As we enjoy this trip, I learned how valuable it is to know your foods. I love food and Asia has a lot to offer in that department. It would be a shame to miss out on all of this deliciousness. Luckily, Jose is on board so we aim to book a food tour at every major city we hit. It has yet to disappoint. If you are traveling and going to a “foodie” city, here are 5 reasons why you should do a food tour:
1. It saves time– In cities like Bangkok, its miles and miles of food. I don’t care how good you are, navigating a new city takes time. With a guide, you nix the time wasted figuring out where to go and what places to visit. In Hanoi, we got to ride on motorbikes! In Bangkok, we jumped on a Tuk Tuk!
2. You’ll have your favorite foods identified- I once met a traveler who told me that they didn’t like the food in Istanbul. You have to be crazy! My eyes almost popped out of my head. Istanbul is food heaven. Because I did a food tour, I sampled items I never would have found on my own and I was able to recognize and reorder the foods I enjoyed most. It can be overwhelming where there are infinite options and in those cases people tend to go with the “safe” foods thereby missing out on some yummy opportunities. Remember, the guides will take you to some of the best places, it is in their best interest to do so.
3. You meet new people, and make new friends- If you join a group food tour, as I did my first time, you meet other travellers and it can be alot of fun. The best tours have a small group which allows for mingling but intimacy at the same time. On the other hand, doing private food tours is great too. Jose and I have found that our guides are fun and friendly. They continue the communication past the tour! In Hanoi, Mr. Ha met up with us on following days to have coffee and even to bring me a present! 🙂 It was so sweet and we felt so fortunate to meet such a genuine person! If you are in Hanoi, do not miss out on the motorbike food tour! It is great fun. In Bangkok, Chin was kind and open about everything. She shared stories and jokes and it was obvious the vendors were fond of her. We were comfortable and enjoyed the tour. She took some extra time and walked us to get a massage! Again, don’t hesitate to book a tour with Chin if you are in Bangkok.
4. Its fun- We not only had fun because we liked eating but we met many food vendors who were welcoming and friendly. Most strike up a conversation and it turns into a pleasant time.
5. You learn more about the city and the culture- A good tour will ensure they tie the culture with the flow of the food and places you visit. I learn the most about the city and culture that way. Additionally, the guides we have had are open and honest and let us ask pretty much anything we want.
So consider the food tour when traveling. If you like food, you wont be disappointed. If you are a picky eater, then this may not be the thing for you.
Here are the ones we did and highly recommend:
Remember a couple of things: Drink the delicious fruit drinks and beware of the spicy peppers!! 🙂