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Culinary hotspots of the world!

The culinary experience of travel is often as important as the comfort of a hotel or sightseeing opportunities. And whilst trying new restaurants and fine dining eateries is fun, so too is exploring food markets over the world. Local culture, exotic foods and flavours, fresh produce, new smells, an array of colours… find all this and more on a holiday like no other!

The Flexicover Team suggest some food markets around the world for all you gourmands and budding chefs.

Tsukiji Fish Market; Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo is a great city for a foodie – it has more Michelin-starred restaurants than London, Paris and New York combined. If you are an ardent fish lover, you won’t want to miss a visit to the Tsukiji fish market (also known as the Tokyo Metropolitan Central Wholesale Market), one of the largest in the world, handling over 2,000 tons of marine produce a day. This unique market attracts tourists for the early morning tuna auctions from 5am! You will be blown away by the varieties of seafood and the sheer spectacle of the market. And after you’ve seen enough, why not start your day with a fresh sushi breakfast or lunch in a nearby eatery – fish does not come any fresher!

La Grande Épicerie; Paris, France

Originally established as a food hall in 1923, La Grande Épicerie is a huge speciality delicatessen and the largest of its kind in the city, situated beside the venerable Le Bon Marché department store on the Left Bank of the Seine. With over 30,000 different products from all over the world, it’s no surprise that it attracts more than 8,000 visitors a day. With the most exquisite desserts made on site, a wine cellar that boasts a range of over 3,000 champagnes and spirits and even the largest selection of bottled water in France, this is a one-of-a-kind shopping experience! And in a city renowned for style and fashion, look out for the pristine packaging, it’s a key selling point - everything must look as good as it tastes; a veritable visual story! A feast for the eyes and a rare delight to the senses!

Peck; Milan, Italy

No gourmet trip to Milan would be complete without stopping at Peck, founded in 1883 and one of Europe’s most famous food emporiums, located in the Central Square. Enthusiasts will love this place which boasts a labyrinthine wine cellar, an enormous delicatessen with over one hundred types of cheese, ham and olives, and a bakery spread over several floors! And if that wasn’t enough, visit the café on the 2nd floor for a freshly brewed coffee or just an elegant spot of lunch. Whether you pop into Peck for some treats, a gift basket for your friends and family back home, to grab a picnic lunch or just for a stylish saunter, this Milanese pit-stop will be a memorable experience.

Mercado de La Merced; Mexico

The capital’s largest traditional food market is definitely worth a visit if you appreciate fresh produce and local specialities. The market comprises several buildings selling a variety of household goods and produce but the largest warehouse is dedicated to fruit, vegetables and spices. The market boasts an electric atmosphere, where all extremes of Mexico come together, the glamorous and the chic, amidst all its poverty and overcrowding. And no Mexican market would be complete without chillies of course. La Merced offers over 150 varieties of chillies for those who enjoy a culinary kick! So make a visit to enjoy the exciting and spicy, if chaotic, experience.

La Boqueria; Barcelona, Spain

Often regarded as one of the premier food markets in Europe, La Boqueria is a well known sight in Barcelona and a favourite of tourists and locals alike. Formally known as the Mercat de Sant Josep de la Boqueria, there has been a market on this site since 1217, originally selling meat before diversifying later. Its central location on the Ramblas, the variety of fresh foods from around the world, the hustle and bustle and the excitement of bargaining, draw in thousands of people each day. Enjoy the smell of the freshest foods and the best products of Catalonia under one roof. Selling just about everything from fruit & vegetables, fresh fish, live king crabs, spices, sweets, flowers and tapas, it is no surprise that this market was awarded the prize for the best market in the world in 2005!

Whichever food market you are lucky enough to visit and wherever you decide to travel, Flexicover Direct, the travel insurance specialist, is committed to providing the highest level of service to ensure that you are safe and secure, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year when away.

If you are travelling soon, have a great trip!