So, you are visiting Canada and don’t know what to bring home as a Canadian souvenir? Like most countries, this vast North American nation has a wide selection of items and products that are unique to this country making them interesting Canada souvenirs or gift items.
As frequent travellers, we fully appreciate how difficult it can be to figure out what to bring home, which will make a great gift for family and friends. Sure, who doesn’t know about the things that make Canada world-famous? The challenge lies in getting things that are not only uniquely Canadian but which can easily be brought home as great souvenirs from Canada.
Souvenirs are probably the best way of keeping memories of places visited alive; of telling your family and friends that you have ‘been there.’ A souvenir gift also tells them that you are thinking about them while away travelling.
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16 Best Souvenirs from Canada - Contents
Canadian Souvenirs to Bring Home
Looking for unique souvenirs to buy in Canada? Hop on board for this is the right place! As avid travellers, one of our greatest joys is to hunt for items to take home, to rekindle memories of places visited. And Canada is not any different. Besides the endless list of places to visit, see or eat in Canada, the country has tons of little treasures that a visitor like you can take home as a reminder of the Great North Wild.
From small and easy-to-pack diamond trinkets to bulky granite items and sweet delicacies, we have the best souvenirs from Canada for you. These are unique items that will rekindle memories of Canada when you're long gone.
World Famous Smoked Salmon
Canada is famous for its bountiful salmon population. If you ever watch the National Geographic Channel, then you know what we are talking about. And don’t just believe that it’s only the bears that appreciate this delicacy!
West Coast salmon, in particular, is worldwide famous. Smoked salmon ranks high among popular gifts visitors take home. Anxious about how you can preserve this fish that’s also known as Lox? You can buy cold smoked salmon in a frozen state and it lasts about 24 hours when preserved at room temperature. This gives you time to get home and enjoy this Great North Wild delicacy.
Few places are as renowned as Vancouver for the king of all fish, “salmon”. If you want to taste what you intend to take home first, there are several popular places in the lower mainland that do a great job of selling fresh salmon. However, the place to visit is Granville Island when you want to sample this exceptional Canadian product. Here, you can also buy Salmon gift packs that require no refrigeration and are packed ready to go.
The Immortal Granite Inuksuk
When you travel above the Arctic Circle, you will be amazed to discover that the tundra offers few, if any, natural landmarks. Therefore, from ancient times, the local people, the Inuit, erected stone Inukshuk to act as landmarks along travel routes. These were used by hunters to find their way, directing them to good places where they could camp. In a way, Inukshuk also seemed to say “we were here” to those who came later.
Today, the Inuit are no longer erecting granite Inukshuks but artisans in Canada are making replicas of the same. These are of smaller scale made from reclaimed or recycled material. We found them to be available in many colours and designs. This will be an excellent way of letting your folks back home that you were here, too.
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Maple Syrup, the Canadian Staple
The national symbol of Canada is undoubtedly the Maple Leaf. Maple syrup can be safely assumed to be the national food and no wonder this is the top producer of maple syrup in the world. Gourmet maple syrup is a popular item found in major stores across the country.
It didn’t surprise us much to note that maple syrup ranks very high among Canada souvenirs, something you should consider adding to your shopping list. Whether its maple syrup, maple butter, maple candy or maple cookies – bring home something made with this Canadian staple and you have a winner souvenir.
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The Iconic Niagara Falls Souvenirs
Who doesn’t know or have heard about the Niagara Falls? As one of the great wonders of the world, it attracts thousands of visitors from all over the world annually. A visit to Canada cannot be deemed to be complete without an excursion to the Niagara Falls.
While there, enjoying the majestic beauty, why not take some awesome photo for memories’ sake? Even better, look for the numerous Niagara Falls souvenirs normally sold around the area.
The Diverse Tim Hortons Products
We literally fell in love with Tim Hortons. No wonder this is the nation’s most beloved coffee chain. Most Canadians favour it over places like Starbucks. You will too, after tasting what they offer. Most Tim’s sell the packaged version of their products as well as different types of tea—including other memorabilia — but you can also find their products like coffee in most grocery stores.
You will agree with us that Tim Hortons is not famous for nothing and you will want to bring that treat home. It’s an open secret that Canadians just love doughnuts, comparable to how Americans love burgers. Canada is ranked among the top consumers of doughnuts globally.
When in Canada a stop by Tim Hortons is a must. Their doughnuts are awesome. And while at it, why not have them pack some for your family and friends back home? Their taste buds will thank you for it!
Ethically-Sourced Canadian Diamonds
Canada is recognized globally for mining exquisite diamonds. Perhaps more significantly, it has world-famous jewellery designers, with several situated on Granville Island. In Canada, many diamonds are produced in the Northwest Territories. These stones not only have many desirable features but are mined to the highest global standards. So why not grab some before going home?
Concerned by ethical issues in mining? Canadian diamonds are ethically sourced as the nation promotes of the Kimberley Process. This is an initiative that deters the use of diamonds sourced from conflict zones in Africa.
Yes, diamonds are a woman’s best friend and when they are from Canada, she can wear them without guilt or shame as Canadian diamond souvenirs are morally sound.
The Guardian Angel Dream Catchers
The authentic craft of the native Canadians, dream catchers were made originally by the Shamans to block bad dreams from getting into the mind of the dreamer. These guardian artefacts are said to catch bad dreams during the night and were hung over the sleeping person. In the morning, these would supposedly get burnt up by Sun while the good dreams would glide down into the mind of the dreamers during the night.
While today these traditional items have lost their popularity, they remain a good choice for your souvenirs from Canada list and can be found in every souvenir shop.
Unique Indigenous (Aboriginal) Art
The history of Aboriginal art in Canada can be traced to the last Ice Age, about 80,000 and 12,000 years ago. However, the oldest surviving pieces of art are dated much later, around 5,000 years ago. While buying a piece of original Aboriginal art may be out of the reach of many of us, unless, of course, you already made your bucks early in life, there are many authentic copies you could affordably buy.
We discovered lots of unique places across the country where you can get quality and affordable pieces of art and jewellery designed along the lines of Aboriginal art that you can consider taking home as memorable souvenirs from Canada. In particular, we suggest you pay the Museum of Anthropology a visit as it has an exceptional collection of Aboriginal art. The Museum’s shops have lots of art copies for sale that make perfect souvenir or gift item.
The Famed and Notorious Canadian Club whiskey
Canadian Club whiskey is one of the best whiskeys produced locally in Canada. With a history spanning over a century, Canadian Club has been a staple whiskey brand for generations. This iconic drink is made in Windsor just outside of Toronto.
Guess what? You could be enjoying a souvenir from Canada loved and appreciated by Royalty. This was the only liquor product from North America that received a royal warrant from several British Monarchs (Queen Victoria to Elizabeth II). And if you love that wicked twist, Al Capone smuggled Canadian Club whiskey during American prohibition from Windsor to Detroit.
The Uniquely Prepared Canadian Ice Wine
Canadian Ice Wine has been nicknamed Canada’s liquid gold. The drink has not only won major international awards but has placed winemaking in Canada firmly in the spotlight. But what is ice wine? Like normal wine, it’s produced from grapes. However, these grapes are left hanging on the vine after the fall harvest and very significantly, once the temperatures drop to -8ºC or below, the now frozen grapes are handpicked and then pressed.
How does that make the wine unique? When they freeze, the sugars in the grapes and other solids don't actually freeze, only the water content. This makes the juice extracted from these frozen grapes very concentrated. What you get is a very sweet wine yet balanced in acidity.
We recommend Canadian Ice Wine as a dessert wine as it brings out intense flavours, unsurpassed smoothness, and a rich taste.
The Trendy Roots Clothing
Founded in 1973 in Toronto, the goal of Canada Roots is to inspire people across the world to experience everyday adventures with style and comfort. Roots gained international fame in 1976 for outfitting the Olympic teams of Canada in their distinctive red and white gear.
If you love trendy sports designs, you will love Roots Clothing. Our favourite Roots item is, without any doubt, the iconic Cooper Beaver T-shirt. This is great Canada souvenir worth taking home. Of course, we are biased, so you can choose any other item of Roots Clothing that tickles your fancy.
Canadian Currency, a.k.a. Monopoly Money
Want a really novel souvenir from Canada? Consider leaving for home with some Canadian cash. True, the currency will have little use outside Canada but keeping some is an interesting way of having a souvenir and of course keeping the memories of how it made your vacation or trip momentous.
Often called "Monopoly Money", Canadian currency is colourful. Each bill bears a different, bright colour, with portraits of notable people on them. If you have kids back home, foreign coins are a richly valued gift item and the Canadian Toonie, in particular, can be prized Canada souvenirs for them.
The Internationally-Recognized Canadian Flag Pins
It’s often joked that many people (including Americans!) so badly wish they had been born Canadian, to the extent they often wear Canadian flag pins whenever travelling abroad. And who can really blame them? Canada has been voted among those with the best reputations in the world.
So if you desire to get the royalty treatment when travelling, why not acquire yourself one of these highly-respected Canadian flag pins? You will thank us later!
The Festive Christmas Ornaments
Christmas in Canada is special and very white, literally, because of the deep snow. A magical way keeping the spirit of the Canadian Christmas alive (if it finds you in Canada) is to buy Canada souvenirs in the form of Christmas ornaments.
They are an inexpensive and nice souvenir because every time you look at your Christmas tree it will transport you back to Canada, mentally at least.
Tasty Candy from Purdy’s or Rogers’
Planning to visit Vancouver City? A visit to this City must always include a chocolaty experience. We identified two highly respected chocolate makers in Vancouver with great candy items worth your visit. Purdy’s can be found in any mall within the lower Mainland and Rogers’ is the other one.
Rogers’ has a history dating back to 1885 when Charles (Candy) Rogers made the first chocolates in his Victoria grocery store. The variety you will find at Rogers’ is uniquely Victorian.
Handmade Canadian Organic Soap
Who doesn’t like hygiene products with an organic base? Canada and Toronto, in particular, is a country of artisans who love making things. Handmade organic soap from Canada is a great souvenir or as a gift for someone back home.
They are not only affordable but easy to pack when travelling home. How could you go wrong with such environmentally-friendly souvenirs from Canada? They are guaranteed to conjure up memories of your days in Canada after arriving home.