The Best Father’s Day Gifts for Travel-Loving Dads

Father’s Day is on June 18. Here’s how to celebrate the dads who instilled a love of travel in us from a young age.

Pouring whiskey from a VSSL flask

The best travel gifts are ones that are dual purpose, like this VSSL flask that comes with a tiny-but-powerful Bluetooth speaker that screws onto its bottom.

Courtesy of VSSL

The greatest gift you can give your dad this Father’s Day is booking a trip to spend time with him in person. But if you don’t want to show up empty handed, here are a few of AFAR’s favorite Father’s Day gifts, selected with supporting small businesses in mind.

Leatherology Harwood Weekender

This weekender comes in six colors of leather, including the cognac shade seen here.

Courtesy of Leatherology

Leatherology Harwood Weekender

For the dapper weekend warrior

Buy Now: $375,

Anyone in the market for a new overnight bag or personal item will love the Harwood Weekender by AAPI-owned Leatherology. This small leather duffel with room for a few changes of clothes and a laptop also has pockets galore, magnetic clasps, and three different styles of monogramming. And it has a trolley sleeve to slide over carry-on handles so it doesn’t fall off. Choose from classic black and multiple shades of brown leather, or if dad isn’t afraid of a pop of color, a dazzling azure blue.

Purist Maker Mug

The Purist Maker Mug comes in a variety of colors, including the dark blue “Drift” seen here.

Courtesy of Purist

Purist 10-Oz. Maker Mug

For the coffee snob

Buy Now: $38,;

Pairing a reusable coffee mug with a bag of beans from a favorite local coffee shop is the best way to encourage a dad to go ecofriendly on his early morning coffee runs. Though this looks like a stainless steel bottle, the Purist Maker Mug is actually lined with an ultra-thin layer of nonporous glass. That means this travel mug won’t give coffee that dreaded metallic taste other reusable cups do; it also weighs just over half a pound. (Glass bottles also mean you can switch between coffee, water—and heck, even wine—without the lingering scent of the previous beverage.) This 10-ounce model comes with a leakproof scope top designed for hot coffee, since it allows for sipping from any side. Purist also sells basic screw-top caps with carrying loops as well as flip-tops, for those who will also use this bottle for cold drinks.

Matador GlobeRider45 Travel Backpack

The Matador GlobeRider45 Travel Backpack is a sleek alternative to hiking backpacks.

Courtesy of Matador

Matador GlobeRider45 Travel Backpack

For the grown-up backpacker

Buy Now: $350,

If he’s still using the pack he’s had since the ‘90s, here’s a sleek upgrade: The Globerider45 Travel Backpack is the first-ever generalist travel backpack from Matador, a outdoor gear brand known for its minimalist and ultralight gear. Made with Bluesign-approved recycled material, this pack is designed for one-bag travel with room for 45 liters of gear while remaining carry-on compliant. It features a clamshell design with plenty of internal pockets to keep shoes separate from clothes, as well as an external-access laptop pocket, a water bottle pocket, and an admin pocket for passports and other small gear. Its padded hip belt and breathable back panel and shoulder straps keep loads comfortable no matter how long the walk to the hotel is.

ENO DoubleNest Hammock

The ENO DoubleNest Hammock comes in more than a dozen fun colors and patterns.

Courtesy of REI

ENO DoubleNest Hammock

For the relaxed outdoorsman

Buy Now: $56 (was $75),;

Anyone passionate about camping already owns a tent. But does he have a hammock for posthike naps in the afternoon? Asheville-based Eagles Nest Outfitters (ENO) has been making travel hammocks since 1999, so they know what they’re doing. The DoubleNest hammock can fit up to two people and support up to 400 pounds of weight, yet weighs just over a pound itself and stuffs down into an included sack for packability. Choose between a variety of bold color combos, two different Grateful Dead prints, or a limited-edition print designed by artist Leandra Taylor in partnership with the nonprofit Outdoor Afro. In addition to planting two trees for every hammock sold, ENO gives 1 percent of its annual sales to nonprofit environmental organizations as a member of the 1% for the Planet group.

Cariuma slip-ons

Cariuma’s slip-ons are made sustainably and easy to get on and off at TSA checkpoints.

Courtesy of Cariuma

Cariuma Canvas Slip-Ons

For the dad who likes comfort and has style

Buy Now: $79,

It’s time to replace those worn-out Vans. Made with an organic cotton upper and a grippy natural rubber sole, Cariumas are a more sustainable version of the classic slip-on and are available in five different colors. As part of its efforts as a B Corp, Cariuma started its own Reforestation Program in its founders’ homeland of Brazil. For every pair of sneakers sold, the brand plants a pair of trees in the Brazilian rain forest. So far they’ve planted more than 2 million trees.

Oru Kayak Lake Kayak

Oru Kayak’s lightweight Lake Kayak weighs just 17 pounds and folds up to easily fit in a car trunk.

Courtesy of Oru Kayak

Oru Kayak Lake Kayak

For the sporty traveler

Buy Now: $499,;

AFAR’s own deputy editor—and dad of three—Tim Chester is a fan of Oru’s foldable kayaks for their lightweight design and ease of use. (They fold and unfold in about 5 to 10 minutes.) The San Francisco–based company’s newest kayak, the Lake, is its most affordable one yet at $499. Just 17 pounds and made with only two parts, it’s also more portable and easier to assemble than the others.

VSSL Insulated Flask + Speaker

This handy travel accessory is a flask and Bluetooth speaker all in one.

Courtesy of VSSL

VSSL Insulated Flask + Speaker

For the dad who always makes the best playlists

Buy Now: $150,

The best travel accessories are dual purpose to limit overpacking. Case in point: This flask from outdoor gear brand VSSL comes with a tiny-but-powerful waterproof Bluetooth speaker that screws onto an 8-ounce chamber to store a spirit of choice. Its lid comes with a magnetic carabiner to clip to backpacks, plus a pour spout and a twist-off lid for easy cleaning. But that’s not all: It’s also insulated so it’ll keep liquids cold for 10 hours and hot for five. The battery in the speaker lasts up to five hours and can be recharged via an included USB-C charging cable.

Armando Cabral's Quebo slippers

Armando Cabral’s Quebo slippers come with their own zip pouch for germ-free storage.

Courtesy of Armando Cabral

Armando Cabral Quebo Zip-Pouch Slippers

For the sophisticate

Buy Now: $495,

Designed by Armando Cabral—a model turned entrepreneur born in Guinea-Bissau and raised in Portugal—these luxe slippers come in eight vibrant colors of supple deerskin leather. The best part? Each pair zips flat into an included pouch, so they can be tucked away in a personal item after they’re done being used at a hotel or on an airplane.

Nomadix Changing Poncho in horizontal stripes

The Nomadix Changing Poncho comes in nearly two dozen patterns, including this rainbow pinstripe version seen here.

Courtesy of Nomadix

Nomadix Changing Poncho

For the surfer

Buy Now: $70,

Getting in and out of wet suits is awkward enough. This Nomadix poncho doubles as a cover-up for quick changes on the beach and as a beach towel. It’s made with a sand-resistant MicroTerry material that dries four times faster than cotton terry (fear not that dreaded mildew stink if it happens to be forgotten in a beach bag). Available in three sizes, the M/L is designed for people up to 6’4”. Nomadix makes all products with postconsumer recycled plastic and is a member of the 1% for the Planet group.

Shotwell Candy Co.'s craft beer and pretzel caramels

Locally made in Memphis, Shotwell Candy Co.'s craft beer and pretzel caramels can be shipped directly or through Goldbelly.

Courtesy of Shotwell Candy Co.

Candy and chocolate from his favorite city

For the guy with a sweet tooth

Buy Now: From $10,

You can’t go wrong with chocolate as a gift for anyone with a serious sweet tooth. But instead of delivering any old bar to your dear old dad, give your gift a travel angle and put together a selection of goodies made in his favorite city. Left his heart in San Francisco? Consider sweets from the likes of Dandelion or Recchiuti. Missing Memphis? Phillip Ashley Chocolates and Shotwell Candy Co. both ship. Not sure where to start? Goldbelly has dozens of options from the USA’s best gourmet chocolate shops and organizes them all by region on its website to make searching easier.

Nocs Provisions Field Issue 8x32 Binoculars

All birders need a good pair of binoculars.

Courtesy of Nocs Provisions

Nocs Provisions Field Issue 8x32 Binoculars

For the bird-watcher

Buy Now: $175,

Improve the adventures of aspiring and novice bird-watchers with the gift of high-quality zoom. For a lightweight model under $200, the new Field Issue 8x32 from Nocs Provisions is waterproof and made with a rugged housing to stand up to all kinds of travel. For dads who already own a pair of binoculars, this Northern California–based small business also makes beautiful woven tapestry straps that work on any pair of field glasses (or cameras, too).

Rains Jacket in Navy

This waterproof jacket from Rains comes in a dozen colors, including navy, seen here.

Courtesy of Rains

Rains Jacket

For the all-weather dad

Buy Now: $110,

A little rain can’t keep dad from spending most of his time outdoors? To keep him dry, give him a brand-new rain jacket from the Danish company Rains. This style comes in a dozen colors from basic black and army green to fun shades of cobalt blue and cheery yellow—making it easy to shop for your dad’s personality.

Priority Bicycles Apollo Gravel

The Gates Carbon Drive Belts featured on all Priority Bicycles last longer than standard chains and don’t rust or require lube.

Courtesy of Priority Bicycles

Priority Bicycles Apollo Gravel

For the sightseer

Buy Now: $1,999,

Made for both pavement and gravel, this all-road bike performs as well on trails as it does on city streets, making it an excellent travel companion. Plus, NYC-based Priority Bicycles designs its bikes for a low-maintenance lifestyle with grease-and-rust-free Gates Carbon Drive Belts instead of traditional chain drives. That means no more stained pants and dirty hands.

This article was originally published in 2020; it was updated on May 25, 2023, with new information.

Lyndsey Matthews is the senior commerce editor at AFAR who covers travel gear, packing advice, and points and loyalty.
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