Experience the Flavors an …

Culinary Tours of Europe

Culinary tours are an excellent way to experience a region’s cuisine and culture. The best culinary vacations offer more than just samples; they also teach travelers new cooking techniques and recipes they can take home with them.

Roll up your sleeves on a hands-on cooking class or discover the secrets behind some of Europe’s most beloved cuisines during a culinary tour of Spain, Portugal, Italy and France.

1. Cooking Classes

Culinary tours that provide hands-on cooking classes are a big deal for foodies. Roll up your sleeves to learn new recipes and techniques that will allow you to recreate the flavors of your European adventure at home.

Experience the local foods that define a region on a culinary tour, such as artisan cheese and olive oil tastings, visits to markets, and traditional dinners with families in the countryside. You may also be able to join a food walk or stroll through historic neighborhoods.

For example, American expat Annie Ojile offers a Rome food tour that lets you try local treats with a Vespa. You can sample the artisan-style bread at Panella, taste gelato along the Aventine Hill, and stop for workers’ fare in a traditional cafe.

Culinary Quests’ Spain tours include a visit to Granada’s renowned indoor and outdoor markets, where you can try a smorgasbord of local specialties including smoked meats, hams and cheeses, seasonal fruits and vegetables, and even Bosnian coffee.

2. Wine Tasting

Roll up your sleeves in a hands-on cooking class or learn how to pair food and wine during a tasting tour. From the aperitif Select in Venice to sour beer in Eger, these tours offer a unique taste of each region’s culture and cuisine.

Wine tasting offers a marriage of modern processing and centuries-old methodology at vineyards across Europe. Discover the best wines of Italy, France and Spain on trips that take you to picturesque wine country.

Whether it’s a savory cured meat in Tuscany or a sweet pastry in Paris, Europe’s cuisine is as diverse as its landscapes. A culinary trip allows you to sample the finest dishes of a specific region, while also learning about their history. From tapas to grilled sausage in Switzerland, or cured meats and smoked cheeses in Croatia, these gourmet tours entertain your palate and feed your curiosity. The perfect blend of adventure and relaxation! Enjoy glamorous dining in Michelin starred restaurants one day and casual local fare the next.

3. Market Tours

If you are a foodie, a culinary tour is one of the best ways to experience local cuisine. Culinary tours expose travelers to exotic ingredients, local vendors, and traditional food practices. They also provide a memorable and meaningful cultural experience.

For example, take a food walking tour in the Jordaan area of Amsterdam. Previous travelers raved about the small group size (no more than 12 people can join an excursion), knowledgeable guides, and large tasting portions. It’s recommended that you save room for every dish by eating a light breakfast before the trip.

Likewise, the “Hip Eats and Backstreets” food tour in Paris isn’t a place for dainty tastings. Over the course of four hours, you’ll sample an equivalent of two meals—from smoked meats and specialty farm cheese to delicious pastries and perfectly roasted coffee. The tour is designed to expose visitors to neighborhoods that mix French traditions with trendy eateries.

4. Champagne Tours

In France, you can tour the famous Champagne houses such as Pommery and taste some of their finest creations. Other wine and food tours focus on the country’s many other delicious treats. International Kitchen, for example, offers cooking vacations in Provence and Burgundy that include cooking lessons and visits to local cheese, olive oil and chocolate producers.

Alternatively, you can explore the famous Parisian neighbourhood of Saint-Germain-des-Pres on a chocolate and pastry walking tour. The neighbourhood is home to some of the city’s best-known patisseries, such as Pierre Herme, Poilane and Jean-Charles Rochoux.

You could also join a wine tasting and cooking class tour with Eating Europe, which offers trips that visit local markets, bakeries and restaurants in off-the-beaten-path neighbourhoods. Other tours with the company include a half-day East End Tour in London, where you can sample English cheeses, fish and chips along Brick Lane and mouthwatering curries. The company has other foodie-friendly itineraries in Florence, Paris and Prague.

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