France is a country that has been strongly associated with culinary tourism with both international visitors as well as French citizens traveling to different parts of the country to sample local foods and wine.
Culinary tourism or food tourism is experiencing the food of the country, region or area, and is now considered a vital component of the tourism experience. Dining out is common among tourists and "food is believed to rank alongside climate, accommodation, and scenery" in importance to tourists.
Culinary or food tourism is defined by the World Food Travel Association (WFTA) as the pursuit of unique and memorable eating and drinking experiences, both near and far. Culinary tourism differs from agritourism in that culinary tourism is considered a subset of cultural tourism (cuisine is a manifestation of culture) whereas agritourism is considered a subset of rural tourism, but culinary tourism and agritourism are inextricably linked, as the seeds of cuisine can be found in agriculture. Culinary/food tourism is not limited to gourmet food; the WFTA reports that "gourmet" comprises 8.1% of culinary travelers. In January 2014, the World Food Travel Association published a comprehensive work on food and drink tourism for trade professionals called Have Fork Will Travel: A Practical Handbook for Food & Drink Tourism Professionals. The work has been referred to as the "food tourism industry Bible" in the book's reviews on Amazon.com.