Places We Love

Chef Stephanie Izard on Exploring With Locals, and Learning About History With a Beverage in Hand

One of my favorite ways to get to know a city is by spending the day exploring with a local.

Some of my favorite excursions have been a helicopter ride in Honolulu, a hot air balloon over Napa Valley, and a walking tour through historic New Orleans.

It’s always nice to just walk around a city and see different parts, but participating in an organized tour lets you learn stories about those places from a local. Plus, your guide is a great resource to learn what the locals love to do in their own hometown.

Learning how to make local dishes will give you a sense of what it's like to actually live in that city

Stephanie Izard

A big part of traveling is learning about the local cuisine. If you really want to get to know a new location, spend some time in a kitchen.

Learning how to make local dishes will give you a sense of what it’s like to actually live in that city, like soup dumpling in Shanghai or pasta in Palermo, Sicily.

You open yourself up to learning about new flavors and techniques. A lot times people go to museums to learn about the culture and history of a new place, but you can also learn the history of a place by visiting a brewery or winery.

They are such integral parts of their communities, especially the ones that have been around for hundreds of years. Plus, it’s a lot more fun to learn about history with a beverage in hand.

For more of Chef Stephanie Izard’s favorites, see her Marriott Moments recommendations, and explore the travel recommendations of other great chefs like Eric Ripert and Daniel Boulud and on Places We Love.