It is undeniable that Germany is vegan mecca in Europe. I actually came back to Turkey more than a few pounds heavier after spending five weeks stuffing myself. No regrets. Amongst all the cities I managed to visit, Regensburg definitely stands out as the most vegan-friendly as compared to others. Yes, I’m looking at you Rothernburg ob der Tauber; pretzel and a jar of Bärlauch bread spread does NOT constitute dinner.
In an attempt to not starve this time, we made a stop at the shopping centre just by the train station – for a pee break initially – and to grab some lunch before exploring this beautiful medieval city somehow stuck in time. I always tend to lean towards Asian restaurants when travelling since I’m more likely to find something to eat, plus it’s yummy. So Vietnamese food at Quan Sen, not that I had any choice if I wanted something more filling than a plain old boring salad.
Bamberg was yet another place on my list that I managed to crossed out this summer, as a day trip from Nuremberg, and I couldn’t be happier. The reason I wanted to go there was because the whole Aldstadt (old city) has been declared a UNESCO Heritage Site, which Lonely Planet describes as “one of Bavaria’s unmissables”. Whilst most people go there for the architectural beauties – I do love pretty German towns – and the beer – nothing for me here -, we quickly realised that adventuring beyond the touristic sights in this very small town offered another, almost hilarious and creative, aspect of Bamberg.
Budapest, simply put, was food heaven. Either that or I was always hungry (which I usually am – writing this as I stuff down a whole packet of Oreos). Contrary to my hilarious and overcomplicated Japanese experience, our eat-outs in Budapest went by without any mishaps. A quick look at Happy Cow for vegan-friendly restaurants in the city – so I wouldn’t starve – generated several possibilities, each that looked more tempting than the other. Our (my) original plan of cooking for ourselves, since our accommodation offered that possibility, just never happened, mostly because we were out till very late everyday and eating out wasn’t as expensive as we (I) initially thought it would be. I didn’t get to try out Hungarian cuisine; there was this place I read about which served a vegan version of the lángos, Hungarian fried bread usually topped with sour cream and grated cheese, but we never did make it there (excuse to go back?). We spent most of our time around Kálvin tér, so most of the places (listed below) we ate at tended to be not far from there or the sights. We did end up coming back home every single night stuffed as hell, so that’s a good sign right?
Jen took me to this one when I said I was starving and that I loved hummus. I’m not sure which one we went to but they have several branches and I learned you’re never far away from delicious hummus and falafel from anywhere you are in the city. Jen and I got to know each other even better over a bowl of Msabbaha (mine), what I would call a gourmet version of the hummus served with warm pita bread and a piece of chocolate baklava (hers).