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5 Countries for Seafood Lovers

One hundred fifty-three countries have a coastline, and nearly every culture that lives along the ocean includes some form of seafood in their diet. There's no shortage of countries for seafood lovers.

Seafood is a vital source of protein and nutrients for many people worldwide. So, where should you travel if you're searching for a delicious seafood feast?

Sri Lanka is a country for seafood lovers.
Fish market in Sri Lanka

Now that's a tricky question (with many answers), but listed below are five countries where I've enjoyed some seriously fresh and delicious seafood meals.

This is, by all means, not an exclusive top seafood country list – these are merely places I've visited and eaten fantastic seafood.

If you have a different country you'd like to highlight for its bounty of seafood, I would love to hear your recommendation in a comment below.

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1. Sri Lanka

Known as the pearl of the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka is a teardrop-shaped island located just south of India.

Surrounded by the sea, you can bet Sri Lanka catches some high-quality creatures.

One of the first places I visited in the country was a small town north of Colombo known as Negombo.

The town is well-known for its Dutch fort, Portuguese influence, and ancient fishing port.

The local fish market was a joy to visit and included some amazingly fresh and good-looking fish.

Jaffna, located on the country's northern tip, was another place where I discovered great seafood.

My favorite dish was the caramelized prawns from Hotel Rolex.

Tip: Check out all the food-related tours in Sri Lanka on Get Your Guide, including a street food tour of Colombo by tuk-tuk.

Grilled stingray in Malaysia
Grilled stingray in Malaysia

2. Malaysia

Consisting of mainland peninsular Malaysia and two regions on the island of Borneo, seafood plays a significant part in Malaysian cuisine.

I admired some of the freshest and most attractive seafood I've ever seen at the Kota Kinabalu night market.

The best part about the market was that a series of stalls served a fabulous selection of the fresh catch marinated, grilled, and ready to be eaten.

Mainland Malaysia and Kuala Lumpur also offer a fabulous selection of seafood cooked into exquisite dishes.

Get Your Guide tours in Malaysia include a cheap private food tour in Kuala Lumpur led by a local and a half-day street food tour in Panang.

Chilean seafood platter
Chilean seafood platter

3. Chile

One weekend I decided to take a trip from Santiago to the coastal port city of Valparaiso – a city praised for its seafood.

On my first day, I searched for a seafood-packed meal and found a small restaurant along the water's edge with a beautiful view.

Though it wasn't the cheapest meal I've ever eaten, the mixed seafood plate was what caught my eye, and there was nothing I could do but order it.

It was everything I had hoped for – fresh seafood cooked perfectly, which is why I included Chile on my list of countries for seafood lovers.

Chile is known for its excellent and affordable wines. Take a wine tour in Santiago or leave the city for a day in the mountains at San Esteban Vineyard.

Coconut fish curry is an example of why Tanzania is for seafood lovers.
Coconut fish curry in Tanzania

4. Tanzania

Whenever I visit Tanzania, I head straight to the Dar Es Salaam fish market to buy prawns, crab, and fish. Every morning, starting before sunrise, fishing boats dock at the market.

Thousands of business owners and individuals come to bid for the finest seafood and scoop up great deals. Everything is fresh and tempting!

Just off the coast of Tanzania is Zanzibar, an island where the seafood is never far away. One of my favorite things to eat in Zanzibar is fish in coconut curry or fish biryani.

Heading to Zanzibar in Tanzania? Consider booking a spice farm tour and cooking class.

Japanese food
Japanese food

5. Japan

Japan is the only place on this list of countries for seafood lovers that I have yet to step foot in.

However, I have eaten many Japanese feasts, read and watched many books and videos about Japanese food, and have many friends who have visited the country.

I can say with faithful certainty that Japan is, by all means, one of the ultimate destinations to visit as a seafood lover.

Tsukiji Market, the world's largest fish market, is where nearly everything that teems in the sea can be found.

Seafood is not only something to eat in Japan, but it's a cherished part of the culture and a form of art. When I visit Japan in the future, seafood will be my priority (if I can afford it).


So there you have five of my favorite countries for seafood. I've heard Portugal and Spain have a nice catch, as does Mexico, South Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, and countless others.

Planning a trip? Go Backpacking recommends:


Friday 20th of January 2017

You mistake good fish for savoury fish. The Spanish fish is very savoury but is filled with pulloutants coming form the Spanish heavy industry. In the Basque country and Galicia the fish sometimes is still clean and safe, but not in Barcelona and Marbella .You say Malaysia and Sri Lanka and Chile offer good fish but you don't mention that Malaysia has a large petrol industry as well as Chile and that SriLanka lacks in hygiene. I think the best fish , in terms of no pollutantsin it, is the fish caught very far away from industrial countries, such Reunion, Mauritius, Seychelles, South Atlantic, New Caledonia...

Den Kingston

Monday 8th of August 2016

The author who doesn't mention Australia when talking best seafood is hard to take seriously...

brett isenberg

Thursday 30th of June 2016

Sorry but you guys are clueless...Malaysia, Chile...comeon, crappy white fish is not worth calling home about... The only country on this list that deserves to be here is Japan... sure Sri Lanka has good mud crab and Lobster ( I have an office there so I have sampled everything)... but thats it... Countries like Australia and NZ amazing oysters, mussels, salmon, kingfish blue/yellow fin tuna, prawns, crayfish etc... Then the Med region ( France, Spain... Gambas...great Blue Fin ( god knows even the Japanese import it) and amazing Oysters ( from Cancale, Normandy), Then the major Fishing countries known for their Wild Salmon...think Scotland, Norway, Canada etc...

Peach John Zizkinslap

Sunday 17th of April 2016

Cool post. Although I will add, and I say this respectfully, that if you haven't set food in Japan, you've never eaten Japanese food. It is the one cuisine in the world that simply cannot be replicated beyond it's borders. I've lived all over Japan (and the world) for the last 15 years, and regardless how much you pay, or how bohemian the Japanese restaurant claims to be, in L.A. or Montreal, or Bangkok, or Paris... it simply will never provide the same texture, quality, and overall flavor of authentic Japanese food, as virtually any entry-level restaurant on any random side-street in Tokyo. ;)

Tony Caldas

Monday 7th of December 2015

Spain by a land slide Particularly the north of Spain

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