The long expected break is here! Your bags are packed so you can leave in the next few days. But together with the excitement of new adventures you may be wondering how to eat vegan when on holiday.
Let’s face it, skipping animal products at home where you easily control what’s in your fridge and on your plate is one thing. But when it comes to eating this way while abroad, it can be a challenge.
And to be honest, it doesn’t really matter how proficient you’re. Places you go and people you see often have different views, customs and preferences. As a result it’s not usual that you can’t control or decide what and where to eat.
So should it stress you in advance? Nope.
Should you prepare beforehand to feel as comfortable and happy with your holiday diet as possible? Yes.
When you do, you’ll leave home relaxed, knowing that the chances of slipping off your path are reduced to a minimum. With this in mind, you can fully embrace the special moments your travel has prepared for you.
After all, a holiday is about enjoyment, being able to relax and experience everything local. Your well-deserved break has finally arrived and you stressing about what and where to eat shouldn’t cloud this special time.
And if you’re wondering whether you can have it all? The truth is… almost.
You can eat in line with your goals while having a good taste of the local treats. What counts is your attitude and doing a little homework in advance.
Your holiday starts at home
Before you leave, it’s always handy to explore what your holiday destination can offer. It takes only a few minutes to email or call the place you’re staying at to ask them what vegan or vegetarian options they have on the menu. When you’re talking to the staff, also ask them what’s for breakfast, whether there are any local restaurants, markets or shops where you could find your favourite foods.
After having a friendly chat you’ll get a feel of how plant-focused the place is and you put your mind at ease knowing what to expect.
Usually any hotel, B&B or pension has lot of plant based options to eat. Breakfast cereals, soy milk, juices, fruit and veg can set you up for a good start of the day. If you feel you can’t rely on the foods available at the morning buffet, you can always take some vegan pate with you, small cartons of plant milks, crackers, nut butter, avocado or hummus and enjoy it with the local wholegrain bread and some tomatoes or salad.
When in Rome, do as the Romans do!
The main reason we travel is to leave the familiar and comforting behind and experience something new, exciting and special. Travelling and holidays is to our lives as spice is to food. It brings different flavours and light into our days, teaching us there is something more out there than our own work and family we’re so used to.
So, don’t be afraid to explore. Blend in with the local people and their customs. Ask about their specialities, pickles, spices, fruits and vegetables. Very often a lot of local foods are naturally vegan or at least vegetarian. The rest is up to you.
When you go to the markets and talk to locals you’re likely to see the place through their eyes. You may even discover a new type of beauty surrounding you which you would have missed otherwise.
Download an app
For the moments when you’re completely at a loss for ideas, having an app showing vegan and vegetarian options near you may feel like a light in the dark. You can download one of these cheaply at www.happycow.net and it’ll point out the various shops, cafes and markets close by.
Vegan twist in a menu
Never mind how much you plan or schedule in advance, sometimes your holiday is like a game of cards. Unexpected, up and down, waiting to serve you what the occasion has to offer. For moments like these, when you get to a restaurant and all you can see is a steak, don’t panic.
Every menu has some hidden gems. Only sometimes you may need to dig a little deeper.
First, look at the vegetarian options and ask whether they could be made vegan. If all you get is a strange look on your waiter’s face, check out the side dishes. You can easily combine at least three or four of them and create a nutritious vegan meal crafted specially for you.
You can have baked potatoes, grilled mushrooms and some vegetables on the side. Or how about a green salad, pickled veggies and rice with some tomatoes? You never know, you may end up with a beautiful dinner the others can only be envious of.
During our holiday we can sometimes end up obsessing about the food we eat for no benefit to us or our loved ones.
I mean, what’s the point of hunting down the perfect vegan restaurant while missing all the beauties, adventures and holiday stories? The truth is that when you come home, you’re likely to forget about the green salad with the amazing tahini dressing you had.
What stays in you however, are those people you laughed with, the paintings that warmed your heart and the scenery that hugged your soul.
Enjoy every minute of your break. Then when you come back home, simply pick up from where you left off, with a bowl of bean curry infused with the holiday spices you brought as a reminder of your adventures.
Now it’s your turn! Share with me in the comments below:
What is the one action you’re going to take on your next holiday to feel relaxed and happy about the food you eat?
Thank you so much for sharing.
Cheers to your sunny break 🙂