Souvenirs from Hungary for friends, family and colleagues, or what to bring from Hungary as a gift. It seems to be a country in the center of Europe and a major transportation hub. But whoever you ask about Hungary knows nothing about it except Budapest. As for Hungarian souvenirs, most people don’t even have a single thought that such a Hungarian thing can be brought, well, except for the Ikarus bus.

TOP 10: what to bring as a gift from Hungary

There is no clearly defined symbol of the country that would become the most popular souvenir in Hungary. Hungary’s strong point is its national cuisine. It’s tasty, filling, the ingredients are all familiar to us, it’s a gastronomic paradise for travelers. As a result, most souvenirs from Hungary can be eaten. Well, if it’s not a magnet.

And Hungarians love not only good food, but also drink. Special thanks to them for this, but more on that below.

Souvenirs from Hungary
Hungary has a huge number of ordinary souvenirs that can be found in any city in Europe. On Chinese souvenirs, only the city name changes. You will find such goods in any souvenir shop in Hungary.

Good to know:

Souvenirs from Hungary are exactly the same as in any European capital. Any souvenir shop has the entire standard set: magnets, spoons, plates, key chains, mugs, shopping bags, T-shirts, figurines, ashtrays.

And now a list of the best souvenirs with a Hungarian flavor that you can take home as a gift from Hungary to friends and family:

  • Palinka is a Hungarian fruit vodka. Similar to Balkan plum brandy. Palinka can be bought in any store; it is available at duty free at Budapest airport. Strength – 50 degrees. Price in the store – 20 euros for 0.35l. Strong alcoholic drinks are expensive in Hungary.
palinka hungarian vodka souvenir
Strong alcoholic drinks are expensive in Hungary, as excise taxes on drinks over 22 degrees are high. This is the price in the store – 20 euros for 0.35l
  • Hungarian wines make an excellent gift. Just don’t bring Tokaji, it’s boring. Of course Tokaji wine is produced only in Hungary. This wine is not produced outside the Tokaj region. At the same time, today it is easy to buy in any store in your hometown and quite cheap.

Interesting to know:

In Hungary, more than 30 wines are protected by region of origin, and you won’t find these at home. For example, wines from the shores of Balaton or from Eger, where they make cool Bikaver. Better buy them, this is not an ordinary Tokaji. Prices range from 2-3 euros per bottle.
souvenirs from hungary
Here, for example, is a shelf in a regular store with Rieslings from Lake Balaton. This is 100% Balaton. Very cool wines.

Review of Hungarian wines and spirits: what to try in Budapest.

  • Another popular souvenir from Hungary is herbal liqueur – Unicum. Strength 40 degrees. Those who have tried it before will taste somewhat like Egermeister.

You can buy it at any duty free store in the world, you don’t have to fly to Hungary to do it. On the plus side: this is a really Hungarian drink that warms you up perfectly.

The standard price for 0.5l of Unicum is about 15-20 euros. Can be found in any store.

Unicum Hungarian liqueur as a gift
A dubious souvenir from Hungary, despite being 100% Hungarian. This is because it can be bought at any duty free store in the world.
  • Paprika is the case when you bring from Hungary something that you can buy at home. Paprika is perhaps the main symbol of the country, along with goulash (for those who don’t know, goulash is a soup in Hungary). But you won’t have luck with goulash, but paprika is easy. There are a million gift sets, especially in the central market of Budapest and in souvenir shops. Sweet, spicy, smoked and so on.
paprika gift from hungary
What to bring from Hungary? Of course, paprika; not a single dish is prepared without it.
  • Libamaj is a real Hungarian delicacy. Sold in jars of 100g. Price is about 30-35 euros per jar. This is a Hungarian delicate goose liver pate. Someone will say this is foie gras and they will be right. And in general, the Hungarians are sure that foie gras came to France from them. It is even sold in souvenir shops.
Libamaj from hungary
This is what Libamai looks like in stores. But I don’t like this option, this is already an adaptation for tourists. Better look for cans that say Libamaj in Hungarian, not Goose liver and Foie Gras.
  • Many bring Hungarian porcelain and crystal as gift from Hungary. In the country, there are three factories that produce high-quality products. The most renowned Hungarian brands worldwide are Herend and Zsolnay (porcelain), and Ajka-Crystal (crystal). All handmade, prices are high, and how to transport them without breaking – I don’t know. Probably, you can buy them at home or order online. Whether to bring them or not, decide for yourself. But I’ve seen their dishes in person, very beautiful.
Hungarian porcelain
This set from the Herend factory costs around 800 euros. I wouldn’t risk bringing something like that in my luggage. But it’s beautiful, no doubt.

Also, you can buy and bring:

  • Hungarian honey
  • Esterhazy cake. Count Esterhazy built a very cool palace in Hungary, which was even compared to a royal one, and today you can visit it. In Budapest, it’s easier to find. Castles, fortresses, and palaces in Hungary.
  • For some reason, Hungarian cheeses, sausages, and lard are very popular among tourists, which they bring as gifts from Hungary home. Hungarians are big meat eaters.

Souvenirs from Hungary: what you can bring but don’t need to

If you read other travelers’ reports, they bring all sorts of things as gifts from Hungary: soap, lavender, Rubik’s Cube, marzipan. Well, tastes differ, but I won’t write about that.

And the fact that the Rubik’s Cube was invented in Hungary is certainly an interesting fact, but a dubious gift. I have the exact same one sold in stores at home. It’s like bringing a light bulb from the USA as a gift to everyone just because Edison invented it here. Although light bulbs are the same everywhere.

  • And here are interesting facts about Hungary that I recommend reading before traveling. Some will even be useful.

The same goes for lavender and marzipan. Lavender is a symbol of Provence, and marzipan is from Austria and Italy. And the fact that Hungary has three lavender fields near the village of Tihany and a marzipan factory doesn’t mean much.

marzipan from Hungary as a gift
In Eger, Hungary, there is a marzipan museum. This room in the photo is made entirely of marzipan, every element. Right next to the museum, there is a shop where you can buy marzipan souvenirs from Hungary. But marzipan sweets are sold everywhere if anything, not only here.

By the way, marzipan is very popular in Hungary, and they sell it in many places. If it’s not Hungarian, then it’s definitely popular here.

Planning your trip to Hungary? Read an article about Budapest: where to stay, the best eateries, and fast food.

In conclusion: souvenirs from Hungary do not shine with any vast selection and uniqueness. There is a lot of ordinary mass-market stuff here, which is in any European city.

The most popular souvenirs from Hungary are alcoholic drinks, snacks, and sweets. The author’s personal opinion: bring Palinka, any wine except Tokaji, and Libamaj for sandwiches. You can’t buy these at home. And go ahead, take Hungarian sausages and salamis as a snack.

IMPORTANT: Below are useful links that will help organize your trip to Hungary and Budapest:

  • Flight: Aviasales – compares prices for flights among 30+ airlines flying to Budapest.
  • Tours and excursions:
    • Viator and GetYourGuide – the best services for finding tours in Budapest and Hungary with the largest database of activities in Hungary. They offer river cruises on the Danube, tickets to baths, and 1000+ tours (available in different languages).
  • Accommodation, apartments, hotels, hostels:
    • Hotellook compares the prices among dozens of other booking services and offer the best price
    • Booking – the most popular booking platform
    • Agoda – even more accommodation options in Hungary
  • Car rental: DiscoverCars – the leading and largest car rental service in Hungary.
  • Travel Insurance: EKTA.
  • eSIMAiralo virtual SIM card in Hungary.
  • Taxi and airport transfers: Intui.Travel