If you’re anything like us then food will play a big part in your life – especially when you jet off on holiday. Not only is sampling the local cuisine a great way to get to know the people and the culture, it’s also a perfect recipe (pun intended) for making memories with your loved ones. You can also bring some of your new-found favourites home with you and add them to your own personal repertoire.
So, whether you like fine dining, street eats or something in between, here are some great ways to discover amazing food experiences whilst abroad.
Most people will be aware of wine tastings. The chance to tour a vineyard, winery, brewery, etc. and then sample some of the produce at the end is a great way to see what the locals are drinking. But these types of sessions are not just limited to wine or beer. With a little research, you could soon be tasting chocolates in Brussels, cheese in Bordeaux or duck pancakes in Beijing.
These tastings range from short, hour-long sessions where you stay in one place to extended tours that take you to a range of the best food spots in town. It’s easy to find something to suit your budget and time restraints.
What better way to learn about the local culinary delights than to try and cook some of them yourself? Cookery classes are usually run by an expert chef who will take you through the process of making some tasting treats step by step.
This is especially good if you are the kind of person that likes to recreate the fantastic meals you have on your travels when you get back home. And the best part is that you usually get to eat what you make afterwards.
Italy is the ideal destination in which to book a cookery class because so much of the country’s food relies on homemade recipes that have been passed down and perfected over the years.
If you would rather somebody who knew what they were doing did the cooking, visiting a local restaurant is an obvious way to try some regional dishes. But how do you separate those that serenade the stomach from those that turn it?
There are many ways you can find great restaurant recommendations, including doing your research before you travel. Take a look at review sites like TripAdvisor or Urbanspoon (remembering to take it with a pinch of salt) or read independent blog posts about the best places to eat in your chosen destination.
You can also get some recommendations whilst you are there, though. Ask the hotel staff if they have a favourite place to dine, speak to other people staying in your accommodation or simply look for restaurants where the tables are full and people are queuing out of the door. You may have to wait a while at the latter, but at least you’ll know the food is worth it.
The trend for food halls seems to be growing across the world. These indoor marketplaces offer a fantastic selection of local food under one roof and there’s always so much variety that you’re bound to find something you like. You can stroll from stall to stall to see what’s on offer before deciding on your favourite and tucking in.
Be warned though, sometimes it’s hard not to cave into the first delicious thing you see/smell and then regret it later when something else catches your eye. However, the prices are usually very affordable, so you can always have a little bit of everything.
One of the simplest ways to find a fantastic place to feast is to allow yourself the chance to get lost. Of course, in this day and age, we are never truly lost, but if you wander unaided for a while who knows what you will come across.
Everybody has at least one travel story that involves them stumbling across the best *insert local dish here* they’ve ever tasted, purely because they didn’t know where they were and wandered into the nearest restaurant just to get out of the rain. And if you don’t have a story like that, now’s your chance to create one. Explore freely and uncover some hidden gems.
If you would like to let your stomach guide you to your next holiday destination, we can help you with the planning. We have a wide range of trips available, including some fantastic food tours. The team is always on hand to offer advice, so call us on 0800 021 3237 or contact us via the website.
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