Culinary Travel: A Buffet of Options

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When clients come to you requesting cooking or food experiences on their trips, listen carefully as to what they may really want. While you can arrange for them to do multi-day cooking programs or trips that are completely food- and wine-focused, sometimes a little taste is just the right amount. It doesn’t have to be a huge time commitment and your client doesn’t have to be a foodie. Many culinary experiences are wonderful travel adventures in themselves, opening a window into the local cultures.

Here is a sampling of the types of experiences you might offer your clients. These often become the highlights of their trips.

• Truffle Hunting in Croatia: Clients head into the Motovun forest in Istria with a guide and truffle-hunting dogs from Karlic, a family-run company. The 2-hour expeditions include an introduction to the history of the truffle and conclude with a tasting.

Vietnam Street Food by Vespa: With these off-the-charts fun tours, your clients experience the nightlife of Ho Chi Minh City the way locals do, all from the back of a vintage Vespa scooter. A typical Vespa Adventures tour includes visiting small eateries, a coffee house and a nightclub for a taste of live Vietnamese music.

Cooking Safaris in South Africa: In the historic Malay Quarter of Cape Town, Andulela is a company that offers guided tours of the Quarter (also known as Bo-Kaap) followed by cooking demos and workshops. Clients can try their hands at mixing masala and folding samosas. They also learn how to balance the delicate flavors of Cape Malay curry.

All About Seafood in San Francisco: On Sea Forager’s Fishing and Foraging Tours, clients learn how to catch rock crabs, how to throw a Hawaiian casting net and how to find edible seaweed. All that and a boat load of great information on sustainability and the history of fisheries in California.

Susan Farewell is the owner of Farewell Travels LLC (, a travel  design firm based in Westport, CT. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @FarewellTravels.