The most important factors involved in visiting a new place is to see a place that you’ve never seen before and to be exposed to a new culture. However there is yet another reason that has been quite popular in the recent years and that is; to visit places based on their culinary culture. Recent year’s most popular type of tourism, the culinary tourism helps people understand the food culture of the places through many different activities.
Turkey, following the same trend, is one of those countries where the culinary tourism has become very popular over the years. Whether tourists within Turkey or outside of Turkey visit certain cities and towns with only one goal in mind; to taste the local food or get to know a certain city or region through its cuisine. Obviously the most effective way to get to know the culinary culture of a place is to taste the local food. However there are many other activities that introduces the local cuisine. Cooking classes or demonstrations are one way to do that. Another way is by visiting the local marketplaces and [preferably small] production centers that produce locally unique products, watching the production process and get a tasting at the end. An example can be given in the case of olive oil. In the month of November, during a trip to Ayvalık, Edremit region, that is known as the olive oil capital of Turkey, the visitors can experience olive harvesting, learn how to process the olives, visit a factory and find out about the making of olive oil and in the end get to taste freshly squeezed olive oil. The tour would not be complete without tasting the wonderful local cuisine cooked with olive oil using the local products.
Whether you plan a custom trip on your own, or go through a travel agency to join one of their tours, the gastronomic travels have become the tourism of choice in the recent years, and it is one of the most delicious way to get to know a new place and culture.