There's no denying the attractions of investing in something a bit different. While stocks and shares may be a sensible part of your portfolio, you can hardly hang them on the wall, polish them in the garage, show them off to your friends, or admire them in your wine cellar.
Meanwhile, there's the diversification that you get from investing beyond the ordinary, because while the global stockmarkets may suffer together, it's less likely that shares take a tumble at exactly the moment your Chippendale sideboard halves in value.
Of course, when you move away from some of the more traditional investment routes, there are certain risks that are specific to each market. Of all the things that can happen to traditional investments at least they won't sit unfashionably in your front room, break down spectacularly, or turn out to be a fake.
Yet many of them have performed so strongly over recent years that they deserve a second look. Knight Frank's Luxury Investment Index, which includes things like art and wine, coins and stamps, has risen faster than the FTSE 100 in the past decade, which makes them an interesting proposition.
We reveal six of the most popular alternative investments, and what you need to consider before you invest.