One of the best parts about traveling to other places is being able to see what it’s like to do the same things in a new location that you’d do back home. Usually we’re somewhat strapped for time when we’re traveling, so stumbling upon unique streets, restaurants, or places to grab a drink feels like you’ve hit the jackpot. For this post, I want to share some of my favorite places to grab a drink while I’ve traveled, including one place here at home in NYC. And these places all have a little something special to them, whether they’re housed in a monastery or change themes with the seasons. This is by no means a “best places in the world” list, just spots I’ve found during my travels that I’d recommend to friends and family if they were to travel to those destinations as well. Please share any of your favorite places, too!
Floating Market [Bangkok, Thailand]
One of my favorite things to do in Bangkok is visit the floating markets just outside of town. I know, I know, it’s considered very touristy by locals, but if you go early and avoid the crowds, it’s a really beautiful experience, especially for an aspiring photographer like myself. You can also ride longtail boats around the city itself and grab a beer (or juice/water!) from a floating market vendor along the way. For more info on the floating markets and Bangkok, read this.
Aviary Cocktail Bar [Chicago, IL, USA]
I’m a big foodie, so any time I’m in Chicago, I try to get to one of Grant Achatz’s spots. One of my favorites is the Aviary Cocktail Bar. It’s a bit formal, so be prepared, and reservations are HIGHLY recommended. You do have to put down a deposit when you book, too. I love this spot so much because of how creative they are with the cocktails and the fact that it’s set up like a chemistry lab. You can watch your cocktail being made or let yourself be surprised when it comes to the table! Their signature drink is the Porthole. For more on places to eat and drink in the Windy City, check here.
Beer Bar @ Namsan Park [Seoul, Korea]
Take the cable car up to the top of Namsan Park. Close to the base of N Seoul Tower you’ll find Beer Bar. Order from the guys up front (the menu is limited, but they do have non-alcoholic options as well as small bites), then grab a seat overlooking the entire city. Some of the most stunning panoramic views await you!
The Restaurant @ Hotel Fauna [Valpo, Chile]
This is one of my favorite restaurants in the world because of the view. Grab some shared plates and whatever drink (alcoholic or not!) your heart desires, and enjoy a beautiful view of the city of Valparaíso. We ended up going back for sunset multiple times while we were in town – it was that beautiful! For more on Valpo and Hotel Fauna, check here.
Birreria [New York, NY, USA]
Atop the Eataly Building in the heart of NYC’s Flatiron district lies Birreria, which changes its theme with the season. The current theme is Italian Countryside, but my favorite is the winter theme, Baita, where the roof is taken over by different cozy cabins decked out to look like you’re on a weekend getaway in the Alps. I love taking friends who visit to no matter the season, and because it’s part of Eataly, you know the wine and food will not disappoint! For more info on Birreria and the current season, check here.
Ye Old Cheshire Cheese [London, England]
Located in a quaint alley off of Fleet Street, this is one of the oldest pubs in London, rebuilt in 1667 after the Great Fire to mimic its original charm. The pub has a heavy literary influence and was a regular stomping ground for Dickens, Twain, Tennyson, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and many others. Grab a pint from the bar when you walk in and then head downstairs for some snacks and conversation. But be prepared to easily lose track of time here – there are no windows past the front bar area, and the atmosphere is such that you’ll find yourself easily lost in the charm! For more on London, read here.
Brouwerij ‘t IJ [Amsterdam, Netherlands]
While it’s a little off the beaten path in Amsterdam, this brewery is absolutely worth checking out if you’re into beer and/or unique establishments. The brewery is located in a former bath house below the De Gooyer windmill and has a beautiful outdoor terrace where you can enjoy a pint or two (or if you’re like me and can’t decide, a flight of five beers). They offer 8 standard beers, 3 seasonal beers, and occasionally a couple of limited edition beers. It’s absolutely worth checking out next time you’re in Amsterdam! For more info on this brewery and Amsterdam, check here.
Klášterní Pivovar Strahov [Prague, Czechia]
This is another unique spot that’s off the beaten path but absolutely worth checking out if you like beer. Klášterní Pivovar is located in the Strahov Monastery, with original documentation for the brewery dating back to the early 14th century. It was closed for most of the 1900s for use as farm houses, re-opening only recently in 2000. There are a lot of amazing breweries in Prague, not to mention beautiful buildings. What I love about this one in particular is that it’s an incredible brewery with really delicious beer and also happens to be in a beautiful historic setting. It’s not too far from the Castle either, so if you find yourself with some extra time on the day you visit the Castle, I recommend checking out both the monastery and the brewery. For more on Prague and this wonderful brewery, check out this post.
What are your favorite, unique places to grab a drink around the world? Drop me a line and let me know!