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Foodie Travel Itineraries from the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2024

Last month the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2024 was published. This list inspired us to dream up some foodie travel itineraries!

Some are in foodie destinations you probably haven’t thought about. Others use the world’s 50 best restaurants as a focal point for longer exploration.

Cape Town

At #49, La Colombe is the only African restaurant in the top 50. It’s located in Cape Town, South Africa. From personal experience we can say it’s definitely an outstanding and worthwhile experience.

However, Cape Town has other top options that are not as internationally acclaimed. Here’s how to spend four days as foodies in the Mother City.

Day 1 – Dine at Belly of the Beast, a no-thrills, open-kitchen, restaurant with a changing daily set menu focused on classic South African meat and fish staples. A great culinary introduction.

Day 2 – Spend the afternoon tasting wine in Constantia, on the slopes of Table Mountain. The most special wine here is Vin de Constance, a dessert wine from Klein Constantia. Constantia Glen has a stunning garden terrace for a late afternoon wine tasting.

Then saunter around the corner for your reservations at La Colombe, a dining experience that is as much theatre and art as it is food.

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Day 3 – Luke Dale Roberts is South Africa’s most famous chef, mostly because of his first restaurant, The Test Kitchen, which is now closed.

Salon is the chef’s newest venture, but we recommend a lunchtime table at his Potluck Club instead, a tapas-style eatery in the art and design district of Woodstock.

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Day 4 – Explore the vineyards of Stellenbosch and Franschhoek, 45 minutes outside Cape Town. La Petite Colombe, sister restaurant of La Colombe, is a lunch option if you want a tasting menu. Or try The Fat Butcher for the best of South African beef.

Cape Town has a real variety of hotel styles and we can advise you personally. The Silo Hotel is very contemporary, One&Only Cape Town is a city resort, and Mont Rochelle is a good choice for staying outside the city in the vineyards.

Staying at The Silo Hotel you can meet the curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art Africa

Piedmont, Italy

Piedmont competes with Emilia-Romagna as Italy’s premier culinary region. Its cuisine is a creative combination of surrounding influences, including France, Switzerland, mountains, vineyards and coast.

First fly to Turin, or Torino as it’s known in Italy. It’s a modern and vastly underrated city with a great art scene. Dine in the 18th-century Risorgimento room of Del Cambio, the restaurant best representing old-world Piedmont cooking.

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It’s one hour south by road to the charming town of Alba, home to the world’s most famous truffle fair, from October 12th to December 8th 2024.

A truffle hunting experience is essential as part of a Piedmont itinerary. As is drinking Barolo in Barolo and Barbaresco in Barbaresco, towns very close to Alba.

The best view of Alba’s stunning cathedral and piazza comes from a table at Piazza Duomo, number 39 in the World’s Best Restaurants list.

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It’s pure Piedmont gastronomy, from one of the most productive and revered farming regions of Europe. But with a modern style which provides a nice contrast to Del Cambio.

Consider extending this little fall holiday on the coast, with a stay at Hotel Splendido, A Belmond Hotel in Portofino.

Hotel Splendido

Spain

Three of the world’s best four restaurants are located in Spain. They can be combined on an eight to ten-day discovery of the country, a trip that will be perfect in fall.

Fly to Bilbao and our favourite foodie region in the world, Spanish Basque. We suggest staying by the beach in San Sebastian, the town with the highest concentration of Michelin stars in Europe.

Pintxos in San Sebastian

Try pintxos, the local “street food,” hang out around the beaches, and take a day trip to neighbouring La Rioja for wine tasting if you have time.

Steak at Asador Etxebarri

Asador Etxebarri is the culinary highlight, the number two restaurant in the world representing the down-to-earth grill-style cooking that first put Basque on the map for foodies. The restaurant is widely considered to be the best grill restaurant in the world.

Next, fly to Madrid and enjoy one of the city’s new hotels, like Rosewood Villa Magna or Four Seasons Hotel Madrid.

Villa Magna has the best location in Madrid for foodies, in the Salamanca district

Explore the city’s art, sights and shopping, perhaps seeing a little football as well. Dine at Diverxo, the number four restaurant in the world, a super contemporary restaurant that creates art on a plate.

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Then take the high-speed Ave train to Barcelona (door to door it’s the fastest option) and end your holiday with one foot on the beach and another in the city.

Barcelona offers so many experiences, whether it’s your first or fifth trip. The culmination of your itinerary will be a 30-course dinner at Disfrutar, the number one restaurant in the world.

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Lisbon

Belcanto, entry #31, is the first restaurant of Portugal’s most famous chef, José Avillez. He creates contemporary Portuguese cuisine and this two-Michelin-star restaurant in Lisbon is an unmissable classic.

Chef José Avillez also operates Tasca at Mandarin Oriental Jumeirah Dubai, so you can try his cuisine without visiting Portugal.

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Hot on his heels is Henrique Sá Pessoa, an upcoming Portuguese chef. We highly recommend his restaurant Alma for your second foodie night in Lisbon.

Chef Henrique Sá Pessoa also has a stall in the TimeOut Lisbon market, along with another Michelin-starred chef, Vincent Farges.

This market is great for families. You can try dishes from these top chefs, in an informal setting, with loads of other options for your kids.

Mexico City

Mexico City

EliteVoyage CEO Petr Udavský recently returned from Mexico and recommends a three-destination trip in the country.

Explore the vibe of Mexico City, enjoy traditional old Mexico at a town like San Miguel de Allende, then finish at a beach resort in the Riviera Maya or Los Cabos. Three nights in each is ideal.

Three nights is foodie heaven in Mexico City too, as the city has three entries in the World’s Best 50 Restaurants list.

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Ease your way into contemporary Mexican cuisine at Rosetta (#34), a restaurant blending Italian and Mexican influences.

Then go deep into indigenous ingredients at the sustainable and super stylish Pujol (#33), the city’s most famous high-end restaurant (also with two Michelin stars).

Quintonil (#7) is the choice for your third night, a great expression of Mexico’s culinary diversity, and another highly sustainable restaurant.

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Bangkok

Bangkok is the new foodie destination in this year’s World’s Best 50 Restaurants list. It has four entries!

The big and bustling Thai capital is sometimes considered a necessary evil when exploring Southeast Asia, a unmissable stop purely for logistical travel reasons.

Rosewood Bangkok

We think Bangkok is the ideal layover destination. There’s so much to experience, plus great contemporary hotels like Capella Bangkok and Rosewood Bangkok.

Complete your stay with a street food tour of one of Bangkok’s markets, perhaps also a Thai cooking class with a top local chef. And definitely a meal at one of these four restaurants.

  • Gaggan (#9) – Indian fine dining, with French, Japanese and Thai influences
  • Sühring (#23) – German, Italian and Thai cuisine in one experiential tasting menu
  • Sorn (#38) – Southern Thai cuisine in a traditional Thai house
  • Le Du (#40) – The Best Restaurant in Asia 2023 is all about seasonal Thai cooking
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Your Next Foodie Holiday

Food is a great reason to travel, an inspiration that can take you to new places with new flavours.

Food is also an essential part of every travel. Bad food can ruin a trip. Good food is an authentic exploration of what is local to the destination.

When we create itineraries we don’t just book flights and hotels. We consider all the important and little details, including where you can eat and the restaurants to really enhance the trip.

We also love to design thematic itineraries, based on a single idea, like the World’s Best 50 Restaurants.

This article has a few ideas we shared around the office. We can create a holiday itinerary based on the single idea you have, whether it’s gastronomy, art, design, sports or anything else.

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