New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers – important subject if you’re visiting this country. In fact, we get asked about this a lot. The short answer is,we have it all! And it starts with a great breakfast. Breakfast really is an incredibly important meal for active travellers.  New Zealanders love eating out for breakfast – and we do it very well. Here’s a few samplers of what to expect from hosted accommodations and cafes in New Zealand:

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers – Breakfast choices

This was our breakfast when we stayed in Central Otago recently. The corn fritters were full of flavour and we just loved the extras on the plate. Breakfast menus always seem to include the traditional”full English” breakfast. But for some years now, breakfast in New Zealand is cooked and delivered with quite a bit of sophistication.  We’ve caught on very quickly to the “smashed Avocado” option.  Most cafes are very proud to provide home-made products – made on site by skilled cooks,

Now honestly, who wouldn’t find these pancakes an attractive option.  Sure, you will get some places that will use a pancake mix from a packet. But just ask around – the locals love telling you about their favourite place.  Nowadays, presentation is so important.  Just look at that  little piece of honeycomb on top of that pancake – it really elevates the ordinary old pancake to a whole new level.

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers – Lunch options

The lunch options you find in New Zealand, are endless. New Zealand is a fishing paradise. We’re surrounded by the ocean and fresh fish is often delivered straight from the wharf direct to the restaurants nearby. Plus it is extremely affordable. Chefs in New Zealand are expected to be extremely knowledgeable about creating the perfect fish dish. So don’t expect anything less! Here’s a great example – pan-fried fish served with new potatoes & organic artichokes from the Nelson/Tasman region:

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers – Cafe food

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers

Taking it down a notch, but not necessarily compromising on quality, cafe cabinet food is another popular option. I would recommend this if you don’t necessarily want to linger over lunch for too long. As you can see, variety is everything folks!

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers

Remember, dining in New Zealand need not be high end. Some of our most popular restaurants have a very rustic feel and we tend not to dress up too much. Even with fine dining restaurants, the code is usually smart but casual.

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers – rustic dining

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with a bit of rustic alfresco, especially if the view and the coffee’s fabulous.

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers – Ethnic & specialty foods

Now a lot of travellers are only interested in eating the food they’re familiar with – cuisine from their own countries. New Zealand successfully met that challenge years ago. Ethnic restaurants – take your pick. You’ll find some great Thai, Indian, Burmese and Middle-eastern eateries dotted all over the country. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free – we haven’t forgotten you guys either. We’re also meeting the needs for Halal and Kosher options.

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers – Vineyard Restaurants

You needn’t visit a vineyard to get an excellent antipasto platter or ploughman’s lunch but hey, why wouldn’t you? This photo was take up in the Hawkes Bay region at the Te Mata Cheese Factory, another famous wine area in the North Island.

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers

I haven’t even touched on New Zealand’s magnificent wines and coffee, but then again, I probably don’t need to. Good news travels fast. The one suggestion I would make, is to concentrate more on boutique wineries.  Many of our family-owned wineries are producing world-beaters! And very often you’ll get a better experience by meeting the winemakers on site.

So here’s to you dear traveller, for travelling across the world to visit and eat at our table. Just for the record, I actually shared this pizza.

New Zealand Cuisine for Travellers


Here are some interesting lifestyle travel itineraries to start planning your trip with.


Happy Travelling!

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