Best Countries to Visit for Travelers on a Vegan DietJuly 20, 2020 | By Leah Freeman-Haskin
Nowadays, local vegan options are a lot easier to come by in the States, but traveling while vegan can still be a bit tricky. Although plant-based restaurants are popping up across the globe, animal products are still a staple in many cultures’ cuisines. If you are looking for a destination that celebrates plant-based and cruelty-free dishes, here are a few countries that are incredibly vegan-friendly.
Tel Aviv, Israel’s stunning coastal capital city, has proclaimed itself the “vegan capital of the world”. Israel’s most popular traditional dishes are already meat-free including hummus, baba ganoush, falafel, and Israeli salads, but seemingly overnight, the city of Tel Aviv has seen a surge in restaurants revamping their entire menus to offer 100% totally vegan options. These changes are the result of a growing trend and demand for cruelty-free dining seen throughout Tel Aviv and even across Israel.
Taipei, Taiwan takes the top spot on PETA’s list of the Top 10 Vegan-Friendly Cities in Asia, thanks in part to its array of vegan and vegan-friendly dining options. According to Happy Cow, Taiwan boasts nearly 1,000 vegetarian and vegan-friendly restaurants across the country. The rising popularity in plant-based foods can be attributed to many factors including the government’s call for citizens to partake in a ‘meat-free day’ once a week.
According to Vegan Society, in 2018, the UK launched more vegan products than any nation on the planet. They also reported that the demand for meat-free food in the UK increased by 987% in 2017 and going vegan was predicted to be the biggest food trend in 2018. The UK is proudly home to over 11,000 vegetarian and vegan-friendly restaurants and pubs, making it easy to find plant-based options throughout the country.
Number two on PETA’s list of the Top 10 Vegan-Friendly Cities in Asia, Singapore is a small nation that packs a punch when it comes to the number of vegetarian and vegan restaurants. From burger joints to popular local Chinese style dishes, travelers to Singapore will have a host of options to choose from. Be sure to plan ahead, during tourist season, restaurants are known to fill up quickly.
If you are traveling to rural areas in India it may be difficult to find entirely plant-based options. Vegetarians will have an easier time navigating the country’s food scene, but vegans surely won’t go hungry. Traditional dishes like vegetable samosa, vegetable biryani, pakoras, and channa masala, are all vegan friendly and are served throughout the region. Happy Cow estimates India has just over 1,000 vegan and vegetarian-friendly restaurants just waiting for you to experience.
It’s always good to have a plan in place and a list of a couple of highly-rated restaurants you want to visit before arriving at your destination, especially if you have specific dietary needs. Call ahead to make reservations if needed, ask about current COVID-19 related restrictions, browse the menu beforehand, and enjoy your plant-based culinary exploration!