What to buy in France as a gift or bring as a souvenir in 2023? Cosmetics, food, clothes, other items that tourists should pay attention to? The best original products and wine you can bring back home from France and Paris, where to buy and how much they cost – in the material of good Time for Trip.
Almost every tourist before going abroad, at least briefly, but thinks about what could he bring home from there. Moreover, today the business is almost never limited to souvenirs – people are happy to buy and transport food and cosmetics, clothes, sometimes even interior items across the seas and oceans.
To their loved one or for use in everyday life, as a gift to relatives and friends, acquaintances. As a reminder of a trip or for the practical purpose of adding original charm to your own home.
The more popular and larger the chosen city or region, the more temptations. Therefore, one should not be surprised that in the case of France you want to bring home literally everything. Eyes run wide, but the baggage weight standards established by airlines are inexorable.
Therefore, in order not to get lost and not to overload the suitcase with things that are not too necessary, in general, it is better to gather your thoughts initially. Which is what we actually did, making a list of things that make sense to buy in Paris or another French city and take across the border.
It wasn’t easy due to the fact that the country is full of beautiful chateaux, small towns and villages, other charming and downright atmospheric places. But we finished the job and this is what happened!
First of all, of course, we recommend you paying attention to the goods, that impossible to buy outside of France at all. Or so expensive that the price tag literally beats off the desire to purchase them.
Popular Gifts from France
Paris, as you know, rightfully claims to be the culinary capital of the world. Yes, and others, even not too large cities of this European country, consider themselves something like trendsetters in gastronomic fashion.
So if clothes of famous brands are mainly brought back from Italy, then in the case of France it is much more reasonable firstly to pay attention to products. For example, on
France is well known mainly for soft cheeses, the most famous of which are Brie and Camembert. Which, as almost everyone understands, is not so easy to carry in luggage safe and sound.
And it’s not that they can be stolen along the way. Most likely – just crushed!
The situation is a little easier with rounds and triangles of soft cheeses with mold, in factory packings. After all, you can make a puzzle out of them and pack in such a way that Camembert and Brie can’t be afraid of sloppy movers.
The price of such sorts of cheese in French supermarket chains (on average from 3 € / 200 gr) makes it possible to buy them in France in large quantities. However, if your flight doesn’t last 2-3 hours, but more, then you risk simply losing money.
Please note, that Camembert tolerates transportation better and will live for some time without a refrigerator. But Brie is more gentle. And, as they say, it loses its taste and aroma, as soon as it warms up a little.
We emphasize once again that if you do not consider yourself a connoisseur and gourmet with experience, don’t buy goods in specialized cheese shops. It is much easier to get hold of what you want in the supermarkets of large Franprix, Monoprix or Auchan chains.
Foie Gras and Meat Products
Many people cannot deny themselves in France the purchase of foie gras. We mean duck or goose liver.
Whole product (foie gras entier) costs from 50 € per kg, pates (pâté de foie gras) are much cheaper. However, if you give yourself the trouble to learn how they mock a bird in order to enlarge its liver, you may not even touch the delicacy.
France does not produce such recognizable meat products as jamon or prosciutto. That does not prevent local producers from flooding the counters of appetizing raw smoked sausages and dried meat.
The most famous is produced in Auvergne. Prices are quite standard (from 25 € per kg) – the less preservatives, the more expensive the product.
It may be worth bringing some original French spices from Paris as well. For example, Dijon mustard is widely known all over the world and conveniently packaged in small jars. Those who find ready-made Tapenade pasta in the store, an indispensable attribute of Provencal cuisine, will definitely not regret it.
Again, they cost quite sane money. In any case, less than you will be asked to pay for even a short River Seine cruise.
Cognac and Champagne are recognizable symbols of France. And you can certainly be proud of yourself if you come home with a bottle of Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin or Rémy Martin.
Note, that you can also stock up on such alcohol in a duty-free shop. It is possible that you will even save money. Not to mention the fact that you will simply spend much less time on acquiring what you want.
Once in France, you can also buy something that is not so easy to find on the shelves of British or American stores. For example, the famous Normandy or Breton cider (from 3.5 €), a bottle of white Burgundy or red Bordeaux (from 6-7 €) wine.
Of course, the production of not the most famous houses like Château Lafite-Rothschild, but quite decent. In any case, they are all protected by the region of origin – Appellation d’origine contrôlée (AOC).
A wonderful choice, confirming your non-standard view of things, will be the purchase of a bottle or two of Armagnac. The older, but not so famous brother of cognac.
We advise you to pay attention and to the Normandy apple brandy – Calvados
Many bring as a great gift from France an unique Chartreuse liqueur, which has an interesting taste and a recognizable salad shade. Someone will certainly put in their luggage the popular local aperitif Pastis, anise and herbs based tincture.
Perfume and Cosmetics
There is no particular point in buying even in Paris and taking home eau de toilette and perfumes of well-known mass brands. After all, you can purchase this perfume in your homeland for about the same money.
Therefore, we advise you to pay attention to some exclusive flavors. From the line of such houses as Guerlain or Chanel, which does not age over the years.
When it comes to cosmetics, we tend to recommend pretty expensive brands such as La Roche Posay and Caudalie.
We advise you to buy in a large Citypharma store at Paris, 26 Rue du Four – this is the largest institution of this profile not only in the capital, but throughout France. Notable for slightly lower prices and an incredible number of visitors.
If you value time and do not want to push around, inspect other pharmacies in Paris. Many interesting things will be found, for example, in Parashop.
Well, now we will move on to what causes the greatest interest.
We are sure that you have already outgrown buying budget souvenirs like the model of the Eiffel Tower, riveted in millions of copies in China. Or the most banal T-shirts with a heart and the inscription “J’aime la France”!
And therefore try to find inexpensive, but original magnets. Small handmade plates and saucers, porcelain dolls, etchings, engravings and lithographs. Including those that can be found in small and extremely authentic Parisian second-hand bookshops.
Prices for such goods are scattered in a very wide range. But we are sure that you will not regret spending the extra 15-20 euros just to buy an original little thing that will remind you of Paris or Nice, Bordeaux or Lyon.
- Or about visiting one of the famous French castles – at the entrance to them they often sell very nice author’s watercolors!
We are not in a position to give any specific recipes here. If you have enough money, go to the expensive boutiques of the most famous brands on the Champs Elysees. If not, look for chain stores in the budget segment.
Or pay attention to small family shops, where you can often find “noname” things of very good quality.
It is worth remembering that although France is considered a trendsetter, a tourist hunting for branded clothing looks primarily at Italy.
And that is why sales in Milan are almost more famous than the local openwork cathedral. They try to keep up with the capital of Lombardy in other Italian regions, building special outlet towns for tourists…