Why Food is the Best Way to Experience New Cultures –– and How to Do So At Home


Whether you’re dreaming of jetting off to a far-away destination (The South of France, anyone?) or virtually planning your next getaway once it’s safe to fuly travel again, travel is on all of our minds right now. 

The world is full of delicious flavors to savor, from creamy gelato to delicious dim sum and nearly everything in between. Even if you’re not a self-proclaimed foodie, you can still appreciate a solid meal on vacation, whether that’s in the form of a Michelin-starred dinner or a locals-approved brunch staple at the hole-in-the-wall cafe. When you savor local cuisine, you’re not only expanding your palette, but you’re also experiencing the culture of that specific destination. 

And, although we may not be able to travel anywhere now (thanks, corona!), you can still transport your tastebuds. For example, Airbnb (@airbnbexperiences) offers tons of online cooking classes — think pasta-making taught by an Italian nonna, mole straight from Mexico, and dozens more. Context Travel (@contexttravel) also provides hundreds of foodie-approved courses and seminars as part of its recently established “Context Conversations” program. A few of our favorites include the Spanish Wine seminar, an Irish cooking class, and an Exploration of French Cheese. The Chef and The Dish (@thechefandthedish) is another service that offers private, chef-led virtual cooking classes. (think Vietnamese, Brazilian, and beyond). 

So, while you may not be able to pack up your bags *just* yet, you can still (virtually!) eat your way through plenty of destinations around the world — all while mingling with locals and forging meaningful connections for years to come.

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