When you’ve set off to explore the world, there’s no tastier way to immerse yourself in the cultures you visit than cooking authentic cuisine with a local chef. (Bonus: You might just bring a new recipe or two home with you.) Check out these five Royal Caribbean culinary experiences, which all burst with local flavor.
1. Tuscan Cooking Class and Wine Tasting
Get inspired during a tour of the iconic Martelli factory, a family business where they’ve been making four different shapes of pasta since 1920. Then, in the kitchen of their rustic Tuscan estate, learn how to make their signature pasta and traditional cantuccini biscuits from scratch before enjoying a three-course dinner paired with five wines produced from the Tuscan hills.
Where to find it: Florence, Italy
2. Aix City Discovery and French Pastry Workshop
Satiate your sweet tooth in the south of France by mastering the art of Provençal and French pastry-making at L’Atelier des Chefs, the renowned cooking school. You’ll learn proper techniques for everything from mastering the use of a pastry bag to whisking cream or making a gorgeous custard. What’s more, you’ll get to take your decadent creations, beautifully packaged, back with you—blowing every boring cupcake Instagram out of the water.
Where to find it: Aix-en-Provence, France
3. Flavors of Jamaica
Under the guidance of a local chef, prepare a feast of the island’s greatest hits: jerk chicken, coconut shrimp and West African callaloo. You’ll cook—even kneading your own dough—and savor the flavors from the veranda of an 18th century Great House against the breathtaking backdrop of the Caribbean Sea.
Where to find it: Falmouth, Jamaica
4. Pelmeni Cooking Class and Vodka Tasting in Russia
Learn how to make pelmeni, Russia’s petite dumplings made of unleavened dough filled with savory ingredients, thought to be derived from Chinese wontons. You’ll feel just like a native when you complement your handmade meal with samples of authentic Russian vodka, learning about the drink’s origins, which date back to the 14th century, while you do.
Where to find it: St. Petersburg, Russia
5. Scandinavian Cuisine in Reykjavik
Enjoy a three-course dinner at Salt Eldhús, a culinary workshop near Iceland’s capital city where the guests are also the chefs. You’ll work with fresh, local ingredients to create an authentic Scandinavian meal, from roasted lamb and root vegetables to ‘happy marriage’ cake with skycream and rhubarb jam. When it’s done, you’ll settle around the shop’s farmhouse table to savor the results of your labor.
Where to find it: Reykjavik, Iceland
There are so many ways to experience the world while sailing onboard a Royal Caribbean ship, from culinary classes to other exciting experiences. Check out more shore excursions for your cruise vacation here.