Christmas gifts for travellers fireplace

10 Christmas gifts for travellers

Every year, we write a quick update about where we’re spending Christmas. This year, we’ll be home in the UK, wedged between longer trips to Ethiopia and Djibouti in Nov-Dec and Australia and New Zealand in Feb-Mar.

We’re excited about the travels ahead, but also looking forward to a few weeks at home. It’s not Christmas in Tahiti, but it’ll do just fine.

In another of our yearly traditions, we’ve put together our list of 10 Christmas gifts for travellers, perfect for long sojourns abroad or comfy Christmases spent at home.

1. Kindle Oasis, £230 ($290)

The Kindle is a great Christmas gift for travellersAmazon

The Kindle Oasis is (mercifully!) waterproof

Last year, I upgraded from the Kindle to the Kindle Paperwhite. I was pleased to gain backlighting and touch screen capabilities, but I did feel that there was a compromise on battery life and I wasn’t exactly enamoured by the loss of the physical page-turn buttons.

With this in mind, I was delighted with the arrival of the Kindle Oasis which combines all the best aspects of its predecessors with added functionality to boot.

Along with backlighting, touch screen capabilities, an extended battery life and physical page-turn buttons, the Kindle Oasis adds audiobook integration and, most importantly for travel, it’s waterproof! This is especially appreciated given that I ruined my original Kindle thanks to a massive unexpected wave on Tonga’s Ha’aluma Beach.

What’s more, the Kindle Oasis is offered in a wifi + free 3G version with Amazon footing the bill for 3G downloads. What more could a bookish traveller ask for?

2. Personalised map print, £195 ($255)

Personalised map print: an excellent christmas gift for travellersFair Use

Personalised map print featuring nine custom locations

I love, love, love this personalised map print. Customers can create a bespoke print by specifying nine locations of their choosing. The prints comes in two sizes: 40.5cm x 40.5cm, or 53.5cm x 53.5cm and can be delivered internationally. (Delivery in the UK is free.)

The print isn’t the most practical of Christmas gifts for travellers since it can’t be used on the road, but it does serve as a lovely reminder of precious days abroad.

Now, which nine locations to choose…

3. Olympus action camera, £280 ($366) – £80 off with our discount

Get an £80 discount on the Olympus TG Tracker by using ATLAS80 under ‘Do you have a coupon code?’ at checkout – valid until 15th December.

Olympus toughcam gift for travellersOlympus

This Olympus 4K camera is ideal for adventure travellers

We’ve been searching for a resilient action camera ever since the waterproof casing on our GoPro failed a couple of years ago. We’ve since used a Nikon and a Canon, but have been less than impressed with the film quality.

With this in mind, we were keen to try the Olympus Tough! TG Tracker. This 4K action camera is waterproof to 30m without needing external casing, freezeproof to -10°C, shockproof to 2.1m, and crushproof to 100kg. We’re not sure in what circumstances we’d need the last feature, but it’s good to know that this toughcam lives up to its name.

We’ve found the film quality to be excellent and will be testing the camera’s limits on our trip to Ethiopia and Djibouti where we hope to swim with whale sharks and trek to Erta Ale in the Danakil Depression, otherwise known as the hottest place on earth.

4. Personalised Compass, £65 ($85)

Christmas gifts for travellers: personalised compassFair Use

A personalised compass for the wanderer in your life

This personalised compass and sundial is one of the most charming Christmas gifts for travellers obsessed with maps, great expeditions and legends of yore.

Made with polished brass, the compass includes a fully operational nautical compass and comes with a protective pouch and a separate protective brass lid which can be personalised with a message of up to 60 characters.

How many do you think Bear Grylls has been given?

5. Packing cubes, from £40 ($52)

These packing cubes have changed the way I travel

Peter has been banging on about stuff sacs and packing cubes for years and I’ve never heeded his advice – until my recent horse riding trip to Montenegro. More fool me. These have changed the way I pack and have made life on the road so much easier.

I no longer find myself pulling out a pair of black leggings when I’m really after my black cardigan, or rooting around for a fresh pair of underwear. I use Eagle Creek’s Pack-It Specter Tech Starter Set in S/M/M to organise tops, bottoms and smalls while Peter packs Ultralight Packing Cubes in a seven-piece set from eBags to organise his clothes and photography gear (of which he has a lot).

Take my word for it: add these to your Christmas shopping list and you’ll change someone’s life forever.

6. MSC Power Stick portable phone charger, £9.95 ($13)

easy ways to travel greener power banksAtlas & Boots

The MSC Power Stick has proven its worth in the wilderness

This USB charger is the size of a lipstick but provides enough juice to get a device or two back up to speed in an emergency.

The stick can be powered up via mains USB, PC or car USB prior to leaving civilisation and then used to provide a full charge to a variety of gadgets including all smartphones, e-readers and digital cameras. It includes an LED display of the remaining charge, and is light and portable enough to keep in your daypack.

It has been invaluable on our many forays into the wilderness and is one our most highly recommended Christmas gifts for travellers.

7. Vintage globe, £50 ($65)

Vintage globe present for ChristmasFair Use

A vintage globe serves as more than a decorative accessory

Peter bought a vintage globe for his father last year and plans to buy one of his own as soon as we have a more permanent base.

The globe works as a decorative accessory and as a reference point, but more than that it’s an excellent conversation starter. Our planet is clearly fascinating and house-guests will invariably comment on a surprising realisation, whether it’s the fact that the Pacific takes up nearly half the globe, or that there’s only one country between Finland and North Korea. Clearly, if you’re not travelling, the next best thing is dreaming about it.

Opt for a globe around the £50 mark for a decent level of quality.

8. Orei Worldwide Travel Adaptor, £20 ($26)


The perfect Christmas gift for the practical traveller

With over 1,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, the OREI travel adaptor is a clear favourite among frequent travellers. It works in over 150 countries meaning you no longer have to carry numerous adaptors on long trips abroad.

The different components slide in and out of the compact self-contained unit which means you won’t lose any vital pieces. It also doubles up as a USB charger, making it the perfect Christmas gift for the practical traveller.

9. Moleskine Travel Journal, from £10 ($13)

Moleskine travel journalMoleskine

A Moleskine travel journal for those who dream of distant lands

I add my notes and reminders to Evernote on my iPhone but Peter relies on his trusty Moleskine.

These beautiful notebooks are perfect for the traveller who dreams of distant lands, long overland journeys and the romance of a time long past. (Let’s face it: we all know one of those.)

10. Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2018, £14 ($18)

A great book for ChristmasLonely Planet

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2018

Lonely Planet’s annual bestseller, Best in Travel, ranks the must-see countries, regions and cities for the year ahead.

Drawing on the knowledge and expertise of Lonely Planet’s staff, authors, online community and Pathfinders (hi!), it presents a year’s worth of inspiration and aims to take travellers “out of the ordinary and into the unforgettable”.

Now available in a larger, hardback format, Best in Travel is one our favourite Christmas gifts for travellers.

Stocking fillers

Finally, there’s a whole range of stocking fillers useful for active travellers.

Lead image: Dreamstime

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