New research from leading escorted tour operator Intrepid Travel highlights a trend towards gastronomy and authentic culinary experiences becoming the most important part of a holiday for Brits. Intrepid Travel has unveiled that a staggering 71% of Brits believe it is important to eat local dishes while on holiday and almost 40% spend up to five hours researching where to eat whilst on holiday. Almost 50% of those surveyed regard eating local dishes as 'important' and more than half believe guided group tours provide more authentic experiences. As Brits continue to place food at the top of their holiday agenda, Intrepid is adding to its dynamic range of Real Foodie Adventures with new tours in South Korea, Southern Italy, Portugal and Galicia, with the first departures from April.

The new tours offer authentic, mouth-watering experiences by pairing the classic grassroots Intrepid Travel style with a special food focus, uncovering the world's most exciting food cultures, whether its sharing a traditional meal with Buddhist monks in South Korea or sampling organic mozzarella di bufala direct from the source in Italy. An increasing number of Brits are recognising that these small group tours using knowledgeable local guides allow for culinary experiences that wouldn't be possible if travelling alone. The Intrepid survey results underline this as it emerges that 61% of Brits have joined guided group tours because it gives them access to places they wouldn't see on their own and more than a quarter (27%) have joined a group tour as they wanted an authentic experience. Interestingly it is millennials who are putting the most value on eating local dishes on holiday and experiencing culinary culture, contrary to recent reports that it is this generation who are to blame for food wastage. 45% of respondents who said they were 'likely' to book a holiday around food were in the 25-34 year old category, followed closely by the 16-24 year old category at 39%. To further highlight this trend, 40% of those who said they dedicate time to researching where they eat on holiday are in the 16-24 year old category, seconded by the 25-34 year old category.