Culinary Attractions in this continent is the primary reason why so many foodies consider Asia as a heaven on earth. From Republic of China to Indonesia, it’s as if the possibilities are endless. Tourists often go on a vacation to cram in as much sightseeing as possible. They flock in to numerous main attractions in the country to witness the mesmerizing beauty and experience its culture. However, only a few of them see local food as a part of the culture.
Many tourists go with zero plan to taste the delicious food and often stick with the food they’re accustomed to. Yes, western food are provided in all parts of the world, but why not try new things while on there ?. Surely, theresn’t better way to get know the culture other than enjoying its authentic cuisine. Here are a list of food attractions and food recommendation to help culinary trip getting started.
South East Asia Culinary Attractions
South East Asia is a thing of beauty. Filled with picturesque towns, mesmerizing temples with incredible views in the background. Impressive ancient ruins and astounding natural attractions from mountainous hills to pristine beaches. Everything is bound to impress for adventurous minds. Even before leave the region, you will already make a plan for next trip. Yes, the region used to take a backseat as tourists would rather flock to other iconic European destinations for their vacations.
However, for the past ten years, South East Asia has seen an increasing number of tourists exploring the towns and enjoying all it has to offer. The stunning temples on Myanmar’s Bagan plains, Vietnam’s famous Halong Bay, and the unearthly landscapes in Indonesia’s Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park. There are so much to explore! If you are planning to explore the region, it will get benefit from reading the following South East Asia Food Attractions.
Its incredible beauty is not the only thing that has won over many of these tourists’ hearts, South East Asia has also won their taste buds for lack of better words. Those who have been traveling the region are well aware that the region is indeed filled to the brim with a wide array of street food vendors, which means one thing: there’s no shortage of tasty treats and delicious hot meals. Yes, South East Asia is indeed a popular destination for those looking for delicious food at an incredibly affordable price.
It’s not a secret that Singapore is world renowned for its affordable Hawker food. This Chinese, Indian, and Malay culture melting pot is filled with tasty meals such as Char Kway Teow, Hainanese Chicken Rice, Bak Chor Mee, Kaya Toast, Char Siew Fan and many more. All of which can be found in its Hawker Centres throughout the country, some of the greatest ones are Chinatown Complex Food Centre, and Chomp Chomp Food Centre.
Penang is a culturally diverse city that is not only exciting, but also crammed with tasty foods. The city has so many street food stalls selling the infamous Assam Laksa, spicy noodle soup with pleasing sour undertones. The tasty Nasi Lemak, Roti Canai, Char Koay Kak, Pasembur and many more can also be found there. However, the best Assam Laksa is said to only be available in Ayer Itam Pasar.
The number of street food vendors in Bangkok is jaw dropping. Everywhere you go in the country, you will find Pla Pao, the barbecued fish served with lime juice chili condiments. Not only that, Khao Pad (Thai fried rice), Gai Bing (grilled chicken skewers), Pad Thai Kung (crunchy stir fried rice noodle dish with eggs, chopped tofu, and dried shrimp), Mango Sticky Rice, and many more. Would like to taste all of them? Head to Chinatown Yaowarat.
East Asia Culinary Attractions
East Asia may have been placed on the vacation destination map long before other regions in the continent. This is largely due to the expansive nature of their manga, and culture. The historical and cultural attraction spots are also the reason why so many tourists fall in love with the region.
Let’s start from Japan, the astounding Mount Fuji, the stunning golden temple Kinkaku-Ji, the infamous Meiji Shrine with its gorgeous garden, the historical Kiyomizu-dera with its picturesque view and many more. South Korea with its mesmerizing Changdeokgung Palace and Gyeongbokgung, buzzing shopping district Myeong-dong and China with its Great Wall, jaw dropping Terracotta Army and Forbidden City complex of museum and palace. Tourists have no shortage of places to visit – the same goes for the local cuisine. The following is a list of food attractions in East Asia:
When we talk about Japan, we immediately think of its salty cuisitne and fresh sushi and sashimi. And what better way to start the culinary trips other than eating the freshest sushi in town? Head over to Tsukiji Fish Market in the morning, this sprawling wholesale market in Tokyo sells and auctions fish, vegetables and fruits. There are plenty sushi vendors on-site can choose for breakfast. Can’t stand the fishy smell? Make way to Sushi Dai in part 6 of the building, and prepare for taste buds to get blown away.
South Korea, just like Japan, has a plethora of food stalls and counters. Head over to Namdaemun Gate 2 to taste the best Japchae hotteok, or Nakwon to get the best Tteokbokki (spicy rice cakes) for those who love spicy food and sample their incredible selection of deep fried goods. From sweet potatoes, to vegetable and squid.
The food sold in the street may differ slightly depending on where to go for a visit. However, one thing they all have in common is the deliciousness. Heading to Beijing? it must be get its iconic sugary dessert treats. Sold by the stick, Candied Tong Hu Lu is a dessert that looks as incredible as it tastes. The bright red and delectable Hawthorns are dipped in tasty sugar layers which gives the dessert a nice sweet toffee-like taste which complements the sour taste of the fruit. Make way to Donghuamen Night Markets for a late night food grabs, or Wangfujing Snack Street.
West Asia Culinary Attractions
If East Asian cuisine is characterized by the bursting umami flavor from its generous use of soy sauce and other oriental spices, West Asian food is its polar opposite. More hearty and incredibly filling, the west side of the continent is popular for their yogurt based food. Other ingredients which are commonly found in its cuisine other than yogurt is olive oil, sesame seeds, chickpeas, and dates.
Clarified butter which is known as Samna in the region, lamb, mutton, wheat, rice, lentils, turnips, other green vegetables such as spinach are a staple and are commonly found in the Western Asian food as well.
Unlike other parts of Asia such as South East Asian countries and East Asian countries, the West Asian countries are not particularly crammed with street food vendors. This is not to say that there are no food stalls in the street, however. Check out the following for recommendations!
If you have ever taste Jordanian soil, you would agree that the food is one of the highlights of Jordan culinary trips. Let’s start from falafel, it’s not a secret that Jordan makes the best falafels in the whole wide world, and this is not an exaggeration! The combination of chickpeas ground and a huge variety of incredible spices makes this mini patty shaped snack to die for. Fluffy and light on the inside and exremely crispy outside. Eat it as is or put it in a sandwich, then make a call. Head over to Al Rainbow Street for the best falafel, or sample other local delicacies such as the creamy Fattet Hummus, Galayet Bandora with meat, or Shawarma. Would like to go to Shawarma heaven? There’s a street in Amman which is dedicated to selling various types of Shawarma.
Unlike other parts of the region, Bahrain incorporates fish instead of meat on many of its meals. Can’t go wrong by visiting the Manama as this area is full of street food vendors selling authentic dishes and even the western food as well.
Longing for a real street food atmosphere? Head over to Ali Al Salem and Ahmad Al Jaber streets in the city. Kuwait has everything to satisfy bud taste. From fresh seafood and fresh produce stalls, to food stalls selling fish curry with incredibly tasty side dishes, Tabbouleh, grilled chicken with hummus and many more.
Central Asia Culinary Attractions
Quite similar to its West Asia counterpart, the local delicacies in Central Asian countries revolve around various milk products, horse meat, mutton and grain which is largely influenced by its nomadic way of life back in the day. However, it’s worth noting that the cuisine in Uzbekistan, that is very much well known in the region for its agriculture and grain farming, is also heavily influenced by grains.
This is the primary reason why its local delicacies are rich with noodles and rice. Are you thinking about making a trip to one or more of these countries ?, Read on to find out the Central Asia Food Attractions!
Lagman soup is an Uzbek twist on ramen soup, it seems. With hearty broth with spicy chunks of lamb meat and noodles as well as vegetables, it’s the epitome of comfort food. Chuchvara soup is sour milk seasoned with spices and boiled with dumplings, and the delightful rice, meat, carrots and raisins pilaf dish. All of these and other food such as Tuy Palov can be found in Margilan so head over there!
From Baursaki, the Kazakh bread rolls, to the national dish Beshbarmak which consists of boiled horse meat (these days, it can be swapped for lamb meat). Large lasagne-like sheet cooked in broth and onion gravy can be found in local eateries in Astana.
Food stalls in Osh Bazar Bishkek are the first places you have to go to when looking for a taste of authentic. Kyrgyztan snacks and meals such as Shashlik the grilled meat skewers, Kurut the yogurt balls, hearty meat potato dish.
South Asia Culinary Attractions
South Asian countries are the best destination for foodies who love spicy food. Yes, South Asians are well known for their bold approach to food.
With various types of spices such as black pepper, cloves, chilli, ginger, turmeric, and other strong spices and herbs, South Asians transform an otherwise dull food into something that makes our mouth waters. Food is flavored with butter, and chapati roti made of atta flour is a must in every food.
No doubt, serious foodie will fall in love with India!. The food are distinctive, and while it may seem odd. India has the ability to turn bitter gourd into a palatable dish called Khatta Meetha Karela and spicy and sweet Karela fries. Which is actually out of this world. Not only popular for its historical sites, India is also popular for its street food stalls. Delhi had the best chole bature and rajma chawal in every corner. In Indore, treat as it’s the place where poha jalebi, samosa, chaat, and bafla are claimed as its specialty.
There are many noteworthy food stalls in Sri Lanka. Head over to Mount Lavinia for a tasty seafood meal, Pettah Train Station to sample various delicious samosas, Dehiwala for its mind-blowing Pani Pol, and Upalis for the best Dal curry in the country.
Pakistani is the home for delicious Punjabi/Sindhi food. Served with authentic chapati, choose heart desires from Tandoori chicken masala, to numerous curries. Other snacks such as Biryani, crispy Shawarma Imlee, Kulfi, and Chaat can be found in Peshawar and Murree.
Thats it, the rather exhaustive lists on the best food recommendations of each region in Asia and where to go. Make a decision on where to go for next vacation, get booked for aviation, and pack your bags!. Simply cannot go wrong if considering our recommendations on the best Asia Food Attractions that the continent has to offer!
Read also: The Culinary attraction of Asia