I have American friends visiting me in London in a few days, and am looking for a traditional English gift for the 18 year old daughter. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
By Pat from London UK
When I was younger my parents always had overseas visitors and all they really wanted to do was to travel to London, go into Harrods and leave with one of the shopping bags.
You didn't mention what was your budget.
Old fashioned English sweets
Store 21 near me (but not in all of them nor online) have some typically English items in the home section.
Book, posters, CD's about Glastonbury music festival as well as the historical side.
Just take her for tea and crumpets and it will be a memory she'll never forget.
This isn't traditional, but I think I would have enjoyed it as a kid. I think a shirt from the London Hard Rock Cafe be very cool. Heck, I'm more than twice her age, and I'd still be happy if someone got me a shirt from there! If she was a couple years older, you could get her a beer glass, but we're not encouraging underage drinking. :-)
I think a great and approriate gift would be to take her to an historic site she'll remember forever (while her parents are doing their own exploring) like seeing the changing of the guards at Buckinham Palace, the London Tower Tour or even London's Madame Tussaud's and a cup of tea and a bisquit to discuss the tour afterwards. In looking back, even way back when I was eighteen and those sorts of things might not have interested me at the moment, I would have so appreciated that sort of sharing memory later much more than a material gift that would be gone and forgotten in the blink of an eye.
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We're traveling to New York from England this weekend and would like to bring over some typically English gifts for some old friends. Does anyone have any ideas? We thought Marmite might be fun, but we're not sure if it has made it over to the US yet!? Suggestions would be welcome!
Julie from Nr. London, England
Everyone likes shortbread cookies! Tea too! (04/12/2007)
When my friend got back from a European trip, she brought back the game "Outrage" from the Tower of London. It was such a fun game, we asked someone who was visiting England if she could pick us up a copy. The game is to be the first to steal the crown jewels, complete with little replicas of the crown, orb, etc. It would be a great gift for any teenagers or younger adults, heck, anyone would like it in my book. I think you have to buy it at the Tower or at an approved royal palace shop.
Enjoy your visit!
Jess in Portland, OR (04/12/2007)
Do they like old things? You can find interesting books/memorabilia etc. in the many markets. There's lots of old ethnic stuff from the days of Empire. And don't forget to look into the Oxfam shops. (04/12/2007)
Some favorite things that we brought back from England were the authentic English toffees, the ones in thick chunks with loose walnuts I can't remember the name, but the stores are in the malls. Maybe Thornton's? The Cadbury candies were good also and so authentically British.
My hubby is nuts over the Branston pickles and the jars of mustard with onions, and authentic mincemeat also.
I loved the T shirts and he liked the Pub pint glasses. We also brought back the cutest refrigerator magnets of lorries and bobbies and anything that was English. We brought back a toy Bobby helmet for a friend that is a policeman. (04/12/2007)
My daughter brought back curly whoorlys and jelly babies; everyone here loved them. She also picked up a few items with the telephone booth you have and the double decker buses. She also brought a tee shirt with England on the front for her adult brother and he loves it. She went to Harrods and bought Earl Grey Tea and she also brought back a bottle of PIMMS which is delicious. Enjoy your visit. (04/12/2007)
Churchill's Confectionary! (04/12/2007)
I believe that in the USA you can't buy liqueur chocolates. Also, consider Christmas crackers (OK, not appropriate at this time of year, but it might help someone later.) (04/13/2007)
By Julia in UK
I am originally from England and every time I go for a visit I always bring Crunchie bars back for treats; I've been in the States for 37 years and have never found anything quite like Crunchies and I've never found anyone who didn't like them! I live in Georgia and can find Marmite fairly easily. Something else might be Tate and Lyles golden syrup.
Enjoy your trip to New York. (04/13/2007)
Yes, we have Marmite available here in specialty food stores, but only in the jars. When DH and I were in the Isles a few years ago we picked up some boxes of Marmite cubes and those were so good added to soups and stews, that might be a suggestion. Also we loved scones and Turkish delight. Very few folks here in the US have even heard of Turkish delight. Personally the best thing I could think of would be some authentic tea. We have "tea" here, but there is a world of difference and for someone who likes it eyelash curling strong like me nothing beats the stuff from "over there".
Hope this helps. (04/13/2007)
What about Lionel Hardcastle's favorite custard tarts? They sound yummy, but I don't know what they are, except curtardy. (04/13/2007)
As a yank who lived in England last year, I'd like to request Jaffa Cakes! Sometimes you can find them imported in places like Cost Plus in the US, but aside from that, they are usually pretty hard to find. Oh boy I miss Jaffa Cakes, mmm. Lemon curd would also make a really nice gift that I think just about anyone could appreciate. I definitely have never seen it here. (04/13/2007)
How about some Wedgewood if they like things like that? (04/15/2007)
We've been to England 3 times, and have always brought back (too much) tea. Another thing we brought last time was tea spoons, since American teaspoons are much larger than English ones. I, too, am wondering about Lionel Hardcastle's Custard Tarts! A souvenir type of thing we've enjoyed bringing and enjoying ourselves is a "tea caddy", one of those short-handled round spoons for spooning loose tea into the pot. Quite a novelty over here. (10/23/2007)