I thought it would be fun to share a post from Sophie on the best European cities for foodies. She’s traveled through Europe and gives her take on the incredible cities that can satisfy the foodie pallet. I’m just getting ready to start traveling Europe, so this post is as much for me as it is for all of you 🙂
Traveling through Europe can be a whirlwind of places, sites and meals, but sometimes its the meals that we remember the most. For a foodie, travel is the best way to really get to know a place, its culture and most importantly, its people. Some European cities are much easier to eat your way through, sampling and nibbling as you go, with new food discoveries always on the horizon.
Use this guide to plan out your next trip to Europe, choosing among the best European cities for foodies. Each destination is a combination of convenience and the best food coming out of the kitchens of each chef.
Any foodie, or anyone that enjoys a good meal, that has ever been to Barcelona knows why this European city has made the list. Spain in general is a great place for foodies to explore new tastes and fresh flavor combinations that are conveniently served up in small portions, but Barcelona is the best city in all of Spain to do this. Dining out is a highly prioritized tradition among the locals, so every restaurant is competing to put out their best every day in order to keep up with a very demanding clientele. The Sarria district is best for adventurous foodies, for fresh seafood and traditional Catalan dishes head towards the city’s beaches, where the catch is brought in daily.
Italians have been taking their incredible love for food and great cuisine all over the world with them, but any foodie will have a hard time pulling themselves away from a table in Rome. Authentic Roman cuisine can be found in just about any corner, any district and any hidden restaurant within the city, but there are a few neighborhoods that are especially good. Testaccio and Campo de Fiori are two of Rome’s best districts for eating like a local. Campo di Fiori hosts a food market every morning where you can grab food fresh from the farms and duck into small restaurants behind the stalls where dishes are prepared. Testaccio is where the locals eat, with chefs serving up the traditional dishes that Romans demand.
The Swedish capital, Stockholm, is often overlooked as a foodie destination, but if you are in search of new and interesting flavors, this is the place for you. The restaurants serve straight up Swedish fare that is an artisanal in creation and execution. Old Town is particularly vibrant, with new spots opening up every month that all put their own spin on traditional Swedish food with a fusion of other cuisines. Gastropubs are especially popular in the city with street food rising in popularity with the locals in every district.
The capital of Edinburgh is an interesting mix of traditional and quirky when it comes to the food that gets the most attention. Foodies love it because they are able to find just about anything to fit their gnoshing moods. Canongate area restaurants are great for first time visitors that want to get a real taste of Edinburgh, and try a lot of small dishes at as many places as possible. The pub scene that is prevalent makes it easier to try one or two lunch burgers for a reasonable rate before moving on to sample elsewhere. Restaurants in the Old and New Town areas of the city are making Edinburgh the talk of trendsetting diners because of the push for gourmet dishes that use new infusions of flavor on traditional dishes.
There are just 4 cities that any foodie would be thrilled visit. Get lost in the city and ask a local where they like to eat. You’re sure to find something amazing!
Note from Dana – I’ve also heard that Paris is a top city for foodies. I’ll report back in a couple of months!
What do you think are the best European cities for foodies?
You might also like my post on Suggestions for Travel Food.