Vegan travelling! What a joy!
What does a vegan travelling Europe for 4 weeks with non-vegan friends and limited access to cooking facilities do? Eat a whole lot of French fries. And have a bloody great time while at it.
Don’t be tricked into thinking this is a post about how I stayed healthy and ate a well-rounded, protein-rich diet, while having the time of my life enjoying a European summer. Only half of that statement is correct. I got sick as a dog in Prague and struggled to shake it off the remaining 3 weeks, probably due to my poor diet. But hey we can’t live perfect lives all the time.
I would like to say I only had to resort to fries as my meal every second day, but in some cities there were blocks of daily hot chips consumption. Not complaining though, because fries before guys right?
Spain was the easiest city to be vegan in. In San Sebastian there was an amazing vegan restaurant not even 100m down the road from our accommodation. They did a 13.95Euro deal that literally fed me for the entire day. Vegan burrito/enchilada + hummus/salad/tabouleh + drink = easily 3 meals worth of energy necessary for all the sleeping/strolling around/lack of physical exertion that was undertaken while there. I don’t think my French fries consumption was even on the cards in San Seb. Barcelona was also a vegan dream. Our hostel did a superfood salad for 8Euro, which was a vegan powerhouse once feta was removed. Smashed that at least twice. I also found the cutest vegan restaurant one day whilst wandering around and absolutely gorged myself… so if you’re a vegan in Barcelona Veggie Garden is a MUST. Finally, to absolutely obliterate all uncertainties I had pre arriving in Spain, we found a restaurant with a VEGAN PAELLA. YES. SHUT UP. I KNOW. The restaurant was called Nuria, on La Rambla, check it out.
Spain was by far my favourite country of the entire trip and in hindsight I think that is because I was still eating healthy meals there…. Really helps the whole brain functioning thing hey.
Prague was less than ideal. Very Eastern European. The main issue was the language barrier when at restaurants. I should have been more proactive in learning how to say a few crucial words in Czech, even learning ‘vegan’ would have been helpful, but I was too busy being a naïve Australian to think of that. I bought bread, hummus and olives from a supermarket and snacked on them when we were in our hostel, and resorting to French fries when we ate out. Sometimes there was a garden salad on the menu, so in those instances I ventured to vegetables outside of the starch variety.
Croatia was full of really good and really shit food experiences. My crew was lucky enough to have a host on board our yacht who cooked us lunch every day, and he was incredibly willing to cook me vegan food. Rich you’re a bloody legend. Having freshly prepared, home style cooking was unreal, after 2 weeks of eating out. Then on the flip side, we went out for dinner every night, which is where things all came unstuck. A couple of nights were French fries nights. Two separate nights I ordered vego pizza without the cheese, and was delivered a vego pizza DROWNING in cheese, and had to send it back. One night in Vis we stumbled upon a restaurant with an ENTIRE VEGAN SECTION and I was praising the heavens. The stars aligned for me that night because I also met the Yacht Week love of my life *that’s a story for another time*.
Mykonos was a tick on the vegan list. The occasion we went to a restaurant to eat, through some bloody miracle it had a vegan section! Had easily the best kale salad of my life. The rest of my time in Mykonos (both pre and post Ios), I mainly only ate greek salad minus the feta, and gyros minus the meat and tzatziki. Laughing mate, absolutely bloody laughing at how easy it was.
Ios was prreeeeettttyyyy much the exact same as Mykonos obviously because it’s the same country. Lotsa naked Greek salad (fetta free), lotsa naked gyros (meat and tzatziki free), lotsa fun times. The kebab shop guy outside of Circus Bar made a mean falafel wrap with hummus. It was goals. There must be a vegan Greek God out there somewhere because I felt #blessed by the Cyclades.
The most important part of this is verdict on what destination had the best French fries. Because you can never have enough fries. I have to say, Maccas in Barcelona Airport blew my mind with their chunky wedges! Delish! Prague fries were a bit on the skinny and oily side, Croatia was much the same, but Greek fries (the ones stuffed inside gyros) were chunky and the stuff legends are made of. I rate Greece. Go you good thing.