I can’t lie, I really love a perfectly aesthetic Christmas tree. You know, Covent Garden style with perfectly placed baubles, hundreds of twinkling lights and a colour scheme that flows throughout. I used to wish I could have a tree like this in my own home every year (though much smaller, of course). But I do think your own Christmas tree needs some sort of personality to it, doesn’t it?
Seeing as Darryl and I love to travel and have so far visited almost 30 places together, it’s fair to say making memories in new destinations is a fairly important part of our lives. So one year, we started the tradition of buying a Christmas decoration from places we visit.
A few years later we now have 13 decorations from around the world (and counting). We haven’t got decorations from everywhere we’ve been, which is probably a good thing as we’ll run out of space eventually, but the ones we do have on our tree remind us every year of some of the incredible holidays we’ve been on.
That said, we have had to seriously improvise with some of them as we couldn’t bring ourselves to leave without *something* for the tree. More on that later!
Read on to see where our travel themed Christmas decorations have been collected from over the years.
Lucerne, Switzerland (2016)
As Darryl’s family live in Switzerland, we visited a few years back to see them and do a bit of exploring. And what decoration do you possibly buy other than the signature cowbell? Well, this would only fit a miniature cow but its beautiful sound reminds me of the time we spent listening to the cows roaming the mountains.
Read more from Switzerland.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2017)
Christmas decorations aren’t too hard to find in the city of Amsterdam, which reminds me I really must go back in December one year! We visited for just one day a few years back and left with these adorable little clogs. They are really petite, so they hang so delicately from the branch.
Read more from The Netherlands.
Inverness, Scotland (2017)
I used to visit Scotland a lot, so I had to pick up a little tartan decoration at some point! I can’t completely remember, but I *think* I found this one in a little village near Inverness when we visited at Christmas time. Scotland at Christmas is just the best, isn’t it?
Read more from Scotland.
Dubrovnik, Croatia (2018)
One place I didn’t expect to find a Christmas shop is Dubrovnik in Croatia. We stumbled upon it whilst pacing the back streets. We loved this little heart (which has a lovely pink pattern on the other side) and it reminds us of the amazing week we spent soaking up the late summer sun.
Read more from Croatia.
Dublin, Ireland (2018)
Dublin in Ireland is such a beautiful city at Christmas. We took Darryl’s dad for his birthday one year and spent the weekend battling the wind and rain to see all the lights and decorations. This beautiful Irish bauble was picked up from the Guinness Storehouse (which is a must visit if you go).
Read more from Ireland.
Budapest, Hungary (2019)
One Christmas Darryl surprised me with a January trip to Budapest in Hungary. The ultimate travel lover’s gift, right? We didn’t find any Christmas decorations during our trip so decided to have one last look at the airport. It’s a bit random, but this painted Hungarian egg is now one of our favourites.
Read more from Hungary.
Reykjavik, Iceland (2019)
We didn’t see any puffins in Iceland (damn it), but we did bring one home. Sort of. There was a gift shop that was basically themed around puffins in the middle of Reykjavik, and this little guy looked like he belonged on our tree. The perfect winter puffin from one of our best holidays to date!
Read more from Iceland.
Salzburg, Austria (2019)
Darryl and I actually went to Salzburg in Austria separately a year apart, but as we’ve both been I figured that allows for a tree decoration. I picked this up from one of the many Christmas shops in the city and now it reminds me of the weekend I spent exploring Austria with my mum for her birthday (and Darryl, his work trip).
Read more from Austria.
New York City, USA (2019)
This shiny number from the United States is one of my favourites. It’s also the most expensive tree decoration we’ve ever bought at an eye-watering cost of £18. But we did buy it from the Rockefeller Centre, so what could I expect? Our time in New York City was unbelievable and I’ve been dying to go back since. Hopefully the next time will be around Christmas as I’d love to see it looking festive!
Read more from the United States.
Barcelona, Spain (2019)
As we got engaged overlooking Barcelona in Spain, we didn’t want to leave this city without a decoration, so we found the most suitable thing we could (again at the airport) and made it into a decoration ourselves. Yes, this was once a gift shop mosaic cork. I told you we improvised from time to time…
Read more from Spain.
Sri Lanka (2019)
In 2019 we travelled around Sri Lanka as part of a tour, but there are no Christmas shops like you’d find in European cities! Instead we bought this beautiful black and green elephant from a gift shop, as a reminder of what was an amazing adventure.
Read more from Sri Lanka.
Edinburgh, Scotland (2019)
I like to visit Scotland, clearly! We visited Edinburgh for my birthday which just happens to be right after Christmas, so our trip was spent wandering around the Christmas markets. We ended up buying this decoration from one of the shops on the Royal Mile, just down the road from Edinburgh Castle.
Read more from Scotland.
Lake Bled, Slovenia (2020)
Before the pandemic unfolded and travel quickly became a distant memory, we visited Lake Bled in Slovenia. We woke to snow on day two and spent our four days hiking some of the best lakes in the area. This bell, which we actually picked up in the city of Ljubljana, is the perfect reminder of when we took a boat out to the beauty that is Bled Island.
Read more from Slovenia.
Whilst we don’t have any trips planned until summer 2021 now, I can’t wait to pick up our next Christmas decoration! I wonder what we’ll find on our honeymoon, wherever that’ll be..?
Do you pick up Christmas decorations on your travels? Let me know in the comments!