The Best Restaurants in France, Italy, and Spain for a Plant-Based Diet
Traveling to Europe as a vegan might seem impossible or overwhelming, but don’t worry! The abundance of mouth-watering plant-based foods in countries such as France, Italy, and Spain will leave your senses and belly more than satisfied! In fact, I still can’t get over the decadent, dark chocolate gelato my three and half year old and I enjoyed in Florence.
Whether you’re traveling with kids or not, a little planning will go a long way. Be sure to check out my 5 Best Tips for Vegans Traveling to Europe, which is featured on The Huffington Post.
In addition to my five best tips that serve as general guidelines, here are my top picks for eats and sweets in the cities we visited:
Paris is packed in the summer! And that’ coming from someone who’s accustomed to living in L.A. There’s no doubt that the art and the Eiffel Tower make up for that, but I recommend that you give yourself some time to unwind in a small town or village after staying there. This was my second trip to the City of Lights and yet there are still so many places and restaurants I want to explore there. Even so, there is one restaurant that any health foodie or vegan will steer you towards…
Make sure you dine at Le Potager du Marais for gourmet French, vegan cuisine. The mushroom pate is the best.
Vegan Florence (Firenze)
Florence is a magical Old World city. You can order pasta with a marinara sauce, olives, sundried tomatoes, and cheese-less pizza or salads all over town. It’s also loaded with gelatorias, with a good number of them offering vegan flavors.
The dark chocolate gelato at Shake Café is an absolute must! Close to the Duomo and other major sites, don’t be surprised if you find yourself indulging there more than once. If you’re craving something healthier they have a great juice bar too!
Yes, the Tuscany countryside is as beautiful as you imagine. All you need is a supermarket or farmers’ market and you’re all set. Wait till you see how many aisles are dedicated to pasta!
So far, this is one my my favorite cities in Europe! The infinite parks, the buildings, the people, and the food all make it a special destination, particularly for families. Here are just a few highlights…
A quirky exhibit of chocolaty sculptures awaits at the Museu de la Xocolata (Chocolate Museum.) Your “ticket” will be an impressive, vegan, chocolate bar that you’re actually allowed to eat while you wander around. If you don’t want to go overboard on the sweets, enjoy some Vietnamese food across the street at La Vietnamita.
Want a quick, inexpensive bite near the Picasso Museum? Barcelona Reykjavik is a 100% organic bakery that includes vegan pizza, focaccia, and other yummy goodies.
For a stylish ambience with a fun vegetarian and vegan menu stop by Teresa Carles. It’s within walking distance to the Block of Discord, featuring some of the most gorgeous architecture in the city (including the Gaudy Museum.)
So many places to try, so little time. Many of the places I researched were left unchecked on my list. Juicy Jones was one of them. However, my family who had an extra day in Barcelona went and loved it! Both the setting and the menu are quite creative.
Wherever you travel aim to enjoy every moment and every dish! You never know who you might inspire to adopt a plant-based menu item or way of life. As a sweet, vegan waiter working in a traditional Spanish restaurant said to me, “Our numbers are growing stronger every day!”
Do you have any holistic, healthy travel tips for vegans and families?