How can I find restaurants in a location you are NOT AT yet?
May 15, 2019 1:38 PM   Subscribe

Going to Europe. Would like to plan some meals near the places I will be staying.

I can find plenty of websites that recommend restaurants, find their addresses, plug each one into Google Whatever, get directions from my hotel to the restaurant, see how far, is public transportation available, etc. etc....BUT is there any way to see what restaurants, preferably with good reviews, are near these addresses in a more parsimonious manner? I'm traveling to London, Paris, and Amsterdam. Thanks!
posted by Obscure Reference to Travel & Transportation (15 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Google Maps actually. Restaurants near X, cafe near X etc, or (at least on mobile) navigate to the general area and click Explore, then Restaurants. I've been doing it in a European capital city over the last few days and it's started listing star ratings right on the map, which is extra helpful. Going for 4.5 and better has resulted in finding absolute gems.
posted by I claim sanctuary at 1:45 PM on May 15 [3 favorites]

When traveling I lean heavily on's curated resturant lists and accompanying maps.

For instance here are their "38 Essential" lists for London and Paris.

Hope this helps!
posted by mhaw at 1:53 PM on May 15 [7 favorites]

Google Maps and Yelp. I usually do both, because each has a different user group / some restaurants aren't on there / etc.

Also try the "Eater" for each place (here's London)- they have great lists of restaurants with associated maps, so if you know where you're staying you can zoom in on that area to see if there's anything close.
posted by DoubleLune at 1:55 PM on May 15 [1 favorite]

The Michelin guides (London, Paris, Amsterdam) have maps; just zoom in on the location you're interested in and click on each icon. The lists are much broader than Eater but more curated than Google or Yelp. (And they aren't as exclusively high-end as their reputation might suggest. For example, they review about 1500 restaurants in London, but only about 70 are starred.)
posted by Mr.Know-it-some at 1:58 PM on May 15 [1 favorite]

Tripadvisor has a map option. You can zoom in on your area of interest.

posted by TORunner at 2:11 PM on May 15

The old, which is unfortunately now The Fork has a map function.
posted by humboldt32 at 2:47 PM on May 15 [1 favorite]

What do you mean by a "more parsimonious" manner?
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 3:20 PM on May 15 [1 favorite]

Yelp has a "redo search in map" feature. If you do a search for the whole city, then find your hotel on the map and zoom in, you can then click the "redo search in map" button and it will only show you results on the particular map tile you're currently viewing. I believe TripAdvisor has the same thing. This is pretty much the only way I find places to eat when I travel.
posted by kevinbelt at 3:26 PM on May 15 [3 favorites]

haha Conrad - I'm not really sure. Maybe using fewer steps? I really just wanted to use that word and figured my precision was not that great.
posted by DMelanogaster at 3:32 PM on May 15

I use TripAdvisor's map interface for this, like TORunner recommended. They don't make it easy to find the page but when you get there it's great. Dots on a map!

Another option; email the hotel ahead of time and ask for suggestions. If it's a fancy place with a concierge they almost certainly have a document with recommendations they will mail back to you. Or else they can give you a list of their usual suggestions, or even book reservations for you. You don't have to have actually shown up to get help, although I find it's about 50/50 whether my first email gets an answer.
posted by Nelson at 3:42 PM on May 15

Time Out has restaurants by neighbourhood.
posted by ellieBOA at 9:40 PM on May 15

I've had good luck in the past with Gault & Millau for Paris.
posted by gimonca at 4:42 AM on May 16

When I went to Europe, I still used Yelp, even though all the reviews were from Americans. You can see restaurants on a map and set up filters for your desired type of places. Google Maps is also a good way to do it.
posted by AppleTurnover at 10:50 AM on May 16

So -- for example, I'm looking for restaurants near where we're staying in London -- on Bartle Road in Notting Hill -- and I'm using Google maps as suggested -- and I'm seeing that it's often more difficult, via public transportation, to get to restaurants that are geographically closer to where we're staying (an AirBnB) than a restaurant would be that is farther away but closer to a tube stop!

So this is a subsidiary question: is there any clever way to find good restaurants, thinking of Indian in particular, in London, that are near a Tube stop that we could get into after eating and make it back to the tube stop nearest our AirBnB (Ladbroke Grove, it looks like) without a whole lot of walking?

I am asking for this particular example, but there are other places we're going where I would have the same question. In other words -- maybe the restaurant doesn't have to be that CLOSE, if the public transportation is good and wouldn't take too long?

Shouldn't there be an app for this? I think people would use it!
posted by DMelanogaster at 5:58 PM on May 16

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