The Best Argentina Souvenirs

Forget the malls when you shopping for souvenirs in Argentina.

What Argentina excels in is all things handcrafted and artisan made.

Think custom leather jackets, bags, and boots.

Woven textiles from the north and confections made with sweet berries from the south.

If you’re on a budget you can pick up treasures at a lower price point by shopping in the weekend outdoor Buenos Aires markets.

Here are my favorite Argentina souvenirs.

We’ll start our shopping tour in Buenos Aires (with tips on where to find each item) then travel across Argentina, highlighting the best souvenirs from Patagonia to Iguazu.

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Traditional Argentina Souvenirs in Buenos Aires

There are so many traditional things to buy in Argentina.

From expertly crafted leather jackets to hand-carved serving platters, you’ll be sure to find plenty of Argentina gifts to take home to friends and family (or to keep for yourself).

Buenos Aires is also home to its fair share of antique shops and markets for the treasure hunters out there.

Here’s my list of what to buy in Buenos Aires and where.

And I speak from experience, I own far too much of everything in this post.

Not actually IN Argentina? Check out these Argentina gifts and souvenirs that you can get online, wherever you are.

Leather Goods

Argentina is world famous for a few things: red wine, steak, and leather.

If you want to get a high-quality souvenir that will last a lifetime at a fraction of what it would cost back home?

Then you need to get yourself a nice leather jacket, my friend!

Invest in a high-quality leather jacket, pair of boots, or a leather bag while you’re here.

The belts shown below are one of my favorite leather items, especially if you don’t have the budget for a jacket or want to bring a gift home for your dad or a brother (por ejemplo).

Embroidered in beautiful colors they show traditional patterns, like the Guarda Pampa, and will last a lifetime. Pick one up at Arandu or Silvia & Mario (among many other leather shops).

Where to shop for leather in Buenos Aires

  • Read my complete guide on Where to buy leather in Buenos Aires
  • The Leather District | Murillo Street, Villa Crespo
  • Silvia y Mario – Beautiful leather jackets
  • Nimes – Leather bags
  • Las Cabrera – More leather bags
  • Arandu | Arandu in Recoleta sells gorgeous leather bags and weekenders.
These leather belts are traditional in the countryside, embroidered with the a pattern called the Guarda Pampa, they make great Argentina souvenirs you’ll use forever.
Alpargatas for babies for sale at the San Telmo Market

Alpargatas

Alpargatas are the Argentine version of the espadrille, it’s a light canvas shoe with a rubber (sometimes rope) sole.

They’re widely used in rural environments and by gauchos but you’ll see them everywhere.

If they look familiar to you, it’s because Tom’s were inspired by the Argentine alpargata.

Pick up a pair or two here because they’re much more affordable and come in so many cute colors and patterns.

Alpargatas are my favorite Argentina gift to bring home for friends not only because they’re such a huge part of Argentine culture, but also because they weigh next to nothing in my suitcase.

Where to find Alpargatas in Buenos Aires

  • Arandu makes my favorite alpargatas. They’re super affordable at around the equivalent of $8 US.
  • The Buenos Aires Markets, peruse the markets for alpargatas, many offer tiny baby sized shoes.
  • Nipa is another shoe brand that sells very stylish alpargatas. They have a store in Plaza Armenia in Palermo Soho.

Mate & Yerba

Perhaps the most classic Buenos Aires souvenir is a mate gourd.

The cheapest option is what you see above at the San Telmo market, an actual hollowed-out gourd.

If you plan on using it or keeping for it for a long time, you’ll need to cure it and keep it clean or it will mold.

There are more stylish mates in nearly every single shop (mate is essential here!).

Ceramic, silicon, wood, whatever material you want, you’ll find it.

The yerba (the tea itself) is available in every supermarket in town.

Stock up to bring it home with you.

However, if you run out, it’s available on Amazon.

To learn how to use your mate, try a mate tasting experience to learn how to prepare mate by yourself, it’s a ritual.

Fileteado

Fileteado is a pure Buenos Aires artform, a style of painting (seen above) with swirls of paint and flowers, featuring strong colors and symmetry.

Vendors in all of the major markets (San Telmo, Plaza Serrano in Palermo and Recoleta, particularly) sell already made signs like what you see above.

Most also offer the option to customize a sign with your family name or whatever you’d like it to say.

If you want to learn even more about fileteado then go on this unique tour to discover the artform in San Telmo. It even includes a class where you’ll paint your very own Fileteado souvenir.

Antique Soda Bottles

San Telmo is famous for its antiques and unique finds and I particularly love these antique soda bottles.

The colorful glass makes for beautiful home decor and soda truly does form an important part of traditional and popular food culture in Argentina.

To this day many locals have a regular soda delivery, like the milkman of the 1950’s.

The soda company picks up empty siphons and leave a new case for the week.

Order a vermouth and soda with a side of salami and cheese in any historic bar at the end of a long day of touring to feel like a local.

Or visit the more modern Sifon Soderia restaurant in Chacarita to see a modern take on the country’s soda culture.

If you want to bring an antique soda bottle home with you, keep in mind that they’re very heavy so if you want one, plan your luggage accordingly.

Inca Rose Jewelry

One of my favorite souvenirs when I travel the world is to pick up rings made with local stones.

And the official stone of Argentina is the pink Incan Rose.

The actual name is rhodochrosite but you’ll hear it called “Rosa del Inca” on the streets of Buenos Aires.

You can find more expensive pieces in the shops on Florida Street downtown, but my favorite place to get Inca Rose pieces is the San Telmo Market.

There are a lot of vendors here selling Inca Rose jewelry at bargain prices.

Bring home dulce de leche to recreate all of Argentina’s decadent desserts.

Dulce de Leche

If you cut an Argentine he wouldn’t bleed, his veins run thick with dulce de leche.

They sure have a sweet tooth here and I dare you to find a dessert that doesn’t feature some form of their beloved and infamous dulce de leche.

You can find main brands on Amazon, so never fear if you find yourself missing it when you leave Argentina.

That said, it’s still worth bringing a tub or two home with you.

You can pick it up in the supermarket in a plastic container or more aesthetic glass jar.

If you want to find a more unique brand than what you find in the supermarket (think small batch production), find Dulce de Leche & Co.

My favorite DDL presentation comes in a thick cardboard jar.

This is how a lot of small batch operations work so it’s usually high quality and also, it’s pretty (like the photo above of my favorite goat’s milk dulce de leche from Familia Green in Tandil).

And while pure DDL is great and all, don’t discount Dulce de Leche Liqueur.

You can pick up a bottle at one of the markets like San Telmo or Mataderos.

IMPORTANT 👉🏻 If you do bring some back home with you, make sure you pack all DDL in your checked luggage, it counts as a liquid and if you pass through security with it in your carry on you’ll cry as they make you throw it away.

Four golden pitchers in the shape of penguins in a storefront window
A flashy penguin pitcher at a wine shop.

A Penguin Pitcher

One of the most unique Buenos Aires souvenirs, if not the most unique anywhere souvenir, is the pinguino.

Argentina has always been a wine consuming nation and historically this wine came in bulk 5 liter jugs called dama juanas.

To fraction out these massive bottles they would fill smaller pitchers. I heard a number of animal pitchers were tried but the penguin stuck (perhaps because they’re adorable or maybe because you can see penguins in Patagonia).

Even today if you order a bottle of the house wine at a traditional restaurant, it will most likely be served to you in a ceramic pitcher in the shape of a penguin.

I’ve brought many a penguin to friends and family as gifts and they never disappoint.

They’re an adorable addition to the table, for wine, juice or event flower vases.

When not filled with Malbec my penguin stores my spatulas.

Where to buy a Pinguino

You can find penguins in the markets like the indoor market in San Telmo. The classic pinguino is white but some shops and vendors paint them with unique designs.

Wine shops and bazaars (shops selling all sorts of home goods) also sell pinguinos.

If you keep your eyes open you’ll quickly find them.

Serving Platters

The steak in Buenos Aires may be famous but one of my favorite things to eat here is a picada (basically Argentine charcuterie).

Picadas are very popular here, either on a menu at a restaurant or as a snack platter to pick at while the asador grills the meat.

You can find picada serving platters in all of the markets (the ones above are at the Recoleta Feria).

Decorated with silver handles or with traditional patterns carved into them, they’re great one of a kind piece to bring home with you that will last a lifetime.

Note that some of the larger ones have a groove carved in around the edge. These are for meat at asados (barbeques in Argentina).

They’re for carrying the meat to and from the grill and for carving it up to serve.

If you host a lot of barbeques back home, this is the ideal Argentina souvenir for you.

adidas Men's Soccer Argentina 3-Star Winners Home Jersey (as1, Alpha, s, Regular, Regular) White/Blue

Futbol Jersey

The world watched Argentina win the World Cup in 2022, witnessing Lionel Messi’s ascent into immortality.

After the burst of national pride and idolatry everyone rushed out to buy the national team’s jersey embroidered now with 3 stars.

If you want to bring home a jersey, or buy one to wear here (and fit in), you’ll see “non-official” jerseys just about everywhere.

Street vendors sell them all over the city, notably on Calle Florida downtown.

You’d have to try hard to not find an Argentina football jersey.

If you want an official jersey you can pick one up at home or find one at an official Adidas store here in Buenos Aires.

Alfajores

Alfajores are THE sweet in Argentina.

The basic recipe is simple: a slab of dulce de leche sandwiched between two cookies, all of this is bathed in chocolate.

The variations are endless.

In Buenos Aires, the largest name brand alfajor is Havanna.

My favorite of their alfajores is the 70% Cacoa (it is *chef’s kiss*).

You can get them in the city and pack them in your bag, use up left over pesos getting Havanna alfajores in the airport, or even get them on Amazon back home if the craving strikes.

If you’re traveling across Argentina, though, you are in for a treat.

Regional alfajores always feature the area’s best products (berries, quinoa flour, etc) and I always try to find the best when I travel, these make the best souvenir for anyone with a sweet tooth. Below are my favorites.

Regional Alfajores Across Argentina:

  • Chalteños El Chalten – My favorite alfajor ever, the cookie is like a decadent devil’s food.
  • Dulce Lugar El Calafate – Forget the mass produced ones in the souvenir shops, go to Dulce Lugar and get their calafate berry alfajores.
  • CalchaquitosCafayate, Salta – Best regional flavors are miel de cana and cayote, I hear they have wine flavors but we missed those.
  • El MollePurmarmaca & Tilcara, Jujuy – Interesting flavors like purple corn or quinoa flours, cayote fruits, and more.
  • Leyendas de mi TierraMisiones – Yerba mate alfajores in Misiones, you can find them in tourist shops, and I know at least in the airport in Posadas.

Those are my favorites to date. This is a list that I’m sure that will eventually grow into its own blog post as I continue my gluttony.

Wine

The wine in Argentina – Mendoza and beyond – is spectacular.

If you love wine, you’re going to want to bring a bottle or six home with you.

Pick up bottles while visiting vineyards in regions like Mendoza and Cafayate to get great prices and bottles that aren’t available for export.

If you aren’t visiting a wine region, wine shops and wine tastings in Buenos Aires are excellent ways to find unique bottles to bring home.

And the good news? If you just want to drink it elsewhere in Argentina, no need to check it. Wine can be brought in your carry on luggage, up to six bottles per person.

For international travel and bringing your wine home with you, you’ll need to put it in your checked luggage. If bringing only a few bottles, wrap it securely in your clothes to keep it safe.

If you want to bring back a lot of wine, invest in this suitcase that is designed to bring back 12 bottles and remain under 50 pounds.

A white stucco building houses a woven coop
When in the northwest from Tucuman to Jujuy, look for Cooperativas to find work from artisans

Regional Souvenirs in Argentina

This is a wildly diverse country and there are so many unique souvenirs in Argentina from north to south.

If you’re Argentina itinerary allows, you can easily spend a lot of time shopping.

Save room in your luggage, you’ve been warned, here are some of my favorite regional Argentina souvenirs.

The Northwest

Let’s come out of the gate swinging, the Northwest is the holy grail of cultural Argentina souvenirs.

With its strong indigenous presence there are a lot of unique items to pick up here, the sorts of quality pieces you can keep in your home for years to come.

Woven Textiles

If you bring home only one thing from the north, let it be a hand woven tapestry.

Along with tapestries and rugs, you can find hand woven ponchos, shawls, scarves, and even socks and gloves.

Each province has its own unique styles of both tapestries and ponchos. I love the tapestries in Jujuy and the ponchos in Salta.

While off the beaten path, Santiago de Estero has a beautiful style to its tapestries with colorful florals.

These textiles aren’t cheap but I’d dare to say they’re affordable considering the amount of time, skill, and effort involved in their creation.

Mascaras Chané 

Mascaras Chané are created by the Chané people in Salta’s yungas (jungles).

These masks are meant to preserve the spirits of the animals they embody, carved into palo borracho wood and painted with natural dyes.

Each is unique. You can find them in Buenos Aires at Facon in Chacarita or Arte y Esperanza (an NGO promoting fair trade).

Handicrafts and souvenirs for sale in Tucuman

Clay Ceramics

Across the northwest you’ll find clay ceramics, from sellers set up around tourist sites to markets.

I’ve picked up some beautiful serving dishes on the side of the road in Salta near Cafayate and I also saw a lot in Tucuman (all of this region combined is referred to as the Valles Calchaquies).

Red peppers drying on the ground below prickly pear cactus
Peppers drying in Payogasta, future paprika in the making in Salta.

Spices: Paprika and Cumin

It’s true that Argentina is not a country rich in spice, but that rule doesn’t apply in the Northwest.

In Salta, particularly in Cachi, definitely pick up bags of pimenton (paprika) and cumin. They often have other spices on offer but these two are the stars.

If you’re there in winter, drive slowly through Payogasta on your way to Cachi.

You’ll see harvested peppers bathing the hills as they dry in the sun.

Patagonia Souvenirs

The Argentina souvenirs in Patagonia are vastly different from the desert of Jujuy and Salta, yet also, similar.

Sheep dominate both the north and the south, so woolen textiles also abound here (but more in the way of a sweater than a wall hanging).

Berries dominate in sweets and even in cosmetics.

Here’s a quick list of things to pick up in Patagonia:

  • Rose Hips/Rosa Mosqueta – Rosa Mosqueta is huge in Bariloche and surroundings. Pick up a bottle of pure oil or cosmetics featuring rose hips (I love Mana, made in Bariloche).
  • Sweaters – It’s cold in Patagonia and sheep farming is a major industry, so you can pick a great wool sweater. I love the selection at Ranchito in Bariloche but El Calafate and El Chalten have specialty shops as well.
  • Chocolate – Bariloche may be chocolate paradise but just about every city in Patagonia has an iconic specialty chocolate shop (from Eidelweiss in Ushuaia to Jauja in El Bolson). Bring back a box for your loved ones, best gift ever.
  • Fishing lures – Fly fishing is huge here, pick up a handmade lure or ten for your fishermen.

The Northeast

Most tourists only visit the Northeast for Iguazu but there is a wealth of natural wonders and culture here.

Chaguar Fibers

Seen above, woven bags and clothing from natural chaguar – a plant-sourced fiber – comes from the province of Chaco.

You likely don’t have Chaco on your itinerary but don’t worry, you can pick up these beautiful pieces just about everywhere.

Shops like Facon, Arte & Esperanza, and Matriarca all sell chaguar pieces.

Yerba Mate Infused Everything

Misiones and Corrientes are home to the country’s major yerba mate plantations.

It’s their main industry and also a major facet of their daily life. So you can find yerba mate infused into just about anything here.

Alajores made of dried yerba, shampoos, creams, liqueurs… this bitter tea is surprisingly refreshing in other forms.

Read More of my Buenos Aires Resources

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Argentina Travel Resources

  • TRAVEL INSURANCE | It is always a good idea to travel insured. It protects you in so many cases, like lost luggage and trip cancellations, medical emergencies and evacuations. It’s very affordable with the potential to save you thousands in the case of an emergency. I recommend SafetyWing.
  • PHONE PLAN | These days, traveling with data is essential. Especially in Argentina where everything is managed on Instagram and WhatsApp. I recommend this E-SIM card. It’s hassle-free and affordable, for more read how to get an Argentina sim card.
  • ACCOMMODATION IN ARGENTINA | booking.com is the most common hotel site used in Argentina and it’s where you’ll find the most options.
  • RENTAL CARS | I love to travel Argentina via road trip, check out RentalCars.com for the best rates for rental cars here.
  • BUS TICKETS | I like Busbud for long distance bus routes and tickets.
  • VPN | If you’ll be using a public WiFi connection and want to secure your data, I highly recommend using a VPN, I personally use and have had a good experience with ExpressVPN. I also use it to access Hulu and American Netflix from Argentina.
  • FLIGHTS | Always check Google Flights and Skyscanner for flights to and within Argentina. Aerolineas Argentina is the local airline with the most routes. FlyBondi and Jetsmart are two budget airlines with dirt-cheap prices (but expect to pay for every add-on like luggage).
  • NEED HELP PLANNING? | I offer one-on-one travel consultations to help you plan your trip to Argentina. Pick my brain to get a local’s insight. Click here for more information.

4 thoughts on “The Best Argentina Souvenirs”

  1. The majority of the city’s jewelry stores are on Libertad Street, fi you google Libertad Joyeria you’ll see a ton on Google Maps. I don’t really care much for the style in most as it’s very traditional but it’s one place to look.

    There are also plenty of nicer jewelry shops on Santa Fe selling Incan Rose jewelry where you could surely get a beautiful ring.

    And for a personal recommendation, I got my wedding bands at Diana Pinhasi- Joyas de Autor just one block from Plaza San Martin, she makes very unique pieces.

  2. correction! i am in Buenos Aires right now and the man who sells the serving platters is at Plaza Francia now 😊

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