The Best Souvenir You Can Bring Back from South America


“What’s the best souvenir to get here?”

It’s a great question and one that our guides get from guests traveling with us all the time.

You have to pick up a souvenir, right? Everyone wants a keepsake from the places they visit. It just makes sense, when you experience the trip of a lifetime you are going to want to have something to remind you of your treasured moments once your return home.

While, of course, every destination is different and each has their own unique or iconic token you could take back with you, wherever it makes sense, you can’t go wrong with a bottle of wine.

Chile and Argentina are obviously South America’s major wine-producing countries and bringing back a few bottles from either country is a no brainer. Chile has firmly established its reputation with iconic Bordeaux blends such as Almaviva and Argentina has driven an international renaissance for Malbec. However, they aren’t the only places we travel to for which a fine bottle a wine would make an excellent memento.

For the wine collector especially interested in expanding the geographic breadth of their collection, we highly recommend Uruguay as a great place to start in expanding your knowledge of South American wines. These past few years have seen Uruguayan wine makers push their way into the wine world. Famous for its Tannat, described as a rigorous variety with tannin, moderate-to-high alcohol and grit, these wines are a favourite, especially for barbeque, throughout South America. However, very few are exported to the United States, giving you a great chance to introduce friends and family to a whole new wine experience.

That’s exactly why we so love the idea of wine as a souvenir. It’s a little bit like exploration in a bottle. What better conversation starter than pulling the cork from a bottle of one of Matervini’s daring Malbecs that you acquired during your tour of the Argentinian vineyard? It’s the best way to recount your experience in a tangible (and delicious) way. Not to mention, a great way to share what you’ve learned with fellow aspiring connoisseurs.

And forget unlocking dinner conversation, you might be shocked by just how much of your own trip of a lifetime comes rushing back to you in those moments as you sip your souvenir. Our brains make extremely powerful connections to memories through taste and smell, the kind of visceral connections even pictures fail to make, so you’ll immediately be transported back to your first taste, sampled against the dramatic backdrop of the snow-capped Andes mountains.

Wine is also an affordable, but still elegant, souvenir when compared to another great travel memento like art. Wine packs simpler and travels better too. Plus, it usually means you’re directly supporting the locally economy with your souvenir spend. So, “what’s the best souvenir to get here?” We say, it’s best to sample all that you’re interested in, then let your palette decide which bottles need to come home with you.