Womans hand serving tagliatelle with ragu sauce at table

A food lover's guide to eating your way through world-class European cities, including Rome, Dublin and Zurich. (Getty Images)

A trip to Europe can feel a lot like traveling back in time. Cobblestone streets, ancient ruins and historical landmarks enchant us, while some of the world's most beautiful scenery leaves us in awe. But Europe isn't just for sightseeing. Europe is also a destination for epicureans who want to enjoy and explore our culinary history, too. Depending on where you travel in Europe, you can enjoy any number of distinctive dishes that have been prepared using ancient cooking techniques and enjoy surprising twists on conventional crowd pleasers.

[Read: 6 Food Tours Worth Traveling For.]

Heading to Europe for a foodie getaway? Check out these eight food-focused experiences and tours to discover delectable bites and thriving culinary cultures.

An Authentic Tuscan Food and Wine Experience
Where: Florence, Italy

Specialty tour operator Walks of Italy offers a unique food and wine experience for visiting epicureans. The tour starts with a casual stroll past the beautiful Ponte Vecchio. Once you reach the Oltrarno neighborhood, you'll start your journey with cheese, meat and famous Florentine bread perfect to douse in oil and vinegar. Next up is an aperitivo hour, where you can expect a leisurely a wine tasting featuring the area's famous varieties. Once happy hour is over, you'll visit a famous Florentine restaurant to dine on traditional Tuscan starters and the region's tastiest steak. Finish the meal with a scoop of gelato before returning home.

The Guinness Connoisseur Tasting Experience
Where: Dublin

No trip to Dublin would be complete without a visit to the Guinness Storehouse, which has played a huge part in the city's growth since its grand opening in 2000. The Storehouse sits on the site of the St. Jame's Gate Brewery, which has been crafting delicious Guinness beers since 1759. The Storehouse Connoisseur Tasting Experience takes you through Guinness history with a combination of delicious beers. Learn about Guinness and Ireland's rich history, while tasting the country's historic drink of choice. Pair your beer with Irish bites like Guinness beef stew. And don't forget to try some famous Guinness bread.

A Trastevere Walking Food Tour
Where: Rome

Reputable tour operator City Wonders offers this foodie jaunt in one of Rome's most historic and beautiful neighborhoods, Trastevere. There, you'll discover quaint medieval streets and many hidden corners of the eternal city. With an expert guide, you'll explore churches, charming piazzas and flower-covered buildings before heading to your final stop, a private 17th-century villa. Your meal will include four gourmet Italian cuisine courses paired with some of the region's remarkable wines.

[See: 15 Best Foodies Destinations in the USA.]

A Tapas Evening Tour
Where: Barcelona, Spain

Spain is known for its high-quality produce and late-night dinners, many of which include small plates. The "Tapas Evening Walking Tour of Barcelona" tour, available through Viator, will take you through many of Barcelona's famous neighborhoods including Las Ramblas and the Gothic Quarter. While you walk around the famous city, you'll try various small plates paired with local beer, wine or cider and nosh on foods such as cured meats, cheese, breads, and appetizers. Plus, you can learn about traditional Catalan culture and wander through the vibrant Boqueria.

A Foodie Tour of Athens
Where: Athens, Greece

Athens, Greece, is known for its Mediterranean-inspired culinary specialties. On Viator's "Athens For Foodies: More Than a Creek Food Tour," you can explore many of the city's famous neighborhoods while savoring traditional Greek fare and drink pairings at authentic tavernas. Try classic dishes such as saganaki, moussaka and stuffed peppers capped off with honey-covered desserts. Your guide will also share insightful stories about the region's food as you sample diverse local dishes and learn how they're made.

A Cheese and Chocolate Themed Tour
Where: Zurich

While Switzerland is home to some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, it's also famous for its delectable gourmet cheese and chocolate varieties, as well as other delicacies. A daylong "Switzerland Mountains, Cheese and Chocolates Tour from Zurich" trip available through Viator includes stops at local cheese factories and a cable car ride into the Swiss Alps. Try locally made cheeses and desserts from Lindt, the famous Swiss chocolate maker.

An Anthony Bourdain-Inspired Culinary Tour
Where: Zadar, Croatia

Follow the footsteps of Anthony Bourdain, who famously wined and dined at Hotel Boškinac, a historic property located on the island of Pag in Zadar, Croatia, with Viator's "Boskinac Wine Full Day Tour from Zadar." At Hotel Boškinac, the scenery and location are as captivating as the gourmet fare, with olive groves, vineyards and fragrant herbs flanking the property. Your foodie journey will include tastes of aromatic local lamb along with cheeses, olive oils and locally made breads. And the four-course meal includes prawns, vegetables, lamb, cheeses and desserts prepared with traditional Croatian cooking techniques.

[See: 10 Top Hotels in Europe for Food and Wine Lovers.]

A Munich History- and Beer-Themed Walking Tour
Where: Munich

This private, full-day tour available through Viator introduces guests to the richness of Germany's food and history led by a knowledgeable guide. Guests will stroll through historic Munich and learn about its history and landmarks as they try the region's famous foods. Your group will weave into and out of the city's famous beer halls including Hofbrauhaus. As you learn about German history and taste its most noteworthy drink, you'll also have a chance to dive into a traditional Bavarian meal consisting of weisswurst (a traditional Bavarian sausage) and weissbier (a wheat beer).


8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities


Photo Gallery
Lima, Peru
Hong Kong
Bologna, Italy
Melbourne, Australia
Montreal
Richmond, Virginia
Oaxaca, Mexico
Houston
|

These days, gastronomes who have already made the pilgrimage to New York City or Paris for elevated culinary experiences have new foodie ground to explore. Those in-the-know are indulging in dim sum, ceviche and boeuf bourguignon in underappreciated dining destinations that have yet to succumb to foodie hype. Here are eight hot spots you (and your taste buds) shouldn't overlook.  Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Lima, Peru
Stroll through traditional Lima marketplaces and you'll find everything from corn to ceviche. For a sit-down meal, try Malabar, where apple wafers are paired with duck foie gras.
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Hong Kong
For serious foodies looking to splurge, the city boasts seven three-star Michelin-rated restaurants, including Bo Innovation, where umami drizzled with black truffle oil and scallop ceviche are on the menu. 
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Hong Kong
The Best Things to Do in Hong Kong
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Bologna, Italy
Tamburini, one of Bologna's fresh food markets, is a great place to get your bucatini, sausage and mortadella fix.
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Melbourne, Australia
Along with laid-back vibes and adrenaline-pumping activities, Melbourne is a haven for modern, farm-to-table restaurants. Eateries here serve up exciting menu items like minted potatoes, oxtail stew and coconut jelly with poached pineapple.
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Melbourne
The Best Things to Do in Melbourne
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Montreal
It's no secret that Montreal serves up decadent French fare, but what might come as a surprise is the city's varied international spots, such as Kazu, a Japanese restaurant, and L’Express, an authentic French bistro. And if you want to pick up fresh ingredients like basil and artichoke, and sample succulent seafood fare, such as Alaskan king crab and Arctic char, venture to the city's oldest public market, the Jean-Talon Market.
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Montreal
The Best Things to Do in Montreal
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Richmond, Virginia
Richmond is known for its impressive historic sites and art galleries, but also for its tasty culinary creations. To dig into some of city's best treats, such as biscuits with homemade sausage gravy, head to The Roosevelt. If you have a hankering for praiseworthy pasta, take a cue from Bruce Springsteen and head to Mamma 'Zu, which welcomed the rock star for dinner in 2013.  
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Richmond
The Best Things to Do in Richmond
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Oaxaca, Mexico
As you might imagine, Oaxaca dishes up some delectable mole-based plates. During your visit, be sure to stop and sample a popular menu item, chicken smothered with heaps of zesty mole sauce, at a traditional open-air cantina.
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Houston
In Houston, you can chow down on everything from pork spare ribs to scallops with cucumber, soy and sea lettuce at sophisticated restaurants like The Pass & Provisions.
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Houston
The Best Things to Do in Houston
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Destinations

Lima, Peru
Hong Kong
Bologna, Italy
Melbourne, Australia
Montreal
Richmond, Virginia
Oaxaca, Mexico
Houston

These days, gastronomes who have already made the pilgrimage to New York City or Paris for elevated culinary experiences have new foodie ground to explore. Those in-the-know are indulging in dim sum, ceviche and boeuf bourguignon in underappreciated dining destinations that have yet to succumb to foodie hype. Here are eight hot spots you (and your taste buds) shouldn't overlook.  Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Lima, Peru
Stroll through traditional Lima marketplaces and you'll find everything from corn to ceviche. For a sit-down meal, try Malabar, where apple wafers are paired with duck foie gras.
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Hong Kong
For serious foodies looking to splurge, the city boasts seven three-star Michelin-rated restaurants, including Bo Innovation, where umami drizzled with black truffle oil and scallop ceviche are on the menu. 
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Hong Kong
The Best Things to Do in Hong Kong
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Bologna, Italy
Tamburini, one of Bologna's fresh food markets, is a great place to get your bucatini, sausage and mortadella fix.
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Melbourne, Australia
Along with laid-back vibes and adrenaline-pumping activities, Melbourne is a haven for modern, farm-to-table restaurants. Eateries here serve up exciting menu items like minted potatoes, oxtail stew and coconut jelly with poached pineapple.
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Melbourne
The Best Things to Do in Melbourne
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Montreal
It's no secret that Montreal serves up decadent French fare, but what might come as a surprise is the city's varied international spots, such as Kazu, a Japanese restaurant, and L’Express, an authentic French bistro. And if you want to pick up fresh ingredients like basil and artichoke, and sample succulent seafood fare, such as Alaskan king crab and Arctic char, venture to the city's oldest public market, the Jean-Talon Market.
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Montreal
The Best Things to Do in Montreal
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Richmond, Virginia
Richmond is known for its impressive historic sites and art galleries, but also for its tasty culinary creations. To dig into some of city's best treats, such as biscuits with homemade sausage gravy, head to The Roosevelt. If you have a hankering for praiseworthy pasta, take a cue from Bruce Springsteen and head to Mamma 'Zu, which welcomed the rock star for dinner in 2013.  
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Richmond
The Best Things to Do in Richmond
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Oaxaca, Mexico
As you might imagine, Oaxaca dishes up some delectable mole-based plates. During your visit, be sure to stop and sample a popular menu item, chicken smothered with heaps of zesty mole sauce, at a traditional open-air cantina.
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Cities

Houston
In Houston, you can chow down on everything from pork spare ribs to scallops with cucumber, soy and sea lettuce at sophisticated restaurants like The Pass & Provisions.
Find out more about:
The Best Hotels in Houston
The Best Things to Do in Houston
Read More:
8 Under-the-Radar Foodie Destinations

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Tags: travel, vacations, food and drink


Holly Johnson writes about travel, credit cards, personal finance and frugality for a wide range of publications including U.S. News, The Indianapolis Star, The Simple Dollar, Lending Tree, Frugal Travel Guy and Wise Bread. Along with her husband, Johnson also runs two personal blogs - Club Thrifty and Travel Blue Book. Johnson's travel writing revolves around the Caribbean and Europe, with a special focus on family-friendly activities, all-inclusive resorts and unique hotels. Follow Holly Johnson on Twitter @ClubThrifty.

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