Take a look at the below list of Top 10 Cities For Best Street Food market in The World in 2017. One of the joys of travel is getting an insight into the customs and culture of the place you are visiting. In most major cities you can now find food outlets that are internationally known and recognised, but who wants to travel perhaps thousands of miles to eat a MacDonald’s hamburger? One of the best ways to experience your host country is to visit the Street Food markets. Often the food is inexpensive, and of excellent quality. Further, these places have an ambiance and atmosphere that you just will not find sitting in an air-conditioned restaurant at your hotel. A word of caution though.
In some nations (Singapore and Australia for example) the Street Markets are highly regulated, in some cases displaying a food hygiene rating or an approved sign, others are totally unregulated. If in doubt only select well-cooked items, and avoid dairy products. The best test of all is to look for the busy vendors that are popular with the local people, you will not go far wrong with these. Let us explore some of the best:
List of Top 10 Cities For Best Street Food Market in The World 2017
10: Ensenada – Mexico
When the Ensenada market opened and began selling fresh, local seafood, the fish tacos became the subject of legends. Today, tourists and locals alike congregate at Ensenada’s many street stands serving the classical combo of fried fish and shrimp topped with mayonnaise, salsa, and cabbage. Shrimp, octopus, sea urchin, sea cucumber, sea snail, crab, clam, cod, or mussels are all fresh and on the menu. Wash it down with a glass of refreshing agua de cebada (or barley water). Perhaps a Mexican beer such as the classic Corona may suit you better? It is usually drunk with a piece of lime in the top of the bottle; light, crisp and refreshing.
9: Palermo – Sicily
Some of the country’s best food is made (and served) at the curb. In Palermo, you’ll find everything from chickpea fritters to liver sandwiches at food stalls and kiosks that litter the City. Most everything is deep-fried, so food safety is not a big concern. Try the classic pane cà meusa (spleen sandwich – needs a wedge of lemon for perfection). Or sample a Pani cà Meusa di Porta Carbone on Via Cala, perhaps visit Borgo Vecchio for the best fish, caught fresh and grilled in front of you? The deep frying is good for the taste, not recommended if you are on a strict diet though.
8: Ho Chi Minh city – Vietnam
Saigon, now called Ho Chi Minh City, is the top spot for the popular Vietnamese crispy bread sandwich known as bánh mì. It was originally served on a French baguette, and the influence of France on cuisine is still strong. Vĩnh Khánh Street is for the young, with many vendors and even Street performers. Tran Khac Chan Street is a pulsating street food Mecca, in the space of a couple hundred metres there are nearly 50 food outlets, all competing for space and your attention. The liveliest section of Nguyen Thuong Hien is between the cross streets of Nguyen Dinh Chieu and Vo Van Tan. Settle down to some snails and shellfish – a classic Saigon night out. Oysters, clams, crab claws, sea snails and local beer are all on the menu here.
7: Rio de Janeiro – Brazil
Cariocans (the people of Rio) take street food very seriously. It is very much a way of life for them. Visit historic Santa Teresa for an authentic Bahian acarajé. Bahian women hustling with assembly line precision can only mean acarajé street food. Acarajé is made of peeled black eyed peas mashed into a paste with a splash of onion and deep fried in an often unforgivably strong smelling dendê. The beaches at Ipanema and Copacabana have hundreds of stalls selling everything from burgers to tapioca crepes and an extensive range of fillings and are well worth a visit.
6: Mumbai – India
The streets of Mumbai are excellent for a food expedition. Mumbai’s street food is first-class and surprisingly vegetarian-friendly. Food safety is a concern, there are many thousands of vendors but less than 10% of them are licenced. Visit Shivaji on Rajwadkar Street, Colaba, who make vada pav fresh daily. Chicken 65 is to India’s restaurants what buffalo wings are in the United States. It is widely believed India’s spicy, deep-fried chicken starter was invented at Chennai’s Buhari Hotel by the hotel’s founder. The best pav bhaji (spicy vegetable curry served with a butter-soaked bun) may be found at the kiosks fronting Juhu Beach. Care is needed with Indian food, some of it can be very hot and spicy indeed. Best if you ask the vendor if you are in doubt.
5: Mexico City – Mexico
In 1516 when the Spaniards arrived they were surprised to find ready-to-eat food for sale on the streets already. The streets today still buzz with carts and taquerias delivering fast, inexpensive, and pleasing food treats. Stick to well-maintained carts with long lines when making your choices, food safety is an issue. Some of the city’s best street food lies outside the main square. A short walk south of the Zócalo, you’ll find the city’s finest tortas at Tortas Been at República del Salvador, while five minutes north of the Zócalo, you’ll find the city’s best pozole on Calle San Ildefonso. The Centro Histórico’s Zócalo also has a great range of street food. Tortas de pierna (a sandwich of roast pork leg); pozole; rajas (charred poblano peppers and onions); tacos al pastor (small tortillas filled roasted pork) are among the local favourites.
4: New York City – USA
There’s literally no food you can’t find on the streets of New York City. The Department of Health regulates and monitors the food hygiene practices of all mobile food vendors and offenders face heavy fines so you can be sure that what you are eating is safe. The Brooklyn Flea Market and Smorgasburg festival is great in the Summer with over 100 vendors offering food in styles from around the world. Be sure to visit Prince Street in Soho, the food trucks there operate 24/7.
3: Sydney – Australia
Vietnamese banh mi or Wagyu beef burgers, or most anything else you fancy, Sydney’s diverse food scene has untold variety The city’s strict food safety guidelines and regular inspections are enforced so the biggest peril here is an expanding waistline. Sydney’s food trucks are are constantly on the move but Sydney has a Food Trucks app, which will tell you exactly where the trucks are. Hyde Park’s Night Noodle Markets every October are worth a visit and you’ll find the best Asian street food at Cabramatta or Marrickville, in Sydney’s Western suburbs.
2: Singapore – Singapore
Don’t be afraid to experiment, Singapore has very strict food safety regulations and stalls are required to display cleanliness grades (“A”-“D”), so spotting the ones to avoid is a breeze. Try the Maxwell Food Center, close to Chinatown, here you’ll discover long queues for Hainanese chicken rice and congee. Nearby is the Hong Lim Food Centre where you can enjoy spicy, delicious laksa and seafood noodle dishes. For something a little contrasting, make for the Lagoon Food Village which sports an entire row of satay (BBQ on sticks with peanut dressing) stalls.
1: Bangkok – Thailand
In Bangkok, you can eat well in the city without ever visiting a restaurant. Vendors offer everything from breakfast to desserts, and all points in between. Not all vendors are licensed so care is needed. Look for stalls that display a smiling plate: this is a stamp of approval issued by health officials. Visit Yaowarat in Bangkok’s Chinatown, and the Soi 38 night market off Sukhumvit Road where you can buy pad see ew (stir-fried rice noodles with Chinese broccoli) and many other popular dishes. For the best boat noodles (rice noodles served in a pork broth with vegetables, meat, and chillies) head for boat noodle alley at the Victory Monument.
Our World tour of street food draws to a close. There are many other places that could justify inclusion, and some I may have missed. When travelling do make it a point to visit the street food markets (taking advice from a tour guide or other local person first). Only then will you truly appreciate the atmosphere and buzz of the country you are visiting.