Food festivals are not only great fun, they’re also a great way to experience the local food culture. Time to tap into your unconditional love for food and come with an open mind. These food festivals from around the world will showcase the best of different cuisines and have you feasting on things you know and love, as well as those you’ve never heard of before!
1. Giant Omelette Festival, Bessières, France
Every year, the Knights of the Giant Omelette comes together as they have for decades. They cook a giant omelette from more than 15,000 eggs, and distribute them to thousands of the festival’s observers.
According to a legend, Napoleon enjoyed his omelet in Bessières so much that the next morning he ordered every egg in town be broken to prepare a giant omelet for his troops. The commune of Bessières continues the tradition to this day in a multi-day festival. The event includes dancing, music and parades, but the omelette-making is the main event. Donning chef’s whites and wielding enormous wooden tools, the brotherhood stirs and cooks the eggs in a massive pan over a fire in the town square.
2. Pizzafest, Naples, Italy
Join the world’s largest celebration of pizza in Naples! As the birthplace of pizza, this delicious event has been taking place every year since 1995 (except in 2020, because of Covid-19). For a week-long period, the most famous pizzerie from around the world will compete against renowned local pizzaioli. People can taste different varieties of pizzas and vote for their favourite. At the end of the celebration, a jury will announce the best pizzaiolo in the world!
And that’s not all – in between all the munching, Pizzafest has all kinds of fun programs. There are workshops teaching crowds how to make authentic pizza, live concerts, interesting exhibits, exciting games, and much more! It’s no wonder why this is one of the most popular food festivals in the world.
3. Gilroy Garlic Festival, Gilroy, California
This festival stinks – but in a good way. Thanks to its massive garlic crop and production, Gilroy is also known as the Garlic Capital of the World. Indulge in all things garlicky at the Gilroy Garlic Festival – garlic calamari, garlic fries, garlic bread, and even garlic ice cream!
Over the three-day festival, you will also find fun for all ages including rides, games and crafts. Meet celebrity chefs, join cooking contests, and watch live entertainment on three stages!
4. Wildfoods Festival, Hokitika, New Zealand
Now onto something less… Conventional. Taking place mid-march in the quaint town of Hokitika, the Wildfoods Festival brings an array of unusual foods. Think seagull eggs, huhu grubs, pigs’ nipples, possum, sheep brain… Generally, things that you never thought could have a place in food!
For the less adventurous, there are always the more conventional platters of escargots and shellfish. Did we also mention that dressing up in costumes is common at Wildfoods, and there is a Feral Fashion contest every year? Visitors can also enjoy world-class Kiwi acts on a main stage, making this a food-cum-music festival!
5. Maine Lobster Festival, Rockland, Maine
Enjoy five days of fun and feasting on various lobster dishes at the Maine Lobster Festival. No one could possibly go hungry with so many food trucks in one place! In addition to eating fresh local lobster, there’s also a Seafood Cooking Contest where a judging committee selects the winner based on the recipe’s simplicity, suitability, and creativity.
Vendors from across the country also sell jewelry, clothing and other personalized items in the marketplace tent. Don’t miss The Big Parade, which features a newly crowned Sea Goddess, and King Neptune, along with their escorts. There is also a fun road race and crate race, where participants try to run across lobster crates without falling off into the ocean. Sounds like fun? Unfortunately, the 2021 festival has been cancelled for the second year in a row due to the pandemic. Here’s to hoping that we can participate next year!
6. Salon de Chocolate, Quito, Ecuador
There are many chocolate festivals in the world, but none deserves a mention more than the Salon de Chocolate held in Quito, Ecuador. Every year, more than sixty producers gather to showcase Ecuador’s cocoa and chocolate, along with many handcrafted delicacies.
Along with a chocolate sculpture contest, visitors also have the chance to indulge and purchase high-quality products. Want to learn more about chocolates? There are various workshops to do so! Lastly, don’t miss the fashion show featuring models wearing intricate dresses made of chocolate. We assure you it will be unlike any fashion show you’ve seen!