3 “Food Bucket List” Vacations for the Foodie Traveler

Remember when travel bucket lists were mostly based around iconic landmarks and museums?  These days restaurants, street food, cooking classes, and food tours are a big part of the decision-making, too!  And this foodie is happy about it! 

Whether you're on a land or cruise vacation, you can experience a variety of dishes that you may not be able to find at home. What kind of food bucket list vacations are happening for those craving culinary delights?  

Michelin star cuisine  

A lot of travelers dream of traveling to luxurious hotels, getting relaxing spa treatments and enjoying gourmet cuisine. These travelers travel to 4-5 star resorts that offer multiple dining options, or hotels in areas known for their abundant dining options. 

These trips usually need to be planned out ahead of time, to allow time for dining reservations at locations that may be booked for weeks or months in advance.

Diners and Casual Fare

These may not be Michelin star but they may be star-studded in their own way. In a quest to try popular local cuisine, some travelers plan their trips around restaurants that have gained fame from popular television shows.  Mom-and-Pop restaurants, diners, and food trucks have stepped up their game and put out some delicious comfort-food menus.  While this is a more casual experience, you can find yourself standing in long lines, waiting to get into some of the more popular local establishments.

“Taste of” Tours

Recognizing that there is a calling for it, some companies have put together “Taste of..” tours, giving the traveler an authentic, local dining experience. They focus on food themes, such as cheese in France, chocolate in Belgium, or tapas in Spain.  These tours may not focus on one particular city, but travel throughout a region to allow you to enjoy the differences in flavors, often bringing a farm-to-table experience. Food tours often include visits to (or a focus on) local vineyards, breweries, or distilleries, as a way to complete the flavor experience.

When setting your itinerary, plan ahead with some reservations while allowing room for spontaneous meals as you travel through your destination.  Also, be sure to include a mix of gourmet and local comfort-casual foods to get a real "taste" of the area.