Reliquaire is a wonderful gift and gadget paradise
Absolutely everyone who knows Tasmania recommends going to Reliquaire gift shop in Latrobe. They rave about it, usually advising that you cannot fully describe it to anyone, you must EXPERIENCE it for yourself. So, intrepid traveller that I am, I decided to venture to this store and see for myself. Nutcracker soldier statues standing to attention outside give a slight hint that this will be no ordinary store.
It blew my mind! What an incredible, fantastic shop. I mean, going there for the coffee alone would be worth it. Their cafe area is strategically located down the back of the store, and the setting is old-world gorgeous charm.
Getting to the cafe from the front door can take a while as the wares for sale here take your breath away.
I was recommended to check out the Alice in Wonderland area, and the "Down the Rabbit Hole" carpet. This is a visual effect that can be unnerving, it truly looks like a hole in the floor. Do you dare to walk on it? (This is where most people have their photo taken in the shop!)
Just outside are full sized characters from Alice in Wonderland to wonder through. This is not an area where you tell people not to touch. The full sized games here entice you to play around.
My favourite time of year is Christmas and there is lots to choose from here. Even though the store is large, there is so much on offer, it can take a while to browse through, but that is half the fun here - the discovery of a new loved item to take home.
The store is divided into sections, and the helpful staff will direct you to the different areas. There is no one theme here, it is wonderfully eclectic. Choose from Tasmanian made products and food or handmade products sourced from around the world.
In the clothing area there is lots of breathtaking fantasy dress ups for children. If only they had this is my size!
They do have some beautiful adult clothing, as well as homewares, cards and pretty smelling candles and diffusers.
Look out for the dangerous dragons, diabolical dinosaurs, scary skeletons and sinister spiders.
Opening the door to another outdoor area, I jumped when this chap greeted me. Each area you enter is a new surprise.
If games and puzzles are more to your liking, there is an abundant variety of them here, both for pleasure and scientific ones for learning. The owners were once school teachers and their love of educational fun created these amazing selections.
Harry Potter, Doctor Who, Star Wars, Pokemon, Marvel, Game of Thrones, Lord of the Rings and many other themed items are found here, all in one place. As a self professed nerdy person myself, I loved browsing through these collections.
The old world charm extends to a wonderful area that is full of gifts that would be suitable for any age friend, or for yourself. A large collection of pieces you may need when renovating a historic home was a pleasant find.
This is one amazing store, comparable to Aladdin's cave with its trove of treasures. What was my best buy this last visit? As a traveller, it is not possible to purchase everything I want. This stylish and beautiful calligraphy quill set now calls my place home. In a modern world of computers and instant messaging, it is a pleasure to write with instruments from long ago, especially when sending postcards to friends. I even feel a bit like Mrs. Whistledown when using it. (That is my Bridgeton book and TV show reference there!)
Reliquaire is a family-owned business and has been operating since 1995. The original store was lost to a fire in 2015, and the new store re-opened in 2017. This would have been a sad loss if it didn't. The family travel the world to bring unique handmade products to Reliquaire.
They do ship items for a flat $14 fee, which is great for travellers who don't want to carry things on their journey. It is wonderful to have your treasures awaiting you when returning home.
Hands down this is one of my favourite shops ever! Now I will be the one telling everyone - go to Tasmania and definitely spend some splendid time at Reliquaire.
139 Gilbert Street, Latrobe, Tasmania, Australia