I have been a vegetarian for almost 5 years now and after having travelled with my partner who doesn’t eat any dairy, it became apparent that not all countries are made equal when it comes to providing for those with alternative dietary requirements. Between us we have struggled significantly to enjoy the local cuisine of foreign countries (he was especially disheartened by the copious volumes of feta included in almost every Greek dish we purchased – some had most creative forms of disguise!)
But, in celebration of Veganuary, I want to share my top 5 countries for the plant-based traveller, places where you can immerse yourself in history and culture whilst savouring some of the most incredible local delicacies.
In 2014 a national survey found 29% of the population in India live vegetarian lifestyles. This can be largely attributed to Hinduism (the majority of Hindus are lacto-vegetarian) being the dominant religious practice For those hoping to sample vegetarian cuisine, the best place to look is the north-west region of India, specifically states such as Rajasthan; a majority Hindu state where a staggering 75% of the population are non-meat eaters.
Shuǐj jiǎo (boiled dumplings filled commonly filled with spring onions, tofu and cabbage.)
Hakka mochi is a popular snack that can be found in street market stalls across the country. Unlike traditional Japanese mochi, these are covered in peanut powder.
Stinky Tofu is another famous Taiwanese street food. This fermented tofu has a pungent smell and can be found in a variety of forms; however it is most commonly deep fried and served with cucumber and pickled cabbage.
Fulong International Sand Sculpture Festival an annual event between April and August
The Sun Moon Lake is the largest body of water in the country! (the perfect spot for sunrise meditation)
Immerse yourself in culture at the Fo Guang Shan Buddhist monasteries located in the Dashu District, Kaohsiung.
“Chicken” burger made from deep fried oyster mushrooms!
A portion of Vegan “fish” and chips will give you a taste of a British seaside staple. Whilst the “fish” can be made from a variety of products the most commonly used substitute is tofu.
Get the best start to your day with a Vegan Full English Most breakfast restaurants and cafes across the country now offer a vegan alternative.
The Roman baths in North East Somerset offer a glimpse into history, with the original construction dating back to 70CE
Take a trip to the Jurassic coast and try your hand at fossil hunting in the picturesque seaside town of Lyme Regis in Dorset
The country’s capital is in no shortage of activities; however, a personal favourite of mine is exploring the Brick Lane Markets with their eclectic mix of gorgeous garms and incredible food (much of which is vegan friendly!