A food tourist is a lover of food (foodie
) who travels. The tourism experience is never complete without eating the local cuisine of any destination visited. But a food tourist isn’t looking for a specific cuisine but rather any great food experience. When people travel intending to try out different foods from different cultures/chefs, that’s Food Tourism
Ways to go about a food tour:
Food fairs are becoming trendy in Nigeria. Last year, GTBank organised a Food and Drink Fair in Lagos State
where lots of culinary gurus and foodies gathered to showcase and sample great tasting meals. This year, the fair comes up in Lagos on April 29th, 30th and May 1st
and people will definitely travel to be a part.
You can travel to a city known for having lots of restaurants offering amazing dishes. Some cities are best known for the quality of food served in a few of their restaurants. Whether it is a Fast Food or Gourmet restaurant, whenever anyone has time to visit that city, that is where people recommend they go to. A classic example is a stopover for a meal or two at Southern Fried Chicken or at the Army Base’s restaurant when in Jos, Plateau state.
You can stay in a hotel that offers a range of buffet cuisine from local to continental. Every day of your stay there can be a food tour. If not, there are hotels that fix their buffet around lunchtime on Sundays to enable people enjoy their meal rather than rushing to beat the clock in the morning. So you can drop by, pay for the service and eat the variety of meals offered within the allotted time for the buffet.
Most cities in Nigeria have specific street foods that tourists would love to taste before leaving the town. E.g. Southern Nigeria is known for its Edible Worm, Bole and Kpokpo garri
; Northern Nigeria has for Kilishi, Kuli Kuli and Kunu
; Eastern Nigeria enjoys Abacha, Okpa and Azuma;
and Western Nigeria is popular for Ofada Rice, Dodo Ikire and Dundun
. Specific cities also to have unique delicacies like Massa
in Bauchi State or Kokoro
in Ogun State.
Wine and Beverage tasting
Just because it is food tourism, doesn’t mean drinking is excluded. Apart from trying palm wine or local gin, you could go to a popular bar for some mixology – cocktails, mocktails, Chapman, etc. Some states have more smoothie and slushy shops than others. So stop by a cafe or anywhere you can get something you’ve never tasted before and have a drink.
Markets and Food Manufacturing companies
Ever wondered why people include a visit to local markets in their tour package? It’s not only to buy a souvenir but also to give food lovers an opportunity to buy food items that can’t be sourced or gotten at a particular bargain elsewhere. You can also take a food tour round bakeries or chocolate/candy factories to sample a wide range of treats. There are people who offer cooking classes for amateurs. You could take a class during your trip or travel to attend a Culinary Master Class by professionals and learn how to make a new meal.
June 10th 2017 was officially the first National Food Tour Day
, set aside for celebrating food tourism around the world. Isn’t it time you go on a culinary adventure? What are you waiting for?
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This article was first published on 24th April 2018