Find out if we’ve got your favourite pastime covered in our dedicated special interest holidays travel guide or just search for a few more ideas to help you have a really worthwhile week away rather than just a boring break at the beach. This page is all about what special interest holidays entail and how you can choose between small group and tailor made options to ensure you get the most out of your holiday.
Things to do on a food holiday
Taking to the streets
Street food epitomises food holiday ideals of sensing a country's soul - authentic, of-the-moment, plus giving cash straight to vendors. India's chaat (street snacks) include spicy potato treats like vada pav in Mumbai or sabzi in Delhi. In Vietnam, pho noodle soups vie with French-influenced banh mi – rice flour baguettes filled with coriander, pickled carrot, pork or chicken. China adores xiao long bao – hot minced pork dumplings with broth – while Thais plump for rad naa (noodles with meat and gravy), nutty satays or spicy tom yum soup.
Mexican tostadas are fried tortilla with guacamole, salsa or raw fish ceviche – also beloved in Peru, marinated in lime juice, salt and chilli. Argentina's BBQ treats include choripan sausage, while Brazil's African roots shine in acaraje (fried black-eye beans with salted dried shrimp). Turkey offers kokorec (spicy lamb sandwich), balik ekmek (fresh cooked fish in a bun) or midye dolma –mussels with rice, pine nuts and raisins. In Sicily, the bold try pani ca meusa (fried pork spleen bun), the less bold arancini (stuffed rice balls).
Our Cooking & food Holidays
Really get into the spirit of your destination with a touch of it's hard stuff
Spirits of place
Sharing national hooch is great for bonding with locals. Knock back artisan grappas like Poli and Capovilla in Italy, or marvel at Norway's 50+ food-friendly aquavits. Discover marvellous mezcals and fine sippin' anejo/reposado tequila in Mexico, or brave China's potent baiju! Or shout 'Kampai' ('Cheers') as you savour classy Japanese whiskies like Yamazaki – before or after delicious sake or shochu.
Stay at home (but not yours)Even better than eating with locals to learn a nation's foodie passions is staying with them. Sizzle up an 11-dish feast with a passionate Thai host or enjoy traditional cooking in an atmospheric Khmer stilted house. Pitch in with the prep during a Mekong Delta homestay in Vietnam, or pick your own exotic ingredients in India before you get into some cooking at an organic Kerala farmstead. In Europe, delve into Italian regional dishes during cooking classes at an Umbrian organic farm after picking its plentiful seasonal ingredients. Or see another side of Provence while staying with a pair of relaxed French gourmands in a beautiful medieval village set just back from the chic Cote d'Azur.
If you'd like to chat about Cooking & food or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help.
Let a friendly local cook show you the ropes
After tasting dishes you love during a trip, nothing beats learning first-hand from a local cook how to prepare them yourself to keep the memory alive back home – and impress your friends! Many cooking and food holidays offer a chance to rustle up meals with your hosts on homestays or enjoy lessons in restaurants or atmospheric markets. Forget Master Chef – this is a stress-free pleasure!
More about Cooking & food
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