By - henry_120100
Hello and welcome to r/LifeProTips!
Please help us decide if this post is a good fit for the subreddit by up or downvoting this comment.
If you think that this is great advice to improve your life, please upvote. If you think this doesn't help you in any way, please downvote. If you don't care, leave it for the others to decide.
Been walking for 5 hours now, still all the sings in English. Has anyone else figured out where to find British cuisine?
5 hours? You ought to be in Llanfairpwllgwyngyll by now.
How come you’re using the contraction? It’s Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch
Call that a contraction? Llanfair PG is where it's at.
That's much Llanbedr.
Best Welsh pun ever!
I haven't gotten the map for that part of Elden Ring yet.
Look for a sign that says "kebabs" or "curry".
If you're in London avoid Chippies.
Source: Londoner, they're shit here.
What's a chippy?
Also, Ive been trying to contact you about your car's extended warranty, its about to expire
Your cars warranty may expire.
So anyway, what is credit card number?
I thought I was supposed to ask for cheeky nandos
If you're in London, Paris is only 2 hours away by train.
You could have gone, had an incredible meal and been back by now!
Some of the best French restaurants are in London lmao
not exactly shocking due to the history but the best curry i ever had was in the London suburbs. a bit drunk and having a stroll, small hole in the wall kind of place, absolutely amazing.
In my 39+ years of living, I never knew London to Paris was a mere 2 hr train ride.
I'm American -- we're used to major metropolises being at least a 3 hr plane trip from each other.
I remember an old saying "How do you tell an American from an European? The American thinks 100 years is a long time, the European thinks 100 miles is a long distance."
Had you heard of the Chunnel?
Best food I had in Paris was a tiny Korean restaurant in the 19th arrondissement. It was so good that I asked for their recipe and went looking for the right ingredients all over nyc to replicate it when I got back. Second best was an Italian place. I had maybe 3 above average, traditional French meals in the 4 weeks I was there, eating out multiple times a day. Tourist traps are all too common in Paris, even in the lower traffic areas. When eating with locals at their favorite places, they were always non-French restaurants. I found it very interesting.
As someone who has been quite often to Paris I rather get the feeling you might have expected something different or "more“ out of French cuisine.
Paris has so many great restaurants from steak and Pommes (which might be the most popular dish in France…) to haute cuisine where you pay 150 bucks for 5 courses of strange looking something but usually at least one course is so amazing that you never forget it.
It’s the paleo version
Yeah, but it's Paris...
What you mean? The streets have a lovely scent of eau de toilet.
London’s different in a way. Soho for example is a popular tourist spot and it has quite a few Michelin star restaurants, and tons of other just as good places.
If anyone’s in Soho go to Sabor, it’s fantastic Spainish food.
There are also your typical tourist trap trash places like “Angus Steakhouse” on Oxford Street unfortunately.
Stick to breakfast when you find it, I’ve read it can get weird after that. Something about spotted dicks!
Just go to Newcastle, the signs might be in english, but nobody speaks it. Good chippys too.
A kayak guide in Acadia told us years ago, that if the view is great, the food doesn't have to be. We've stuck by that philosophy for 15 years now.
Every restaurant owner near a a good view: “got’em!”. The one exception I found in my travels was an incredible Arabic restaurant in Bethlehem that was perched on the side of a small mountain. Food was inexpensive and delicious while you sat at a lowered table on a covered patio overlooking the sunset and shepherds tending to their sheep.
Drop the name, boss!
I do believe this is it. We didn’t sit outside though, we sat under the awning overlooking.
This is 100% the place
The food looks is so beautifully presented and looks so tasty; smaller portions so that you can savor the experience
We were there for about 2.5 hours. 3 of us shared about ten different things then coffee and dessert. Incredible experience.
مطعم يم يم
>مطعم يم يم
LOL, literally translates to "Yum Yum Restaurant". I love it!
Interestingly that is a very similar name to the halal truck I frequent in brooklyn. I always thought it was odd he called his truck yummy yummy in my tummy. Lol.
Yum Yum restaurant?
دركى دركى دركى
Big snakes babysitting little snakes
Holy shit I can read Arabic!
*Learn this one trick Linguistics don't want you to know!*
I’ve had some good seafood, at places with nice views of the ocean
Agreed, it’s not a universal rule, I took it as a tip to avoid tourist traps. The internet has helped sus out the best places in a given area. However, and I may be wrong about your seafood joint, the biggest factor for quality food with a view is going to be menu price. For those on a tighter budget, this is better advice.
When I lived in China it was all about whatever market the restaurant was closest to
The best seafood I had was a workers cafeteria across the road from the port of Qingdao.
Just piles of everything, any foreigner there was expat, clean as hell, loud and deals being done while people are.
What the place actually was, a sales market for the different operations showing commercial buyers what they catch, the freshness etc.
lol This feels like a direct dig on Jordan Pond House.
Jordan's restaurant is far better, the popovers are "fine" at the pond house.
There is another one I heard. If you see a terrible looking restaurant operating in a nice looking area, their food is probably amazing. They don't care to spend money on renovations or fancy stuff. The food is usually good enough to compensate for all that.
I experienced this with a Chinese restaurant. It looked kinda sketchy in a weird area but we're like fuck it and tried it anyways. Some of the BEST Chinese I have had in a long time.
I lived in Hong Kong back in the 1980s and did get the impression that some of the best food was found in the least attractive backstreet restaurants (cheap plastic tablecloths etc.) - especially if they were crowded with locals.
If you find any kind of Asian restaurant with plastic chairs, tiny tables with no tablecloths, and a lot of customers, you're in for a treat.
Had a Vietnamese roommate in college . Got me hooked on pho and banh mi (this was in Appalachia America). Moved to an actual city, with lots of pho places . Found the one that only had Vietnamese folks dining. Best pho in the city and worse decor lol. Half 1980s Wendy’s in a strip mall.
Was given a Vietnamese coffee on the house for ordering in my abeit rough Vietnamese.
Absolutely. Eat where the locals do.
I'm lovin it
This. I went to OBX for the first time ten years ago with my now husbands family. They all went to tourist places and had mediocre food. We drove around until we found a place in a strip mall with only obx plates out front. No a/c but our rockfish tacos had been swimming that morning!
Also they served dinner between 6-8am for night workers. It’s was fabulous
This. I used to travel a lot for work and would always ask the locals where to go that wasn't a tourist trap or a chain. Had some good food.
Even now, some of the best dim sum are made by old masters who run small restaurants and don’t really care to expand their existing client base: these restaurants will look like it hasn’t been renovated since the 90s, filled with the elderly, but the food will be some of the best in the area.
My rule for choosing dim sum is that the worse the parking is, the better the food is. Your rule seems like a worthy addition to that.
Hell yes; indicators of a good Chinese (and many other types of) restaurant include: boxes of toilet paper etc. stored in a back booth/hallway; terrible lighting; faded posters left from the previous restaurant; a tv in the corner with the owner’s grandma watching her shows
Don't forget the kid doing his homework at one of the tables
Or rolling silverware begrudgingly
Doing homework *while taking phone orders* lol.
*Are you doctor yet?*
In Spain too.
This goes for Korean and Japanese places in the US too. They sit the children in a quiet place where they can be watched by parents and are taught to be quiet and work or read. On-site day care.
Had a similar experience with Mexican food in my college town.
On one side of the street was a big building with a name that looked like they chose two random Spanish words, and the inside being decked out in Mexican decor.
On the other side was a restaurant in a strip mall with basically zero decorations and looked kinda of like a hole in the wall.
Well the hole in the wall had some of the best food I've had and the other place was very very bland.
The best Mexican restaurants I've eaten at have folding tables and chairs and random posters/decor, and the building was obviously some other type of business before they got it.
If the kids are taking your order, you know it's gonna be bomb
if the kids are doing homework at one of the tables the food will be even better
I ate at Mexican restaurant outside of Minneapolis one time. You could tell it had been something else before it was that. We walked in, I looked around, saw that everyone in the place was hispanic (not just the workers, but the customers too) and some of them looked like they were just sitting there hanging out (including the kid doing homework that was mentioned by someone else). Knew right then it was going to be really good. Was not disappointed.
Took my (Mexican) friend to a Mexican place in Los Angeles before dropping him at the airport. No English on the menu, I ordered in my bad Spanish since the waiter didn’t speak much English. No problem, we all know the basic script of ordering food regardless of language.
The waiter promptly turned to my Mexican friend and repeated the whole order for him in Spanish to confirm that the white girl knew knew what all the words on the menu meant. My friend confirmed and pointed out that *I’d* brought *him* there.
Best Mexican food I’ve ever had. Glad someone was making sure the gringa knew what camarones al mojo de ajo meant.
Minus the nice area, you are basically describing Chopstick Charley's in Jacksonville FL
I didn’t know where Acadia was so assumed it was where the Akkadian Empire once was (Middle East). Suffice it to say, very off the mark!
But the food can be great and have a great view.
I've experienced both scenarios.
Probably going to pay out the nose (in my experience definitely) but I've gotten some amazing views and delicious food together in touristy areas before. Maybe slightly removed from the main area, but just by a few blocks max
Yep, there’s probably a three-way Venn diagram with “good location,” “good food,” and “good prices” where usually you have to pick two and a teeny, tiny number makes it into the middle.
This burger place around the corner from me has some windows where you sit basically on the edge of the cliff/above the rocks next to the ocean. It has amazing burgers. They are very reasonably priced.
I’ve found heaven and I’ve eaten so many burgers
That’s exactly what u/Fat_Bearded_Tax_Man said.
> if the view is great, the food doesn’t **have to** be
Can be, but doesn't have to in order to survive.
Frankly, I don't mind this in some places. I'm at the Acropolis? I'll take the overpriced mediocre meal to get the view.
Our meal a few years ago at Jordan Pond House confirms this.
It's funny you said that because I couldn't find a good restaurant in Bar Harbor. All of them were mediocre to horrible, and of course overpriced. Ordered tomato soup and essentially got a bowl of warm Ragu sauce.
I am glad for both of these comments, as I am visiting Bar Harbor later this year and going to Acadia.
Mainely meats, Jordan's Restaurant (not pond house), Rosalines Pizza. Other than that eat near the park where the busses are, not near the ocean.
Depending on the pathway you go to get Acadia, if you end up in Brewer, there is this little seafood shack called Eagle’s Nest that has the best Maine Seafood you will ever have.
My family did an RV trip to Bar Harbor in summer 2019. My husband was obsessed with lobster, naturally. He wanted to find some being unloaded off a boat so we found some docks and as a boat came in he went up and asked to buy some. They only had some giant crabs that they called stone crab, but they weren’t like the stone crab in Florida. Anyway, the guy sold them to us for $1 each and that was the best meal we ate. 15 of those suckers.
My boyfriend and I stopped and bought mussels from someone’s fishing shed refrigerator and steamed them at our campsite with beer and butter, best mussels he’s ever had but they made him super sick lol. We got my lobster from a gas station lobster tank and it was yummy.
I had the best BBQ of my life on that island, but it wasn't in Bar Harbor. Mainely Meat at Atlantic Brewing. Also, the pizza at Rosalines was fantastic. We rented a place across the street and smelled it everytime we walked by. Everything north of cottage st was garbage.
This is astonishingly accurate. I’ll never forget this comment.
I'd be careful taking this advice. Food standards can fall off outside of tourist areas.
My Indonesian friend refused to take me to the 'authentic' restaurants because everytime he brought white foreingers there they'd get sick. Meanwhile he and his family eat there all the time and are fine. I think it has to do with gut microbes that take time to adjust.
You see the same phenomenon with local water supplies, even within first world countries. Rural water can give city folk the runs if they're not used to it. It usually takes me a week or two for my bowels to get used to Carribean tap water.
And in some 3rd world countries it's just asking to get mugged.
Source: grew up in 3rd world country.
This was my thought too. The tourist areas are probably better protected. Great if you know the area well and are prepared to defend yourself, I guess.
Unless you’re somewhere in Tokyo, in which case you can get lost anywhere and be absolute tanked and alone and waving money around and be perfectly fine. Or if you’re like me, be tanked and trying to figure out how to play pachinko and a very long-suffering and kind older man with no English will come and help you in a sort of concerned dad way because you’re acting like a total idiot gaijin
I've heard that about Japan. Apparently the penalties for messing with tourists are way worse.
When I was 20 (back in the early 90s), I was in Ikebukuro (a relatively less touristy stop on the Yamanote line in Tokyo) on the night before I left Japan, after a several-month stay. A group of rough looking dudes saw me on the street and struck up a conversation--not unusual in Japan for folks who want to practice their English, especially in southern Japan, but also in Tokyo.
We went to a bar and had a few drinks--they wouldn't let me pay.
We went for great Chinese food in a great hole-in-the-wall. They still wouldn't let me pay.
A couple more izakayas, same deal.
Then they decide we should go to a hostess bar. At this point I'm thinking I should beg off, since the whole "drunk gaijin with a $1000 charge" thing apparently *does* happen, but I figure, what the hell... We stay for a bit, and then move on to the next point on the itinerary.
Two more bars, sun's coming up, and I have to get on a train to Narita to leave. It was just a group of firefighters who had gotten their annual bonus and decided to blow it on a night getting drunk with the random foreign kid.
I ended up coming back to Japan and living there for a few years. And a couple of years ago I brought my young kids there for a week. It is strange how relaxing it is knowing that they could go and explore on their own a bit and everyone would keep an eye out for them. There are definitely things I don't like about Japan, but it's hard to describe the feeling of not having to worry that you're going to be attacked, robbed, etc.
Haha perfect description of Tokyo
I like to go adventuring in Cape Town
Had a friend born and grew up there. Every house had 2 layers of locked doors and had an automatic rifle
Went looking for food in Santa Marta, Columbia with a mate. We’re crossing an intersection, guy walking opposite way does the nonchalant “cocaine?” thing as he passes, we just keep walking, and then he shouts at us to stop. I think we’re about to get mugged or something, but I turn around, and he tells us “you’re walking out of the safe zone. We can’t be responsible for you past this block. Please turn around.”
The nicest street dealer I’ve ever met. Offered to buy him a beer, he just laughed and declined.
Guess where I'm from lol.
Telling tourists to wander out of protected areas to find restaurants is a recipe for being kidnapped in many Mexican/ South American cities.
Agreed, when people come to Mexico they want to eat street food but they get "the curse of Moctezuma" which is diarrhea
Growing up in the US we always called it Montezuma's revenge :D
It was also mostly associated with drinking the water.
Never experienced it myself but I did get the Vietnamese version after some coffees with ice cubes and holy hell it was awful.
Curse for food poisoning, revenge for moldy water :D
Growing up in southern California Montezooma's Revenge was a Rollercoaster.
I edited the Wikipedia article on Montezuma’s Revenge when I was 11 to include the roller coaster. I was very offended when my edit was deleted, not realizing they were spelled differently.
Don't worry, I support your edit.
It's probably not because of unsafe standards, it's because there's different microbes in the water that you're body isn't used to. Happened to me (North American) my first day in Australia but I was fine for the next 5 weeks I was there. Oddly enough, never had an issue in the Caribbean or Central America.
FFS: I'm referring to first world countries, not drinking water out of a ditch in some backwater town in India.
Considering that even the locals don't drink the tap water in the part of Mexico I've been to, I don't know that I agree with you. Frequently, yes; always, no.
It gets worse when you consider that if you don't know for sure, the tap water could very well be well water. Which ranges from some of the best water you can taste, to literal dogshit infested muck. And since aquifers vary so much in terms of size and depth, there is no way you can ever be sure what you're going to get. Even if you had a good experience down the street, small distances can make a really big difference in terms of water quality. This effect is particularly pronounced in areas that are not very strict when it comes to how close septic and other pollutants can be to well lines. Moral of my rant is, if you don't know, go for bottled water. And you almost certainly don't know.
I'm a street food kinda person and ate my way through India like a champ, growing increasingly more brazen by the week. Train chai is what did me in. Train chai sold by a guy on the platform and passed through the window, on a 15 hour trip. Upon my arrival at my destination a friend's relative had planned a whole day of food tasting with me and I just wanted to die.
Taking food risks before a 15-hour train trip? Man you like living on the edge...
That's true. I got caught there drinking water served at cheap restaurants coming in glasses (obviously from the tap, which somehow I hadn't thought about), so I'm certainly not in a position to give anyone a lesson!
Lol this reminds me of my trip to China as a whippersnapper almost 10 years ago. My digestion was *rough* for a week or 2, but God damn it was tasty. Had so many things I never knew existed as a cuisine.
Just had to get used to squatting in the restrooms.
FWIW sometimes there is a delay before the symptoms start so if the symptoms started on the train it could have been something you ate a day or two before
Pro tip: Refrain from eating anything on Indian trains. I too found out the hard way.
Probably the milk in the chai?
Ironically, I got food poisoning from the hotel food on the only night I ate at the hotel - all other nights we went to random restaurants in the vicinity of the factory we were visiting and nothing happened the whole week
Food poisoning can take a couple days to kick in, so it may not have been the hotel food. It could’ve been something you had the day/days before.
Some sources make a distinction between fast food poisoning and slow food poisoning:
Fast food poisoning: Food-borne pathogens have already colonized the food and excreted their toxins (i.e. it's spoiled). Even if it's cooked properly, the toxins will remain and cause gastrointestinal symptoms, usually within a few hours.
Slow food poisoning: Food-borne pathogens are present in the food, but have not excreted enough toxins to cause immediate illness. This is usually the result of undercooked food or cross-contamination between raw and cooked food. The pathogens colonize your GI tract and produce toxins while inside your body, which can take anywhere from several hours to a few days.
If food is already spoiled *and* it gets undercooked or cross-contaminated, you can get both the immediate onset *and* the longer-term GI infection.
Lol happened to me on my first day in Mexico City after arriving from Europe.
Also worth noting that it depends on where you go. Larger cities can have perfectly fine water quality, and I don't have any issues when visiting my wife's family in Chihuahua, but even they won't drink the tap water in some of the tourist areas.
You're still generally advised against drinking local water when out of the country due to different local bacteria. You get the advice going from major European city to major European city, its only sometimes related to treatment quality.
Some cities may be large but still have problems with tap water. In my city tap water is drinkable but has a bad taste, and in the small country town that my family is from, tap water has a nice taste but it's not drinkable
>nice taste but is not drinkable
/r/hydrohomies in shambles
Doctors office instructions for a child traveling with us, on pre travel visit: only bottled water, no ice. If you cannot get bottled then boiled and cooled, but still has more risk than bottled. Fruit only if you peel it yourself, washing the fruit and then your hands before peeling. (Child involved still got diarrhea, her parents traveled to mother's hometown in the phillipines for 2 weeks. Parents felt it was impossible to carry that much bottled water as air travel and then boat travel was required). There are pictures of said child carrying a live chicken around all day, so I'm not surprised about the diarrhea.
Make sure that the bottle of water is factory sealed still. It's not unheard of for people to take empties, fill them up with tap water, and sell them.
Italy got me on this one. Went to lunch and I ordered water because I didn't actually want to drink anything, but I'm from arizona, and here, it's just less friction to order water than it is to not get a drink at all.
Got a bottle of tap water in a glass water bottle. It cost more than the wine that everyone else ordered.
It's also just not universally true. Sometimes touristy or popular spots attract good restaurants because the foot traffic is there. The entire Vegas strip is a giant tourist trap and it's become one of the biggest fine dining destinations in the country because of it.
Really the heart of any major city is going to have both touristy stuff and great food. Just get better at recognizing mediocre restaurants or do some research on where to eat beforehand.
Yea, I mean it's not terrible advice overall, but this isn't 1991. As you mentioned, research is a thing we can do very easily these days. I'm going on vacation soon. My gf and I have a super long document with all of the restaurants and breweries with Google ratings of 4.6 or above. That was cross referenced with "best of" lists from reputable publications and such. Any restaurant or brewery that was talked about often but had a lower Google rating got a deep dive to see whether or not the bad reviews were for food/beer quality or for the usual dumb shit people complain about.
There's going to be no need to roll the dice on any place we go, tourist trap or not. Sure, there's still technically a chance we could have a less than stellar experience somewhere, but the odds are pretty low. I certainly am not going to go walking around in an unfamiliar area just hoping to stumble on a good spot. I understand that for some people they find it really fun to do that sort of thing, but that's not us. We're paying damn good money on the trip. You bet your ass we're going to do a ton of research to make sure we get the best possible experience and maximize the amount of time we have.
Yeah, I wandered through a meat market in Cozumel once that was pretty well off the tourist area. The amount of raw chicken sitting out on dirty countertops was unsettling.
Heck, we had dinner in Chinatown, SF. We went off the beaten path to an “authentic” looking place. Food was absolutely terrible.
Really depends where you are. There's a huge difference between rome/Paris and Indonesia. Different rules apply.
Well, i'm glad i waited to read the edit before i replied because i was going to STRONGLY suggest you only do that in certain countries and during the daytime...unless you have someone local to accompany you.
Took your advice...ended up trying to order sushi at a pet store.
Go to a restaurant where you can’t read the sign or menu. Great idea.
Edit: not saying this can't be done, or that you'll have a bad time. In fact, I've even done it. It's just not plan A, and you won't really know what you're going to get.
When I was in high school we did a three week trip in Europe to sing in the great cathedrals. Started in France, ended in England. We had become so used to not reading/understanding anything, that we were about two hours into our time in England before someone shouted, ‘hey! I can read things!’
We had become used to not trying. This was pre-cell phones.
I had a similar experience after i went abroad for a year. I went back home and i was thinking 'why is it so loud'. Turns out after a year i got so used to not understanding what anybody was saying anyways, i just wasnt used to overhearing English anymore
We did a three week high school trip to Mexico. I remember getting to the Dallas airport on our way home and my teacher being surprised that the signs were in English first. I was like “Um, Ms. Williams, we are in Texas!”
Honestly I don't even know what "authentic" means in this day and age.
If it's good it's good, I don't really have a standard for what's authentic and what's not.
I used to work in a German restaurant with a German owner teaching his cooks recipes taken from his German family cookbook.
We'd still get tourists fervently denying that the food was the least bit authentic, sometimes going so far as to call our staff liars. And they were the authority on such matters, of course, because they'd been to Germany once.
Crazy how easily some folks can grasp, for example, that nobody's cooking is quite the same as *mom's cooking,* but when it comes to other people's moms cooking in a country other than their own, suddenly they expect an entire nation to adhere to the exact same recipe.
People pretending to be foodies when they go abroad always on the hunt for "authentic" food and do what the locals do. Sometimes you just want to get cheap food in your stomach after walking long periods of time.
It's annoying when people twist it into "oh it's more authentic so it's better" because the idea of eating where locals eat is more about finding better prices. Restaurants in tourist destinations can charge more for the same thing and get away with it, not to mention some of them have to charge more because their rent is higher.
The only exception I've found where the tourist location is consistently worse than the local place across the street are all-inclusive resorts, but that really isn't surprising since they're exclusively serving tourists.
Yea I hate the term ‘authentic’ as it relates to food. It’s basically meaningless.
Pretty much any time I would say the word ‘authentic’, I just swap it for ‘traditional’ because that’s what I generally intend to mean.
For example, Taco Bell is still ‘authentic’. It’s real. It exists. It just isn’t ‘traditional’ Mexican food.
Isn't TB purporting to be tex-mex anyway? In my view, places like taco bell, Chipotle, and panda express are traditional American food that was originally inspired by other cultures. What is traditional American food otherwise, if not an eclectic mix of influences from everywhere.
protip: walking a few blocks away from the colosseum or the spanish steps doesn't get you into some virgin non-tourist authentic version of the city. In general people who are tourists worry way too much about some hipster need to be not a tourist, but it's fine.
Yeah the entire center of Rome is very, very "touristy" but when I was there my host mother took me to several places in the center that she said were great. And they were!
yeah, and then outside the center it doesn't go to like, tuscan villas with italian grandmas that never met an english speaking man before, outside the tourist center is like, office buildings and strip malls. It's cool to not just only go to the place right next to the colosseum and find a good restaurant instead, but striving for some big concept of "the real italy" just isn't anything.
Do you have any recommendations for Rome? Going there this summer
We just came back from there! Definitely go to Trastevere for food. I had some bomb pizza at this place called 'Ivo a Trastevere', recommended by our air bnb host. Also another place down the street from there called Suppli where you can get some inexpensive and great street food.
I don’t have any recommends for restaurants, as we just meandered until we saw one we liked and it never turned out bad, ever. Even the “touristy” places had some of the freshest-tasting food I’ve had.
If you need ideas of where to go, we just looked up premade itinerary’s for Rome and cherry picked what sounded interesting to us! The Vatican museums and the Borghese Gallery were some of my favorite places, however.
Oh, also study the transit system there! Incredibly convenient and easy to use. Metro for almost every major place in Rome, and busses for harder to reach areas. Just never use a taxi lol
Definitely visit the Capitoline museum. It's a great bang for your buck and there's a cafe on the roof with gorgeous views.
Don't skip St Peter's. It's incredible.
One of my usual haunts was Spaghetteria L'archetto. It serves spaghetti, you guessed it, but with different sauces from different regions in Italy and around the EU. Pretty cool.
Freni e Frizoni for apertivo. Great mint julep, trust me.
I dont know about restaurants, but here are my 2 cents:
Wear comfortable shoes. Many streets in the historic centre are paved with little rocks... And the centre itself is HUGE. You'll probably end up walking a lot, so my advidce is don't wear heels. I've seen tourists walking barefoot because of a broken heel or footache
Oh and also, if possible, don't bring your trolleys with you on long walks (high risk of damaging the wheels)
Be very, very careful if you are strolling around on a bike or a elecric scooter (both are present in sharing). Car traffic is no joke
Uber is illegal in Italy
EDIT: u/ngfdsa pointed out that it's not illegal anymore
For the love of God, do not bath in the river
Bring a full-charged photo device, you'll need it
Enter every church you see open, they are all beautiful. If you are going to visit St Peter, be aware that when the Pope is celebrating a mass, tourists cannot enter, so search online for upcoming events.
Tap water is generally safe. Even street fountains water is, so you can refill a bottle every time you want. But you cannot drink from the artistic fountains like the Trevi fountain (usually, the ones from you can drink have a little tap)
Edit2: just wanted to specify that in other Italian cities tap water is not safe.
If you have questions, feel free to ask :)
It's a funny thing. I've just been in Barcelona for a week and this is very true, you nearly have to leave the city to find some genuine off the beaten path area without fellow tourists. Also funny because its making this weird assumption that (in this case) Barcelona natives must hardly eat out in their own city because obviously its all for tourists!
Like, at some point you gotta realize that since the whole city is like that that maybe that IS genuine. That the image of the perfect untouched simple country folk from a commercial is the fake image, the italian man that goes to subway for lunch sometimes and the nice pasta restaurant sometimes IS what is real.
Yeah if you want "real" (and cheap) italian food go to a small city outside rome with less that 10000 inhabitants (maybe even without a train stop).
Imagine thinking you're outside "tourist traps" by walking a while lmao.
This is true too. In London, going out from Kensington Gardens puts you in Notting Hill, High Street Kensington, the museums in South Kensington, or Harrods. Going a few blocks from Harrods will put you at the Saatchi Gallery. Going a few blocks from that is the National Army Museum or Chelsea Physic Garden. Tourists go to *all* of these places. Maybe Pimlico is a bit less touristy and more residential, but I don't recall anything that was particularly untrod ground.
I can think of two areas of London where this would kinda work:
1. Going from Oxford St to Fitzrovia. Even then, the restaurants round Oxford St are *fine*, they're just busy and loud from the tourists and more likely to be a chain. You're hardly going to find bargain food in Fitzrovia, but the area is quieter and there are some cracking independent places round there.
2. Going from Wembley Stadium to Ealing Rd. Fantastic South Asian food, no tourists at all, several restaurants with non-English menus. Drawback is its not the nicest area. At all.
Here's a better LPT: If you're spending thousands of dollars on a vacation, make it worth your money by thoroughly researching the city/area before you go. You should already have a general idea of which areas are touristy, which areas are safe, which areas are unsafe, etc. You should also have a list of restaurants popular among the locals.
Obviously everyone travels differently, but to me it seems crazy to travel to a country you've never been to and just randomly pick whatever restaurant you come across. I'm not saying tourist areas should be completely avoided... there is a time and place for them, but if you are looking for authenticity it helps a lot to have some understanding of what you're getting into.
My first time in Chinatown San Francisco, we looked for the place where the chinese speaking folks went for lunch....and while it was kind of a dingy basement restaurant, there were no regrets! This was the trip that changed my mind about chinese food (and made me painfully aware that the buffets are, generally, crap).
San Francisco is kind of unusual in this regard though, because (barring Fisherman’s Wharf), it’s easier to find a great meal than a bad one. The food scene + rent + small square footage, etc just doesn’t allow for mediocrity in restaurants. I lived there for 8 years and genuinely forgot that it’s possible to get bad food at restaurants in other places
edit: square mileage is really what I meant
Never understood why it was cool to dislike the wharf. Great people watching. Close to northbeach and the marina. The seafood/bread bowl carts are great. And they sell cans of beer.
I agree, the location and people watching are good, I was specifically referring to the quality of the restaurants there in relation to tourist traps. That’s my one complaint about the area.
If you don't mind my asking, where were/are you from at that time?
Oh, I wish I could tell you the name of the place...but it was written in Chinese, so I could make no sense of it....and this was in 1997, but my wife and I ate at the same place in 2006 on our honeymoon (we drove coastal highway 1 all the way to LA...which I do not recommend).
There was a shop called the tea house just a block away..."Uncle" Ghee would serve samples of tea, telling you what they were good for (golden throat was our favorite).
That's such a gorgeous drive! Why didn't you like it? Too twisty?
Driving up/down the Highway 1 is a quintessential California experience - truly one of the great drives of the country
I've driven from LA to SF and from SF to LA on the 1, and I've driven the 5 up and down the state more times than I can count.
The 1 will take several more hours, but it will *feel* like a quicker drive because of the beauty of the drive.
So, while the 5 only takes about 6 or 7 hours, it *feels* like 10, whereas the 1 takes about 10, but it feels like 4 or 5 hours.
I think he was asking you where you were living at the time when you ate their first.
Always thought about taking the PCH from LA north. Why do you not reccomend it ?
Definitely take PCH north from LA. It’s absolutely gorgeous. (And pick a good soundtrack. I like to put Ventura Highway by America on around Summerland area).
Authentic does not equal good.
I've eaten at plenty of authentic places while traveling that have been sub par and plenty of touristy spots that had great food.
Then there's the aspect of safety. Touristy spots tend to be safe. Local places, you never know.
And finally there is food safety. Touristy places tend to be cleaner and follow safety standards. Local places can be all over the place.
Good comment. The LPT is far too broad a suggestion to be useful.
Yeah why is nobody talking about safety. Your chances of getting mugged increase exponentially the further you go from tourist areas in a lot of places.
The hell I'm leaving the resort area in Mexico. They have armed security in the tourist areas for a reason.
But this also sort of depends on where you go.
As someone who lives in stockholm, there is no place in the city I would be concerned about getting robbed, no matter what the time is.
And it would be just as safe for an obvious looking tourist.
But if I go to a super touristy area like “gamla stan” in the middle of the day when it’s full of tourists, it is like one of like 2 places where there are pick pockets once in a while.
So the super touristy areas is the only place I ever feel a need to have some type of guard up.
So my suggestion would be for people do research on the country and city you are going to.
Because there isn’t going to be any one rule you can follow that is going to be true for all the places you travel to.
Going on a whim to try and find ‘authentic’ food or spots, in a new place you don’t know much about. Might land you in trouble.
Gets some advice from someone who lives there.
>we'd always walk a few blocks away to where people stopped speaking English
I'm definitely trying this next week when I visit London.
I know it's a joke but that actually works in London. Indian/Pakistani food in London is amazing.
Do not do this in India or Bangladesh. You will get sick and might die of diarrhea. I am not kidding. Eat where you can be assured it's safe.
Also, if you do stray from the “tourist bubble” to get some more authentic cuisine, it is important not to drink the local water in some places. Montezuma’s revenge and similar maladies will ruin your experience.
Source- tried this in Belize and pooped my brains out for 24 hours (sometimes in a shower it was so bad) because I didn’t ask for bottled water.
Lmao I bet this man never ate at Dorsia. I mean, I haven't either /s
The only tourist trap I been to was Katz. The sandwiches aren't bad, but they aren't worth over 20 dollars a piece. If they were 12-15 dollars, it would be the perfect price for a sandwich that quality.
Otherwise, most places in NYC I been to were good to great, even the food in the bodegas.
I always thought that /r/eatsandwiches should require the price that the person paid so there is context
Katz Pastrami sandwich is now $26+ and approaching 30 fast
I did this in Ireland and wound up in a dive bar with a meth head trying to sell me a tub of tide pods. When i asked the bar tender what they had for food he responded soup and sandwich. when i asked what kind of soup and sandwich he responded with "its soup and a sandwich"
It was just a soup and a sandwich.
I've done a lot of travelling, and often the food near the tourist spots is genuinely good, and authentic. The "go where the local go" idea works, but the reason the locals dont go to the places tourists go is because of (you guessed it) tourists. not the authenticity. You can tell right away the food in a place is shit before you even sit down.
There's really nothing wrong with being a tourist or doing touristy things.
As someone who lives in a city a lot of tourists come to, we go to places off the beaten path so we don't have to deal with tourists. When tourists find and start coming to the places we go to avoid them, then we have to go to other places to get away. Not trying to be a dick, but just explaining the reality of tourist locations from a more local perspective.
In Venice we befriended some uni students, who took us literally one street off the main thoroughfare and had awesome food for about half the price.
Yesterday I got seated at a table by the bathroom with cleaning solution stored under the table and proceeded to eat the best Pho in Boston. And I’d do it again.
As a celiac this thread makes me afraid to travel.
A few blocks? You really need to walk like 20 blocks from Rockefeller Center to get anything decent hahahaha.
First time in NYC, went to Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. What a regret.
Lol, I love the scene on The Office where Michael Scott goes: “Oh, look! A Sbarro. My favorite New York pizza joint. And I'm going to go get me a New York slice!”
Visits new Jersey
Also avoid eating at any place where there is waiter at the door trying to get you to come in.
One being in Morocco I gave this rule up and got the best freshly caught fish dinner ever at a fair price. We were their first customers that evening, and everyone (and me as well) were avoiding places where no one sits yet