Eating a plant based diet is relatively simple in the comfort of your own home. But what do you do when you travel? Logistically it can be hard to find places to eat, socially it can be awkward when you're surrounded by people who think you're a little nuts and eat only nuts, and it can be frustrating when you're hungry and you have to settle for rice and carrots when there's nothing else available. But here's the good news - you can do it, it just takes a little planning in advance. I recently went on a road trip from San Francisco to San Diego for a long weekend and was able to make some smart choices before heading out, which made traveling on a plant based diet super easy.
Traveling By Car
Traveling by car when you're plant based is going to be the easiest mode of transit. You can pack a cooler of goodies for the drive and really have an unlimited variety of foods to bring along. For our trip down to San Diego, I packed tortilla wraps filled with hummus, spinach, sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, and slivers of onions. Then I tightly wrapped the tortillas in plastic wrap for easy accessibility while driving, and less mess. They were super delicious and we didn't get the afternoon sluggishness from fast food. I also packed snacks of carrots and pickles. We weren't sure how much breakfast food would be available when we got to the hotel, so I also packed several of my Banana Muffins for a quick morning snack. These Chickpea Olive Wraps are also great for taking on road trips:
I'm a big camper. I love being in the outdoors, sleeping in tents, hearing the wind rush through the trees, and the animals out and about. My husband and I did an amazing National Park Road Trip a few years ago and found the simplicity in freeze dried food. All we had to do was boil water, add it to the mix, let it sit about 10 minutes and we had a warm and filling meal. And the best thing is, there are tons of plant based options. REI has a ton of great selections and BackpackersPantry.com has even more. I was a little wary of trying this kind of food, but was happily surprised at how good AND filling it was. Backpacker's Pantry is my favorite brand and their Chana Masala is my favorite dinner.
Amy's Kitchen also makes some good products if you're car camping and can bring a little heavier load including canned goods.
There's a great app from Happy Cow called Veg Travel Guide for Vegans & Vegetarians. For $2.99 it allows you to search by location for vegan, vegetarian, and health food stores near you. They also have a website search option if you don't have a phone that can download the app. Just a quick search in an area near me that I didn't think had many options came up with 10 restaurants! The app and website also rates the restaurant or store so you can see right away if it would be a good option or not.
So don't delay your trip or sacrifice your healthy habits because you think it might be too hard to travel on a plant based diet. You can totally do it and it even makes your adventure better because you know you're able to continue your lifestyle while on the road. Happy Travels!