One of the best parts of traveling is getting familiar with and eating or tasting a bunch of different local foods. There are a bunch of different food and drink festivals all over the world that host multiple-day events focusing on local cuisine or a certain food scene. Some of the festivals are worth buying a plane ticket and traveling to, but some of the most popular food and drink festivals are actually in the United States.
Even though they’re domestic, a flight could help you get there instead of spending hours on hours in a car on the way. That being said, these are some of the best food and drink festivals around the world.
You should absolutely plan to visit at least one of these or add it to your bucket list.
Location: Miami, FL
SOBEWFF is one of the most popular food and wine festivals in the United States. Although it’s already passed this year (it’s usually hosted in mid-February), the event is one of the foodies’ favorites. Next year, SOBEWFF will be hosted on February 24-28 in light of its 20th anniversary.
This food festival showcases talent from the Food Network itself, including chefs like Ted Allen, Valerie Bertinelli, and Guy Fieri.
Location: Aspen, CO
Have you ever read the publication Food and Wine? If you have, then you might be familiar with the premier culinary event they host in the mountains of Colorado every June. The sponsors, and the “talent”, of this event, are worth booking tickets alone -- not to mention the scenery and location.
Martha Stewart is known for being just one of the talents who are at this festival.
Location: Naples, Italy
Can you imagine trying 100,000 different types of pizza? If you attend PizzaFest, you’ll have the opportunity to try them!
One a year, Naples becomes the most popular Italian destination. PizzaFest is run for a whole week, essentially turning Napoli’s Lungomare Caracciolo into a pizza village. In terms of attractions at the festival, there are a bunch of different events to spectate but there are also championships to compete in, such as the World Pizza-Making Championships.
Location: Paris, France
The City of Love is often on traveler’s bucket lists, but likely for other reasons than the Salon du Chocolat. Oftentimes, people visit Paris to see the Eiffel Tower, taste upscale wine, and eat French cuisine. While the wine in France is worth the price, it is one of the most expensive cities to drink around the world. Fortunately, the Salon du Chocolat takes the cake in terms of the spotlight when it’s hosted in Paris in the fall.
As the world’s largest festival dedicated to chocolate, this event is a premier culinary event that hosts 500 participants, 200 of which are actually chefs. Salon du Chocolat even hosts a fashion show where dresses were made out of chocolate itself. Clearly, this event is for those who love chocolate and who might want to visit France while they’re at it.
Location: Rockland, Maine
If you aren’t a seafood fan, you might not be aware of how amazing it is as a cuisine out of New England. There are few places more “New England” than Harbor Park, Maine -- which is to say that Maine’s Annual Lobster Festival is a can’t miss.
For those who aren’t from New England, Lobster Fests are very common. Imagine a carnival dedicated to food and you have an idea of what a Lobster Festival might include. This year is the Maine Lobster Fest’s 73rd anniversary and the schedule of events is brimming with top-notch chefs. The entertainment is also a big part of this festival, including cooking contests and a massive parade.
Location: Tokyo, Japan
Ramen is one of the most popular foods in not only Japan but among Americans too. The USA has a bunch of different ramen-style restaurants, and they’re only becoming more popular. For 11 days every fall in about October or November, over a dozen vendors bring their best version or styles of ramen with them.
There are so many reasons to travel. Food is just one of them. All of these locations are worth visiting or adding to your travel bucket list.