Christmas is less than 10 days away! Continuing on with the 2017 edition of the “Traveler’s Holiday Gift Guide,” I have twenty-four more worldly holiday gift ideas for all the globetrotters and even some for the armchair traveler. And feel free to enter not one, but TWO giveaways at the bottom of the page! 😊
Bun cha Hanoi, Goi Cuon, Tra Da. No string of words could stir more rousing food memories in my soul than the ones features on Jodi Ettenberg’s typographic food map of Vietnam. Jodi Ettenberg is one of the most prominent names in the travel blogging sphere and we share a history of time spent in Ho Chi Minh City and also a gluten intolerance (she has a nice library of gluten-free food guides at her blog, Legal Nomads.) The blog has gone unfortunately into hiatus mode since Ettenberg’s critical diagnosis with a CSF leak. Travel blogging is hard work and many full-time bloggers rely on the support of their readers. Please help out a fellow travel blogger in her time of need by purchasing one of her designs featuring the cuisines of Italy, Japan, Mexico, Thailand, and Vietnam. $18 for one white on black print.
Q: What’s the secret behind fighting off the effects of jetlag and poor health choices while on the road? A: Drink more water! And what better way to stay hydrated then with a Hydro Flask bottle, which uses TempShield insulation to keep drinks cold for 24 hours and hot for up to 12 hours. The sports cap makes sipping easy and the best part about this product is that it comes backed with a lifetime warranty, so no matter how banged up it gets on the road, you can trade it in for a brandnewproduct! *mindblown* One canister for $35.95. Comes in purple, green, blue, and black.
Need a monthly dose of travel inspiration? The next destination is waiting on the other side of each page turn. Challenge: play a game of spontaneity with yourself and aim to visit the country being featured on your birth month. $26 for one wall calendar.
If there’s one country I’d never go to, it would be North Korea. But that doesn’t mean I’m not curious about what goes on behind the iron curtain. In a riveting compilation of curios collected by author Nick Bonner, readers are given an uncensored look at the state-controlled designs consumed by everyday DPRK citizens. These two-dimensional images inform us about what is eaten, what is advertised, and what is purhcased, challenging what we think we know about the world’s most secretive state and giving us a rare glimpse into one of the most oppressive regimes of the modern era. One Flexibound book for $25.31.
If local liquors are up your alley, Brooklyn’s homegrown treat is none other than Kings County Chocolate Whiskey. This bestseller pairs leftover cacao husks from Mast Brothers, a popular chocolatier also from Brooklyn, with Kings County moonshine to create a warm, not overly sweet whiskey that’s fine on the rocks or as a part of a festive libation. One 200 ml flask for $20.
With a telling name and a cheery aesthetic, the Printomatic by Kodak is bound to be your next best travel companion. The compact camera uses cartridgeless technology to produce smudge-free photos printed on sticky-backed paper that come out at an instant. And since it is a digital camera, you can save all your photos. The price is probably the best part about this gift. $69.99 for Amazon Prime subscribers, gift bundle is $99.
For the globetrotting family, this is the perfect solution for keeping restless children occupied while also making sure that these special journeys are properly documented. The full package comes with a pullout city guide mapping out twenty kid-friendly locations vetted by creative locals, a set of memory cards, 2 postcards, and a 24-page travel journal for your little ones. The cities currently offered in the series are Barcelona, London, Copenhagen, New York City, Paris, and San Francisco and are only $15.95 each.
Let your look reflect what a holiday ought to be: easy, breezy, and all about lounging. Not only will you be super stylish in these airy pants, but your purchase of these Aruna Lounge Pants gives dignified work to young women in India to combat human trafficking, reinvesting all the proceeds in an empowering, microfinance venture with budding artisans. $30.80 for a pair.
In the wake of the detrimental impact the Trump Administration is having on the United States’ national parks—as in shrinking the size of monuments and hiking up park fees—supporting the existence of the national parks service could not be more crucial. This screenprinted National Park Registry posters features 59 natural wonders located all around the USA and allows the owner to catalog their visits via a neat stamping process. Screenprinted print is $59 and comes with stamp and inkpad.
30. Brazilian Beauty on the Go by Sol de Janiero
. The Bum Bum cream, named after Brazilian’s favorite *ahem* “asset”, is made with Amazonian Guaraná extract, giving skin an extra boost of radiance and lift. The Brazilian Kiss Cupuaçu Lip Butter leaves lips feeling soft and luscious, while leaving a dewy sheen. É o jeitinho brasileiro. Travel-sized bundle for $25, valued at $38
Brooklyn-based children’s book illustrator Claudia Pearson draws upon everyday facets to paint a picture of urban Brooklyn. From fire hydrants and perched pigeons, to jars of pickles from Brooklyn Brine and apartment buildings filled with ordinary people and aspiring artists, each tote is decorated in an assembly of the objects we associate to famous American cities. 14 cities to choose from, $20 per bag.
Reduce the possibility of losing the most important thing in your suitcase with this made to order passport monogrammed with your initials. Made from natural cowhide leather out of workshop in Cambridge, United Kingdom, the passport cover can be further personalized should you wish to add a special message in the inside flap. $27.11 including monograms, order in Turquoise Blue or Tan.
When it comes to practicality, scarves are a close second to sarongs.This silk bandana can be used to dress up a plain shirt, as a makeshift cover for expensive camera gear, as a protective wrap for loose jewelry, and to cover your head in sacred spaces. This is cross-functional at its finest. Four different prints for $24.50. Use the promo code ‘ADDTOCART’ for 25% off.
34. Travel Pillow by TRTL
At first, you might feel a bit stupid rocking what looks like a piece of cloth attached to a broken neck brace out in public, but who cares?! You’ll pass out the moment you strap this pillow around your head. The TRTL Neck Pillow has been engineer to support your neck on long haul flights and can be positioned for sleep either to the left, right, or the front of your head for individualized comfort. It lies flat when not in use, which is perfect for frequent fliers not looking to lug around a lot, or those who pack too much and space is tight. $22.98 for one pillow, comes in four colors.
While we may never unearth the secrets to our celestial origins, we can trace our earthly roots with much more ease. Using saliva samples to compute a DNA analysis, the 23 & Me testing service will outline your ethnic makeup under 31 unique population categories and also which Neanderthal grouping you came from. Also great for ending age old disputes between bickering relatives about your family lineage. #knowthyself Ancestry Kit now $79, originally $99.
No matter what language it’s written in, the word woman demonstrates power, magnificence, prestige, and strength. That’s why the makers behind this shirt, WORD, chose to name the shit “The Creator Shirt,” alluding to the woman’s role in the act of creation. Whether women are rearing children or starting their own businesses, they are making a difference in their communities. 25% of the proceeds of this shirt is donated to Planned Parenthood, which provides affordable healthcare for women across the USA. $25 for white or black shirt. Sizes run big.
Dress your boring old beadspreads and sofas with decorative throw pillows of evergreens blanketing the majestic Sierra Mountains in California. 1% of the proceeds goes toward the Tree Planting National Forest Program. Choose from an indoor pillow cover or a fade and weather resistant outdoor cover. $22.50 for a 16×16 inch indoor pillow. This maker also takes custom orders.
Looking back on my travel journals, I’ve come to realize that my observations and thoughts share space with flight timetables, contact details, ticket stubs, and random polaroids. What happens if there was one notebook that was part journal, part planner? The team behind Adventure Assist have finally delivered a product that seamlessly centralizes all trip planning and documenting into one durable, travel keepsake. With pockets in the inside covers and tabbed pages sectioned off into packing lists, calendars, contacts, and accommodations, you’ll always have useful information in hand. One travel notebook for $34.95.
For those days where it’s hard to make up your mind, let these statement earrings do the talking. And indecisiveness is made that much more chic when translated into French, oui or non? Jewelry artist Larissa Loden “rescues” knicknacks flea market hunting to create one of a kind pieces that also have a past life. One pair for $20.
After procuring a copy of Cook Korean! featured on last year’s “Best Travel Books of 2016” wanderlist, I have become obsessed with illustrated cookbooks. The discovery of self-published Marcella Kriebel was all by chance, as I stumbled upon her second book, Comida Cubana ($19.29), at the Harvard Book Store. This 100% handpainted and handlettered cookbook transports us to the Caribbean island of Cuba and shows off local delicacies like Bacán (banana leaf steamed plantain and crab). Her first endeavor, Mi Comida Latina ($17.37), features more than 100 recipes from across Latin America, ranging from the mainstream items to the more obscure.
The secrets of classical Japanese beauty are bottled up in this stunning travel-sized vial. The Luminous Dewy Skin is a milky, emulsive spray that is used to reduce the appearance of dry, fatigued skin. On especially grueling travel days, it can be used to refresh dehydrated tired skin with or without makeup. The Tatcha brand utilizes the holy trinity of Eastern anti-aging ingredients: green tea, rice, and algae, as the foundation of its Eastern inspired skin care philosophy. The travel-sized version of this bestseller is $20.
Uniqlo’s line of Japanese culture-inspired wear, the “Nippon Omiyage” (Japanese Souvenir) collection celebrates all things kawaii, ramen, manga, and harajuk. Throughout the year, the collection rotates submissions from various artists who dream up creative interpretations of elements obviously Japan like Mount Fuji and regal geishas. The latest contributor is revered cartoonist Fujio Akatsuka whose ramen masters shouting out kanji-whatnots from his slapstick mangas, Tensai Bakabon and Moretsu Ataro, put the graphic in graphic tee. $14.90 for a gray graphic tee.
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