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Culinary travel is on the rise with recent research revealing six in 10 holidaymakers go abroad purely for food. Here, the travel experts at luxury cruise agent Panache Cruises share their top foodie capitals of the world.

THE GLOBAL culinary tourism market is tipped to have a value of more than $3.4 billion by 2028.

“Lots of holidaymakers are fascinated with food and find it fun to learn about international cuisine while they are away,” said James Cole, Founder and Managing Director of luxury cruise specialists Panache Cruises.

Here are the company’s top 10 cities to help guide foodies on their gastronomic adventures.

1 Tokyo

As of 2023, Tokyo’s restaurants have more than 200 Michelin stars between them, the most in the world.

Their culinary scene is packed to an exceptional standard and often credited to traditional street vendors who are renowned for adding a Japanese twist to foreign dishes.

2 Paris

One of the world’s gastronomic capitals and renowned for its Michelin-starred restaurants, top chefs and wealth of food, especially its brunches and sweet treats.

Tempting patisseries, chocolatiers and fromageries are everywhere, making the city a dream destination for foodies.

3 Hong Kong

Known as one of the best cities in Asia for foodies, Hong Kong has the highest density of restaurants in the world and is referred to as the “World’s Food Fair.”

It has it all; from street food to fine luxury dining, there is an extraordinary array of classic, traditional and fusion dishes.

4 New York

The Big Apple is full of iconic and old-school dishes and has arguably shaped the modern western dining scene with the likes of pizza, burgers, bagels and cheesecake.

Over the years, the range of food has expanded into cuisines from across the globe – making food from all over the world accessible in one place.

5 London

Another global gourmet destination with award-winning restaurants and critically acclaimed chefs.

The dining scene in the city is incredibly vibrant and versatile, bustling with high-end luxury experiences, food markets and traditional establishments with a classic British flare.

6 Bangkok

The best place in the world to eat authentic Thai food. It has long been declared the world’s street food capital, bustling with street vendors and pop-up stalls. Not only is the food fresh and delicious, but it is also very cheap.

7 Singapore

Famous for its traditional fresh dishes submerged in herbs and spices and rich in taste and flavour. 

China, Malaysia and India heavily influence its culinary styles and while most of the food is traditional, it has delicious modern touches.

8 Berlin

Known for its flourishing food scene inspired by its global population, Berlin has seen an increase in innovative chefs setting up restaurants and pop-ups.

It is not all side-of-the-road sausages; there is an array of dining options, including Michelin-starred cuisine.

9 Barcelona

A vast range of traditional local dishes are available in Barcelona, voted the best Spanish city for food.

Their famous Catalonian dishes are seafood-heavy, nutritious, rich in herbs and spices, and the perfect light bites for summer.

10 Rome

Situated in the heart of Italy, known for its long-standing love of eating out and its rich sense of tradition, Rome’s cuisine is tasty, robust and full of carbs.

Best known for its pasta and pizza, masses of rustic trattorias are waiting to serve its simple and loved food.