8. Holiday Décor
Ornaments, lights, throw blankets, pillows, nutcrackers, and more are excellent Disney souvenirs if you’re looking to decorate your house for the holidays and add a little bit of extra Disney magic to your home. Some guests can have entire Disney-themed Christmas trees, and others put up stockings decorated with their favorite characters. The best part about shopping for holiday items at Disney is that it doesn’t need to be November or December for you to do your shopping. Both Disney Springs and the Magic Kingdom have merchandise locations that exclusively sell holiday supplies year round.
One souvenir that I bought on my last trip was a pair of Mickey crocs from Mouse Gear in Epcot, which were totally worth the money. (As an aside, when I say “crocs” I mean the brand was crocs, the shoes themselves are not the typical crocs that I don’t find attractive at all, they’re basically like Vans with a picture of Mickey on them.) These shoes were so comfortable and I wear them a lot even when I’m away from the parks. They also were not unreasonably priced, and were what you’d expect to spend on a pair of crocs. The shoe section at Mouse Gear also includes a variety of different kinds of crocs and Disney flip flops, and of course plenty more options for kids, all of which are well worth the money if you’re looking for an extra pair of shoes.
Accessories are typically worth the money because they are things that you’ll use on a day-to-day basis. Some of my favorite accessories you can purchase at Disney are handbags, like Vera Bradley’s and Dooney and Bourke’s, jewelry, including Pandora and Alex and Ani, and backpacks, headbands, and hats.
5. Recycled Map Jewelry
In Epcot’s World Showcase, there is a small kiosk that sells earrings, necklaces, and bracelets, made out of recycled park maps. Not only are these items unique and interesting, but the money made from purchasing them goes directly to the women in Uganda who roll the paper beads by hand.
4. Home Décor
It should come as no surprise that a Disney fan would list home décor as an item on this list. There are so many different options for decorating your home with Disney souvenirs, such as throw pillows, tapestries, storage solutions, artwork, and kitchen items. The best places in my opinion to shop for these items are Mouse Gear in Epcot and World of Disney in Disney Springs. While not decorative, I’d also add Disney luggage to the list of homey souvenirs that are good to have. And Disney luggage has the added bonus of being very distinctive looking, making it easier to spot at baggage claim.
Dinnerware is also very much worth the money simply because it’s something you’ll definitely be using on a regular basis. The nice thing about Disney dinnerware is that there are some really classy and subtle designs, that really understate the Disney theme but still have just the right amount of Mickeys on them. Some of my favorite dinnerware purchases include plates and bowls, silverware, and stemless wine glasses. Disney Springs is definitely the best place to shop for these items, as many can be found in World of Disney, and the kitchen shop as well.
2. Items from your favorite attraction or character
Rather than stocking up on whatever Disney merchandise you come across just for the sake of having more Disney stuff, I generally try to focus on items that have a design that will mean more to me. This point means that while I do occasionally purchase something with a park icon or something just specific to the newest Disney movie, I tend to focus my random purchases on items that relate to either my favorite parts of the parks or my favorite characters.
1. World Showcase or Animal Kingdom merchandise
My number one pick for which Disney souvenirs are most worth the money is pretty much anything you’ve purchased from World Showcase or Animal Kingdom and Animal Kingdom Lodge. Many of the items in these locations are specific to other parts of the world, and it would be difficult to track these things down without actually going to those countries. Animal Kingdom Lodge is home to one of my favorite resort gift shops, and every time I go in there I can’t help but want to go home with some of the beautiful African artwork that I know I wouldn’t be able to find most anywhere else. Epcot has the same effect—while there are some items in World Showcase primarily in Italy, the UK, and Japan, that I could track down with relative ease, there are other shops in places like Morocco, France, and Mexico that carry items I’ll likely only ever see either in World Showcase or in those countries.