The Best Foodie Destinations to Visit by Superyacht
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Istanbul, Turkey

If you're a food-lover looking for your next superyacht cruise destination, head to these foodie destinations to satiate your cravings for the world's best food on-shore.

Istanbul, Turkey

Food stalls are found on every corner of Istanbul's streets. The abundance of chewy Turkish ice cream, coal-grilled corn cobs and pistachio-stuffed baklava in the historic centre of Sultanahmet reflect the inherent importance of food in the local culture. Located at the point where East meets West, Istanbul's food scene is a fusion of European, Mediterranean and Asian flavours and chefs enjoy a plentiful supply of fresh seafood from the city's surround waters.

Speciality dish: Any visitor to Istanbul is eager to try Turkish Delight from the source. At the Spice Bazaar hawkers sell a variety of these traditional treats, from cranberry-studded sweets with a nougat centre to powdered cubes in every flavour imaginable; pomegranate, rose, mint, pistachio, chocolate, ginger, almond... the selection is endless. Shop owners will allow you to taste test before purchase and, per tradition, will offer their customers sweet apple tea to change the taste between samples.

Where to eat: Ulus 29 on the European side of Istanbul serves high-end Turkish dishes in an atmospheric setting. High above a hill on the fringes of the city, looking over at the continent of Asia, dine on grilled kebab meat served with a super creamy side portion of whipped goats cheese.

How to visit by superyacht: Ataköy Marina, which is about half an hour from Old Istanbul, can berth yachts up to 100 metres.

Image courtesy of Adobe Stock

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Jamaica

The combination of ultra fertile land and waters plus a varied history and fusion of cultures means that Jamaica has a wide mix of foods and cuisines, from tropical fruits and spices introduced from the East Indies in the 18th century to fresh fish pulled straight from the warm waters of the Caribbean Sea. And while the rum is not secret, make sure you don't miss Jamaican Coffee either. The mist-enveloped Blue Mountain range in the far east of Jamaica is the only place in the world where arabica beans are grown, producing a rare alkaline coffee with no bitter aftertaste and a milder caffeine hit. Follow the winding road from Kingston high up past the cloud line to the Craighton Estate, which has been a working plantation since 1765 and is now owned by the Japanese Ueshima Coffee Company, to stock up on roasted beans to grind on board.

Speciality dish: Escovitch fish. Fillets of fresh fish such as grey snapper are seasoned and pan fried until crispy, then slathered with a sweet sauce made from thyme, onion, bell peppers, pimiento and sugar, finished with a touch of notoriously fiery Scotch Bonnet chilli. It's usually served with with bammy, a flatbread made from fried cassava.

Where to eat: The dinner offerings from the kitchen of Jamaica Inn in Ocho Rios change daily, but there’s always a fresh catch of the day, served grilled, blackened or jerked, and eaten on the al fresco terrace under the stars. Famous diners here have included Princess Margaret, Sir Winston Churchill and Marilyn Monroe. Head chef Maurice Henry sources fresh ingredients from nearby farmers’ markets, so if you want to bring a taste of Jamaica home, send your yacht’s chef St Mary’s on Fridays to pick up avocados the size of grapefruit, apple bananas (fruit that looks like a banana but tastes like an apple), fresh young coconuts and those scorching Scotch Bonnets.

How to visit by superyacht: Errol Flynn Marina on the northern coast of the island can host superyachts up to 106 metres.

Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

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Phuket, Thailand

Far from the bustle and chaos of Bangkok, Phuket offers an idyllic island stop-off for superyachts travelling in Southeast Asia. Leaving the turquoise waters behind, head to the heart of the city to indulge in fragrant curries, spicy soups or tasty titbits from street vendors. As the old trading port of Thailand, the local food has been flavoured with the culinary traditions of its neighbouring countries, Malaysia and China.

Speciality dish: There are plenty of flavoursome, savoury dishes that are native to the island, but desserts and sweet treats are particularly popular in Phuket. A local favourite is Bee Go Moi, a packet of sweet and salty black glutinous rice flavoured with coconut milk.

Where to eat: Blue Elephant restaurant, located in the former governor’s mansion, serves typical Thai dishes in a romantic, historic setting. Royal Phuket Marina is 25 minutes away and has berths for yachts up to 35 metres.

How to visit by superyacht: Phuket is one of the best chill-out spots to visit in Thailand, and a blossoming hub for superyachts. Ao Po Grand Marina is well endowed with 300 berths for yachts up to 100 metres. Located in the north, just under Phang Nga is Phuket Yacht Haven, which has berths for yachts up to 110 metres.

Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

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Sicily, Italy

Italy is world renowned for its food, and culinary delights culminate on the Island of Sicily. Sicilian cuisine is unique in that it has been influenced by the island’s colourful past. The Arab presence on the island during the 10th and 11th centuries is believed to be responsible for the introduction of marzipan fruits and candies, which are a traditional treat still eaten by locals today. With Mount Etna continuously bubbling away on the island, the volcanic soil has helped aid the abundant growth of local produce, meaning that only the best natural ingredients are used. The romantic coastline of Sicily is perfect for exploring by superyacht, but make sure you have time to stop on shore and sample the delicacies.

Speciality dish: Pasta alla Norma, made with sautéed tomatoes and aubergines, ricotta and basil is the staple dish. Satisfy your sweet tooth with a typical Cannoli pastry, finished off with a sip of Limoncello, the fluorescent liqueur produced from Sicilian lemons.

Where to eat: Villa Antonio in Taormina is reportedly the best restaurant on the island, both for classic Italian food and ambience. Try the risotto with red shrimp for a prime example of delicious Sicilian cooking.

How to visit by superyacht: Porto dell’Etna can berth yachts up to 40 metres, but for lager yachts there are anchorages around the Taormina harbour.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com / Marcin Krzyzak

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Crete, Greece

One of the Greek islands mentioned by Homer in The Odyssey, Crete has lured countless sailors to its ancient shores. The food here is famed for being wholesome and healthy; isolated from the rest of Europe, Cretans make good use of home grown produce. The tomatoes are renowned for being particularly flavoursome and certain cheeses produced on the island are impossible to procure elsewhere in Greece. The green vegetables grown here are said to be loaded with vitamins and minerals and are rated more highly than meat, so actually cost more to buy. Though Cretans favour a more simple cuisine, the flavour of the ingredients makes their diet noteworthy.

Speciality dish: Little pies, stuffed with melted goats' cheese, zucchini and flavoured with fresh mint are a speciality. The dessert version is filled with vanilla and honey, spiced with cinnamon and tangy lemon rind.

Where to eat: The harbour of Agios Nikolaos is strewn with typical Greek taverns and restaurants. Migomis, which has views over the harbour and its surrounding cliffs from its romantic terrace, serves up refined meditteranean cuisine. Expect light seafood dishes such as freshly caught mussels dressed with thyme and garlic, slow-cooked octopus with truffle cream or lobster salad with orange and citrus vinaigrette.

How to visit by superyacht: Agios Nikolaos Marina in eastern Crete offers berths for superyachts up to 70 metres.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com / Georgios Tsichlis

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Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona may be the party capital of Spain, but it’s also become something of a gastronomic haven too. Catalan cuisine is surf-and-turf in nature, making use of both the fresh seafood from the Mediterranean, as well as the special Iberian pork reared in the nearby mountain ranges. Paella was created in the Catalonian region, but in Barcelona the locals substitute rice with vermicelli noodles and call it Fideuà. Barcelona is also the perfect place to sample some tapas; small plates of fried calamari and spiced Butifarra sausage should tie you over until dinner, which is normally served around 10pm.

Speciality dish: If you’re looking for something lighter between the cured meats and fried treats, try the local dish of Esqueixada; a salad of tomatoes, olives and shredded salt cod, dressed with olive oil and vinegar.

Where to eat: Barcelona has become a hub for experimental cooking. ABaC hotel has a 3 Michelin Star restaurant that aims to reinvent the traditional dishes of the region.

How to visit by superyacht: the sleek OneOcean Port Vell has plenty of berths for superyachts up to 190 metres, and will set you right in the centre of the city.

Image courtesy of Istock.com / Luciano Mortula

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New York, USA

In tribute to the city’s multicultural heritage, a conglomeration of different foods from around the world can be found in New York. Italian, Puerto Rican and Chinese cuisines, brought over by first generation migrants, are just a couple of the popular international dining options available in the Big Apple. Despite the towering structures and populous streets, this metropolis is easy to access by superyacht, offering an exciting stop-off in the Atlantic with Michelin-starred restaurants by the dozen.

Speciality dish: Brunch is a big deal all over the US, but namely in this city, which New Yorkers claim is the birthplace of Eggs Benedict. Legend has it that Wall Street broker Lemuel Benedict started the trend in the 1980s when, attempting to nurse his hangover one morning at the Waldorf Hotel, he ordered two poached eggs on toast slathered with hollandaise sauce.

Where to eat: While you may be tempted to fill up on burgers and hot dogs, you’ll be more satisfied making your way through the memorable tasting menu at Eleven in Madison Square. For your after-dinner drink stop off at the 21 Club for a signature Manhattan in an original speakeasy setting.

How to visit by superyacht: Leave the superyacht in Brooklyn before exploring the concrete jungle. MarineMax Manhattan accommodates yachts up to 91 metres.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com / Rene Pi

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St Barths

French and Creole cooking dominate the food scene in St Barths. Over the years, St Barths’ reputation as a foodie destination has attracted the best chefs from around the globe, resulting in the proliferation of gourmet restaurants across the island. Thanks to the tropical climate, chefs can make use of all kinds of exotic fruits such as papayas, mangoes and pineapples. Sweet potato is the side dish of choice, often paired with grilled mahi-mahi. St Barths’ azure waters make the island an attractive destination for anchoring a superyacht, but the local food should be motivation enough to head on shore.

Speciality dish: Start your evening with a glass of fruity rum punch before sampling some delicacies from the local waters. Make sure you try some of the world renowned Caribbean lobster, grilled or dressed up in a salad.

Where to eat: At Maya’s the menu changes daily, making use of the freshest produce to create mouth-watering dishes served with a backdrop of the ocean.

How to visit by superyacht: St Barths offers a tranquil getaway for superyachts. Port de Gustavia is a well-situated marina with berths for yachts up to 60 metres.

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock.com / Sean Pavone

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