The world’s best eats don’t always come cheap. But there’s a way to get a taste of fresh seafood and gourmet cuisine without breaking the bank. Forget about Tokyo and Paris; there are new food scenes that’ll keep your wallet and taste buds happy. So grab your passport, loosen your (seat)belt, and dig in to these eight up-and-coming foodie cities.
1. Mumbai, India
Mumbai’s street food is part of why some consider it to be the food capital of India. Look for the city’s most popular dish, vada pav, a deep-fried potato sandwich topped with chutney. Don’t leave without getting your fill of authentic Goan bites and kebabs at the city’s famous food trucks.
2. Hanoi, Vietnam
Cheap yet delicious eats are the reason Hanoi makes the list. Head over to the Old Quarter for sticky rice wrapped in banana leaves, or slurp up some Obama and Bourdain-approved noodles for a reasonable price.
3. Dubrovnik, Croatia
Dubrovnik’s location along the Dalmatian coastline makes it a perfect spot for Mediterranean plates. Dive into fresh seafood dishes like octopus salad, fried squid, and black risotto (which gets its dark color from cuttlefish ink).
4. Malmö, Sweden
An influx of migrants and refugees has transformed Malmö into a diverse culinary landscape, home to some of the best Syrian food outside of Syria. If you’re looking for something local, go to Vollmers for Michelin-starred Scandinavian.
5. Warsaw, Poland
Warsaw is another great gastronomic bargain. For less than 10 euros, you can find gourmet meals like steak tartare and pâté. Stroll along the cobbled streets in Old Town to sample traditional Polish pierogis, or opt for Japanese poke and Peruvian ceviche at one of the city’s fusion restaurants.
6. Mexico City, Mexico
Choose from UNESCO-approved street food or fine dining at one (or two) of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants. Then burn off those wonderful calories roaming through La Merced, Mexico City’s largest food market.
7. Nova Scotia, Canada
Dubbed ‘Canada’s Ocean Playground,’ Nova Scotia’s home to world-renowned Digby scallops, Cape Breton oysters, and some of the most fertile lobster fishing grounds on the planet. Prefer fresh produce? Fiddlehead ferns, chanterelle mushrooms, and wild blueberries are staples on the city’s farm to table scene.
8. Palermo, Italy
Palermo is the godfather of Italian street food. Leave your diet at the airport and go for the traditional sfincione (spongy pizza). More adventurous eaters can try the pani ca meusa, a sesame roll packed with beef spleen sizzled in lard and topped with ricotta.
Looking to get your fill of international eats in one place? Check out how you can eat your way around the world without leaving NYC’s five boroughs.