When it comes to Walt Disney World and merchandise locations, many of us will immediately think of locations like the Emporium, MouseGear, or World of Disney. And while these stores are massive and easy go-to shops for a quick souvenir to remember your trip with, these locations will often have overlapping, repetitive merchandise – the same t-shirts, the same stuffed animals, the same coffee mug.
However, not all stores on property are like that, and some of them truly carry unique items that you won’t be able to find elsewhere. Next time you are visiting, stop into one of these stores to truly find something special to remember your vacation.
1) Mombasa Marketplace & Zuri’s Sweet Shop
Located in the Harambe village over at Animal Kingdom, Mombasa Marketplace is the central retail location for the area. Although the shop inside is rather small, Mombasa carries a wide array of more unique merchandise items, including African clothing and instruments, animal carvings, and photography. Mombasa Marketplace is also home to musical offerings from the Harambe village, including Burudika, the four member band that is often playing directly outside of the shop throughout the day.
Directly connected to the store is Zuri’s Sweet Shop, which opened up in spring 2015 as part of the Harambe expansion. With the addition of Zuri’s, guests can now shop a much larger selection of home goods with a more Animal Kingdom themed flair. Items include flatware, cups, and spices – which includes seasonings and rubs used over at Flame Tree Barbecue. Zuri’s also made way for the addition of a second bakery into Africa and, while more generic since the removal of animal themed poop desserts, offers guests various desserts in the event that they didn’t want the usual popcorn or Mickey bar for their day.
2) La Bottega Italiana
La Bottega Italiana is the second, and smaller, of the two gift shops in the Italy Pavilion over in World Showcase. While nearly all of the World Showcase Pavilions offer incredibly unique merchandise offerings that can’t be found outside of that country, I find myself always drifting towards La Bottega when I’m in search of something to buy for myself or someone else. Don’t let the size fool you – this shop is a must stop.
La Bottega Italiana is split into two rooms, each with two different themes. The front room is where guests can find a large array of Italian wines and spirits, along with items such as wine toppers, coasters, and stemware. The second room of the shop offers a mixed assortment of items, including home goods, cookbooks and Italian desserts – both boxed and assorted. Italian guidebooks and smaller gifts, such as keychains and bracelets, are also available for purchase.
Also of interest: The Italy Kidcot location is directly outside of La Bottega Italiana, on the side closest to the square.
3) Basin & Basin White
Basin at Disney Springs, and its second location, Basin White at the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, is your one stop location for anything bath and beauty related. While I have never personally purchased anything inside, it has always been incredibly busy whenever I’ve stopped in, and seems to be especially popular with teenagers.
Inside the shops, guests can find a wide array of products that range from facial scrubs, to bath bombs, to shampoo and conditioner bars. Complimentary samples of many of the products are also available inside, giving guests a chance to try before they buy. Several of the products are also mix-and-match, allowing you to mix and match various scents and styles to create your perfect bath experience.
Basin only has four stores in the continental United States – two in Las Vegas, and the two here in Walt Disney World. If you are in the area and have not had a chance, stop in and check it out.
Image © Disney Parks Blog
4.) Memento Mori/Tatooine Traders/Tower Hotel Gifts
Memento Mori, located just outside of the Haunted Mansion, Tatooine Traders at the exit to Star Tours: The Adventure Continues, and Tower Hotel Gifts at the exit to Tower of Tower are three of the best themed merchandise locations on Disney property, playing to the strengths of the attraction it is based around and offering merchandise unique to that location.
Memento Mori offers guests a selection of Haunted Mansion themed china, clothing, pins and decorations that are sure to please any happy haunts you have back at home. However, the real highlight that makes Memento Mori unique is the newest offering, where guests can have a photo done to replicate the effect of Master Gracey’s on the attraction. Truly ghastly!
Tatooine Traders is a guest’s go to destination for anything Star Wars merchandise, ranging from clothing to action figures to photos. For this shop, the truly unique highlight is the “Build Your Own Lightsaber” attraction, where Jedi and Sith alike can design their lightersabers with various hilts and colors, giving every galactic force wielder their own weapon of choice.
Tower Hotel Gifts gives guests the chance to take the amenities of a five star, luxury hotel back to their own home – without the fear of elevators in free fall. Inside the shop, one will find bellhop bells, bathrobes, mugs, board games, Do Not Disturb signs, and more. Whether you are a fan of the ride or not (and believe me, I am not), this shop will definitely guarantee you a unique memory.