Do me a favor, please. Turn off CNBC.
The U.S. is or is not heading into a recession, but let's set that aside for now. Let's go someplace where the U.S. economy -- or the presidential election -- is not the No. 1 news story. The U.S. economy is one of the largest in the world, but it's not the only place to invest.
Come fly with the Fool, and we'll see whether we can find some interesting investing opportunities, and delicious food, elsewhere. Because of budget constraints, we won't stop at every company from our "Best International Stocks" series, so be sure to do your own exploring.
Our first stop is Apodaca, Mexico, home to Grupo Aeroportuario Centro Norte, which operates the nearby Monterrey airport. Enjoy cabrito al pastor, slow-roasted over embers, before driving to Garza Garcia, location of cement maker Cemex (NYSE: CX ) .
Head further south to Concordia, Brazil, home to frozen-food producer Sadia (NYSE: SDA ) . While there or at our next stop, Sao Paulo, try the feijoada completa, simmered beans and meat, possibly made with a Sadia meat product. Eat it for lunch before stopping by CPFL Energia, an electric utility.
Now, to London. Mind the gap! Stop at the headquarters of Diageo, provider of Smirnoff vodka. Maybe we could have an aperitif before dinner, which might include Wish-Bone dressing from Unilever (NYSE: UL ) , also located here. Don't forget the hasty pudding. Mmm!
Now we head to Bagsvaerd, Denmark, outside Copenhagen and home to Novo Nordisk, an insulin provider and biopharmaceutical company. Don't forget the smorrebrod, an open-faced sandwich, for lunch. Then to Stockholm, Sweden, location of Autoliv. If you drive there, you might be using one of Autoliv's safety products, such as a seatbelt. While you're there, make sure you attend a kraftskiva -- a crayfish party.
Then we venture south to Turkey and Israel. In Istanbul, try some lufer, bluefish, served as a delicately spiced kebab while you get a taste of Turkcell's wireless communication. In Israel, visit Teva Pharmaceutical (Nasdaq: TEVA ) , a generic-drug maker. Stop for some falafel as part of your lunch.
Now it's eastward to Asia. First stop is Singapore, home to electronics manufacturer Flextronics (Nasdaq: FLEX ) . Don't forget to taste the bak kut teh, pork sparerib soup. Then head to Hsinchu, Taiwan, home to Taiwan Semiconductor. You'll see how its products differ from Flextronics' as you spoon up some gong wan (pork ball) soup.
Turn north to Beijing, home to Baidu.com (Nasdaq: BIDU ) . Use its Internet search pages to find a restaurant that serves da zha xie, a crab dish. Delicious!
Our last stop before returning is Toyota City, Japan, just outside Nagoya. This is home to Toyota Motor (NYSE: TM ) , the automaker. Unless you're used to driving on the left, though, take public transportation to a restaurant where you can try hitsumabushi, an eel dish of the region.
Whew! I don't know about you, but I'm tired and full after that trip around the world. While we both recover, take the opportunity to read more about those companies and others by following the links below. When you've "eaten" as many as you wish, head on over to CAPS and tell us which ones you like or dislike. We'll tally the votes and announce the winner: the best region outside the United States that you, our Foolish readers, have chosen.
- America Movil-- Mexico
- Canadian Natural Resources-- Canada
- Cemex-- Mexico
- Grupo Aeroportuario Centro Norte-- Mexico
- Allied Irish Banks-- Ireland
- Autoliv-- Sweden
- Diageo-- England
- Novo Nordisk-- Denmark
- Turkcell-- Turkey
- Unilever-- England