If there’s one thing most people agree on when travelling, it’s that food is a major factor in choosing where to go – and there are so many top travel destinations for local food.
Food plays a huge role in our travel choices and ultimately in our overall experience while on holiday, therefore trying local restaurants, as well as authentic street food, is a great way for travellers to really embrace local culture. And you can’t deny that beautiful, bright and unusual foods are the perfect way to fill your insta-feed and show off your local foodie finds!
WHERE TO TRAVEL TO FOR THE BEST LOCAL FOOD
According to Booking.com, 61% of 50,000 global travellers asked said they pick a destination based on its food and drink. And our appetites are continually growing – almost 50% of global travellers want to be more adventurous with the type of cuisine they eat while abroad! These are five of the top travel destinations for local food – have you visited any of them yet?
If you’re planning a trip to Peru, and to the vibrant city of Lima, there are many dishes you must try. However, there are two favourites of locals and tourists alike – Ceviche and Lomo Saltado.
Ceviche is Peru’s national dish and the best versions of this marinated fish dish are in Lima. It will be the freshest, zestiest and healthiest dish you ever have! Lomo Saltado – beef flame-cooked in a wok mixed with native ingredients such as amarillo chillies, tomatoes and red onions – is the most popular meat dish in Peru. Its smoky flavour gives it character, however the sauce – a combination of Peruvian and Chinese ingredients – really make this a mouthwatering dish.
Another one of the top travel destinations for local food is Ipoh, Malaysia. Ipoh is famous for its street food, meaning eating is quite probably the best activity to do in the city. For breakfast, be sure to try Chee cheong fun. This popular morning dish usually consists of large pieces of flat rice noodles rolled up and served with a sweet or spicy sauce, however in Ipoh is also served with minced pork, mushroom sauce, preserved green chilli, a sprinkle of deep-fried shallots and sesame seeds.
Bean Sprouts Chicken (chicken meat, assorted chicken innards, and locally grown bean sprouts with soy sauce and sesame oil) is arguably Ipoh’s most famous dish and would make a perfect lunch or dinner. Once you’ve finished whatever you’re eating, wash it down with an Ipoh white coffee – it’s smooth with a lightly charred scent and very addictive!
Catania is an ancient port city on Sicily’s east coast, and although the local food there has a lot in common with Italian cuisine, it also has Greek, Spanish, French and Arab influences.
A popular Sicilian street food is Arancino. Bite into one of these fried rice balls, and you might find anything from meat ragu to mozzarella to peas hidden within. Another dish that won’t be hard to find is Pasta alla Norma. This dish is typical of the Catania side Sicily and is a combination of aubergine, tomato sauce and salted ricotta, served with short pasta.
Cuisine in Serbia is a strong mix of local Balkan, Asian and south-east European dishes, however grilled meat, sausages, pastry and local vegetables dominate almost every menu in Belgrade. If you’re looking to try authentic dishes during a trip to this former Yugoslavian republic, there will be an overwhelming variety of meals on offer.
For starters, try Ajvar, a savory spread made out of roasted red peppers which is great on local, fresh bread and for mains, why not tuck into Ćevapi or Pljeskavica? Ćevapi are small sausage-like portions of grilled minced meat, made from beef, lamb or pork, while Pljeskavica is the Serbian version of a hamburger. Beware though, Serbian food is heavy, with plenty of calories.
HO CHI MINH CITY, VIETNAM
Some of the best places to try the local cuisine are in south east Asia, and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam is another one of the top travel destinations for local food due to its great delicacies. As well as the widely known Pho – rice noodles served in a flavoursome soup with beef, bean sprouts, lime wedges and greens – you can also tuck into fresh seafood, spring rolls and meats prepared with an array of cooking methods.
While in the city, be sure to also try Banh Mi (a baguette sandwich with pickled vegetables, pate, butter, soy sauce, cilantro, chilies and hot peppers) and Bun Thit Nuong (vermicelli noodles with grilled pork).