K.C. was a featured writer for Yahoo! Travel before joining trips to discover in 2013. She is the author of Best Travel Guide for First Time Visitors to Ireland, an Amazon bestseller every year between 2013 and 2016. She has been a featured expert on Newsweek, Travel + Leisure, Travelocity, among others.
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If one of your favorite parts of traveling to new destinations is sampling the food, you might want to plan your trip around one of the world’s best spots for culinary tours. A food tour is a perfect way to find out where the best eats are, enjoying lots of samples while learning more about the city from a local guide along the way. From pizza in Naples to ceviche in Lima, there are fabulous options across the globe waiting to be explored.
While Naples is less-visited than popular Italian cities like Florence, Venice and Rome, if you’re looking for some of the world’s best pizza and a wide range of other delicious eats, this is the place to go. You can sample that soft, chewy crust with slightly burnt edges and lots of other tasty regional cuisines on a Naples Street Food Tour. You’ll head out with a local expert to explore downtown squares and basilicas and stop at hidden eateries to sample traditional dishes that not only include pizza but everything from zucchini flowers to ragù and baccalà.
Croatia’s Istria Peninsula, a region often compared to Tuscany, is home to medieval hilltop towns, lush hills, sea views and some of the best cuisine imaginable. A gourmet food and wine tour will bring you to sample its very best flavors, including wine tasting complemented with local snacks. You’ll get to head out with an expert to take part in truffle hunting with trained dogs (followed by a truffle tasting) and enjoy an olive oil tasting in Motovun too. In this storybook walled hilltop town, you’ll not only discover breathtaking views around nearly every corner, but you’ll get to sample various olive oils while learning about the olive grove and production.
Athens is not only famous for its ancient sights but its fresh food. You can sample some of the best by taking a walking food tour through the city, led by a local. You’ll get to enjoy bougatsa, a sweet or savory pastry, Greek honey dumplings called loukoumades, olives and other Greek treats. Meet up with dedicated artisans and visit the central food market where local vendors sell produce from throughout the country to check out the regional herbs and spices too. If you like coffee, there’s nothing better than a cup of the strong Greek stuff to fuel your exploits.
One of the highlights of any trip to Paris is the delicious cuisine. Montmartre is one of its most charming neighborhoods, a cobblestoned art district filled with gastronomic delights. A tour will allow you to meet with some of its most talented food artisans, with 10 pre-selected food stops while enjoying a wide range of landmarks from Moulin Rouge to the Sacré Coeur. You’ll eat like a true Parisian, sampling gourmet cheeses, cured meats, fine wines, and chocolates. Be sure to pick up some fresh-baked bread for a snack later.
In a country where mouthwatering food can be enjoyed around every corner, Oaxaca offers some of the best, in fact, it’s even been recognized by UNESCO for its culinary traditions. A diverse range of traditional Mexican dishes were birthed or perfected here. Known as the “land of the seven moles,” for its legendary and complex sauces made with dozens of ingredients, often including chocolate, visitors can watch traditional chocolate making and learn how it’s incorporated into desserts and many other aspects of the culinary experience. An Oaxacan Markets Food tour will bring you to some of the most popular spots to try traditional Oaxacan cuisine, just be sure to bring a big appetite.
Marrakech is an eclectic city with a rich history and delicious cuisine. A culinary tour will bring you to taste some of its best authentic local eats while visiting a lively local market, partaking in a mint tea ceremony and more. You’ll be led by a local foodie to sample everything from olives in all their varieties, fresh Morrocan salads and savory meatballs to almond juices, an artisanal pastry, the famous Tagine and more. After all that sampling, you might want to relax in a traditional Moroccan hammam, a significant part of Moroccan life and beliefs.
Located on the central coast of Vietnam, Hoi An is considered one of the country’s top food hubs. Its center is a national heritage zone so you won’t have to battle scooters or other motorized vehicles while strolling the cobblestone streets that are jam-packed with history and mouthwatering fare. Discover the best by taking a guided walk through its street food scene visiting off-the-beaten-path eateries that are popular with the locals, perhaps sampling cao lau, known as Hoi An’s secret noodle.
A place where east meets west, Hong Kong has a unique culture as a former British Colony. It’s one of the world’s top dining capitals, attracting chefs from across the globe while boasting Asia’s greatest number of restaurants per capita. Enjoy authentic Chinese cuisine, including the world’s cheapest Michelin-star meal at Tim Ho Wan. You’ll find some of the most unforgettable meals in the street food stalls, however. As it can be difficult to navigate the wide range of options without a guide due to the language barrier, the best way to do it is to join a private street food tour, which includes a visit to a teahouse. You’ll be able to sample everything from shrimp wonton to pineapple bun while soaking up the vibrant atmosphere.
One of the most underrated cities in South America, Santiago has a fascinating culture to explore, including delicious culinary traditions that can be enjoyed in traditional markets like La Vega and Mercado Central. The ChileCooks Food Tour will bring you to the traditional markets and it even includes a home cooking lesson with a local so that you can learn how to prepare several dishes yourself. It includes homemade bread with an appetizer, empanada, main course and dessert as well as wine tasting and a pisco sour.
Located on Spain’s northern coast in the Basque Autonomous Community, San Sebastian is home to beautiful beaches, but it’s most renowned for its tapas culture and a foodie scene that’s been called one of the best in the world. Take a food tour to discover its pintxos (Basque tapas) and wine, while learning about the history of the cuisine and sampling items like stewed rabbit and fresh txangurro, tocal spider crab and Basque beverages like cider and txakoli wine.
New Orleans is famous for its crawfish, gumbo, jambalaya, and Beignets, but to sample the most authentic, it’s best to take a food tour. A French Quarter Food Tour will take you into the heart of the city’s rich gastronomic heritage while learning about its diverse culinary history. It includes a wide range of local bites that will add up to a full meal while visiting everything from local institutions to hole-in-the-wall favorites.
San Francisco is world-famous for its fresh seafood like Dungeness crab and clam chowder served in a sourdough bread bowl, but it offers a whole lot more, some of which can be discovered on a “secret” food tour through the Mission district that famously inspired its own style of the burrito. The tour includes everything from bakery-style cookies to that creamy clam chowder along with California wine.
In Porto, Portugal’s second city, food is an expression of culture, so taking a local food and wine tour only makes sense. In between strolling its cobbled streets, gazing up at impressive buildings and churches like the Church of Sao Francisco with its elaborate Gothic rose window, there are lots of outstanding eats and fine wines to sample. By taking a food and wine tasting tour you’ll be able to savor them both in popular cafés and markets, including sweet custard tarts and savory classics like a ‘bolinho de bacalhau’ codfish while learning about its history, culture and gastronomy from your local guide.
Mumbai is famous for its street food, with many varied options, all spicy and delicious, most based on rice, vegetables, fish, coconut, curries and homemade sweets. A street food tour will bring you through its food lanes known as ‘Khau Gullies’ to treat your taste buds and learn about the history of various communities and their kitchens to see how they’ve impacted the cuisine in the city, particularly it’s street food.
Lima is the unofficial gastronomical capital of South America, home to many highly-acclaimed chefs like Gastón Acurio and Virgilio Martínez, who was honored with the Chef’s Choice Award, making him the world’s best. It’s also the only city to have two restaurants named among the top 10 on the list of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants. An evening tour is one of the best ways to experience it. You’ll explore the historic part of the city, visiting the local landmarks while enjoying the food and drink. You’ll be able to delve into foods from around the country with a local guide who will bring you to the very best versions. Just some of what you might sample include ceviche, Peru’s national dish, and Lomo Saltado, a beef stir fry that combines Chinese stir-frying and classic Peruvian ingredients.