For an in-depth look at the largest city in North Dakota, check out Fargo Food Tours. This Fargo walking tour just launched this spring and it’s a great way to experience the history, culture and food scene at street level.
Well, mostly at street level. You do go underground to one of the most cleverly hidden restaurants in downtown Fargo at one point.
The three hour walking tour explores six iconic Fargo restaurants and eateries every Saturday during the spring, summer and fall. (Winter walking tours are still up in the air at this point. Winter is Fargo isn’t exactly walking tour friendly.)
Fargo Food Tours gives you a taste of some of the city’s most popular foods, from appetizers to main dishes to sweet treats. I’m a woman with strong opinions on what to eat in Fargo and I’m happy to say that the tour’s selections were on the mark.
The pace isn’t rushed, so you can see the city, people watch and window shop. (You’ll probably leave with a list of places to stop after.) Between restaurants, you’ll stop by the railroad tracks to learn how the railroad influenced local culinary history, discover how immigration shaped settlement and the Fargo food scene and even check out some street art along the way.
Guide Meghan Battest has done her homework. I research Fargo history, food and art as a location scout, travel writer and reporter, so I was happy to be able to jot down a few fun facts I hadn’t heard yet. If I learned something new, you will too.
As an added bonus, you’ll also have a chance to visit with hosts and owners when they’re available. It’s a great opportunity to meet people who are often working out of public view. There’s time to ask questions and learn how some of your favorite foods are created. If you’re lucky, you might even get to watch the staff at work.
I love taking walking tours when I visit other cities, but I’d never taken one in my own town before. I went with a group of eleven ladies, which included a woman from Wisconsin and one from Washington D.C., as well as a group of girlfriends on a day trip from Jamestown, North Dakota. That’s a pretty typical mix, according to Megan.
“I would say it’s usually 50/50 visitors and locals from the surrounding area,” she says.
This tour will appeal to tourists, but I wasn’t initially sure if it would have much to offer people who have visited Fargo before. But it took about three minutes for me to scrawl “great for locals” in my notebook. I’d visited all the stops on the tour before, but it was nice to sample food I hadn’t tried. And I really enjoyed Meghan’s background information and the opportunity to talk to the people who own the establishments and prepare the food. Both gave a new dimension to places I thought I knew.
It was also informative to see my hometown through visitors’ eyes. It’s so easy to take the place you live for granted or to stay in the same routine. This tour was a fun way to shake things up and see what newcomers thought was interesting about a place that’s familiar to me.
If you check out Fargo Food Tours yourself, make sure to wear layers and good walking shoes, since you’ll be walking outdoors for much of the tour. There are stairs involved, but an elevator is available if you have limited mobility.
Tours last from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. each Saturday. They do tend to fill up, so if you have your eye on a date, it’s smart to book online early.
Speaking of filling up, I was pretty full after this tour, even though portion sizes didn’t include full-sized entrees, appetizers or desserts. I ate only a some of what was available to me and didn’t have seconds when they were offered. But I should tell you that I have a lighter appetite than some people.
I’d say the amount of food was comparable to what I ate on a similar tour in Lisbon, Portugal a few weeks ago and slightly more than what I’d have for a regular meal. Water is provided. Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are available for purchase.
I took the “Iconic Fargo Favorites” tour, which also happens to be the only one available at press time. But that will change soon. Meghan has plans to launch a coffee crawl, a local beer tour and an international food excursion in the spring and summer of 2020.
What about you?
How do you like to explore a city?
What do you think of food tours?
Which walking tour should I try next?
What’s your favorite kind of tour and why?
Which dishes do you think best represent your city?
What are your picks for the most iconic tastes of Fargo?
I attended this tour for free as journalist, courtesy of Fargo Food Tours. As always, my opinions are my own. I don’t recommend experiences that I don’t think you’ll enjoy as much as I do.
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