Many travellers hesitate to visit particular locations, in fear of a lack of suitable meal options for a vegan. Honestly, there is no substantial reason today to avoid any destination because of the dining experience or here for the lack of. This article is a compilation of tips to keep in mind when planning a holiday overseas.
1. Don’t be Afraid to Travel Due to a Lack of Options: Across the world, there is a wide variety of vegan options for you to choose from. Tourist-centric cities in many regions house vegetarian or vegan options that offer —veggie burgers, nutritious salads, vegan pizza, etc. Many non-vegetarian options also offer vegetarian cuisine, though, limited in number. Usually you can find basic staples such as rice and veggie dishes at most restaurants around the globe. Here is an appetizing plate of brown rice and flavoured veggies from Norway.
There are vegans everywhere, so finding food is not a major issue.
2. Savour the Vegan Version of Local Cuisine: During times of travel, it doesn’t hurt to research on your destination a little. Look up information on local cuisine that may be offered in vegan-friendly options. Yes, it is a specific search, but it’s still worth shot. This local ethnic cuisine is what most travellers crave on all their journeys. Below is a sample image of a vegan Tapas in Spain.
3. Visit a vegan store: Across the globe, vegan shops are becoming increasingly common. Some are distributers of vegan shoes, handbags, wallets and other accessories. The other stores market various vegan skin-care products. It’s always wonderful to find a stunning vegan purse or come across a skin-care product during one of your travels.
4. Seek out Vegan Markets: Regardless of whether you’re travelling to the United States or Europe, you’ll discover that vegan markets are becoming all the rage. A lot of these markets offer vegan sacks, faux meats, vegan cheeses and even skincare products. Travellers can visit these markets to buy travel snack for the lengthy bus/train journeys. Stocking up in advance saves you the time and effort of seeking out a late-night vegan friendly eatery. Below is a vegan market shop in Istanbul.
5. Taste the indigenous fruits, juices and teas: One of my favourite travel experiences is trying out fruits that are indigenous to that particular region. It is not necessary for all countries to export all their fruit. South America and the Caribbean islands are prime examples of this. It is exciting to dive into a unique tasting experience and try delicious exotic fruits from around the world. Similarly, unique teas and juices can we found too. Argentina has mate tea while Egypt offers hibiscus tea. Below is a picture fresh local oranges in Morocco:
6. Stay at Vegan Friendly Hostels: As a frequent traveller, I prefer staying in hostels. They are not only inexpensive, but travellers are also not tied down to a specific meal plan. Organised group tours usually include pre-planned meals at set restaurants. In scenarios such as this, there is no guarantee that you will be provided with a wholesome vegan meal. Hostels often offer a shared kitchen where you can cook your own meals with the fresh produce you purchased at the vegan market! Through vegan bed and breakfasts, the vegan traveller can find an oasis of eco-friendly atmosphere and vegan dining.
7. Appreciate the indigenous wildlife: It is common knowledge that vegans appreciate all sentient beings. That may be a reason for adopting veganism as a lifestyle to begin with. For those embarking on an exotic adventure, try visiting an animal sanctuary and witness wildlife frolicking about. Below is a picture of some adorable penguins in South Africa.
8. Check your airline meal online in advance: A variety of airline today offer vegan meal options. However, each airline uses its own terminology, not all of which is standard in the industry. VGML, Western Vegetarian, Vegetarian non-dairy are just a few terms used by some airlines. For the sake of convenience, travellers can also request vegan –friendly meals online or call their airline in advance. Keep an eye out for condiments, breads and desserts as they are not vegan foods.
9. Bring some packaged vegan meals and snacks: While many popular tourists town offer a lot of vegan options, you can’t really expect the same from remote or rural destinations. During times like these, it is always a smart idea to pack several vegan foods in your luggage — pre-cooked oatmeal cups, snacks, packaged meals that essentially need only hot water are a few ideas for you to try out. In some localities, vegan restaurants often close early and leave you seeking a fulfilling meal after a long day of sightseeing.
10. Connect with the local vegan community: Search social medial platforms like Facebook for active groups and common interests. If the group is active enough, you should be able to gain a few recommendations about vegan-friendly markets, restaurants and hostels. Other online platforms like Reddit’s vegan community or Meetup.com are also worth checking out.
These 10 tips can certainly make any holiday ‘worry-free’. Pack the essentials and travel with an open mind. Happy Journey!