Shopping for souvenirs from Cuba? These unique Cuban souvenirs promise a lifetime of fond memories. They also double up as brilliant gifts for friends and family.
When most people think of Cuba, they probably think of cigars, rum and beaches. But there’s so much more to this island nation than that!
Cubans are known for their creativity and ingenuity, which is on full display in the form of souvenirs.
Whether you’re looking for a unique piece of art or something more functional, there’s a Cuban souvenir out there for you.
To help you narrow down your options, I’ve shortlisted 15 of the most unique and culturally iconic souvenirs from Cuba that you can take home with you.
15 Best Souvenirs from Cuba
From Cuban cigars and rum to straw hats and coconut monkeys, here are 15 of my favourite souvenirs from Cuba.
1. Cuban Cigar
Cuba is world-famous for its cigars, making them excellent souvenirs from Cuba whether you actually indulge in them or not.
Havana has many cigar shops where you can purchase authentic Cuban cigars, and the knowledgeable staff can help you choose the right cigars for your tastes and budget.
However, it’s important to remember that bringing Cuban cigars into the United States is illegal, so check the customs regulations before purchasing them. You’re fine to bring them into England though.
READ MORE: What to Do on a Day Trip to Havana
2. Cuban rum
Boasting a vibrant festival culture, Cuba is unsurprisingly a producer of many world-famous rums. Just a few of the household names around the world include Havana Club, Bacardi and Santiago de Cubamany.
Many rum shops in Cuba will let you sample various blends to help you choose your favourite variety. If you want to learn about the production of rum, you can join tours of distilleries located throughout the nation.
Whether you prefer a light rum or something with a kick, you can find it in Cuba. Rum also makes for a thoughtful gift from Cuba, especially if you give it to someone who enjoys cocktails.
3. Cuban art
For a Cuban souvenir that captures the beauty, history, culture and overall feeling of Cuba, you can’t go wrong with some local art.
Artwork in Cuba is very diverse, colourful and full of life. Works by famous Cuban artists such as Wifredo Lam reflect Cuba’s Afro-Cuban spirit, which beautifully captures the nation’s unique heritage and culture.
You can find art galleries all over Cuba, but some of the best places to buy art are in Havana. Several art markets and shops sell both traditional and contemporary Cuban art.
4. Cuban coffee
If you can’t start the day without your morning caffeine boost, coffee might be the ideal souvenir from Cuba for you.
Cuban coffee is strong and flavourful, with a unique taste due to the island’s climate and soil conditions. Café Cubano is the most famous type of Cuban coffee, but there are many other varieties to choose from.
You can find coffee beans and ground coffee in shops all over Cuba. If you know someone who loves coffee, this is a souvenir they will appreciate.
READ MORE: What to Buy From Florida
5. Clothing from Cuba
Cuban clothing is colourful, vibrant and unique, making it an excellent Cuban souvenir option for those who like to make a fashion statement.
There are many local shops in Cuba selling everything from t-shirts to dresses and hats, and you can even have clothing custom-made if you want something truly one-of-a-kind.
Whether you’re looking for a festival costume, casual wear or something more formal, you can find it in Cuba.
6. Cuban Straw Hat
When I think of Cuba, one of the first things that comes to mind is the iconic Cuban straw hat.
This traditional accessory has long been a symbol of Cuban culture, making it an excellent Cuban souvenir. You can find hats in many different styles and sizes, including ones with embroidery or other embellishments. If you’re wondering what to buy from Cuba, a hat is a great choice.
7. Cuban music
Cuba is known for its vibrant and diverse music scene, so it’s only natural that music makes for a great souvenir.
Whether you want traditional Cuban music or something more modern, there are plenty of options available. CDs, records and cassettes can all be found in shops throughout Cuba. If you know someone who loves music, a Cuban vinyl will go down a storm!
READ MORE: The Best Souvenirs from England
8. Cuban cuisine
Treating yourself to Cuban cuisine is one of the best ways to experience the culture of Cuba.
From traditional dishes like ropa vieja and arroz con pollo to more modern creations like pan con Lechon, there’s a dish for everyone in Cuba.
Consider buying some ingredients as souvenirs from Cuba to make these yummy dishes at home. Spices, herbs and an array of other local products can be found in markets and shops. These are some of the best Cuba souvenirs to bring home – you can check out the best types of food in Cuba here.
9. Cuban Currency
Cuba’s currency, the peso Cubano (Cuban peso), is not traded outside the country, making it an excellent souvenir from Cuba and memento of your trip.
You can find coins and notes of different denominations in shops all over the island. It’s also worth noting that some banks will exchange Cuban pesos into foreign currency if you return home with extra.
10. Kitschy tourist items
Cuba has plenty of kitschy tourist items if you’re looking for something lighthearted to bring home from Cuba.
Fridge magnets and ceramic figurines are brilliant souvenirs and allow you to add a touch of Cuba to your home. You can also buy Cuban licence plate keyrings and other knick-knacks.
It’s worth noting that many of these items are mass-produced and not locally made, but they’ll still serve as reminders of your trip to Cuba.
READ MORE: The Coolest Things to Do in Havana
11. Baseball jerseys and gear
Cuba is passionate about baseball, so it’s no surprise that sports apparel is a popular Cuban souvenir.
Whether you’re a fan of the Cuban National Team or just want to show off your love of the sport, there are plenty of options to choose from. You can find everything from jerseys and hats to baseball gloves, all of which are great gifts from Cuba for baseball fans.
12. Handmade crafts
If you want a souvenir from Cuba that’s truly unique, consider buying a handmade craft.
Artisans are ubiquitous in Cuba, making everything from jewellery to wood carvings and paintings. You can also find various handmade ceramic items like plates, mugs and bowls.
Support local artisans by purchasing one-of-a-kind crafts that represent the culture and creativity of Cuba.
13. Wood carvings
Wood carvings are a traditional Cuban craft and make stylish Cuban souvenirs and decorative pieces.
Carvers create intricate sculptures that range from simple animals to religious figures to abstract designs.
Wood is an abundant resource in Cuba, with mahogany and cedar being popular materials for carvings. These pieces make for lovely decorations and conversation starters in any home.
14. Coconut monkeys
Coconut monkeys are a traditional Cuban souvenir that can be found in many shops and markets.
These small figurines are handmade with natural materials like coconut shells, meaning no two sculptures are identical.
It’s said that these little monkeys will bring happiness to your home, so consider buying one as a fun reminder of your time in Cuba.
15. Cuban flag
The Cuban flag is a powerful symbol of the country’s history and culture, so bringing it home as a souvenir can be a great way to honour your trip.
Flags come in various sizes and styles, from traditional flags with the five-point star to modern versions made from cloth or plastic.
No matter which flag you choose, it promises to be an ever-lasting reminder of your time in Cuba.
Inspiration for souvenirs from Cuba
Of course, I could go on listing amazing Cuban gifts forever, but these 15 souvenirs won’t fail to please your friends and family. If you’re shopping for yourself, the best souvenirs from Cuba will immortalise your trip. So, the next time you find yourself in Cuba, pick up a couple of these unique gifts!
Have I missed any souvenirs from Cuba that deserve a mention on this list? Let me know in the comments below.
Quick list of best souvenirs from Cuba
- Cuban Straw Hat
- Cuban Cuisine
- Cuban Currency
- Kitschy Tourist Items
- Baseball Jerseys and Gear
- Handmade Crafts
- Wood Carvings
- Coconut Monkeys