Must-Have Long Beach Souvenirs

If you’re visiting Long Beach–or even if you have lived here for years–it can be tricky to come up with a gift or souvenir that represents the city and all it has to offer. After all, you can’t really bottle beach vibes and bring them on the plane home. Relax! Here’s a few quintessentially Long Beach items from local businesses that will help you remember your time here fondly.


Long Beach lovers know it instantly—the navy blue T-shirt from Joe Jost’s (2803 E Anaheim St.); our city’s oldest bar. Featuring their classic schooner of overflowing ale and “Est. 1924” on the back, the shirt is available as a pocket tee as well as tank top. There’s even a root beer onesie for babies. Pair the shirt with a packet of Joe Jost’s pickled egg dry mix for a gift with some real Long Beach flavor.


The Aquarium of the Pacific (100 Aquarium Way) is Southern California’s largest aquarium; an absolute must-see when you’re in Long Beach. And the gift shop, with lots of educational toys, ocean-themed apparel and home decor–not to mention squid hats complete with tentacles–is almost as fun as the exhibits. Check out new items with the likenesses of the Pacific Pals, the Aquarium’s resident puppet performers. Axl the axolotl (a salamander from Mexico) and Elsie Sweetmitten the sea otter are featured on new collectible enamel pins.


LB Swag (5304 E 2nd St.) carries products made by local vendors, including an ornament that celebrates a beloved local holiday tradition. If you have been in Long Beach in December, you most likely have seen lights strung to look like floating Christmas trees in waterways around town. While the wooden-framed pyramid structures are 16-feet tall, LB Swag carries a miniature 5-inch-tall ornament version as well as a 14-inch centerpiece lined with LED string lights to bring this beloved piece of local holiday cheer into your own home.


World Famous V.I.P. Records was opened by Kelvin Anderson Sr. in Long Beach in 1978. The store served as a launchpad for Long Beach artists like Snoop Dogg, Nate Dogg, and Warren G, and its iconic sign towering above Pacific Coast Highway became a local landmark. The store closed and the sign was taken down in 2018, but Anderson hopes to find a new location for a future museum. Rep the LBC with a flat bill hat featuring the V.I.P. sign logo in full-color embroidery to help fund its future home.


Local distillery Wille’s Tin Shop (1115 E Wardlow Rd.) created Long Beach Water, a vodka that, true to its label, uses Long Beach water in its distilling process. In the same way that NYC water makes better bagels, Wille’s says LB water creates a clean taste with hints of citrus zest and minerals. Originally a tin shop established in 1906, Wille’s was converted into a distillery in 2019. Along with vodka, they also make Jackrabbit Whisky and Pine Ave Gin.

Credit: Wille’s Tin Shop
About the Author
Claire Atkinson