Top Destinations to Complete Your Foodie Bucket List
We invite you on a culinary adventure to satisfy even the fussiest of eaters! From the freshest sushi in Tokyo, to the legendary steak of Buenos Aires, souvlaki in Athens and tasty Spanish tapas to the mouth-watering fusion of cuisines and cultures in Malaysia, there really is something for everyone.
Take a gastronomic journey around the world and visit the top 10 destinations endorsed for food by Booking.com’s global travellers[i], enjoy great stays and be sure to stop by the top foodie neighbourhood in each destination. Be inspired with a round-up of the best local foods on offer – the perfect way to complete your foodie bucket list!
1. Hong Kong
Taking the top spot is Hong Kong, famous for its vibrant urban centre, skyscraper-studded skyline and of course the variety of foods on offer. Travellers will be in awe of the variety of dishes available, we recommend having a taste of dim sum, kau kee beef brisket, wonton noodles and poon choi (Chinese casserole). During your travels make sure you fully explore Hong Kong Island as Booking.com travellers endorsed this as the top neighbourhood in Hong Kong for food. The top nationalities that travelled to Hong Kong in 2016 were Korean, British and Taiwanese.
Where to stay: Sitting atop the prestigious Pacific Place Complex is the stunning JW Marriott Hotel Hong Kong, which boasts direct access to the Pacific Place Shopping Mall, an outdoor pool and spacious rooms with mountainous views, Hong Kong City views or overlooking the Victoria Harbour. Dine at the award-winning Man Ho Restaurant which serves authentic Cantonese cuisine, or the Flint Grill & Bar, JW Café, Dolce 88 or the Fish Bar which serves the fresh catch of the day.
2. Sao Paulo, Brazil
The city of Sao Paulo is a world-renowned foodie haven, from smart bistros to gourmet restaurants, there is something for everyone. Sample the nation’s signature dish, the Brazilian feijoada (black bean and meat stew) and take a trip through Itaim Bibi, which was voted as the top foodie neighbourhood in Sao Paulo by Booking.com travellers. The top nationalities that travelled to Sao Paulo in 2016 were Argentinian, American and Chilean.
Where to stay: Hotel Unique boasts contemporary cuisine at the Skye Restaurant and bar, which is considered to be one of the best restaurants in Sao Paulo, not only with incredible food but outstanding views of the vibrant city.
3. Tokyo, Japan
The fusion of ultramodern meets traditional is widely regarded as Tokyo’s focal point; take in the neon-lit skyscrapers to historic temples and sample the nation’s diverse offering of foods. Its top restaurants have accrued more Michelin stars than both Paris and New York combined and its signature cuisine of sushi continues to take the world by storm. Be sure to visit Chiyoda Ward, which was endorsed by Booking.com travellers as the top foodie neighbourhood in Tokyo. The top nationalities that travelled to Tokyo in 2016 were Chinese, Taiwanese and American.
Where to stay: With nine restaurants to choose from the Mandarin Oriental Tokyo is a culinary delight. The jewel in their crown is the Michelin starred Tapas Molecular Bar. An intimate dining experience with only eight seats, this exclusive experience celebrates the art of innovative molecular cuisine with bite sized dishes in the traditional sushi bar, right before your eyes.
4. Athens, Greece
Discover Greece’s culinary revolution of Athens’ street food and stop by Plaka, which was voted the top foodie neighbourhood in Athens by Booking.com travellers. Be sure to sample the capital’s signature dishes, Souvlaki (grilled meat and vegetable skewers) and Koulouri (tasty sesame bread rings). The top nationalities that travelled to Athens in 2016 were French, British and Italian.
Where to stay: Housed in a neoclassical building is the beautiful Alice Inn; centrally located in the heart of Plaka, guests can take a short stroll to the Syntagma Square where they can find an array of restaurants, bars and cafes. Wake up to daily fresh breakfasts, or prepare your own meal in the common kitchen, while basking in the sunshine on the ground-floor terrace.
5. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Kuala Lumpur is best known for its modern skylines, glass and steel-clad skyscrapers, sandy white beaches, lush rainforests and colourful food-stall-lined streets. Travellers will love the fusion of contemporary meets traditional and the beautiful mixture of Malay, Chinese, Indian and European cultures and cuisines. Booking.com travellers have endorsed Mid Valley as the top foodie neighbourhood in Kuala Lumpur. The top nationalities that travelled to Kuala Lumpur in 2016 were Singaporean, Saudi Arabian and Chinese.
Where to stay: Experience world-class service at The Gardens – A St Giles Signature Hotel & Residences, Kuala Lumpur, located in Mid Valley and boasting elegant accommodation, infinity pool, fitness centre and stunning city views. Guests will be spoilt for choice from the hearty buffet breakfast served at The Spread, or opt for fine-dining at Sage featuring an open kitchen, or try a refreshing cocktail (or two) at the lobby and pool bars.
6. Melbourne, Australia
Known for its gorgeous beaches, sun-kissed city centre and vibrant bars and restaurants along the Yarra River, Melbourne is the place to be. Embrace the true Aussie lifestyle and tuck into delicious barbeque dishes with friends and family while watching the timeless sunsets pass by. Take a trip to South Yarra which was endorsed as the top foodie neighbourhood in Melbourne by Booking.com travellers. The top nationalities that travelled to Melbourne in 2016 were Chinese, Kiwi and British.
Where to stay: The boutique hotel of Art Series - The Olsen is located in the heart of South Yarra on Chapel Street, which is just a few minutes’ walk from an array of dining venues, entertainment hotspots and shopping centres. Take a dip in the hotel’s unique glass bottom swimming pool, relax in the day spa and then round off your evening with a delicious dinner at the contemporary onsite restaurant and bar.
7. Bangkok, Thailand
Go on an adventure and sample the exotic street food stalls of Bangkok. Take a culinary exploration and try the capitals signature dishes of chicken satay, sukiyaki (sliced beef soup), khao gang (curried rice) or gai yang (grilled chicken). Along your travels make sure to take a trip to Siam, which was voted as the top foodie neighbourhood in Bangkok by Booking.com travellers. The top nationalities that travelled to Bangkok in 2016 were Chinese, British and German.
Where to stay: Travel like a local and stay at the cosy Villa Mungkala guest house in SIam, offering beautiful views from the terrace, free bicycle hire to explore the surrounding areas and private bathrooms. Ideally located, guests can take a short walk to the Temple of the Golden Mount and Khao San Road, where an array of nightlife hotspots, bars, music and dining venues can be found. Be sure to check out Max’s Magical Thai Food, Susie Wong’s Beer and Buns and Brick Bar.
8. Granada, Spain
For any foodie fan, a trip to Granada is a must. Sample the city’s staple dishes of piononos (small sweet pastries glazed with syrup and filled with cream) or try the olla de san antón (a typical stew containing beans, rice and sausage) or jamón de trevelez (ham that is cured naturally). During your stay make sure you pass through Centro which was voted as the top foodie neighbourhood in Granada by Booking.com travellers. The top nationalities that travelled to Granada in 2016 were French, Italian and British.
Where to stay: Located just outside Alhambra’s ancient walls is the exquisite Alhambra Palace; in the neighbourhood of Centro offering spectacular views over the city of Granada. Relax in stylish rooms with Moorish-inspired décor and dine at the a la carte restaurant serving the very best of Andalusian food.
9. Las Vegas, United States
Arguably one of the most famous, if not the most famous party hotspot in the world, Las Vegas has a lot more to offer than vibrant nightclubs and 24 hour casinos. The boulevard is home to the widest choice of restaurants and cuisines, from swanky rooftop bars, to lavish restaurants, to intimate and budget diners; Sin City has it all. Booking.com travellers endorsed West of the Las Vegas Strip as the top foodie neighbourhood in Las Vegas. The top nationalities that travelled to Las Vegas in 2016 were British, Chinese and German.
Where to stay: Stay in the West of the Las Vegas Strip at the South Pacific themed Tahiti All-Suite Resort, boasting an outdoor swimming pool with a sand bottom. The poolside features barbecue grills so you can sit back and enjoy something delicious off the grill surrounded by tropical gardens.
10. Buenos Aires, Argentina
A trip to Argentina is the perfect opportunity to indulge your senses, from the sight of the stunning mountainous views to the taste of the mouth-watering foods. Treat yourself to the country’s legendary steak and the dulce de leche sweet treats. During your travels, pass through Palermo which was voted as the top foodie neighbourhood in Argentina by Booking.com travellers. The top nationalities that travelled to Buenos Aires in 2016 were Brazilian, Chinese and Korean.
Where to stay: The stylish Soho Point apartments are located in the trendy neighbourhood of Palermo, with the Serrano Square just a short walk away. Offering a range of fashionable dining venues, open-aired cafes and bars.
To complete your foodie bucket list adventure, why not take a trip to the below fifteen destinations that were also endorsed by Booking.com travellers for delicious food. Be inspired by local insights, tastes and some of the top local, signature dishes to sample during your travels.
[i] To find the top 10 cities, we looked at destinations that had the most endorsements for 'food' by global Booking.com travellers between 1 January 2016 - 31 December 2016, which needed to have over 300 endorsements or more for 'food' to be considered