We all know too well how travel is good for the soul. Now make it count even more by making it good for your body too. Take your cue from the locals at these beautiful travel destinations, and see how they eat right in their own ways, and are healthier and happier because of it.
The Land of the Rising Sun is home to one of the world’s longest living populations. Fun fact: the World Health Organisation estimates that Japanese women will live to an average age of 87 years, compared to the global average of 74. A sustainable and balanced diet plays a big part in contributing to this statistic.
And it’s true that no one does balance quite like the Japanese — their meals are high in vegetables, fruits and fish; and low in saturated fats.
Not to mention always being a winner when it comes to marrying delicious flavours and impeccable presentation.
If you want it any fresher, you might have to head to Tokyo. Stay at Ascott Marunouchi Tokyo and use the centrally-located urban oasis as your base camp for the ultimate foodie trip. Live it up in luxury and style with the family and friends package, which grants you a Marunouchi Suite for a group of up to six.
Of the many standout qualities of Vietnamese cuisine, we’re partial to the country’s love for broth-based cooking. Removing oil from the equation makes for healthier meals; yet the result is far from bland thanks to their generous use of fresh herbs — think cilantro, mint, basil, star anise and more.
Aside from the namesake national dish — Pho (a piping hot serving of rice noodles prepped with fresh herbs, a flavourful broth and meat, usually beef or chicken) — this casual eatery also does flavour-packed summer rolls and deliciously crusty Banh Mi (Vietnamese style baguettes).
The real deal isn’t that far away either. A two-hour flight will take you to the heart of the country. Whether you prefer the picturesque pagodas of present-day capital Hanoi, or the vitality of former capital Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam promises a tastebud-tickling experience. After pampering your palate, sleep well at Somerset West Point Hanoi or Diamond Island Luxury Residences in Ho Chi Minh City.
In many cultures, the goodness of a meal is in the entrée, but in Korea, it starts with the side dishes. And the superstar of Korean side dishes has to be kimchi. The vegetable dish is a powerhouse of vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants, and even has probiotic properties to aid digestion and regulate cholesterol. It's best for pairing with Korean stews, popular sharing items like jap chae (stir fried Korean glass noodles), and even soju.
Indulge in Korean goodness at Seoulroll, located at Raffles City. They serve a variety of delish rice rolls that you can choose to pair with healthier multigrain rice, along with an assortment of sides including kimchi, of course. All condensed within a power packed and tightly wrapped bundle that will make for a convenient and complete meal.
Or, trace this age-old cuisine back to its place of origin! Seoul is almost bursting at her seams with so much vitality, and any visit to South Korea has to feature a stop in this capital city. Stay at Citadines Han River Seoul. Perched along the Han River which cuts through the city, it’ll place you at the heart of the gourmet action.
After that satisfying meal, take a stroll at the nearby Seonyudo Park, with its many geological features, ecosystems and seasonal plants and flowers. It's a pretty good way to get that holiday workout in, and snap some memorable photos along the way.
Now trending: a twist on American fare
The U.S. may not be the first place that comes to mind when we’re talking about eating right. But burgers and fries aside, the country does lay claim to some of the yummiest and healthiest food. A recent favourite, hands down, has to be the Hawaiian poké bowl.
Homegrown eatery Aloha Poké was the first to bring this Hawaiian staple to our shores; check them out at Bugis Junction to get a slice of Hawaii.
If you prefer a lower carb option, pick salad over rice. You'll still be enjoying a meal fortified with omega-3 fatty acids from fresh chunks of seasoned tuna and salmon.
It's definitely a great meal option that checks the boxes of 'Eat Clean' and 'Feel Clean'.
For more ingenious spins on this classic dish, a trip to New York City may be due. While not the birthplace of poké bowls, the Big Apple leads the country in terms of food trends.
We've been associating olive oil with healthy food for quite a while now, but Spain has definitely done it longer — and probably better than most. Its classic Mediterranean cuisine features super healthy ingredients like olive oil, nuts and fish, with good fats that are beneficial to the heart, and with anti-inflammatory properties to boot.
Get your tastebuds dancing at Octapas in Clarke Quay. The Spanish tapas bar serves up a wide range of Mediterranean flavours including all-time favourites like paella.
If you're up for an adventure, off to Spain you should go! Put yourself up at Citadines Ramblas Barcelona, hang out at the Las Ramblas boulevard and eat your way through the Mediterranean!