Enjoy Traveling as a Vegetarian | Let’s take an imaginary journey to Lijiang, China, the backpacker’s Mecca, a place full of wonder, history and natural beauty.
When you arrive, you see the old city in the distance, with its charming odd-angled roofs and colorful tapestries. You check into your hostel, a charming, colorful guesthouse with incredible vegetarian and vegan food of both Chinese and Western origin. The place is clean, quiet and nice, with an Internet cafe and a great view of the ancient city around you. The hostel owners ask what your itinerary is, then offer to help find transportation for your excursions and suggest several other activities you might be interested in doing.
After a good night’s sleep and a wonderful breakfast of fresh fruits and vegetarian pastries, you leave your bags under lock and key in the hostel’s safety room and take off for the day, well rested and full of excitement at what awaits.
Sounds good, right? For those of us with an adventurous spirit and a limited budget, the experience of backpacking is second to none. The ability to make your own itinerary, the community that exists among free-spirited travelers and the feeling of being more connected to the local culture are all reasons so many people like to travel without a tour group. It’s a lifestyle, a way of thinking about travel that defines the quality of the experience.
If you’re one of those people, you know that hostels and guesthouses have gotten a bad rap. A good hostel can serve as an inexpensive, charming home base for the trip of a lifetime, providing everything from transportation and storage to information about activities in the area and even home-cooked meals.
Finding the right hostel can sometimes be a challenge, though, especially if you’re a health-conscious eater or a vegetarian traveling in a foreign country with an unfamiliar language. Travelers in Asia, for example, often order “vegetarian” dishes that end up containing meat or a healthy-sounding vegetable dish that has been stir-fried in copious amounts of oil.
Fortunately, there’s a web site that can point you in the right direction: hostelbookers.com has a page on their best vegetarian accommodation dedicated to finding hostels and hotels that are safe, clean and vegetarian-friendly.
Do you want to stay in a bungalow in Thailand, eating curry dishes and tropical fruits by the seaside on a warm, breezy day? We’ve got the place for you! Do you want a charming room with a patio on the river in Ecuador, equipped with a spa, local cuisine and an art gallery? We’ve got that too! How about a tree house in Turkey, complete with stunning views and incredible Mediterranean food? Consider a beautiful budget hotel in Venice with veggies straight from the garden. We’ve got just what you need. If you are visiting Thailand, there is an amazing vegetarian food guide that gives you translations on how to order for vegetarian and vegan dishes and it gives you the best places to enjoy a good meal.
Feel free to browse the site’s offerings to find the best deals or to locate that perfect seaside view. You can view ratings, see comments and check out every detail before booking your dream vacation. Begin your journey knowing that your home base will be a safe, inviting place where you can always look forward to a good night’s sleep after a long day of hiking a mountain, exploring a local market, or sampling a smorgasbord of street foods.
As you plan your next trip, be sure to visit and find that veggie-friendly hostel or hotel that will turn your experience into a great trip that also suits your lifestyle.