Travel
Fair Dinkum Australian Souvenirs
September 15, 2016
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4 Fair Dinkum Australian Souvenirs | Duende by Madam ZoZo

Want to pick up some fair dinkum souvenirs of your trip Downunder? As a proud Aussie, I’d hate to see you walk away with anything less than the best Australian souvenirs from your holiday in my homeland. So here are four true blue Aussie mementoes to take home from the land Downunder.

Outback gemstones

What more appropriate birthstone for an October baby (like myself) than the glittering opal. Australia’s national gemstone, forms in the arid outback region once covered by an inland sea. Seasonal rains, carry silica down into the cracks and crevices of ancient rocks and deposit it there for safe keeping. As the water dries up, the silica left behind forms stunning gems. What’s even cooler than that, are the opals that have formed in fossilized dinosaur bones and marine creatures.
The kaleidoscopic colours characteristic of precious opals are a result of silica spheres bending white light into its component colours, much like a prism. Australia is responsible for 95% of the world’s opal supply to the jewellery industry, making it the ideal place to pick up a little opalescent accessory during your visit.

Opal

Bush fashion

“Akubra” is like “Band Aid,” it’s a brand name that has become synonymous with a product. In Akubra’s case, wide-brimmed bush hats made of rabbit fur felt and traditionally popular with dwellers of rural Australia. They aren’t those terrible, stereotypical cork hats Aussie’s are often depicted wearing, but the hat of Jackaroos and Jillaroos (Aussie cowboys and cowgirls). Akubra makes “The Croc” style especially for the Crocodile Dundee wannabes amongst us. For the non-cheeseball’s I would point you towards their Heritage collection, for an authentically Aussie look. Akubra has been supplying the Australian military with their distinctive slouch hat since the early 20th century, so you know these hats can take a beating. Most importantly, Akubra still manufacture their hats in Australia. For those concerned about wearing fur, consider that rabbits are an introduced species in Australia and a serious pest endangering native ecosystems and annoying farmers – you’d be doing us a favour!

Famous Aussies Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman rock different style Akubra's in the 2008 Baz Luhrman movie Australia
Famous Aussies Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman rock different style Akubra's in the 2008 Baz Luhrman movie Australia

What goes around comes around

Like karma, a returning boomerang is designed to come back. There are also non-returning styles among other variations of the tool used by Indigenous Australians for activities such as hunting, combat and sport. However, the flat, slightly v-shaped, aerofoil wings that exhibit the clingy, dependent behaviour of always returning, are the most commonly recognized boomerang form. Boomerangs aren’t exclusive to Australia’s indigenous tribes, but are most strongly associated with them. Australia’s oldest known boomerang was found in South Australian swampland and dates back 10,000 years, so take home an historical and cultural icon to hang on your wall.

Boomerang | Four Fair Dinkum Australian Souvenirs | Duende by Madam ZoZo
Aboriginal boomerang by CameliaTWU

Leaves of gold

Eucalyptus or gum trees as they are commonly referred to, are flowering trees native to Australia. Of the world’s 700 known species, only nine are not found Downunder. I have been stunned on my travels to find pockets of Eucalyptus growing around the globe. As it turns out, these homeland signatures were useful to colonial powers and introduced into many parts of the world to use as building materials. Eucalypts are the sole diet of cute and cuddly koala’s, and they produce an oil that possesses useful antibacterial qualities. In the late 1980’s, Aussies Patrick and Amelia Carfax devised a way to capture and preserve the characteristic foliage of a eucalypt by plating it in precious metals. Their company, Real Leaf Jewellery Australia, create pendants from signature Aussie leaves and nuts that make unique souvenirs or gifts.

Gold Plated Eucalyptus Leaf Pendant
Fair Dinkum Australian Souvenir

If you haven’t got a copy of my Soulful Souvenir Guide yet, head on over to this page. The Guide is intended to help you purchase more beautiful, useful, meaningful mementoes of your travels that have a positive impact on the community you’re visiting! As a bonus I have included a shopping list of 133 souvenirs, one each for 133 countries spanning the four corners of the globe.

Peace, love & inspiring travel,

Madam ZoZo

About author

Madam ZoZo

Hi! I'm Madam ZoZo, aka Zoë, an Australian designer, creative consultant, blogger and digital nomad. I'm passionate about travel, design, dance and new experiences that fuel my creativity. I strive to travel in a style that is gentle on the earth and that contributes to the communities I visits, even if it is merely to take away a greater understanding of a different culture. Duende by Madam ZoZo, is where I share the stories of my travels and the duende (soul/inspiration) I find along the way.

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