Healthful snacks is an oxymoron. A snack to be good needs to be tasty-salty or sweet and most of all fattening. I know there are those health nuts that love to chew on crisp carrot sticks or tasteless celery stalks, but how much fun is that compared to zesty pizza flavored tortilla chips or sour cream-onion potato chips or a lovely candy bar filled with peanuts, caramel and covered with chocolate? Now we are talking snacks. No wonder those of us who love to travel by car or plane, and take along bags full of snacks are gaining weight. It isn't rocket science to figure that out!
My skinny hubby can drive all day long never craving any snacks. He's happy with just an occasional drink of water and not bubbly soda water with a cup of sugar, chemicals and caffeine added. His idea of a tasty snack is fresh fruit bought at a local farmer's market enroute. Guess that's how he keeps his svelte figure at age 65 with nary an extra pound on his slim 6 foot frame added since he was 25. But think of all the tasty delights he has missed-snicker bars, tootsie rolls, flavored popcorn, crunchy chips, etc. Oops, time to go find a snack and I'm not even traveling. LOL!
Eating while vacationing is challenging. Every meal is a daily decision and a delight or disaster depending on the results. No problem you say, just take a picnic. Okay. But what to take and how to refrigerate it for days on end can be a problem. Ideally fried chicken and potato salad plus homemade rolls and ice cream would be fun but only if you have an RV with a frig and freezer run by battery to keep your food from spoiling.
For those of us less fortunate with only a car, sandwiches in an ice box with a melting ice block can be our only option or eating out. Next comes the question of where to eat? A picnic table in a shady park would be nice, but it depends on where you are during your trip when you get hungry. In the middle of a hot desert with 102 degree weather or driving through a busy city, then the solution is to eat in your car with no table and serve directly out of your icebox (which is now probably filled with melting ice water that your prepared food may be floating in and hopefully not filled with, thereby wrecking whatever you have carefully bought and packed to eat.)
We cleverly took along two folding camp chairs then used the trunk of our car for our table which worked out fine most of the time. Finding shade under any nearby trees, we were ready to start our picnic feast, then the ants, bees and mosquitoes discovered us. What an adventure in eating. Where's the nearest McDonalds? (By the way, they have a new Southwestern salad that is wonderful.)
Eating out is an easier solution but it's also a challenge. Asking locals for their recommendations on where to eat is best. Sometimes you are really disappointed by service and fare, but occasionally you'll find a great place with wonderful food though it's maybe a bit pricey, but hey you are on vacation! Then comes the shock of returning home and realizing you have to fix your own daily meals again.