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This guide to foodie destinations around the Globe is a primer that comes with a little help from the inner data banks of Booking.com and reveals the world’s top hot spots for those who like to travel through their tasting sensors and get the most from sweet, salty, savory, sweet, sour, salty, bitter, pungent, and astringent receptors.
“This map for gastro-globetrotters shows the best places for essential food experiences,” says Pepijn Rijvers, who is in charge of marketing at the hotel reservation site. Thus, the suggestions here are based on the tastes of travelers, not chefs, not reviewers …and not Yelpers.
The 15 must-try places to experience and celebrate some of the world’s favorite foods include some old favorites while others hidden gems.
- Hershey, United States: Hershey Pennsylvania is the beating heart of classic, North American chocolate. Chocoholics loved this hometown headquarters for its celebration of all kinds of cocoa creations.
- New Orleans, United States: With its buzzing nightlife and jazz scene, it’s no wonder some of the most iconic modern cocktails were born here, from the Hurricane to the Sazerac.
- Lodi, United States: Move over, Napa … Wine lovers keen to sip some of the world’s best vintages know that Lodi is the place to be, what with its perfect climate and long-standing reputation for cultivating grapes.
- Salento, Colombia: Colombia’s coffee capital was highly rated for offering the full coffee experience, from exploring where it’s grown to sipping endless cups of freshly brewed goodness.
- Grimsby, United Kingdom: The seaside town of Grimsby was rated as a hotspot for this much-loved national delicacy, priding itself on its numerous traditional chippies.
- Gouda, Netherlands: Gouda, a creamy and mild yellow cheese that comes from the eponymous city, is a firm favorite with Booking.com travelers.
- Plzen, Czech Republic: The town of Plzen’s namesake brew is the grandfather of all lagers, inspiring more than two-thirds of beer produced globally today.
- Brussels, Belgium: Whether they’re covered in whipped cream or served gooey and hot, the variety of fluffy, buttery waffles in Brussels was irresistible to Booking.com reviewers.
- Naples, Italy: The ultimate pizza has to be a traditional Margherita from Naples, straight out of a wood-burning oven, covered in home-grown cherry tomatoes and mouthwatering mozzarella.
- Valencia, Spain: When you think Spain you think paella, and with Valencia as its birthplace, the locals are expert purveyors of this fragrant saffron rice dish.
- Dalian, China: With the Yellow Sea on one side and the Bohai Sea on the other, Dalian is surrounded by waters rich in all manner of fish, prawns, crabs and other seafood.
- Tokyo, Japan: Tokyo is synonymous with sushi. Watch skillful chefs slice salmon thinner than in your wildest dreams here and enjoy melt-in-your-mouth makizushi.
- Incheon, South Korea: For the finest Chinese street food outside of China, the South Korean city of Incheon is a goldmine. Its Chinatown is a bustling centre for every Chinese delicacy under the sun.
- Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka: Famed for its misty-mountain tea plantations, Nuwara Eilya is the perfect place to enjoy a spot of high tea. Indulge in cakes, sandwiches and cup of Ceylon overlooking the stunning Sri Lankan landscape.
- Trang, Thailand: Traditionally eaten for breakfast here, huge halls are dotted around the city dedicated to little plates of steamed dumplings, quail eggs and other regional fare.