Whether you’re a vegan, vegetarian, or you simply want to cut down on your meat and dairy consumption for ‘Veganuary’ and beyond, you don’t have to compromise your beliefs or dietary needs just because you’re travelling. In fact, one of the best things about travel is experiencing new cultures, and delicious food is a big part of that.
So if you’re travelling meatless in various parts of the world, we’ve got a vegetarian friendly guide for you. First up, Australia. Show us what you’ve got!
Australia may as well take a crown as the vegan capital of some sort because this is a country that knows how to do vegan and make it freaking tasty.
Of course, you might struggle a little more when eating out in the outback, but if you’re cooking for yourself, the supermarkets will keep you sorted. There’s a wide range of vegetarian friendly brands available, such as Quorn, Frys, Linda McCartney and Veggie Delights, so hostel cooking won’t be a problem. In fact, vegan products grew by 92% last year in Aus alone. There are even local vegan “butchers”, making plant based “meats”, such as Suzy Spoon.
1. New South Wales
Sydney and its surrounds are also home to the epic vegan fish and chip shop called Bliss & Chips, a plant-based burger chain called Soul Burger, and even a pub where the menu is entirely vegan, The Green Lion. Asian food across the city is largely vegan as well; Thai Pothong in Newtown deserves a special mention, purely because of its separate vegan menu featuring an array of fake meats. On Saturdays, head to the famous Glebe Market, jam-packed with #foodporn moments including beautifully crafted vegan cupcakes! All the yum.
Want to treat yourself? Grab a slice at Gigi’s Pizzeria in Sydney’s Newtown suburb – some of the best pizza you’ll ever try, and it’s wholly vegan.
Are you heading to Byron Bay? Chances are if you’re backpacking up the East Coast, the answer is a resounding “yes”. This New South Wales beach town is Australia’s hippy capital, leaving you with some amazing options when it comes to veggie food. Everyone seems to love Manna Haven, a café based on the ethos of peace. There’s also Elixiba, which can also be found along the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast, as well as The Beet and Curly Kale. This town is a vegetarian or vegan’s idea of heaven.
Like a lot of food trends, Melbourne is causing a stir in the vegan food scene too. Both Smith & Daughters and Smith & Deli offer tasty plant-based cuisine and they know how to nail that all-important Melbourne staple: brunch! Mock meats galore can be found at Vegie Hut Chinese, while The Cornish Arms has both a meat and meat-free menu, ideal for dinners out with groups of friends. Looking for dessert? Girls & Boys offer heaps of plant-based smoothies, addictive acai bowls, nice creams and other sweet delights. Fancy gorging on yummy food and giving a little back? Lentils As Anything is a unique community restaurant which you can find in both Sydney and Melbourne. It’s entirely vegan and operates on a “pay-as-you-feel” basis, ensuring all sects of the community can come in. With a focus on giving a safe space to LGBT+, the indigenous people of Australia, the homeless and people from all backgrounds, there’s good vibes all around.
3. Gold Coast & Queensland
Head further along the East coast to Brisbane where there’s a whole host of options. To name a few there’s the local chain Charlie’s Raw Squeeze as well as Loving Hut and Vege Rama. Cairns won’t leave you stranded either. Fuel up on rainbow salads and black bean burritos at Cheeky Yam after diving the Great Barrier Reef.
5. South Australia
If you find yourself in Adelaide in October, you might be lucky enough to catch the annual Vegan Festival hosted here. In addition there are loads of everyday places such as Veggo Sizzle and Vego and Loven it to get that vegetarian fix.
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6. Northern Territory
Venture up North to Darwin and gorge on organic fodder from a caravan at Buda bar or dig into veggie soul food at Eat at Martin’s – the pumpkin dahl is next level! Even Alice Springs has something to offer vegetarians and vegans so if you’re passing through while visiting Uluru check out the Tea Shrine for noodle salads drizzled with peanut sauce, bubble tea and steamed dumplings.
7. Western Australia
And last but certainly not least Western Australia! Perth is another city that has made meat-free easy peasy thanks to places like pay-as-you-feel Indian Annalakshmi right on Swan River and Flora & Fauna in Northbridge. As for trendy Fremantle known as ‘Freo’ head to the hipster haven Raw Kitchen for fresh Kombucha, gnocchi (with blueberries in what?) and a big slice of vegan triple choc cake or venture into the markets for a veggie burger at Chic Pea Vegan Café.
There’s even a veggie fast food chain, Lord of the Fries, found across the country! Ideal for a guilt-free late-night takeaway.
Oh, and if it’s goon (Australia’s cheap, staple booze) you’re after… there are vegan versions, too!
Wanderlusting for a vegan road trip Down Under? We don’t blame you. Let us know in the comments where we should provide an all things vegetarian and vegan guide to next!