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For a millennium, Venice has provided inspiration for artists and writers. This coveted city is made up of 118 islands linked by 453 bridges. Each corner of town exhibits individual architectural magnificence, the city combining as one to form a spectacular theatrical stage set.

Beautiful churches adorn the banks of the Grand Canal as she snakes her way through the city. This main artery is at the centre of a myriad of canals running throughout the town.

The lifeblood of Venice is its tourism, a magnet for over 12 million visitors a year. Catering for this influx of visitors, the cities population of 70,000 people continue their daily lives, working the bars, cafes and restaurants.

Despite all this however, it seems that Venice is slowly sinking at the rate of approximately 2 inches every century. Terrible floods in 1966 caused much doom mongering and many people feared that Venice was about to be taken off the map.

The threat to remove funding for vital restoration projects gave serious cause for concern and prompted an urgent response to save the city. It was feared imminent flooding could completely destroy the city; preventative measures were high priority.

The efforts of the past two decades have had considerable success. Reduced pollution, shipping and the restoration of natural sandbanks have all contributed to the cause.

The first settlers of Venice were those fleeing the Barbarians around 400 AD. To create solid foundations for their buildings they drove timber into the mud and began creating a community for their people.

The city’s emblem, the winged lion, derived from Saint Mark the Evangelist. The first significant church of Venice was built in the ninth century to house the relics of Saint Mark, and his emblem was soon adopted.

Venice’s trade brought great wealth and prosperity to the city and for many centuries it continued to grow. The city thrived on its colonies and invested its riches wisely. Churches and palaces became commonplace, as were museums to house many newly acquired works of art.

For the past couple of centuries however, the obvious lack of development space meant the city found it difficult to advance further. Wars with Turkey were a drain on the resources and so Venice was content to consolidate.

Despite this, Venice does not rest on its laurels. Every visit offers something new, a fresh experience to take home. Each region of the city has an individual charm, giving the sense there is always something special around each corner.


It may not have the bustling squares of Florence, the imposing monuments of Rome or the flowing canals of Venice, but Naples is where you will get to know the ‘heart of Italy’. The city may be noisy, polluted, overcrowded, and slightly intimidating, but it is equally intriguing and engaging, and boasts a spectacular selection of tasty dishes.

Neapolitan cuisine owes much to the fertile soil which offers up some unique crops, above all the San Marzano tomato, as well as the sea which is the basis for all the seafood dishes. Mussels, clams and other shellfish all play a huge part in the cuisine of the city. From the simple ‘impepata di cozze’ (mussels, hot pepper, parsley, lemon juice and some bread), to far more elaborate recipes, the mussel rules. The rest of the local seafood is treated equally well. A classic ‘frittura mista’ might include ring sliced squids, small whole fishes, little shrimps and big prawns.

One of the best places to enjoy a traditional Neapolitan meal is behind Castel dell’Ovo, in the small district known as ‘Borgo Marinari’ where many small and pretty tratorias offers a good selection of dishes based on the typical southern Italian fare. This is also a relatively cheap area in which to eat, especially when compared with nearby Santa Lucia or Mergellina. If you are on a tight budget, the ‘Centro Storico’ has plenty of places serving traditional dishes at reasonable prices. Needless to say, this is where you will have the chance to eat along with the locals.

Naples is the proud birthplace of pizza: halfway between refined cuisine and traditional working-class meal, Neapolitan pizza became one of the main dishes and a symbol of Neapolitan cuisine in the 18th Century. It was finally consecrated in 1889, when the famous pizza maker Raffaele Esposito offered it to the Queen Margherita di Savoia. The recipe the queen liked best, topped with mozzarella, tomatoes and basil, was later named ‘Pizza Margherita’ in her honor.

If you are interested in history as well as food and want to visit the place where this pizza was invented you are in luck because it is still around and is now known as Pizzeria Brandi. At this moment you could consider that place a bit of a tourist trap but it should be worth the visit just to say that you have ate in the pizzeria where the pizza was invented. There are other well known and notable pizzerias as well such as Da Michele, Di Matteo, Trianon da Ciro, as well as Cafasso but to tell the truth, it is really difficult to eat a bad pizza in Naples. You could even grab a pizza from one of the street-side stalls, eating it folded into quarters and find it to be tastier than the ones made by your local pizza maker.

Unlike pizza, pasta was not invented in Naples, but it was in the nearby Gragnano that the industrial production of pasta started, together with the techniques to dry and preserve it. Made out of durum wheat, harder to manipulate than soft wheat, the industrial made pasta was more successful here than in northern Italy, where home-made pasta was (and still is) more popular. Pasta from Gragnano is still acknowledged for the quality of the wheat and the slow drying process. The most popular variety,, besides the classic spaghetti and linguine, are the ‘paccheri’ (large hollow tube shaped pasta) and ‘ziti’, long pipe-shaped pasta, broken by hand before cooking and usually topped with rag?r />

In Naples you can have pasta with almost everything: vegetables, meat, fish, butter or even olive oil alone. Even with so many recipes to choose from, Neapolitans have their “holy trinity” of pasta sauces: ‘pummarola’, ‘rag?nd ‘genovese’. Pummarola, a basic tomato sauce without extra flavors except basil,only tastes the way it should only if made with the proper ‘san marzano’ tomatoes. Rag? actually a tomato based stew where the meat is eaten on the side. Genovese is similar to rag?t, instead of the tomato, there is a large amount of onions which are stewed with the meat.

Genovese and rag?e two of those dishes that need time, three hours being the absolute minimum, to be cooked. As a result they are classical home-cooked dishes not too popular with restaurants. If you want to taste a good genovese or rag?our best bet is to get invited to a Neapolitan home since restaurants either didn’t serve them or only knock up a poor version.

A typical Neapolitan menu may start with a ‘mozzarella in carrozza’ (literally ‘mozzarella in a carriage’, the carriage being two slices of bread dipped in beaten egg and deep-fried) or a ‘caprese’ salad (mozzarella, tomato and basil) and then continue with a pasta dish such as ‘spaghetti alle vongole veraci’ (spaghetti with clams), or ‘maccheroni al rag?As a main course, you can have either ‘impepata di cozze’ or oven-baked mullet. Then to freshen up your mouth after fish dishes, there is nothing better than a good mature cheese like ‘scamorza’ or ‘caciocavallo’.

Finally, you just cannot miss out on tasting one of the typical Neapolitan pastries such as ‘bab?(made with light flour, eggs, and yeast and bathed in rum or limoncello), ‘sfogliatella’ (a shell shaped pastry made out of several thin layers of dough filled with orange-flavored ricotta), ‘struffoli’ (grape-size, deep-fried dough balls dipped in honey) and, last but not least, ‘pastiera napoletana’ (an orange blossom flavored wheat and ricotta pie, traditionally made at Easter). Needless to say, these delicacies are always accompanied by a cup of coffee or a glass of flavored liqueurs (namely rosolio, limoncello or walnut-flavored nocillo).

This article is part of a series covering the most important italian travel destinations and regional cuisines. You can find similar articles about eating out in Rome, Florence, Milan. Venice. Elba Island and the Tuscan Archipelago.


South Louisiana: From the Vieux Carre to Venice

This year for Spring Break we went to South Louisiana and back to our home town, New Orleans, or NOLA. While we have lived in Nashville, Tennessee for 13 years, we decided to head to “Cajun Country” to check out the status of things and give that grand ole city our business. To say the least, we were pleasantly surprised. Yes, there still were many empty houses in the eastern section of the city, but as a whole, it has brilliantly restored itself and is emerging from the looming economic despair it was facing.

We stayed in the heart of the French Quarter, Vieux Carre, at an exquisitely restored boutique hotel, Hotel St. Marie. We had an inner room with a balcony overlooking the courtyard and pool, which isolated the traveling sounds of nearby streets. We had determined to spend this trip as tourists and see the city as though we were new to it. We dined at old traditional neighborhood restaurants and newly created bistros. The recently established, Cochon, in the warehouse district, was a supreme surprise. With an in-house Boucherie (butchery) the chefs were able to prepare cultural favorites such as boudin and andouille. We sat at the “Chef’s Counter” where we watched Chef Stryjewski and his staff prepare our meal. After ordering the traditional N’Awlins cocktail, Sazerac, we were ready to begin our dining extravaganza. We were so enamored by the combination of ingredients that we were inspired to order one of everything on the menu well almost everything. Let’s just say that the spoon bread with tomatoes and okra, fried alligator with the chili garlic aioli and andouille with sweet potatoes and black-eyed pea vinaigrette were all equally amazing and thoroughly tantalizing. Other favorite dining adventures included Brigtsen’s and their delectable tuna with corn sauce, Muriel’s turtle soup and Upperline’s roasted duck with ginger peach sauce – all seemed to be on the same path, to recreate NOLA one dish at a time.

The Vieux Carrie also boasted of hosting the first-time ever exhibition of the Vatican Mosaic Studio. This was truly a breath-taking exploration of both cut enamel and filament enamel art work from ever-patient artisans. The filament enamel work entitled “Roman Forum” was my favorite as it truly looked like an oil painting rather than stretched glass.

Another highlight of the trip was an excursion to Plaquemines Parish and the fishing town of Venice, Louisiana. This is where the eye of Katrina passed and pushed approximately 4000 boats over the levees. However, the people have been working hard and we only saw about 10 boats left to recover. We went with family on a chartered, flat-bottomed, marsh boat down to the mouth of the mighty Mississippi River and proceeded to do some “catchin” as we weren’t just fishing. Among the fish we caught were red fish, speckled trout and sheep’s head; enough for a grand ole fish fry and plenty to bring home. In this Cajun girl’s opinion, NOLA and Venice looked, felt and tasted great. South Louisiana is back and better than ever.


To Venice

To Venice – one and only. No other cities in the world come even close to Venice. The water streets and the entire pedestrian city is just a dive into the past, where time stops and people walk suspended between eras as the world turns and Venice remains an island. The buildings and the hundreds of little squares are just beautiful, some “Calle”, (the Venetian name for streets) are so narrow that it is possible to touch from part to part extending your arms. Little shops, restaurants are all over and comfortable Locandas (Inns) are ready to welcome you. In Venice, the art speaks by itself. Visit Piazza San Marco, the Bell Tower, The Fenice theater, Ponte di Rialto or the Ponte dei Sospiri, then Take a couple of hours to visit Murano and its glass workshops. Gondolas sail everywhere, replacing noisy and polluting cars. On high tide season special wooden walkways are placed in the city, as it floods for several days. If you happen to be there during the Carnival, you can see Venice at its best, where customs and masks are worn and the atmosphere becomes even more surreal than usual, creating and extraordinary and magical experience. Another special event is the boat race on the Canal Grande, where the city stops to watch this spectacular show. For centuries Venice has been a city leader in the commerce and an important seaport, it was already important when Marco Polo made his expeditions to China, as another of its citizens, Casanova, highlighted Venice romantic and sometimes libertine tone


Oh yes it helps to know something about the city you are going to visit, even if it is only trivia. It just helps you to be better prepared for the experience.

On this page, we have collected some information that could be of value as you slosh your way through the city.

Many restaurants have menu cards that say minimum two orders. Why on earth they should force you to order two dishes of the same type I cant understand but that is how it is. You are lucky if you have a companion who shares your taste in food, but then again, you may not have such a friend with you. I have two suggestions, offer to walk out, especially if the restaurant is not crowded or get the duplicate packed for later.

Toilets. A tourist city should have a lot more than Venice has. There are toilets near most prominent tourist spots but there could be a lot more. Carry some change with you all the time. Railway stations are of course well equipped but you still need to know where to find them.

Church Tourism: No doubt, Venice is famous for its churches, but if you are going in only to sight see and there is a service on, you will be stopped at the door. Either attend the service or come after a while. We cant argue with this, it does make eminent sense.

Hundreds of small statues of the Virgin Mary and of Lord Jesus can be found all over the city. No one has even attempted to count them. Yet, come evening, and you will find candles lit under all. This is something that the tourist can participate in as well. Who knows. Your prayers might just be answered as well

The Pigeons At San Marcos Squarem

There are hundreds of pigeons at the San Marcos Square. It is a nice tradition that people feed the pigeons as they pass by. You can get bird feed for about a euro for a packet. Children have a field day scattering grain and watching the birds take off and land again. Hundreds or maybe thousands of pigeons flapping in unison are a sight to treasure.


There are queues everywhere. But this is only to be expected since the tourists are in such large numbers. While you may not like to wait in a queue, you will surely appreciate the orderliness of it all. On the flip side, it will always take you longer to see a monument than you plan for because of the queues. So adjust for this in you plans.


If you are coming to Southern California there are so many things to do with so little time. If you are looking to get away from the city and enjoy a nice quiet peaceful vacation then you should head out to Palm Springs. Palm Springs is full of shopping, fine dining, spa’s, even nudest colonies. An endless array of golf and tennis courses. Casino’s if you love to gamble, they also have plenty of concerts and a comedy show every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night. If you have children or love to have fun, there is a waterpark on the days when a pool just does not seem enough. There is also the Palm Springs air museum. Near by is the Children’s discovery museum. If you like to see plays, there is The Folly’s which is for an older crowd, and not too far away is the McCullum theater. Every Thursday night is the street fair, where the city closes off the strip to traffic, for food, music, horse & carriage rides, art, and tons of booths to choose from. Near by is Indio California, known for its festivals. Depending on what time of the year you choose your vacation, you might end up around the time of a festival. There is the riverside county national date festival, which is a carnival, concerts, rodeo, monster trucks, ostrich races and many more. Tamale festival, which is full of people competing to make the best tamales, tons of food, rides and games for the kids. The Coachella music and Arts festival and lets not forget the Palm Springs Film Festival,just to name a few. Palm Springs is full of celebrities that live here locally or just come to get away, whatever the case may be you are bound to have a relaxing time in beautiful Palm Springs. You can not leave California without visiting, Universal Studios, located in Universal City, CA (Los Angeles) Outside of universal studios is the beautiful city walk, with shops, food, The hard rock cafe, movies and one of my favorites Tommy’s world famous chilie burgers. If you are in to theme parks not too far away is Magic Mountain located in Ventura. If you are going to be in Los Angeles, Venice Beach is a nice place to spend the day. Full of food, dining, shows and people you will probably never see anywhere else. Right next to Venice is Santa Monica, there is a promenade and a peer there, with food, arcade games and rides. I think Los Angeles pretty much has made a name for its self, there are endless things you can do there. Go to Hollywood down sunset strip. Check out Beverly Hills Rodeo drive, go by the staple center for any number of events, in the summer there is ESPN’s X games, year round the WWE wrestlers come, many concerts and tons of fun for a first time visitors coming to Los Angeles. Lets not forget about Long Beach, where you can go out to the aquarium of the pacific and then head downtown to site see. Then there is Orange County, who wants to come to California and not go to Disneyland. Right near Disneyland is the Angels stadium, if you are a fan of baseball. Lasts but certainly not least, San Diego California. A beautiful city, fine dinning, and tons of night life. If you are looking to lay out, head over to Mission beach. You can rent skates, bikes, surf boards, ride roller coasters, win prizes and have fun for the entire family. If you are looking to get away and relax I would suggest going to Palm Springs. If you have a family and are looking for amusement parks and beaches, defiantly check out Los Angeles. What ever you choose, you will can not go wrong when it comes to Southern California.


Is there anything quite as romantic as April in Paris? Strolling hand in hand down the Champs Elysees, stopping in at a sidewalk caf for a latte, soaking up the magnificent color-soaked gardens where Monet painted water lilies? How about schussing down a slope together in the Swiss Alps, then drinking hot toddies and cuddling up together before the fire in an Alpine ski lodge? Or waltzing through the night on the shores of the Danube and greeting the morning sun from the middle of the Chain Bridge overlooking the river that inspired the most famous romantic waltz of all time? If youre looking for a romantic destination for a last minute romantic getaway, Europe is the place to look. Heres our picks for the top romantic destinations for a last minute romantic European getaway.

Venice, Italy
Beautiful Venice, the City of Canals, is a wonderfully romantic destination for any couple. Must-do romantic activities for Venice include viewing the city from the Campanile di San Marco, feeding the pigeons in St. Marks Square, a visit to the Bridge of Sighs and a twilight gondola ride along the canals that make Venice the unique city that it is. Stop back in St. Marks Square after your gondola ride, and enjoy an espresso or an aperitif at one of the sidewalk cafes while the city wanders by before returning to your hotel for the night.

Gstaad, Switzerland
Gstaad, the luxurious Swiss skiing city, is also one of the most romantic destinations on Earth. Surrounded by stunning mountains, the city offers activities that range from snuggling in front of a cozy fire to strapping on skis for a cross country hike. In the spring and summer, the mountains become a hikers paradise. Go on a treasure hunt in the hills to find the lovely edelweiss, or take a ride in one of the sky gondolas to enjoy the view and snuggle high above the city and mountains. The shopping is superb in Gstaad, with exclusive boutiques and crafty shops tucked along the main streets. Whatever is the season, Gstaad offers a plethora of romantic activities to suit any couple.

Costa de la Luz, Spain
Take a step off the beaten track to find true romance in Spain. Costa de la Luz lies along the Spanish coast, near to the far more traveled Costa del Sol. Beautiful sandy beaches and quaint towns define Costa de la Luz. Spend your days lazing in the sun, or hiking up into the surrounding mountains, then return to town in the evening for tapas and sherry at one of the many bodegas. You can stay in a luxury hotel, or take your pick of many bed and breakfast inns and villas along the Atlantic coast. For the adventurous, Costa de la Luz is the wind-surfing capital of the world, with some of the most challenging and exhilarating waves off the coast.

Mediterranean Cruise
Island hop on a luxury cruise liner in such a way that only the Europeans know how to do. Forget the tropics for a timeless romance, visit the sites where the ancients walked and loved. A Mediterranean cruise might include stops in Rome, Athens, Corsica, Sicily, Athens and Turkey. You can wander the ruins of the Parthenon, explore the cliffs of Corsica or hike into the hills overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. On board, youll be treated like royalty, with fine dining, fine wines and pampering spa treatments. Your love is timeless why shouldnt your vacation reflect that?

Booking last minute travel is easy when you use travel consolidator. You can take advantage of the best last minute deals offered by over 100 providers, all in one central place. Why spend your time surfing through dozens of sites to find a special romantic last minute getaway? Just find it all in one place.


Snapshot of Venice

A Love Affair with Venezia

Venice to the tourist, Venezia to the Italian, and Venexia to the Venetian, but whatever you choose to call it, it is one of Italy’s most captivating cities. This city of canals carves its way through several small islands nestled within the marshy lagoons along the Adriatic Sea, and takes its place as the capital of the Veneto region. With its shoreline embracing the Adriatic, it’s no wonder it was considered a major sea power, making it an important staging ground during the Crusades, a leading area for commerce, and a central inspiration for the arts during the Renaissance.

One only needs to stroll the streets of Venice to feel the whimsical wonderment, which captivates and lures you in to days long gone. The intricate detailed architecture of the buildings will keep you in awe as you wander through every nook and cranny. Though there is a blending of modern alongside the pieces of the past, the newness has not overshadowed the splendor of this ancient city, which was founded in 568 following the emigration of refugees escaping the invasion of northern Italy by the Lombards. The narrow paths and walkways are not only crowded by tourists, but the ghosts of yesterday hauntingly carry you along your journey, as you step back in time.

Whether you are there for its beauty or a connoisseur of sorts, Venice will offer up a dish of something for everyone. Though often crowded by tourists, this city is not hard to navigate at all. Once you abandon your car at a parking garage/lots, or step off the Train at Venezia S. Lucia station, the paths are clearly marked by yellow signs pointing the path of the most common sites visited in Venice. In addition, there are many water taxi/bus stations along the canal, each having maps noting your location; and if you are feeling intimidated and unsure, you can purchase a water taxi/bus ticket and tour the city by boat.

The streets of Venice are lined with small shops, selling everything from souvenirs, Murano glass, carnivale masks, art, jewelry, clothes, food, wine, bread, gelato, and more. There are open-air markets where you can buy fresh produce, meats, cheeses, and souvenirs. One of these al fresco markets can be found at the famous and oldest bridge in Venice, The Rialto, which spans across the Grand Canal. The Rialto, itself, consists of two covered inclined ramps, which lead to the central portico. Small shops line the covered ramps of the Rialto.




Portia is a beloved character in the Merchant of Venice. She enters in scene two, act one. She is depressed and is worried because she is in love with Bassano and her father has other ideas for her. He does not want her to marry a poor man. The essence of her famous first speech is “I could easier teach twenty what is the right thing to do than to do the right thing myself.” (Not the exact words but that’s their meaning.)


The Merchant is Antonio: He and Bassanio open the play with discussions on how to borrow money to finance a trip so Bassanio can marry Portia. He, like all business people at one time or another, is having money problems. His ships are to be in shortly however. But not soon enough so the he can lend Bassanio money. He will help him get the money, however. (Three of them come in as the play closes.)


The Jewish business man who lends Antonio the money, but reluctantly. Although he has fewer lines than the other important characters, he makes a great deal of sense with his words. His words reek of justice but since the other characters are bent on getting what they want then, money, he is reluctant to lend them money. Antonio wants to talk over the prospective deal over dinner and Shylock, being no hypocrite, informs them that he might be persuaded to do business with them, but he will not eat with them.


He is a friend of Antonio and is important as a back-up character in that his need for money so that he can marry Portia, the woman he loves introduces the problem of business dealing. Also, his impending marriage a and he cantankerous father of Portia whose actions and conditions under which she can marry, adds a sub-plot to the twisted tale.


A Friend of Bassanio who is in love with Nerissa, the

Maid of Portia.


Nerissa is Portia’s maid and she is the one to whom Portia confides. Often in Shakespeare’s plays, the hero and heroine have maids servants and this allows thim to share their thoughts to the audience. Usually the first time we meet these characters are in the first act. In subsequent acts they will be contributing their own problems that will need be solved. Nerissa is that type of character.


Jessica is the daughter of Shylock. She steals from her father in order to elope with Lorenzo. It’s her influence that indirectly gets Antonio off the hook with Shylock. She’s not a thief, only a desperate girl in love.


Launcelot is a clownish servant to Shylock. We first meet him when Shylock gets back home after the first meeting with Antonio and Bassanio. Their banter lead on to more important dialogue. Their talk alerts us, and Shylock, to some unusual happenings in the air. He tells his daughter to make sure the doors are locked tightly.

There are other minor characters in the play that appear now and then such as Leonardo, who is in love with Jessica; The Duke of Morocco and the Prince of Aragon who wanted to marry Jessica; Solanio, Salarino, who were also Bassanio and Antonio’s friends; Tubal, a friend to Shylock; Old Cobbo, Launcelot’s father; Salerio, a messenger from Venice; Balthazar and Stephano who worked for Portia. And of course, let’s not forget the nameless court officials.

It’s a good play but truthfully in places it is like most of Shakespeare’s plays, especially “Much Ado About Nothing, the next play up in my book “William Shakespeare: The Complete Works.


Let’s just make a statement about food from outdoor carts and stalls while you’re traveling. If you have any doubts or fears at all …. don’t eat any! If you follow that rule, you’ll never get sick from street-bought food. However, just about every tourist and traveler takes the chance once in awhile. Since I retired a dozen years ago, I’ve done it in many cities of the world: Paris, London, Rome, Panama City, Acapulco, Venice, Stockholm, Amsterdam, Oslo, St. Petersburg, Copenhagen and others.

Most of my Navy service assignments took me to the other side of the world, and I sampled outdoor goodies in Tokyo, Shanghai, Beijing, Seoul and Hong Kong. I’m sure I’ve been very lucky, because I never was sickened by street food anywhere. The only time I ever was seriously ill from bad food was once when the cooks in the galley on my ship used some spoiled leftover ham to make ham croquettes. A dozen sailors were seriously affected, and two had to be hospitalized. Fortunately, I only had 24 hours of wishing I was dead.

If you are traveling this summer and are tempted to try some street-bought food, here is some advice that will at least minimize your chances of getting ill.

1. First, if you’re elderly, on medications, have a delicate stomach or have recently recovered from a severe illness, before you leave for your travels, check with your family physician. Listen to the instructions you get from the experts, and go easy and simple on the street vender food.

2. Wash everything thoroughly, preferably with bottled water, before you eat on the street. The best precaution is to take lots of those chemically treated hand wipes, and polish off everything you intend to eat on the spot. Of course, make sure your own hands are washed with fresh wipes or soap and water before you gobble anything.

3. If you want to try main course cooked food, buy it only after you actually see it boiled, fried or steamed thoroughly while you wait and closely observe the procedure. Don’t buy cooked food that looks like it has been sitting around awhile, especially fish, poultry and meat.

4. Do as the natives do. If you see a gang of locals buying and eating at a particular cart, chances are its food is clean enough for you to try.

5. Before you venture out to the marketplaces, ask hotel staff or cruise ship crew about the best places to get clean food in the town. If you’re familiar with the language, check with police, taxi drivers and other locals.

6. The safest foods are those Mother Nature has seal-wrapped for you: bananas, oranges, peanuts and coconuts. Freshly opened coconut milk is safe, delicious and nutritious.

7. Even if you believe the food is safe, don’t overindulge. Many foods not native to your own country may be safe to others, but your stomach may find them unfamiliar and reject them, especially if you eat a large portion.