Food and travel are inextricably intertwined. Exciting new destinations invariably come with amazing new tastes and flavours, original recipes to learn and mouth-watering new dishes to try.
The new year is all about new experiences, which makes a culinary journey of exploration one of the best ways to celebrate. Whether you are a died-in-the-wool foodie or just a travel junkie looking for new sensations, combining new destinations with novel gastronomic experiences is one of the best things to put on your list of New Year’s resolutions.
So before boarding your cruise in Cape Liberty or your aircraft in LAX, take a look at some of the suggestions below for amazing food experiences around the globe, and add something truly delicious to your New Year celebrations..
I’ve only just returned from Japan and I can honestly say it’s by far one of the best places I’ve ever been. The country also has more Michelin starred restaurants than anywhere else in the world, so food is more like a religion here.
Tokyo rings in the New Year with a traditional feast known as Osechi Ryori, a selection of carefully prepared dishes designed to symbolize good luck. These feasts tend to include a range of classic Japanese dishes including sushi, sashimi, and steaming bowls of ramen. I’m slightly addicted to ramen right now.
I visited Barcelona twice last year, once for an event and once as a trip away (supposedly as a normal tourist, but I ended up being a blogger as normal). It’s possibly my favourite city in Europe, while I have a couple of mates over there, so I love to visit whenever I can.
Spain’s tapas culture finds its ultimate expression in the twisting alleyways and vibrant markets of Barcelona. A stroll through the Barri Gotic offers al fresco dining in an incredible variety of small, local tapas bars, with a mouth-watering array of dishes to try.
From paella and jamón ibérico to cod croquettes and Spanish omelette, the food culture in the Catalan capital is as lively as the nightlife, making it the perfect place to celebrate the new year.
South East Asia is one of the greatest places on the planet to eat street food, and Hanoi in Vietnam is a great place to start. Exploring the Old Quarter of Hanoi is a sensory journey of sights, smells, and tastes, with sizzling grilled meats, aromatic pho, and freshly brewed Vietnamese coffee on every corner.
Vietnamese cuisine is fresh, vivid, and vibrant, a wonderful way to experience the complex flavours of South East Asia for the first time.
The home of traditional fine dining and gourmet excellence, French cooks literally wrote the book on sophisticated and elegant cuisine.
A trip to Paris should therefore be considered a pilgrimage for serious foodies. From the simplest croissant to a full Michelin-starred cordon bleu feast, there really is nowhere in the world quite like Paris when it comes to pulling out the culinary stops.
Considering I was brought up eating coq au vin for dinner and croissants for breakfast, I couldn’t help but include French food on the list.
Whenever people ask ‘what is the best place you’ve ever been’, Peru is always my answer. There was so much to see, while every city differed from the last, from sandboarding in Huacachina to climbing Machu Picchu.
Peruvian cooking burst onto the international scene a few years ago and hasn’t looked back, so a New Year’s trip to Lima is an amazing thing to do for food lovers. From extraordinarily zesty cenvice to traditional anticuchos, Peruvian cuisine is vibrant, exciting, and innovative, and the perfect complement to Lima’s diverse and intriguing nightlife.
Istanbul has always sat at the crossroads of civilization, and its traditional food heritage reflects that perfectly.
The overwhelming aromas of the famous spice bazaars conjure up tantalizing images of Eastern wonders, while the fresh Mediterranean flavours of grilled meat, fresh fish, and ripe tomatoes are everywhere.
From kebabs and gozleme to baklava and Turkish delight, the food in Istanbul is a journey through history and culture itself, and makes for an exciting trip.
The magic of Marrakech is found in its vibrant, exciting souks and in the chaos of the Jemaa el Fna, the main city square. Here the smells of freshly grilled meat, rich tagines, and aromatic couscous blend with the sounds of the markets to create a sensory experience quite unlike anywhere else in the world.
The world is an abundant smorgasbord of flavours, smells, and culinary delights, and the new year offers an incredible opportunity to explore them. The destinations above are just a taste of what awaits you on your travels!