There’s something for every shopper in Germany’s Thuringia. From fine specialty foods to porcelain items with centuries of history or a traditional plush toy to a challenging card game. Here are eight unique, authentic souvenir ideas that scream ‘Thuringia!’.
Thüringer Kuschelkloß is a ball-shaped plush toy modeled after a potato dumpling. Though it sounds downright weird, they are actually quite adorable, with their big marble eyes. Plus, they are super soft and cuddly and children absolutely love them. This famous character of Thuringia also appears on keychains, t-shirts, bags, wallets and a lot of other items.
Altenburger Spielkarten (Altenburg playing cards)
The Thuringians invented a very enjoyable card game called Skat in Altenburg in 1813, inspired by the card games Tarok (or Tarot) and Sheepshead. These cards are available everywhere you look in the Thuringian city of Altenburg, and make a truly authentic souvenir to take back home. Such is their popularity, that there is an entire museum dedicated to these cards in this city.
When in Altenburg, beer lovers must check out Altenburger Brewery, a historic brewery established in 1871. They offer tours of the museum and beer-making facilities as well as unlimited beer-tasting opportunities. They brew several varieties of beer, including Bock, Festbier, Helles, Pilsner, Radler, Schwarz and more. Once you’ve decided on your favorite, you might want to purchase a few bottles to enjoy later.
Altenburg is famous for its superior-quality cheese. These are deliciously soft and creamy, and made without additives. Altenburger Land is the most famous cheese brand in Altenburg and the six-time winner of the federal honorary prize, the highest honor for dairy items. The brand has been producing goat cheese using the same method since 1897. Their cheese achieves its unique flavor thanks to the combination of 85% cow milk, 15% goat milk and a dash of cumin.
Thuringia is also known for the world’s tastiest guilty pleasure – chocolate! Though chocolate shops all across the state await with a tempting range of unique chocolates, two brands – Berggold and Viba – stand out because of their long tradition and irresistible taste. Berggold, based in Pößneck, has been delighting tastebuds since 1876, and promises a range of exciting flavors. The Viba workshop and museum in Schmalkalden offer guided tours of their chocolate production plant, hands-on chocolate-making workshops and of course, a chance to fill your bags with sweet, sweet edible memories of your holiday in Thuringia.
Mustard and condiments
BORN Senf & Feinkost, a 200-year-old brand based in Erfurt, Thuringia, has achieved legendary status. They are known for producing the finest-quality mustard, along with ketchup, vinegar, mayonnaise, horseradish, salad dressings and spicy sauces. They pride themselves on using only natural, pure ingredients, minus any additives or sugar. For a tour of their production facilities and the chance to buy some fabulous foodie souvenirs, head to the BORN Senf-Laden mit Senf-Museum.
Porcelain production has a long heritage in Thuringia. The first European hard-paste porcelain was produced in the Thuringian city of Meissen in 1708, and this skill is still lovingly carried on by artists throughout the state. Delicate, intricately designed porcelain crockery, jewelry and home decor make perfect souvenirs to remember your holiday. The best places to browse and buy porcelain items are the Meissen Porcelain Museum, Weimar Porcelain Manufactory, Porzellanium – Erlebniswelt in Triptis and Porzellanmanufaktur in Reichenbach.
Jam and marmalade
Marmeladenmanufaktur “EwigLeben mit Genuss” is a little jewel in the Thuringian town of Bad Blenkenburg and is more of an insider tip than a tourist “must-do”. It is sure to bowl you over with more than 40 delicious flavors of jam and marmalade, including orange, pear, apricot, blackberry, cherry as well as unique combinations like elderberry-pear-apple, raspberry-wild strawberries and more – made with fresh fruits sourced from their own gardens and regional vendors. Their beautifully packaged delicacies are perfect to bring back home as a gift or for yourself.
Untere Marktstraße 32 a, 07422 Bad Blankenburg, +49 036741 57565 or 0170 2669 950
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