For the past 5 years, as a unique and yummy travel tradition in every country I visit, I try to find a McDonald’s hamburger fast food chain to order myself a Big Mac Meal. Then I take a photo of myself with the burger and track the cost.
There’s just something about McDonald’s that feels like home. It’s familiar food and comfort after being on the road for months immersed in different cultures. It’s free WiFi so I can book flights for the next leg of my journey or Skype my family. They never mind how long I might sit there catching up with friends on my computer. I even spent Christmas day in Cape Town last year celebrating the holiday with a Big Mac.
I’ve seen McDonald’s with self-playing baby grand pianos, cozy fireplaces and spaghetti or rice instead of french fries. I like to see what local tastes the restaurant has on the menu at each new destination, reflecting the cultural traditions of the area.
It’s always an adventure being in a country where I don’t speak the language trying to inquire where I can find a McDonald’s. There’s a lot of ‘eating-a-burger’ miming and hand waving for street directions. Sometimes you try air-drawing the golden arch “M” in hopes they’ll understand what you’re looking for. It’s surprising how much you can communicate without speaking the same language.
Check out my photo gallery of the Big Mac’s I’ve tasted around the world – 22 countries and counting!
Enjoy, because I sure did!
*Some countries I’ve traveled to don’t have McDonald’s (at my time of travel there). They include Laos, Vietnam, Brunei, Belize, Bolivia, Tanzania, Kenya, Madagascar, Swaziland, Lesotho, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Botswana.