5 of the best gifts from Greece!
When visiting any destination, souvenir shopping is one of the best parts of the enjoyment of exploring the city and a great opportunity to bring something back home that will remind you of your adventures away. Greece is no exception and has a large array of souvenir shops to help you find both beautiful and also tacky things to bring back home: from miniatures of the Acropolis to contemporary jewellery, artistic creations inspired by Greek folk art, leather shoes, bags, belts and anything that you can imagine. Here is a short list of the top 5 souvenirs to bring back.
If you are a fan of leather shoes then Greece is the place for you! Maybe the most iconic and best thing to buy from Greece is the handmade leather sandals. You will find many leather shops in the historic centre of Athens, and especially in the tourist areas of Plaka and Monastiraki. Find unique styles, colours and patterns that will accompany you during summertime.
Tradition in Greece believes that wearing a blue eye on you, will protect you from the evil eye. In Greece, you will find different variations of it, mostly in jewellery but in other forms as well. Check out jewellery shops; in the tourist shops you’ll find more versions of it: printed on t-shirts, bags etc. Prices vary according to the quality and style.
Worry beads, komboloi, is a number of beads bound together on a string. Traditionally, used by Greek men to keep their hands busy. To play komboloi, you move the beads between your fingers, making noises as the beads turn around and hit together. Today, it is mostly used for decoration and as a souvenir reminiscent of the old times. There are various types of komboloi depending on the material and the size of beads. Usually, beads are made of amber or coral as these materials are better to handle than others such as metal or plastic. It is a really nice reminder of the Greek culture and you may still see some old men in the villages playing them.
Organic products made by pure Greek herbs are a must when you visit Greece. You can find face creams, hand creams, shampoos, body lotions, lip balms and more cosmetics in big department stores and pharmacies in Athens. Search for the famous, great quality Greek brands Korres and Apivita. Visit Apivita Experience Store on Solonos street in Kolonaki. You will find a four floors where you can see, smell and try the company’s products.
If you are a fan of contemporary art, then you should not miss two of the best museum shops in Athens. They offer traditional souvenirs with a modern twist in the forms of amazing paintings, bags, t-shirts and exquisite copies of Greek folk art and much more.
The first option is Benaki Museum and its shop, which are located at 138 Pireos, a ten minute walk from the metro station Kerameikos. You can visit the shop without having to visit the museum. It is one of the best museum shops. The second option is Goulandris Museum of Cycladic Art located at Neofytou Douka 4 in Kolonaki, just 6 minutes walking from Evangelismos metro station, which offers more luxurious and traditional art.