As you know, I love to travel and have visited places all over the world. It’s amazing to try new things, and experience new cultures. I love tasting all the different kinds of foods and trying new flavors everywhere I go. But sometimes all that newness can get overwhelming, and you just want a little taste of home. It’s amazing what a burger and fries can do to help you feel more at home and to stop missing home quite as much. Here are some ways to get a taste of home when you’re traveling.
Try the Local Twist on American Food
As you travel, it’s easy to find yourself craving familiar foods. While you can always just make your own versions of American favorites in a hostel kitchen or at local markets, why not try some traditional local dishes as well? You can get local pizza in many places, but often they put their own local ingredients on them that make them an interesting dish. You still get a taste of home, but with a new and fun twist.
Ask the Locals
If you want to get a taste of America when traveling abroad, ask the locals for recommendations. You’ll find that most people are happy to help and will give you plenty of suggestions on where to go and what to look out for. This is especially true if it’s your first time in their country or city, as they may feel like they are helping someone who might be an ambassador for them and their country if they give their best advice. The more specific the question, the better.
Get a Box Sent to You
When you’re staying in one place for a while, you can easily get some items shipped from Amazon or from a favorite vendor. There are even delightful gourmet soup delivery services that have everything you need to make your favorite comfort foods while you’re on the other side of the world. Ask your family or friends to send you your favorite treats on occasion.
Look for Specialty Stores in High-End Shopping Districts
If you’re in a high-end shopping district, look for specialty stores. These are places that sell products of a particular type. You might find a food district that has restaurants where you can more easily find foods from home. You can also often find “international” stores that carry some local favorites like Oreo cookies and Yoplait yogurt. Be prepared to spend a lot more money in these places than you usually do, but for a taste of home, it can be well worth it.
Find an American Bar or Restaurant
There are American bars, restaurants, and cafés, in almost every major city around the world. They often cater to expats, diplomats, and visitors from all over. Look for places with a US flag out front or restaurants/bars that show American sports on TV. If there’s a place where lots of Americans eat and drink, chances are it will have what you’re looking for. If possible, try to find a place with a menu in English as well as the local language — this can be difficult depending on where you’re traveling. But if it’s just too hard or time-consuming to do all this legwork, here are some recommended spots:
Search for a Military Base Nearby
Most countries have a military base near them, and these bases can be a great resource for travelers. A base may have a commissary, which is like an American grocery store, but with more variety and lower prices than you’d find at home. It will also probably have a PX, where you can find things like snacks and gifts. In addition to food options, the base may also offer recreational facilities such as gyms and libraries. While these facilities are not open to everyone, if you are military or former military you may be able to get access to them while you are overseas.
Consult an App and Check Hostel Message Boards
With a hostel, you can expect to have access to amenities that make your stay more comfortable. You may be able to store luggage or leave it at the front desk while you explore the city. You might be able to use their WiFi or even borrow toiletries from the front desk if yours go missing. These places also have message boards and can be a great resource for finding food sources more like home when you’re away.
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