5 Countries to Visit on a Gastro Holiday in 2016

Food has become a very important part of our culture. The word “Foodie” is a term that most people are familiar with and many people like to post photos of their meals on social media sites. It is no surprise that many people are choosing to take vacations that are based around discovering the perfect local meal. You can take guided food tours, sign up for cooking classes, go on food cruises, and download restaurant apps for your phone that allow you to find the most popular food in the area you are in. Make sure that you get in a lot of daily walking so you don’t gain any unwanted pounds. Here are five options that you may not have thought of for 2016.



Vietnam is famous for its food and foodies will not be disappointed. Any luxury holiday to Vietnam would not be complete without sampling Vietnamese food, as it is all about fresh ingredients, and the flavor is a blend of salty, sweet, hot, and sour. Some of the dishes have a French influence that will not disappoint. From Pho, a rich beef or chicken soup with noodles, meat and vegetables, to Bahn Mi, a French inspired sandwich of a baguette filled with different kinds meat or vegetables. You should also sample Goi Cuon, a translucent rice wrap filled with a mix of coriander, meat and vegetables served with a rich peanut sauce.



France is known for its culinary delights. Try bread baked to perfection, rich sauces with fresh ingredients, and desserts that will melt in your mouth. A lot of hotels include breakfast with the price of the food and you can sample fresh croissants, pain au chocolat, fresh brewed coffee, fresh baguettes and cured meats and cheeses to your heart’s content. Lunch is the main meal here and it is a two-hour affair. Order the table d’hote and get a four-course meal paired with different kinds of wine with each course. End your day by having a late dinner at one of the many street cafes.



Malaysia is a great stop for foodies looking to explore a blend of Asian flavours. The food here is a blend of Malay, Chinese and Indian and the food is out of this world. There are plenty of outdoor pubs and restaurants that are open 24 hours or sample from the many street stalls that are set up.  Make sure you try Bak kut teh (a wonderful pork soup) Satay (freshly grilled meat on a stick) Char kway teow a popular dish with wide flat noodles and Curry Mee (a spicy curry soup with vermicelli noodles, coconut milk, mint leaves, egg, and a choice of tofu, chicken, prawns or cuttlefish.



Greece is known for its food and it is often described as a mixture between Turkish and Italian. Olive Oil, Basil, Oregano and garlic along with nuts and seeds are traditional ingredients that are lovingly added to freshly caught seafood and locally raised meat. Pita bread is a simple flatbread that can be served with numerous dips like Taramosalata or Tzatziki and make sure you try the filo wrapped pastries. Sample the salty cheeses often made from goat or sheep milk like Feta, Myzythra, or try Saganaki (a heavenly fried cheese dish made from Graviera). Greek wine making can be traced back 6500 years so make sure you sample some of the local specialties. Why not attempt to cook some of the local delicacies yourself with fresh ingredients while on a self-catering holiday in Greece? There can be no better way to truly be immersed in a countries cuisine other than cooking it yourself. 



Italy is known for its food and the quality of it is part of their culture. Pasta dishes, pizza, cheese, cured meats and freshly prepared gelato are just a few of the things that you must sample here. The specialties vary from region to region so make sure you use your phone to find out the best tastes for where ever you are. Be sure to wash it down with a bottle of locally sourced wine!

Cookeskitchen.co.uk: Join us in a cooking revolution (blog)