10 Popular Pasalubong Ideas from the Philippines
Pasalubong is a popular Filipino tradition of bringing home something from your travels for your loved ones back at home. It can be a simple souvenir you got from the places that you went to or food that you have tried and want to bring home with you.
Pasalubong can also be a gift given to you by someone who just came from other place in the Philippines or abroad.
Oftentimes, pasalubong is associated with people traveling abroad and are coming back home, who we call balikbayan. Thus, people returning from out of the country are almost always carrying a lot of gifts from the country that they have been to that they will be giving to those who they left here in the Philippines. However, pasalubong can also be taken the other way around. It can be something you give to other people abroad that came from the Philippines when you travel out of the country.
Since pasalubong is already embedded in our culture, you can easily find one that you might like to share around. If you are traveling to the Philippines and you want to bring a little bit of the Filipino tradition through pasalubong, here are popular ideas that you can buy for your loved ones here. Note that some of these are available anywhere in the Philippines while some are only readily available in specific provinces.
10. Souvenir shirts
Many people are fond of souvenir shirts so buying this as pasalubong to remember your trip in the Philippines can be a good idea. Most will like it because they can wear it proud, as if they went on the trip with you. When other people see what they are wearing, they would think that your loved ones have been in the Philippines too and that they got the shirt on their own as a souvenir. Plus, it’s a practical gift that they can wear over and over again, with proper washing.
You can find different souvenir shirts depending on where you went in the Philippines. In Manila, there are a lot of these in the department stores. You can also get souvenir shirts from the provinces that you visit. Some can go so cheap especially those that you buy from the local markets. Moreover, you can get personalized souvenir shirts with your name printed on them.
9. Pearls and other jewels
Palawan is your best source in the country for authentic pearls. When your on the lookout for jewelry as pasalubong then visit Palawan. Go to Puerto Princesa and take a tour of its market to see the best deals for pearls.
Aside from inexpensive pearl jewelries, you can also find one of the most exquisite pearls in Palawan, the South Sea Golden Pearl.
If pearls are too grandiose for you, there are other fashion jewelry that you can consider. Most are made of beads, which are prominent in provinces like Bulacan in Luzon and Cebu in Visayas. Even in Manila, you can easily find trinket shops selling beaded ornaments.
8. Abaniko (Handheld fan)
Because sometimes it gets hot.
7. Wood crafts and furniture
The Philippines, mainly in the area of Laguna and Quezon Province, is known for the skills and artistic fervor of its wood craftsmen. If you want to bring home unique wooden art from the Philippines, make sure to visit these provinces. Almost all wooden art here are made by hand and are considered products of meticulous labor.
If you’re into quirky wood arts, head out north to Baguio City and get the barrel man.
People from your country who aren’t familiar with it can get curious and might crack them a good laugh when they find out what it is. Or it can be great discussion art piece.
If you have a bigger budget for air freight, you can even bring back to your country a furniture set. If you want to level up your pasalubong even more, why not get a Kenneth Cobonpue piece from Cebu? It may not be made entirely from wood, but it’s a piece you’ll be proud of.