The flavor and aroma of seafood can be like a snapshot, bringing back memories of romantic island honeymoons, family vacations spent dining at a seafood stand by the shore, or visiting Nonna’s kitchen on Christmas Eve.
Seafood is also adored all over the world, and we may frequently eat it at home. Seafood lovers will travel the world in search of the ideal meal that they will never forget and may desire to know the best seafood cities in the world.
A sushi breakfast at a dawn Japanese fish market or freshly caught ceviche spooned into your cup on the pier could all qualify as the ideal meal.
Other options include enjoying freshly grilled fish on an Indonesian beach while the tide washes over your feet.
Each location brings its own distinct flavor and vibe, ranging from sushi to Cajun, and preparation is equally important.
Here are the 20 best seafood cities in the world for which you should travel great distances.
What is the best Seafood City in the US?
Seattle, one of the top places in America for seafood, is situated on the beautiful and rainy Puget Sound.
This lovely location invites a variety of seafood to menus all throughout the city, from modern American eateries to classic Italian bistros. Seattle’s specialty might be any number of fish, including;
The bustling Pike Place Market is one of the most recognizable images of the seafood scene in Seattle.
If you have ever witnessed fish being thrown into someone’s arms from the air, you have experienced the renowned seafood atmosphere of Seattle’s Pike Place Market.
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What are the Best Seafood Cities In The World?
Tokyo is a favored destination for seafood lovers since sushi is the Japanese meal that is most well-known and consumed abroad.
The range of dining options includes anything from high-end dining at renowned Michelin Star-rated restaurants (Tokyo has the most Michelin Stars of any city) to sushi brunch at the largest and busiest fish market in the world.
A popular early-morning tourist site and wholesale fish market. Tsukiji Fish Market is known for its sushi counters, where freshly caught fish practically arrives on your plate, and its live tuna auctions.
Try the internationally renowned U.S. President-visited, documentary-inspiring Sukiyabashi Jiro if you can get a reservation and have $300 to burn.
Pick your favorite since both options are frequently praised as the best sushi in the world.
2. Hong Kong
Hong Kong is a top destination for seafood because of its natural, deep harbor and authentic Cantonese cuisine.
Visit the Sai Kung Seafood Market for seafood that is so fresh you can see it swimming just moments before it is served.
Along the waterfront promenade, vendors sell their catches straight from their boats; you can then take your purchase—still alive—to a nearby restaurant for preparation in Hong Kong’s traditional less-is-more style.
The three-Michelin-star Lung King Heen restaurant inside the Four Seasons Hotel and the Jumbo Kingdom floating eateries in Aberdeen Harbour are both well-known.
3. San Francisco
San Francisco is a coastal city that teems with recently caught seafood, yes.
To the dismay of local foodies, the Dungeness crab is currently inedible. They also have their signature seafood dishes like cioppino.
San Francisco is a culinary hotspot that specializes in California fusion cuisine and is a seafood lover’s paradise, but it is also much more than that.
It is also home to some of the top chefs in the United States as well as Michelin Star-rated and James Beard Award-winning restaurants that serve creative seafood dishes like lobster coral xiao long bao and sea urchin tarte flambée from Benu Creations.
The largest city in Australia, Sydney, is a seafood lover’s paradise.
Given that Australia’s oceans are known for producing high-quality seafood, it is simple for Sydney to provide a wide range of species.
The Sydney Fish Market trades up to 100 species per day and about 500 in a year, despite being known for fish like salmon, tuna, lobster, abalone, prawns, and barramundi.
Sushi has gained enormous popularity in Australia, which has a sizable Asian population.
There are also many renowned restaurants in Sydney, including Tetsuya’s, where the confit of Petuna ocean trout is well known as the dish that has garnered the most Instagram likes.
Boston’s hallmark cuisine of comfort food prepared in the pub manner with the freshest catches of the day is nearly associated with New England seafood.
Lobster, clams, crab, and scrod are served in traditional meals such as New England clam chowder, fried clams, fish and chips, and lobster rolls, which are devoured by locals and tourists alike.
Boston’s standing is enhanced by the presence of internationally famous chefs like Jasper White, Todd English, and Lydia Shire.
No trip to the city would be complete without a stop at Neptune Oyster or the Yankee Lobster Co.
The Legal Sea Foods chain, with its headquarters in Boston, is renowned for its quality and variety.
Spain’s capital city doesn’t let you down when it comes to seafood, even though you won’t have a glimpse of the ocean when you’re eating.
The city, which is a landlocked one, has the second-largest fish market in the world and offers some of the greatest seafood from Spain’s coastal regions.
In Madrid, it’s common to eat tapas, which involves going to several bars and ordering a variety of small plates. Popular dishes there include prawns with garlic and bocadillo de calamares.
Madrid’s cuisine is a fusion of different parts of Spain, so you can find everything from traditional Valencian paella at Casa de Valencia to a feast of Galician seafood at Ribeira Do Mino, including heaping platters of crab, prawns, and gooseneck barnacles.
7. Panama City, Panama
Rumor has it that the name Panama means “a lot of fish.” The Mercado de Mariscos, a fish market situated directly on the dock and flanked with outdoor cevicherias serving this national specialty in plastic cups, is unquestionably the greatest spot to purchase fresh seafood in Panama City.
Although there are many other species and unusual delights to be discovered, corvina, red snapper, octopus, and langostino are plentiful and well-liked. Maito and Manolo Caracol are just two of the numerous other places in Panama City that serve excellent seafood at affordable pricing.
8. Jimbaran, Bali
In this fishing community, the Jimbaran Seafood Cafes, a collection of eateries situated close to the edge of the tide on Jimbaran Bay, offer a distinctive and memorable dining experience.
In this paradise for seafood lovers, diners choose their own freshly caught, live seafood, which is then immediately grilled over a fire of coconut husks.
Among the shellfish served while taking in the stunning sunset are red snapper, prawns, squid, and lobster.
9. Valparaiso, Chile
The most significant port city in the southern Pacific was Valparaiso (or “Valpo”) until the Panama Canal was opened. Since ships no longer needed the halt between the Pacific and North Atlantic, the canal dealt Valpo’s economy a hit.
The historic district of Valpo was designated a World Heritage Site in 2003, sparking something of a revival. The emergence of artists coincided with a rebirth in the culinary arts.
In old houses that had been repaired, locals and businesspeople created restaurants.
The Humboldt Current, which is rich in nutrients, is responsible for the abundance of fresh seafood species that swarm the shore and greatly diversify the local cuisine.
Espritu Santo, a small inn-restaurant, emphasizes seasonal ingredients and local fish.
10. Palermo, Italy
The cuisine of the Sicilian capital largely incorporates local seafood from the island, along with fresh produce and frequent pasta.
Sea urchin, sardines, anchovies, and swordfish are among the lesser-known species found in Palermo compared to the other cities on this list.
These species are prepared in more unusual ways, such as sardines or swordfish stuffed with raisins and pine nuts and served with seafood couscous.
In Palermo, street food is incredibly popular and occasionally includes seafood.
11. New Orleans
Food in New Orleans is renowned throughout the world, particularly seafood.
Offering a fantastic and distinctive variety of seafood dishes with an instantly recognizable Louisiana flavor are NOLA’s native cuisines, Cajun and Creole: The Big Easy is a must-visit destination for seafood lovers thanks to its seafood stews like shrimp étouffée and gumbo, as well as Creole classics like jambalaya and shrimp creole.
The hard white meat of a lobster, which is packed with a rich, delectable flavor, is frequently referred to as the “King of Seafood.”
Maine is the world’s premier lobster producer; in 2018, the state landed 119 million pounds of lobster, worth more than $484 million.
You can eat lobster in a variety of ways, including simply steaming or boiling it, baking it into lobster risotto or lobster mac and cheese, or tossing it with mayo and stuffing it into a crunchy lobster roll.
Portugal’s most beloved seafood dish is called bacalhau. Codfish that have been salted and sun-dried are referred to as “bacalhau.”
Using this age-old technique, the dried codfish can be kept at room temperature for an unlimited period of time without having to worry about bacteria or mold growing on it.
Bacalhau can be made in more than 365 different ways in traditional cooking, one for every day of the year.
You can find bacalhau being served in a variety of ways throughout Portugal, from large urban areas like Lisbon to small towns in the Alentejo wine region.
The world’s best seafood may be found in Mozambique, which has a lengthy coastline and plenty of fishing opportunities.
Every Sunday, citizens in large towns like Maputo visit fish markets to stock up on fresh, locally caught seafood.
Particularly prized in this region are prawns for their enormous size, mouthwatering flavor, and succulence.
15. Açores Islands
On the Açores Islands, fish is a delicacy, just like on Portuguese soil.
The lapas, or limpets, are the main attraction here. Lapas can be eaten raw or grilled and are typically removed from the volcanic rock along the shore.
Lapas grelhadas, or grilled lapas, are typically served with butter, garlic, and lemon drizzle sauce.
If you’re thinking of visiting Sussex, England, schedule your trip around February.
At the height of the scallop season, the town holds its renowned Rye Bay Scallop Week.
Many of the town’s pubs and restaurants, as well as food trucks and market stalls, sell thousands of scallops that have been shucked and sold.
The occasion now includes tasting events, cooking classes, demonstrations, and live music and has grown into a massive celebration of the delicious, highly valued bivalves.
Finland’s post-sauna snack, a platter of sweet-and-sour marinated herring, is the only thing more prized than their saunas.
On thick brown bread with mustard and dill, the fish is served after being purchased at Kauppatori (the market square).
The 300-year-old tradition of the Finish hosting their own “Herring Fair,” when fishermen sell their fresh catch in the market square, takes place every October.
18. Belize Cayes
The fishing and tourism sectors on these small islands are heavily dependent on the Caribbean Sea for both food security and employment.
You won’t have any trouble locating a seaside grill stocked with locally caught jerk-spiced fish.
Eating lionfish in Belize is actually a great way to support ocean conservation because they are a tasty and healthy invasive species in the Caribbean.
As the second-largest coral reef ecosystem in the world, Belize’s waters are of particular interest to environmental conservation organizations.
New Orleans, which is situated along the Gulf of Mexico, is well-known for its fried fish sandwiches, oysters, and gulf shrimp.
In Louisiana, eating seafood in the pepper-blackened New Orleans fashion is the most traditional method.
Visit New Orleans in October to take in the New Orleans Seafood Festival for a special treat.
Baton Rouge, which is known for its crawfish, is another fantastic destination in Louisiana for seafood.
When visiting the American South, you must go to a Southern crawfish boil, and you must try the gumbo-like meal called crawfish étouffée.
20. Italian island of Sicily
Sicily, an Italian island, has delicious fresh seafood. You can find both fancy establishments and no-frills trattorias here because the seafood is prepared with both European and North African influences.
Sardines and sea urchins, which are caught just offshore, are popular local fare.
It takes a lot of time and effort to prepare the straightforward and traditional spaghetti ai ricci, which includes locally caught sea urchins!
Frequently Asked Questions
Calabash is a tiny fishing community in North Carolina’s Brunswick County. At the 2010 census, there were 1,786 people, up from 711 in 2000. As a result of the town’s “Calabash-Style” seafood eateries, it takes pride in being referred to as the “Seafood Capital of the World.”
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the only island state in the United States places highly on things like seafood. A delicious Hawaiian staple, delicious, fresh poke, makes up a large portion of Hawaii’s mouth-watering fruits of the sea selection. Honolulu, the state’s capital, is one of the best places to try this dish.
Baltimore is without a doubt the best place to eat crab in the United States. This coastal community takes its blue crabs very seriously; in fact, steaming the crustaceans is one of the city’s oldest customs.
The caliber of the seafood, the variety of species, and the preparation were taken into consideration when compiling this list.
Although it wasn’t a requirement, coastal cities dominated in providing the freshest catches.
The presence of renowned chefs, lists of the best restaurants, and Michelin star ratings were then cross-referenced for these cities.
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