Alright, so your flights are booked and you are so excited to be heading to a new city. You want to maximize your time on vacation but also make the most of your new surroundings to stock up on some Instagram content. Where do you start? How do you know where to go/eat/photograph? Don’t worry, I’ve got 5 tips for finding the perfect food posts to photograph while traveling!
Utilize your network
Your network is bigger than you think! When I drove through Pittsburg last summer, I knew I wanted to stop for donuts to stretch my legs and break up the trip. I couldn’t think of anyone I knew in the area until I remembered that I had met Pittsburg-based Lauren of Wellesley & King at a blogging event last year. She recommended Peace, Love & Little Donuts, which was the perfect lunch break.
Don’t feel like you need to know someone offline to reach out for recommendations. In our digital age, it’s not unusual for bloggers and influencers to receive direct messages from their followers asking all sorts of questions. As long as your question is real and you aren’t spamming them, most are happy to take the time to send you a message back.
If you don’t follow anyone in the city you’re traveling to, using hashtags can be another way to find some Instagram-able food options. And, the best part is that once you search one hashtag, Instagram will suggest other hashtags that are similar. Be warned though, this search method is likely to lead to a lot of wanderlust and a hours lost to a dark hole of Instagram searching.
Find travel guides
Whether from travel magazines or bloggers, there are travel guides for just about any city or country you might be visiting. I’d start with the New York Times 36 Hour guides. Other good resources for restaurants are Female Foodie, Bitches who Brunch and Eater.
Check location tags on Instagram
Instagram’s location tag feature is a great way to see what kind of photos others are posting at specific spots. This is especially helpful to give you an idea of what the space looks like and what kind of photos you could take based on recommendations you’ve gotten from influencers, travel guides and hashtags!
I like to start my location tag searches wide (so start with city names or neighborhoods) before narrowing in on terms that aren’t a restaurant name but are more specific than a city. So for example with New York, when doing research I could start with something as wide as “New York City” and narrow in some terms like “Bryant Park” and “The High Line”.
If all else fails, Google it! “[city name]+travel guide+blog” is sure to bring up lots of delicious suggestions!