Four holidays for foodies

From a culinary cruise on the Rhone, to lessons on how to knock up a bonzer barbie Down Under, Ruth Jackson reviews four of the best holidays for food-lovers.

A French food and wine odyssey

A holiday on the Rhone is a "real cork-popper", says Jeremy Lazell in The Sunday Times Magazine, thanks to the numerous vineyards you'll pass through. But if you also want some fine French fare to soak up all the wine, then take a trip with Belle France. The firm offers a six-night cruise on Le Phenicien, which offers top-notch accommodation in en-suite cabins. As well as visiting vineyards, you will also enjoy cookery classes with three of the region's top chefs. They even accompany you on visits to the local markets.

The trip costs from £2,379 per person, including cooking classes, excursions, tastings, gourmet meals and a free bar on the boat. Call 0870-405 4056, or visit to find out more.

A spicy tour de force


The Taste of India Tour costs from £3,737 per person, including flights from London, transfers and most meals. Call 0845-277 3344, or visit to find out more.

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The Scottish cookery course

Learn how to make the very best Scottish cuisine at Nairn's Cook School in the Trossachs in Scotland. Nick Nairn will show you how to prepare scallops, cook the perfect steak and bake a chocolate cake. Nairn, who is famous for his frequent appearances on Ready Steady Cook, is "an entertaining teacher, able to do an almost perfect impersonation of Jamie Oliver while still instructing his students in a simple, straightforward way", says Nicola Barry in The Sunday Express.

As well as learning how to whip up Scottish culinary delights you can learn anything from how to put on an 'Easy Posh Dinner Party' to 'Canny Cooking', which will show you how to eat like a king on a pauper's budget.

Cookery classes cost from £165 per person. Call 01877-389900, or visit for more information.

Learn to BBQ the Aussie way


The school was set up in 1989 to help encourage locals to buy the market's more exotic produce and by 2006, 10,000 students were passing through its door each year. The school offers an array of courses - but they sell out fast, so book early.

The seafood barbecue course costs A$145. For more information, visit, or call 00 61 2 9004 1111.

Ruth Jackson-Kirby

Ruth Jackson-Kirby is a freelance personal finance journalist with 17 years’ experience, writing about everything from savings and credit cards to pensions, property and pet insurance. 

Ruth started her career at MoneyWeek after graduating with an MA from the University of St Andrews, and she continues to contribute regular articles to our personal finance section. After leaving MoneyWeek she went on to become deputy editor of Moneywise before becoming a freelance journalist.

Ruth writes regularly for national publications including The Sunday Times, The Times, The Mail on Sunday and Good Housekeeping among many other titles both online and offline.