Fun fact: Being vegan cuts your diet’s carbon footprint on average by half. Half!
And as the world gets more clued in about protecting the environment, it’s no wonder that cities worldwide are getting more and more vegan friendly in response.
But some cities are simply higher up on that vegan-friendly scale than others…
So we’ve sniffed out the cities with the BEST plant-based offerings for vegans, vegetarians and foodies alike and tracked down their most beloved vegan kitchens and events for you. (And these cities get bonus points for being 10/10s on the must-see destination scale, food aside.
#1 Tel Aviv, Israel
Often called the vegan capital of the world, it’s no surprise that this seaside destination tops our bucket list of vegan-friendly cities.
With 5-8% of the population already eating vegan, Tel-Aviv boasts the highest percentage of vegans worldwide. So if you’re thinking, ‘gee, there sure must be a lot of vegan choice around’… You’d be correct. The number of vegan restaurants and cafes in the city stands at 400 – and counting!
These two facts combined help make Tel Aviv not just a must-see travel destination for vegan foodies, but basically for anyone wanting to taste some great local cuisine.
Or … scratch that – it’s honestly the perfect city for curious travelers in general. With an average annual temperature of 20.9 °C (69.6 °F) promising a sunny trip, as well as a geographic position (*cough*seaside*cough*) and historical legacy very much worth experiencing, Tel Aviv is more than just a good spot for over-indulging in food and getting your tan on.
In fact, Tel Aviv translates to ‘Tell of Spring’ – which is essentially a reference to its (or more accurately Jaffa’s – Israel’s ancient port city which it is now a suburb of Tel Aviv) history and the idea of renewal. Who said romance is dead?
Without further ado, here are everybody’s current vegan favorites:
Cafe: Anastasia – try their amazing vegan cheeses or buy something to remind you of your trip in their attached shop.
Restaurant: Zakaim – it’s fresh and local, with a Peruvian twist. Queue the mouth watering.
All-vegan shop: HaGal HaYarok – the first chain shop of its kind! ALL products are vegan-friendly… you’ll not find even the tiniest drop of honey inside this shop.
#2 Taipei, Taiwan
Back in 2016, Taipei won the title, Asia’s Most Vegan Friendly City’. So it seems Tel Aviv has some veggie competition: With 12% of the population committed vegetarians compared to Tel Aviv’s 13%, Taiwan is well on track to a more plant-based diet.
As you may have already guessed, Taiwan errs towards a vegetarian lifestyle rather than totally vegan, however their over 300 vegetarian restaurants are famous for their many fabulous vegan-friendly options.
Inspired by the Buddhist religion, which is often believed to discourage the consuming of meat, the cuisine in Taiwan has deep roots in vegetarianism. Which means vegan and vegetarian food is not designed to be an alternative to meat, but to be great food in its own right!
Here’s the best vegan-friendly places:
Restaurant: Hoshina – enjoy handmade noodles in Japanese-inspired dreamy sauces… yum.
Cafe: Vegan Heaven – We’ll give you a clue… They’ll gonna be asking, ‘who ate all the cakes’..?
Market: Keelung Night Market – an awesome selection with tons of vegan friendly options to nose out.
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Okay, so maybe you heard that Chiang Mai was the vegan capital of Asia? Well, what can we say, it’s a big place with a whole lot of food. Let’s just agree that Chiang Mai is the best place for trying some delicious, plant-based Thai cuisine at equally delicious prices.
Your plant-based diet in Thailand is food first, vegan second. Even their famous national dish is vegan – just ’cause. ‘Khanom khrok’ is a pancake made out of rice flour and coconut milk and will definitely hit the spot.
Look out for the red and yellow sign that signifies a vegan or vegan-friendly restaurant. And trust us, even the most oblivious vegan-adventurer will not have a problem on this mission, since the sign is literally around every bend in the city.
Our three favorite picks?
Market stall: Happy Mushroom – Located in the Ruam Chok Fresh Market, this stall serves vegan Thai and Burmese dishes, all cooked in coconut oil, that could put a five star restaurant to shame.
Street cart: V-Secret Homemade Vegetarian – it’s modest but good. Eco-eaters listen up: this street cart has almost zero waste since almost everything is served inside food (like a cabbage leaf).
Restaurant: Ama Vegan Kitchen – For those craving a change from Thai food, get a table in this restaurant. It sells mostly ‘western’ food and somehow makes their occasional raw dishes taste like something you could never do yourself.
Home to the world’s first and largest no-meat festival, Toronto is known for its vegan events. In fact, if you’re heading there this holiday season, we recommend a trip to this Vegan Christmas Market.
To be honest, it doesn’t come as a surprise that Toronto manages to top so many vegan bucket lists. As the most populous city in Canada, and one which is recognized as one of the most diverse cities in the world, it’s no wonder they’re forward-thinking. With 200 distinct ethnic groups finding their home here and 160 different languages being spoken, well… need we say more?
Our vegan faves:
Restaurant: Rosalinda – For big flavors, Mexican cuisine and a modern atmosphere, book a table here.
Cafe: Away – Your go-to vegan cafe for snacks, cocktail, coffee or lunch.
Area: Vegandale – Strictly speaking, this is not really an eatery. But you can get food here, so win-win. Come to this area of Toronto for vegan food of all sorts and ethnically-sourced clothes.
We’re actually not just being biased because Berlin’s the home of MyPostcard. It’s because it’s a great city for vegans – this is where vegan businesses come to flourish.
Or take a walk down Schivelbeiner Strasse, otherwise known as Vegan Avenue – basically your one stop for a vegan lifestyle. Here, you’ll find a vegan cafe, a vegan shoe store, a vegan clothes shop and a vegan grocery store.
If you’re going to be doing a little tourist-ing while you’re here, check out these 8 Berlin insider tips to get you to the coolest places.
Top 3 vegan picks:
Cafe: Brammibals – oh Brammibals! Where you’ll find vegan doughnuts of all kinds and all equally scrumptious. Best not visit if you’re on a diet.
All-vegan shop: Der Sache Wegen – plastic-free, bio, fair trade and regional produce. All the things that make a grocery store great. Just bring your own tupperware and come prepared to weigh your food.
Fast Food: Mo’s Kleiner Imbiss – Also called the King of Falafel. It’s tiny but it’s goooood.
This is the most vegan city in India. It’s so vegan, it’s even vegan virtually. That’s right, Vegania, a self-described virtual vegan country, is big here.
In fact, Bangalore has a few initiates like this, include Good Mylk, where vegan activists are working hard to get nutritious and good value alternative dairy product a place in the Indian market.
Here are Bangalore’s most beloved vegan kitchens:
Restaurant: Go Native – a three parter, combining a farm to table restaurant using local organic foods, a retail store specializing in sustainable products and a plastic free grocery store.
Cafe: The Tasting Room of Happy Healthy Me – a completely vegan cafe attached to a vegetarian store, serving a great selection of Indian food.
Restaurant: Time Traveller – Offering a menu and a buffet service, you’ll enjoy a lot of choice at this restaurant. It’s vegetarian but there’s a whole lot vegan selection.
It’s not just considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world, but it’s apparently also pretty vegan-friendly.
In fact according to Happy Cow, it has 47 vegan restaurants in a 5 mile radius. So if you don’t like the look of the first one, there’s nothing to stop you from moving a few meters down the road to the next one.
Warsaw’s best plant-based places:
Restaurant: Edamame Vegan Sushi – because who doesn’t love sushi?
Fast Food: Vege Kiosk – best suited for vegans in a hurry, because the food here – ranging from pizza to dessert – is on a to-go basis.
Nail Parlor: Nailed It – chances are you’ll not get any food here, but you come out the owner of a brand new environmentally and animal friendly manicure.
Flagged for its “roaring vegan scene” by The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta), Singapore’s a great place for vegans (and non-vegans) to explore.
Case in point: When the vegan joint, Beyond Burger, opened, it outsold traditional beef burgers by an outstanding three to one!
Restaurant: Vege Pot – great for local and Chinese dishes.
Cafe: Brown Ice – preservative free and healthy… With each scoop containing as little as 80 calories, who could say no to a second (or a third) one?
Food festival: Singapore Vegan Festival – or ignore the above and head to this festival to see a selection of the best vegan food in town plus cooking demos and public speakers.
New York, The USA
Nicknamed the Big Apple, maybe it’s no surprise that NYC has a vegan scene going on.
The people of NYC have embraced the vegan lifestyle and a lot of the restaurants here are vegan-friendly, if not entirely vegan.
Add that to the amount of vegan events, like the upcoming Third Annual ABQ Vegan Trunk or Treat for example, and you have yourself a vegan haven.
The best vegan destinations in NYC
Cafe: Bunna Cafe – a cafe / bar with vegan friendly cocktails, Ethiopian cuisine, plus cool cooking sessions and music nights.
Restaurant: The Butcher’s Daughter – we assume the name is ironic, because this place is totally vegan and fabulous for brunch. And it calls itself ‘the vegetable slaughterhouse’ which is kind of awesome.
Food court: St Mark’s Vegan Food Court – which opened in June 2019. It’s got a Latin place, a burger joint, Jamaican food and two more kitchens currently in talks.
And there you have it, the 9 vegan-friendliest cities in the world. And we’re rooting for more competition!
P.S. If you don’t take any pictures of your amazing vegan food abroad, did you even go..? Exactly! 😉 Make sure to learn these 5 food photography tips to make the most of your pretty vegan food.