Seven Must-Visit Food Halls to Inspire a Gastronomic Getaway
Foodies, indulge your love of amazing flavors and set off on a culinary adventure full of world delights and expertise by immersing yourself in local tastes in the best possible way: food halls. Offering a variety of styles from local favorites to international cuisine, try it all in a relaxed setting with both fellow travelers and locals alike. With everything under one roof there’s something for everyone, from vegans to meat eaters and everyone in between. Food halls cater to all appetites from sweet or savory, to spicy or mild.
With 51% of global travelers* wanting to try the best places for food and drink on their next vacation, we are sharing seven must-visit food halls around the world to provide some foodie vacation inspiration.
With a nickname of “the magic city” travelers heading to Birmingham, Alabama will be enchanted with the array of delicious food and dining options available. The Pizitz Food Hall, located in downtown Birmingham, is a revamped industrial building which reopened as a food hall in early 2017. Gourmands will be spoiled for choice with 12 restaurants under one roof, from Indian street food, to Mexican favorites, Southern soul food to Asian cuisine and handcrafted candy for the sweet tooths and many more. Wash down all the delicious food by embarking on the Birmingham Brew Tour where travelers 21 and older can sample 16 local styles of beer and learn about the industry’s history in the area.
Where to stay: Ideally situated for food connoisseurs, the boutique Aloft Birmingham Soho Square is located just a short drive from the Pizitz Food Hall, and other notable sites including the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute and the Botanical Gardens. Boasting three onsite restaurants, travelers can continue the foodie themed trip by enjoying American fare and seafood at one of the restaurants and listening to live music at the bar.
Siam Center Food Court, also known as Food Republic, is located in downtown Bangkok and offers cuisine from around the world all under one roof. Split into two sections, diners can feast on Asian and Western favorites, or traditional Thai dishes. Before visiting the food hall, tourists should know that the Siam Center Food Court is cashless, and diners must queue at the cashier desks to exchange cash for credit. Learn about Thai culture and immerse yourself in more culinary delights with a Private Half-day Bangkok Tour where you’ll taste authentic and traditional dishes including Bubble Tea, Pad Thai and mango with sticky rice before enjoying a cocktail at a rooftop bar offering panoramic views of Bangkok.
Where to stay: Stay at the Hua Chang Heritage Hotel, which offers a luxurious contemporary feel, with traditional Thai touches in the heart of the city. The hotel is favorably situated a short walk away from the famous Siam Paragon Market. For guests who can’t get enough amazing Thai cuisine, the onsite restaurant offers guests a modern take on traditional dishes that will blow your mind. Guests can cool down and relax after a day of taste testing around Bangkok at the pool bar.
London is a global hub of culture, architecture, fashion, music and cuisine, and is embracing the food hall movement. Located in the Victoria neighborhood of central London, Market Hall Victoria offers diners nine kitchens, two bars and a roof terrace. From spicy Mexican tacos to juicy kebabs, British burgers and Dim Sum, foodies can enjoy a wide range of affordable dishes. When you’ve sampled all those delights, hop on the London Underground and move onto the renowned Borough Market or join a Brick Lane Private Food Tour where your tastebuds can appreciate everything from curry to cake.
Where to stay: Located on the doorsteps of Market Halls Victoria and near the theater district, Kula London- Victoria Apartments is the perfect base to explore the city’s many cultural attractions and food halls. Stylishly decorated throughout, the apartments offer a welcoming home away from home feel. There’s also a well equipped kitchen if you’re feeling inspired to recreate the delights of the food markets.
Often referred to as the underground food court, Shilin Night Market in Taipei is a subterranean paradise for food lovers offering unique and favored Taiwanese dishes alike. A quintessential part of Taiwanese culture, this one-stop destination is the largest night market in Taipei. For adventurous gourmands looking to enrich their palates, must-try local delicacies include the stinky tofu, Taiwanese fried chicken, oyster omelet and fried ice cream. Other night markets worth visiting include the Ningxia Night Market and the Yansan Night Market.
Where to stay: The Tango Hotel Taipei Jiantan is located just a short walk from the Shilin Night Market and the Jiantan MRT Station. Perfectly located in Downtown Taipei, the hotel offers travelers the best of both worlds with an arty and urban design, yet beautiful panoramic views of the mountains. Relax by the pool or enjoy a break from sightseeing with a meal or drink at the onsite dining room and bar.
Rome is a delight for foodies and is renowned for its delicious and hearty Italian cuisine. In addition to the Michelin-star restaurants and family-run pizzerias, Rome is embracing the food hall culture. Mercato Centrale Roma, is a foodies paradise open 365 days a year offering a wide selection of indoor dining options in an energetic and casual setting. With an artisan focus at the heart of the hall, spend time browsing the many crafted products that the vendors have to offer, from hamburgers and pizza to pasta and gelato. Beyond the foodhall, explore Rome’s food scene on a Guided Food-themed Walking Tour with Tastings where you’ll enjoy 25 food and wine tastings and the renowned Trionfale Food Market along the way.
Where to stay: Located in a prime location next to Rome termini station, and also on the doorstep of the Mercato Centrale Roma food hall, is the fashionable MODO Rooms & Suite Rome, perfect for all travelers looking to experience some incredible Italian cuisine and sightseeing. With city views, the stay is located in the Esquilino area, home to a selection of bars and restaurants and is a short walk to the famous Colosseum.
With a nickname of “tenka no daidokoro” (the nation’s kitchen), Osaka does not disappoint when it comes to mouth-watering food halls. Umeda Food Hall, located in the Hanshin Department Store, consists of 30 restaurants where visitors can sample a range of food cuisines, from Japanese to Korean to Italian. Another must visit food hall is EST which opened in 2020. A share zone space in the middle of the food hall offers the perfect chance to share food with family and friends. There is plenty to awaken your taste buds, including tasty gyoza dumplings and sipping champagne in a fun and vibrant setting. To explore further, delve into the local sweet delicacies on the Okonomiyaki Pancake Tour of the city.
Where to stay: Nearby the Umeda Station and the Grand Front Osaka, which offer an array of shopping and food options in one place, Hotel Hankyu Respire Osaka is excellently positioned. After a busy day of sampling the local cuisine and sight-seeing, guests can unwind in the property’s Japanese Garden. To enjoy even more tasty food, head to the Italian restaurant which overlooks the beautiful garden and features an open kitchen and a fine choice of wines for an evening of indulgence.
Avant-garde adventurers will love the Food Garden in Tijuana, Mexico. Forget any preconceived ideas of food halls and shopping center food courts, the Food Garden expands 11,000 square feet and is a hub of culinary artisans, gastronomic ecosystems and social development spaces. Local and homegrown food stalls and social initiatives are at the heart of this food hall, and offers a blend of street food and high end cuisine. Delights to try include fish tacos or local chilaquiles.
Where to stay: Set in the Baja California region, Rio Suites Hotel & Apartments offers a cozy stay in a convenient location, a short walk from the Food Garden. After visiting the Food Hall, and if travelers still have room to taste more local delicacies, authentic Mexican dishes can be enjoyed at the onsite restaurant.
*Research commissioned by Booking.com and conducted among a sample of adults who plan to travel for business or leisure in the next 12-24 months. In total 24,055 respondents across 31 countries and territories were polled (including 501 from Argentina,1003 from Australia, 500 from Belgium, 1001 from Brazil, 500 from Canada, 1000 from China, 1007 from Colombia, 1001 from Croatia, 508 from Denmark, 1002 from France, 1000 from Germany, 1005 from Hong Kong, 1000 from India, 502 from Israel, 1003 from Italy, 1002 from Japan, 500 from Mexico, 501 from The Netherlands, 501 from New Zealand, 500 from Peru, 1000 from Russia, 1005 from Singapore, 1002 from South Korea, 1002 from Spain, 501 from Sweden, 501 from Switzerland, 504 from Taiwan, 500 from Thailand, 1000 from the UK, 1002 from the US and 501 from Vietnam). Respondents completed an online survey in August 2021.