As many dedicated foodies will know, hunting for the most incredible food spots when traveling requires a savvy approach. There are plenty of bustling food markets, charming eateries, and hidden culinary gems around the world to explore – but where are the best cities to be a foodie?
To find out, the experts at Spin Genie looked at various factors, such as the average cost of visiting a restaurant in different parts of the world, the cities with the most restaurants, and the most Instagrammable food spots.
Whether you’re looking to try out sizzling street food in Bangkok or seeking the ultimate Michelin-star experience in Paris, we’ll reveal the ultimate travel guide for food lovers and unique spots to indulge in flavourful cuisines from across the globe.
The Best Foodie Cities Around the World
1. George Town, Malaysia - 7.86/10
George Town takes the crown as the best foodie city, scoring 7.86 out of 10. The colourful, multicultural capital is surrounded by stunning colonial streets and is described as a center for vibrant culture, street art, and the country’s best street food.
Also in the top place for its wide range of affordable food spots, George Town has plenty to offer food lovers, from Michelin-starred feasts to street eats. Teksen Restaurant is a top choice, serving delicious dishes since 1965. The well-known Chinese restaurant among its locals has won the hearts of serious foodies with its traditional Cantonese cuisine infused with a local twist.
2. Taipei, Taiwan - 7.31/10
Taipei follows closely behind, scoring 7.31 out of 10. The food capital of Taiwan offers an array of things to experience and explore, from the island’s fascinating temple culture and architecture to its indulgent food at affordable prices.
Some of the best food spots for quality, flavourful dishes and good service in the capital include Din Tai Fung, which has been serving traditional Chinese dishes since its opening
in the 1980s. Another top-rated restaurant is Raw, a French-style restaurant with vibrant cuisine infused with Taiwanese flavours.
3. Osaka, Japan - 7.24/10
Described as the economic powerhouse of the Kansai Region, Osaka is a large port city known for its modern architecture, vibrant nightlife, and hearty street food. If you’re looking for some of the best food spots in Japan, Osaka has plenty to offer.
Osaka Cuisine Asai is a Michelin-star restaurant that serves various course meals made with fresh, seasonal ingredients daily. With such a vibrant food scene, it's no wonder the popular city completes the top three, scoring 7.24 out of 10.
The Most Affordable Foodie Cities for a Quick Bite
1. Chiang Mai, Thailand
Average cost at a cheap restaurant: C$1.98
Chiang Mai grabs first place as the foodie city with the most affordable meals at a cheap restaurant. On average, meals are incredibly inexpensive, costing just C$1.98. Some of the best cheap eats in Chiang Mai include The Breakfast Club, a bakery restaurant at the heart of Chiang Mai, and Tong Tem Toh, a popular restaurant specializing in Northern Thai cuisine.
The Most Expensive Foodie Cities for a Quick Bite
1. London, England
Average cost at a cheap restaurant: C$34.70
London tops the list when it comes to the foodie city you’ll most likely pay more for, even while dining at a cheap restaurant. The capital city harbours some of the world's best hotels, bars, and restaurants, but sometimes at a hefty price.
With over 300 Michelin-star restaurants in the city alone, it’s no surprise London has a wide range of food hot spots that tend to be more expensive. In fact, on average, you can expect to spend C$34.70 for a meal.
Foodie Cities with the Most Affordable Mid-range Restaurants
1. George Town, Malaysia
Average cost at a mid-range restaurant: C$13.46
George Town tops the list for having some of the most affordable meals at a mid-range restaurant. On average, a meal for two costs as little as C$13.46, much lower than in many other major foodie cities.
One of the most popular areas for street food is New Lane; here, you can find stalls selling everything from BBQ chicken wings to rice noodle rolls at highly affordable prices.
Foodie Cities with the Most Expensive Mid-range Restaurants
1. Copenhagen, Denmark
Average cost at a mid-range restaurant: C$160.21
Described as a classy city with many small independent galleries and cafés, Copenhagen offers diverse worldwide cuisines, from Taiwanese to Ethiopian food spots. There are also around 68 Michelin-starred fine dining restaurants within the city.
It comes as no surprise that the city is the most expensive for a meal. As a matter of fact, it costs as much as C$160.21 for a three-course dinner for two. If you're seeking a Michelin-star experience for a moderate price, Selma is a great restaurant to experience traditional Danish lunch.
The Foodie Cities with the Most Cheap Restaurants
1. George Town, Malaysia
Total number of cheap restaurants: 280
Number of cheap restaurants per 10,000 population: 17.7
With many favourites, such as Siam Road Charcoal Char Kuey Teow, New Lane Street Food stalls, and the Tai Tong Restaurant, it is no surprise that George Town grabs first place as the city with the most affordable joints. There are just under 300 cheap eats to discover in George Town, with roughly 17.7 cheap restaurants per 10,000 population.
The Foodie City with the Most Mid-range Restaurants
1. Paris, France
Total number of mid-range restaurants: 8,410
Number of mid-range restaurants per 10,000 population: 36.6
The capital of France and a major European city, Paris, is one of the global centers for art, fashion, culture, and, of course, food. Known for its cafe culture, there are plenty of opportunities to grab a bite.
Le Truffaut, Maison, and Le Cadoret, which serve classic French food, are just some of the hottest restaurants in Paris right now.
The Foodie City with the Most Fine-dining Restaurants
1. Paris, France
Total number of fine dining restaurants: 709
Number of fine dining restaurants per 10,000 population: 3.1
Once again, Paris tops the list for the foodie city with the most fine-dining restaurants. The city has, on average, 3.1 fine-dining restaurants per 10,000 of the population. From Odette to Atelier Maître Albert, the city has an impressive 709 fine-dining restaurants in total. This comes as no surprise as the famous capital is home to some of the most renowned restaurants in the world.
The Most Instagrammed Foodie Hotspots
1. Melbourne, Australia
Instagram hashtags: #Melbournefoodie
Number of Instagram hashtags: 2.8 Million
Melbourne takes the crown for the most Instagrammed food spot with a whopping 2.8 million posts for the hashtag #Melbournefoodie. Some of the most Instagrammable dining experiences include Sebastian, a restaurant reminiscent of the sunny shores of San Sebastian; The Kettle Black, a café featured in Vogue Living; and Higher Ground, a one-of-a-kind location with three levels of dining space and 15-meter high ceilings.
Highest-earning Influential Foodies
1. Gordon Ramsay
Potential earnings: C$64,965 (£37,740)
When it comes to the highest-earning foodie influencer in the world, it comes as no surprise that the British celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay tops the list with an impressive potential earnings figure of C$64,965 (£37,740) per sponsored post on Instagram.
During his career, the multi-Michelin-starred chef has opened a string of successful restaurants worldwide, including the UK, France and Singapore. Also a star on the small screen, Gordon Ramsey has been featured in shows such as MasterChef US, Kitchen Nightmares, Hell’s Kitchen, and Hotel Hell.
Thriving as one of the most famous restaurateurs today, the MasterChef has some top-tier restaurants for foodies to visit, such as the Restaurant Gordon Ramsay located on Royal Hospital Road in Chelsea, London. Holding three Michelin stars, foodies can expect nothing but the finest seasonal ingredients for the most elegant modern French cuisines.
The Best Foodie Cities in the US and Canada
1. Savannah, Georgia - 7.86/10
Savannah tops the list as the best foodie city, scoring 7.86 out of 10, known for its beautiful coastal landscapes, charming architecture, and its rich, vibrant history. The city’s food scene is just as impressive. From plentiful coastal cuisines to flavours from around the world – Savannah knows how to serve a good time and a good meal.
A top foodie destination in Savannah for locals, tourists, and celebrities alike is the Olympia Cafe. After more than three decades in business, the dining establishment thrives, serving up a storm with its much-loved traditional Greek and Mediterranean menu.
2. Las Vegas, Nevada - 7.78/10
In second place is Nevada’s finest – Las Vegas, with a score of 7.78 out of 10. The food scene in Las Vegas has grown to become a so-called “Gourmet Rooms” galore hailed by celebrities.
From Bardot Brasserie to Wing Lei, the first Chinese restaurant in the United States to be awarded a Michelin star, the city has every genre of food imaginable, all at various price points.
3. Atlanta, Georgia - 7.26/10
Ranking in third place is Atlanta, scoring 7.26 out of 10. From century-old diners to award-winning eateries, Atlanta offers some of the best dining experiences in the country and is described as one of the nation’s best food cities. The city caters to all tastes and palates, whether you prefer classic southern cuisines or top-tier modern dishes.
Bacchanalia is one of the top-rated restaurants in the city, offering guests a complete dining experience. You will not be disappointed if you opt for their signature dishes or divine four-course tasting menu.
Foodie Cities in the US and Canada with the Most Affordable Quick Bites
1. Savannah, Georgia
Average cost of a meal at a cheap restaurant: C$16.26 (US$12.00)
When it comes to foodie cities with the most affordable meal at a cheap restaurant, Savannah grabs first place with an average of C$16.26 (US$12.00) for a decent plate of food.
If you’re looking for a new dinner spot to try out, Savannah has an array of places to add to your list, including southern favourites such as The Olde Pink House. Whether you’re in search of classic southern cuisines such as shrimp, grits, and buttery biscuits or a plant-based brunch, you won’t run out of options.
Foodie Cities in the US and Canada with the Most Expensive Quick Bites
1. Saint John, New Brunswick
Average cost of a meal at a cheap restaurant: C$35.41 (US$26.13)
Home to a variety of cafes and restaurants that offer an array of colourful cuisines, international dishes, and the ultimate Canadian comfort foods, Saint John tops the list as the foodie city with the most expensive meals at a cheap restaurant. On average, you can expect to pay C$35.41 (US$26.13).
Foodie Cities in the US and Canada with the Most Affordable Mid-range Restaurants
1. Winnipeg, Manitoba
Average cost of a meal at a mid-range restaurant: C$75.89 (US$56.00)
Winnipeg has many great food spots. In fact, a couple of the city’s restaurants are seen as some of Canada’s best eateries, with an average price of C$75.89 (US$56.00). If you’re looking for a trend-setting eatery in Winnipeg, Deer and Almond is the perfect blend of global and local flavours.
Foodie Cities in the US and Canada with the Most Expensive Mid-range Restaurants
1. Seattle, Washington
Average cost of a meal at a mid-range restaurant: C$162.63 (US$120.00)
Surrounded by the Olympic mountains and evergreen forests, Seattle is a hub for many attractions, entertainment, and food and drink spots. The beautiful food scene in the city offers visitors anything from local seafood to downtown gems.
Whether you want to try classic or unique cuisine, Seattle offers it all, from Pacific Northwest cuisine inspired by Filipino-American flavours to contemporary dishes bursting with rich seasonings. However, these delicious cuisines come with a hefty price tag. The average meal cost at a mid-range restaurant in Seattle is C$162.63 (US$120.00).
The Foodie Cities in the US and Canada with the Most Cheap Restaurants
1. Victoria, British Columbia
Number of mid-range per 10,000 population: 11.2
A great place for food lovers to explore and enjoy the local culinary scene is Victoria. The Canadian city has a host of hidden foodie gems and fine dining hotspots that will leave you spoilt for choice.
The city not only has a thriving culinary scene, but it is also the top destination with the highest number of cheap restaurants in both the US and Canada, with an estimated 11.2 affordable restaurants per 10,000 population.
Foodie Cities in the US and Canada with the Most Mid-range Restaurants
1. Victoria, British Columbia
Number of mid-range per 10,000 population: 36.7
Also the top foodie city with the highest number of cheap restaurants, Victoria once again tops the list with the highest number of mid-range restaurants in both the US and Canada.
Whether it’s mouth-watering Chinese cuisine or Danish baked goodies, the city has enough colour and flavour to satisfy culinary cravings at any price point. As a result of its large, diverse range of eateries, Victoria has approximately 36.7 mid-range restaurants per 10,000 population.
The Foodie Cities with the Most Fine-dining Restaurants in the US and Canada
1. Las Vegas, Nevada
Number of fine dining per 10,000 population: 2.3
From Michelin-starred restaurants to world-class cuisine, Las Vegas offers a memorable dining experience. The city tops the list with an estimated 2.3 fine dining establishments per 10,000.
Whether it's indulging in traditional French fare at Joël Robuchon or immersing yourself in the mouth-watering experience of Japanese delicacies at the world-famous Nobu in Caesars Palace, even the most demanding culinary appetite is guaranteed satisfaction.
The Most Instagrammed Foodie Hotspots in the US and Canada
1. New York City, New York
Instagram hashtags: #NYCfoodie
Number of Instagram posts: 2.1 Million
As a city bursting with character, it is no surprise that New York City takes the top spot for the most Instagrammable dining experiences. From floral-covered interior designs to chic modern rooftops, the Big Apple really does have something for everyone.
Filled with iconic landmarks, the popular city bagged over 2.1 million posts on Instagram using the hashtag #NYCfoodie.
Highest-earning Influential Foodies in the US and Canada
1. Chrissy Teigen
Potential earnings: C$182,849 (US$135,150)
With several best-selling cookbooks under her belt, the American model and TV personality Chrissy Teigen is crowned first place as the highest-earning foodie influencer on Instagram across the US and Canada.
The popular star has also been featured on several cooking channels, such as Cookies and Cocktails and Chrissy Teigen's Hungry. She also launched her own cooking website back in 2019. Therefore it’s no wonder that the well-known star is estimated to make a whopping sum per sponsored post on the social media platform.
Some of Teigen's favourite food spots include Giorgio Baldi, a popular restaurant on the Pacific Coast and Via Veneto, a lively Italian eatery in Santa Monica that combines organic and locally sourced ingredients with its creative cuisines.
Using a list of articles such as Time Out and Luxury Columnist, we created a seed list of the top foodie cities around the world. With this list, we then used Numbeo to source the average cost of a cheap restaurant as well as the cost of a three-course meal for two people at a mid-range restaurant. Please note that each currency used was also taken from Numbeo. This data was collected on 01/08/2023.
Then, using Trip Advisor, we gathered data on the number of cheap, mid-range, and fine-dining restaurants by using the relevant filters on the site. The data collected was solely based on the number of restaurants from within each city, not including nearby areas. Data collection of this was completed on 21/08/2023.
To calculate per 10,000 population, we used City Population to search for each city’s population. We took the most current data available for each location and only considered cities with more than 50,000 population. This data was completed on 16/08/2023.
To find out which cities are the most Instagrammable, we used Instagram to search for various hashtags relating to each city e.g. #[CITY]foodie. This data collection was completed on 22/08/2023.
Using various articles from Google, we also compiled a list of the top foodie influencers, considering how many followers they have on the social media platform. We then calculated their highest estimated potential earnings per sponsored post by using the Instagram Influencer Sponsored Post Money Calculator. The data collection for this section was completed on 23/08/2023.
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