits, honey, and local flowers.
Claus Porto soaps are uniquely Portuguese cosmetics and popular souvenirs that many tourists love to take home. Their enticing scents and hand-carved designs will be a constant reminder of a great trip to Portugal.
6. Portuguese guitar
If you’re a music lover, you’ll probably be a fado music fan by the end of your Portugal trip. Fado music is distinctly famous for its melancholic and expressive character. You’ll hear this music playing in cafés, restaurants, and pubs.
The Portuguese guitar is an essential element of fado music. This pear-shaped 12-stringed instrument is as beloved as the music genre itself. It makes a wonderful souvenir when you’re a musician or keen on learning how to play.
Tip: You can get an authentic Portuguese music experience at this live fado show in Coimbra.
7. Portuguese embroidery
Linens and hand-embroidered items are some of Portugal’s most cherished works of art. Portuguese embroidery is mostly associated with the semi-tropical island of Madeira, which has over 150 years of embroidery history and is home to over 3,000 embroiders.
You can get various items like scarves, clothing, tablecloths, and bathroom and kitchen towels with stunning Portuguese embroidery. The store, A Vida Portuguesa, carries an amazing collection of kerchiefs and hand towels, so be sure to check them out.
8. Model trams, cars, and vintage toys
Model cars, trams, and trains are among Portugal’s most authentic souvenirs. As an ode to the vintage streetcars connecting various areas in Lisbon, these model trams are an ideal memento.
If you’re a true aficionado (or collector) of vintage cars or toys, you’ll love the various options on sale. You can find these model trams and vintage toys in a material of your liking; some are made of metal, plastic, and even cloth.
9. Soccer jerseys and scarves
Football (or soccer, as the Americans call it) is one of Portugal’s most loved sports. So it’s no surprise that you’ll find lots of soccer jerseys, scarves, and other sports memorabilia dotted across the streets of Portugal.
The country’s affinity for this beautiful game is largely attributed to the popularity of Madeira-born Christiano Ronaldo — one of the most renowned footballers worldwide.
If you’re a fan, you might want to see the life and career of the sporting legend at the CR7 Cristiano Ronaldo Museum in Funchal, Madeira.
10. Leather shoes and belts
Similar to those in Italy, leather shoes, belts, and bags made in Portugal are some of the finest in all of Europe.
Portuguese-made clothing and footwear date back to the 16th century, when leather artisans set up shop in Alcanena, Portugal’s “Land of Leather”.
Portuguese leather shoes are well-built, stylish, and have a high-quality finish. If you’d like to take home a pair, Rua Augusta is Lisbon’s main shopping street and the best place to get supreme leather goods.
11. Traditional arraiolos rugs
Arraiolos rugs are yet another great display of Portuguese cratsmanship. These unique carpets are particularly famous in the village of Arraiolos, where artisans still practice needlework and tapestry dating back to the Middle Ages.
You’ll find dozens of workshops across the village selling colorful rugs embroidered with patterns of wool and other fabrics. The famous Arraiolos stitch covers the bottom layer of linen in patterns of Portuguese folkloric design.
12. Portugal-inspired paper products
If you’re looking to buy souvenirs that won’t break the bank, Portugal-inspired paper products are for you.
What are these? In simple terms, these are paper replicas of popular Portuguese symbols like the Barcelos rooster, azulejos, and other ceramics.
These paper products make great Portugal souvenirs as they capture the essence of the country’s culture, are affordable, and won’t take up much space in your luggage.
13. Portuguese literature (and related products)
Buy a book as a Portuguese literature keepsake as a reminder of your wonderful trip to Portugal.
Portuguese literature is full of interesting works. Whether you are looking for a history book, a travel guide, or fiction, Portugal will not disappoint an avid reader!
From the popular Lusíadas by Camões to the more modern works of Saramago and Gomes de Amorim, Portuguese literature has something for everyone.
If you happen to visit Livraria Lello bookshop in Porto, you can also get a classic book included in your entry fee – usually, they are mini or pocket-size books, and not regular ones, so they are easy to carry.
14. Couto medicinal toothpaste
Couto medicinal toothpaste has been an essential self-care product in Portuguese households since 1932. Not only does it spotlessly clean teeth, but it’s also an effective mouth disinfectant. The best part is that it’s a practical souvenir that you’ll definitely use.
If you’re keen on stocking up on authentic Portuguese cosmetics, Couto medicinal toothpaste should be top on the list. Its quintessential orange packaging and retro design still dot the shelves of many shops across the country, so you won’t have any trouble finding it.
15. Decorative handmade candles
If your kind of souvenir is fragrant and aromatic, decorative handmade candles will be perfect for you. These handcrafted wax products are molded into various shapes and then dyed in any color you can possibly think of.
You can visit Casa das Velas Loreto in Lisbon to pursue their vast selection of colorful and uniquely-shaped candles.
You’ll find several shapes and sizes, from religious candles to fruit-shaped ones that look good enough to eat.
16. Statue of Our Lady of Fatima
Our Lady of Fatima is the Guardian Angel of Portugal. Typically dressed in flowy robes with her hands clasped in prayer, having this religious motif in your house is considered good luck.
You’ll find this popular effigy on handwoven fabrics, statuettes, and other Portuguese ceramics across the country, but more especially at religious attractions.
Portugal food souvenirs
Portugal is home to some of the best cuisine in the world. And if you’re an admirer of Portuguese gastronomy, you’ll love that the country offers lots of foodie souvenirs that you can take home with you.
Here are a few Portuguese food souvenirs that will definitely whet your taste buds:
17. Portuguese extra virgin olive oil
Portuguese olive oil is regarded as one of the tastiest in the world. This fruity, flavorful, and golden olive oil comes from Portugal’s six growing regions. You’ll find various olive oil flavors, from bitter to sweet and from mild to intense.
Thanks to its world-class olive oil production, many restaurants in Portugal religiously serve this delicacy as bread dipping and a drizzle over salads, pizza, pasta, and other dishes.
18. Portuguese cheese
Portuguese cheeses are some of the best in Europe, comparable to those in France and Switzerland. You’ll find various kinds of aged Portuguese cheeses made from cow, goat, or sheep milk — which is considered a classic.
The most famous cheese you’ll find in Portugal is Serra da Estrela, a soft and pungent cheese served with a spoon. Other great options are hard-cured cheeses like Transmontano goat’s cheese and Rabaçal cheese.
Note: While cheese and other edibles on this list are great souvenirs to take home, please be aware that you have to declare all food items at Border Control upon arrival.
Tip: Enjoy a variety of famous cheeses on this wine and cheese-tasting lunch in Lisbon.
19. Portuguese sardines
Although it seems like an odd souvenir to take home, canned sardines are a local favorite in Portugal.
For miles and miles, you’ll find people socializing, drinking beer, and having a plate of grilled sardines, one of Portugal’s most iconic fish dishes.
You can find a sea of colorfully decorated canned sardines at the vibrant, carnival-inspired Mundo Fantástico da Sardinha Portuguesa souvenir shop in Baixa, Lisbon. You’ll feel like a kid in a candy store, looking through thousands of canned sardines. Try finding your birth year or one with an interesting fact on the back.
20. Pasteis de Nata
Pasteis de nata or pastéis de belém are fluffy egg yolk custard pastries, typically dusted with cinnamon or powdered sugar. These sweet treats originally date back 300 years ago.
They were made by monks from the Jeronimos Monastery in Belem. When the monastery closed down, the monks sold the recipe to Pastéis de Belém bakery, which still sells these crunchy desserts.
While this famous dessert is not the easiest souvenir to bring back, you can buy Portuguese tarts as a packaged six-pack in most bakeries across Portugal.
Tip: If you’re a bit hesitant about buying these tasty treats as souvenirs from Portugal, you can take this pasteis de nata cooking class in Porto and make them when you get home.
21. Ovos moles de Aveiro
Ovos moles de Aveiro or Aveiro sweet eggs are another Portuguese desserts. They originated from the Aveiro region, where a delicious treat is made from eggs, sugar, and different types of flour.
The resulting product has an egg-like consistency and can be found packaged in its original form or inside boxes with various shapes such as flowers or fish.
These traditional sweets are authentic Portuguese products to bring back home, as they can last up to six weeks in their original packaging.
Presunto is a dry-cured Portuguese ham similar to prosciutto crudo in Italy and jamón in Spain. If you’re a meat lover, you’ll enjoy this local delicacy in cooked meals or as a thinly sliced appetizer on a charcuterie board.
23. Peri-peri hot sauce
Thanks to international fast food brands like Nando’s from South Africa, you may have tasted peri-peri (or piri-piri) hot sauce before arriving in Portugal. This is one of the best souvenirs from Portugal, as it is well-packaged and easy to carry through customs.
Peri-peri dates back to Portuguese colonial times. The pungent relish is a result of mixing African bird’s eye chilies, garlic, lemon, vinegar, paprika, and other spices into a delicious marinade.
24. Portuguese preserves
Portuguese honey and jam will make an excellent addition to your pantry. These sweet treats, collectively known as “doces” are easy-to-carry food souvenirs thanks to their airtight packaging.
The most famous Portuguese preserve is Mel da Serra de Monchique, this wildflower honey from Faro boasts notes of lavender, heather, and eucalyptus, easily making it one of the best brands in the country.
25. Paupério cookies
Paupério cookies are another enticing confection to add to your list of foodie souvenirs.
These traditional biscuits date back to 1874 and are still widely produced in cities like Valongo in Northern Portugal. They come in beautifully packaged vintage-style tins or boxes with an Art Deco design that will liven up your pantry.
Wine is an authentic Portuguese souvenir that you can keep for many years. Here are a few Portuguese wine options to consider in Portugal:
26. Port wine
When tourists think of what to buy in Portugal, port wine is almost a non-negotiable. This sweet, red fortified wine is largely produced in the Douro Valley and other northern regions like Porto.
Port wine has bold, rich, and flavorful notes, thanks to the variety of grapes grown in the Douro Valley and the traditional wine-making processes used to make it.
You can find generic bottles of this dessert wine in supermarkets across the country, but for a more authentic experience, we suggest taking a wine-tasting tour in the Douro Valley.
27. Madeira wine
Famous for its black vintage bottle packaging, Madeira wine is one of the most cherished in Portugal. This fortified wine comes in sweet and dry varieties.
The latter is typically served as an aperitif before or between meals, while the former makes an excellent dessert wine.
You can buy Madeira wine in a local wine shop on the island. You’ll find the most expansive range of options there, compared to inland cities. But you can also buy this fortified wine in major Portuguese cities like Lisbon and Porto without much hassle.
28. Moscatel de Setúbal
Moscatel de Setúbal is a fortified Portuguese wine made from Muscat of Alexandria grapes grown in the Setúbal peninsula in southern Portugal. Boasting notes of dried fruits like mandarins, honey, and caramel, Moscatel de Setúbal makes a wonderful wine for dessert.
A decent bottle of Moscatel de Setúbal will cost you about €12 ($12.88). However, you can expect this price to go up (or down) depending on where you buy.
At Garrafeira Nacional on Rua de Santa Justa 18 in Lisbon, you’ll find an extensive collection of Portuguese wines at affordable prices.
29. Ginjinha cherry liqueur
Ginjinha is a sour cherry liqueur that’s loved by young and old people in Portugal. Boasting notes of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg, the liqueur is both sweet and sour.
Ginjinha can be enjoyed as both an aperitif and digestif, meaning you can have it before and after meals.
This much-loved specialty dates back to the Portuguese monks of the 17th century. Today, you can find it anywhere in Portugal. Visit A Ginjinha, a bar situated at Largo de São Domingos 8 in Lisbon, for a cherry-stuffed bottle.
Where to buy Portuguese souvenirs
Portugal is dotted with souvenir shops on every corner, so finding a great memento to take home won’t be a problem. In Lisbon, you’ll find an array of open-air markets selling lovely trinkets like handicrafts from local artisans, Portuguese olive oil, and canned sardines.
Here are a few great places to buy souvenirs from Portugal:
- A Vida Portuguesa — Portugal’s most well-known souvenir shop with several locations around Lisbon. You’ll find various authentic crafts, cosmetics, paper products, and food items.
- Arte Rústica — A handicraft store selling high-quality items like Portuguese tiles, ceramic tea sets, pottery, and other home goods.
- LxFactory – This bohemian-style industrial complex boasts an array of hip restaurants, trendy boutiques, cafes, and galleries along its cobblestone streets.
- Manuel Tavares — A gourmet grocery shop selling wines, spirits, groceries, and regional products like olive oil and Portuguese sardines.
Tips for buying Portugal souvenirs
Souvenir shopping is one of the most exciting things to do while visiting Portugal. But there are a few things to keep in mind when buying Portuguese souvenirs.
Here are some travel tips to help you get the best souvenirs from Portugal:
- Avoid buying Portuguese tiles from the Feira da Ladra flea market in Lisbon. A lot of these ceramic tiles are chipped off buildings and other structures, making them illegal to sell (and buy).
- Always check the expiration dates on Portugal food souvenirs like canned sardines, wines, pastries, and cured meats.
- Make sure you familiarize yourself with border control regulations regarding the importation of food, fruits, and plant material.
- Never buy marine products like seashells, corals, and animal parts as souvenirs, as these cause harm and belittle the integrity of Portugal’s biodiversity.
- Not all items you’ll find in street stalls and shops are “made in Portugal.” Often, items like jewelry, ceramics, and paper products sold at markets are imported to the country.
- Last but not least, make sure you have enough space in your bags to pack all these souvenirs once you’ve bought them. Perhaps add a small souvenir bag to your Portugal packing list.
Authentic Portugal souvenirs wrapped up
When it comes to what to buy in Portugal, you’ll have an assortment of items to choose from. Portugal offers an array of edible and non-edible souvenirs.
If you’re looking for something to look at and cherish for many days to come, you can buy Portuguese ceramics, like azulejos.
Preserves like honey and jam and bottled wines are also great items to take home. Although you may have a harder time fitting these into your luggage. Nonetheless, when looking for souvenirs to buy from Portugal, your preferences are the only limitation.
From colorful Portuguese tilework to traditional olive oil, Barcelos roosters, and fragrant cosmetics, you can easily turn your house into a Portugal home.
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