The culinary tour: a gem in the realm of vacations
By Martin McAllister
If you're an avid traveller, you're likely to have taken all the 'usual' vacations - from beach breaks and mountain retreats to spa getaways. And if you don't get the opportunity to travel much, you'll undoubtedly want your trips to be extraordinary and well-worth your time. The reality is that while there are countless types of fulfilling recreational pursuits out there, travellers are always looking for new and interesting ways to spend their vacations. After all, everyone wants to come away with a holiday experience that's not only unique, but unforgettable.
A gem in the realm of vacations has long been the culinary tour. Yet this type of getaway has kept a perpetual sense of novelty, quite simply because there are so many ways to relish it. When you go to a beach, you can expect sun, sand and waves; but when you take a tour reflecting all the cultural and culinary influences upon the cuisine of a region, you might come away with much more than you bargained for. Simply put, if you love travelling, enjoy trying new things and can't get your fill of good food, a culinary tour is the perfect type of vacation for you.
No matter where you go these days, there's something delicious to eat. But there are certainly parts of the US which boast a rich culinary history. One of these is undoubtedly New Orleans, Louisiana. Sure, New Orleans is famous for its Mardi Gras celebration and Jazz Fest; but the city, known as "The Big Easy," is also world-renowned for its culinary customs. New Orleans is noted for its mix of cultures, each of which has held on to its past traditions in some way - and food, like music, just happens to be one of the most prominent of these traditions.
Tour the city's most famous kitchens and dining rooms - particularly in the French quarter and along Bourbon Street - and learn about the many ethnic influences that have helped shape its history and unique cuisine. Pick up on the culinary contributions of historic restaurants in the area, dating from 1840 to present, and learn the distinctions between Creole and Cajun foods! No matter how you go about it, you can't go wrong with a culinary tour in New Orleans.
Alternatively, why not combine a culinary tour with a wine-tasting excursion? Napa Valley, California is undoubtedly the ideal destination if this idea strikes your fancy. Napa Valley is the American capital of food and wine, and a region which attracts countless visitors from around the world each year. By touring a winery, you can come to appreciate the various processes involved in producing an exquisite wine - from harvesting and fermentation to ageing. And aside from all the fantastic culinary treasures and premium wines, you can expect stunning, picturesque scenery. Whether you're a novice or an accomplished wine connoisseur, a wine and culinary tour in Napa Valley is guaranteed to delight you. Moreover, Napa Valley is just 30 miles north of San Francisco, so you could easily make your way down to try the culinary treats of the "Golden Gate City" - which includes those in America's largest Chinatown.
If you're considering a culinary tour, rest assured that you'll find a number of fantastic options for accommodation - regardless of whether you're off to the east coast, west coast or deep south. A culinary tour is truly one of the best ways to become acquainted with a city's culture and unique character - so why not book a culinary tour today and prepare to have your taste buds dazzled!
About the Author
You'll find a number of options for accommodation should you consider undertaking a culinary tour for your next vacation.
Martin McAllister is an online, freelance journalist. He lives in Scotland.
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