Years ago, a friend and I booked a cheap package holiday to Rhodes from London. We stayed in pretty little apartments in beautiful Lindos. Our neighbours were two 18 year old girls from Essex who hired lilos, smeared themselves in carrot oil (!) and got third degree sunburn from floating in the bay all day. They spent the rest of their week indoors, coated in Greek yoghurt (apparently it’s an excellent sunburn treatment).
That’s one thing I remember about them. The other is that they had brought enough Pot Noodles and spam (I kid you not) so that they “wouldn’t have to eat Greek food” for their entire holiday. My friend and I were gobsmacked. Why on earth would you go to Greece and NOT eat the food? We were devouring pistachio and honey-topped yoghurt for breakfast, olives and feta with every other meal, tangy little dolmades, honey-soaked baklava… oh my, thinking about it even now has me salivating.
Local food is one of the things I am most interested in when I’m travelling. My journal from my round the world trip mentions what I ate every single day! It’s funny how I can remember many of those meals so clearly.
(More images from a recent lunch at the Tibetan Teahouse are over on my photography website.)
The only country I’ve been to where the food was truly awful was Russia – but to be fair, it was 1997 and I was travelling on a very small budget. Apparently their caviar is pretty good if you can afford it… Egypt was a little disappointing too as a vegetarian until I discovered out-of-this-world falafel at a local takeaway spot in Cairo, and koshary, which is carb-laden deliciousness.
Foodie highlights for me have been the wide range of veggie options and the delicious sweets in India; real Turkish delight and (more) baklava in Istanbul; mezze platters everywhere in Turkey and Greece; crepes from food carts in Pape’ete; muffins in New Zealand (seriously, what do the Kiwis put in them?); deep fried sushi in my favourite restaurant in Dubai; the iced tea at the Taj hotel in Mumbai; a seven course degustation meal in a chateau in the Champagne region… oh my, I could go on for hours.
You won’t find a Pot Noodle anywhere near my luggage!