If you enjoy the sweeter things in life, then read on to discover the best countries across the globe to visit. Wherever you travel, a delicious treat is never too far away so, leave the digestive biscuits at home and embrace the sweet specialities in each country you visit.
Anyone with a sweet tooth will be thankful to have visited Finland with its delicious array of sweet food available. We spoke to Varpu from Her Finland, a Finnish lifestyle and travel blog, to find out her recommendations. She says: “Finland is a paradise if you like sweet treats! Definite musts are traditional cinnamon buns, Finnish pancakes and blueberry pie with vanilla sauce.”
Cinnamon rolls are a popular treat enjoyed in Finland and they are made with ‘pulla’, a sweet and buttery cardamom dough. The pulla is then swirled with cinnamon and dusted with pearl sugar. Supermarket cinnamon buns will never taste the same after you have visited Finland and tasted the authentic delights from the local bakeries. You can also try creating them yourself by following Varpu’s recipe.
The Åland islands, found on the region of Finland, offer a one-of-a-kind treat that visitors must try. Varpu continues: “They have a special Åland oven pancake, which melts in your mouth! You can only have it there. It's divine.”
More commonly referred to as the home of the Pizza, Italy is also the place you can go to tuck into some delicious desserts. The views and coast of Italy make a great destination to travel on a luxury med cruise, and it’s made even greater by the many Gelato parlours available. If you have a sweet tooth you will be in your element when choosing between wide ranges of flavours, from hazelnut to pineapple or just plain vanilla, there’s something for everyone.
Another traditional Italian dessert is Panna Cotta, which translates to ‘cooked cream.’ Restaurants across the globe mimic the Panna Cotta recipe, but you need to enjoy this dessert in its home country. It is a mixture of sweetened cream and gelatine that’s set until it stands unsupported.
We spoke to Nick from Goats on The Road, a blog all about how to turn travel into a lifestyle which he writes along with his partner Dariece. We asked which country he thinks has the best sweet food: “My favourite sweet food country has to be Italy. There are just so many different delicious desserts to choose from! From Tiramisu to Cannoli and everything in between, Italy has some of the best food on the planet, for all courses!”
Tiramisu is perhaps the most well-loved Italian dessert. Made with ladyfingers dipped in coffee and a mixture of eggs, sugar and mascarpone cheese that’s then topped with cocoa, the delicious treat is an all-time favourite. The name itself translates to ‘pick me up’ and whilst in Italy, it would be a crime not to try the Italian speciality.
Whilst you explore Italy, be sure to visit one of many Italian bakeries and enjoy a Cannoli. The pastries originate from the island of Sicily and consist of fried pastry, sweet cream and ricotta. You’ll notice a variety of different flavours and toppings depending on where you go, from chocolate to pistachio. These pastries are the perfect addition to a cup of coffee.
Denmark is said to be home to the happiest people in the world, perhaps this is because of the beautiful architecture, free education or impeccable work-life balance, or maybe it’s because they create delicious sweet food!
A Baltic city where you can indulge in sweet delights is Copenhagen. Wander down the streets of the picturesque city and you’ll notice various delicious smells wafting from nearby bakeries. Make sure to pop into one and ask for their local speciality.
We spoke to Cindie, the owner of Foods of Copenhagen, a business that provides food tours for travellers who want to experience the incredible local cuisine. Cindie is an expert when it comes to the must-try food of Copenhagen and we asked what people with a sweet tooth should try when visiting the city: “Copenhagen has an amazing cake (& coffee) culture, which mean we are very spoiled when it comes to food overall. I suggest Wienerbrød and cakes from places such as Andersen & Maillard and La Grace.”
The origin of Wienerbrød, or Danish pastry, is often debated. The name roughly translates to Vienna bread, and many believe they were originally created in Austria. Despite the speculation that Danish pastries are not actually from Denmark, the country have perfected the way to make them delicious. Denmark has so much to offer and with delightful ports like Skagen - food lovers can easily cruise to the country.
The Netherlands is often overlooked when it comes to sweet food. From sweet pies to their signature stroopwafels, there are many sweet foods to enjoy whilst visiting the beautiful country.
Stroopwafels are made by two thin layers of waffle joined together by a caramel syrup. This Dutch treat originated from the city of Gouda and is best enjoyed warm from one of the many street food markets in the Netherlands. The gooey delicacy is most often enjoyed with a hot drink.
If you like pancakes, then you’ll love Poffertjes. The Dutch sweet treat is made with batter and is a much smaller but fluffier version of pancakes and most commonly served with powdered sugar and butter.
Eating Europe is a company that aims to give people a true taste of Europe through engaging food tours that help tourists experience delicious local food. We spoke to Wibke from the Eating Europe team to find out where she enjoyed the best sweet food: “While it doesn't get any more traditional than apple pie, the classic Dutch version (the original I may add) served at Cafe Papeneiland in Amsterdam is nothing short of perfection... every time!”
It’s probably no surprise that France is at the top of the list for the best countries to visit if you have a sweet tooth. The sit outside a traditional French café on cobbled streets whilst enjoying a coffee and something sweet is a scene dreamt by people all across the world. From sweet macarons to a chocolate heaven gateau, there are many French foods that will satisfy a sweet tooth.
We spoke to Chris from Artisan Traveller, a blog he writes with his wife Ali all about their travel adventures across the globe and asked where he had the best sweet food: “I was in Paris, France when I had the most amazing cake from a famous pâtissier called Pierre Hermé. The cake was Montebello. A pistachio dacquoise biscuit topped with pistachio cream and fresh strawberries - absolute heaven!”
If you’re willing to challenge your sweet tooth, then read on to discover the most unusual sweet treats tried by expert travel bloggers.
Becki from Borders of Adventure, a blog about her travels around the world featuring cultural insights and guides, reveals the most unusual sweet treat she’s tried: “It was some of the sweet treats in jars in Colombia. One was shaped like a little doll and was like fudge. We had that in Cartagena, and they were selling the sweets under the archways off the square.”
Chris, from Artisan Traveller, continues: “The most unusual sweet food that I have come across on my travels is a dessert called Khao Neow Dam Sang Kaya. The dessert can be found at The Silom Soi 20 Market in Bangkok. It comprises a mound of sweet sticky rice with coconut custard and coconut cream wrapped up in a pandan leaf. It is almost fudge-like in texture and extremely moreish. It was undoubtedly one of the highlights of our time in Thailand.”
Nick and Dariece also have tasted some unusual sweet food during their years travelling the globe. They say: “We had some really strange desserts in India. For example, Fried Banana and Rice Flour Balls (Unniyappam) have a very strange texture, but they’re still very delicious.”
No matter which country you visit next, be sure to try out the local sweet food. From old classics to unusual flavours make sure to indulge your sweet tooth wherever you go.