The Coromandel and the Bay of Plenty Restaurants

There are many dining options across the Coromandel and Bay of Plenty. You can buy everything from fruit from roadside orchard stalls and take-out fish-and-chips joints to cafés serving sandwiches and espresso coffee, right through to fine-dining affairs. Even when restaurants are formal in appearance, diners and hosts tend toward a relaxed country-casualness. Restaurant owners make a point of using the region's abundant resources: the fish is likely to have been caught that morning from a nearby bay, and shellfish are from local mussel and scallop farms. A huge community of artists lives in the region and their work is likely to be for sale even though it adorns restaurant walls.

Dinner service begins about 6 pm in the winter and around 7 pm during the summer months, though many places have "all-day menus." In peak season most places keep serving until at least 9 pm. For many restaurants reservations are a good idea, especially in the summer around the Coromandel. In winter, phone ahead to check if the restaurant will stay open.

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  • 1. Cafe Nina

    $ | Café

    Folks come here for breakfast and lunch every day of the week and you might have to wait a bit during holiday time, but locals think it's worth...Read More

  • 2. El Barrio Cafe & Bar

    $$ | Café

    Once a truck repair yard, now a quaint café. El Barrio opens early, at 7:30 am, so breakfasts are popular, as is the Atomic coffee. For lunch...Read More

  • 3. Maketu Beachside Cafe

    $$$ | Café

    With a wraparound enclosed porch overlooking the beach, and a menu focused on fresh local seafood, this is as good a place to take time out...Read More

  • 4. Sidetrack Cafe

    $ | Café

    At the base of Mauao and across the street from the beach, this bustling café is a great place for breakfast or lunch after a climb or swim...Read More

  • 5. SixfortySix

    $$ | Café

    This café boasts of being the friendliest place in town, and the daylong crowds support the claim. Good coffee, fresh pastries, plus a paper...Read More

  • 6. Tay Street Beach Cafe

    $$$ | Café

    The tables out on the patio across the road from the dunes of Maunganui Beach are the place to be when the weather's nice; otherwise, head inside...Read More

  • 7. The Bean Cafe and Roastery

    $ | Café

    Mellow jazz might be playing in the background, local art graces the walls, and the retro couches and armchairs are a great spot to chill out...Read More

  • 8. The Refinery

    $ | Café

    Hidden down a side street (look for the sign on the main street), is this gourmet home-cooking surprise. This excellent coffee shop and café...Read More

  • 9. UMU Café

    $$ | Café

    Like many places to eat on the peninsula, this café does a roaring trade with mussels—chowders, and a platter with mussels served every which...Read More

  • 10. Waiomu Beach Cafe

    $$ | Café

    Waiomu Beach Cafe sits across from Waiomu Beach, and if you've had enough of the twists and turns of the coastal road, this is the spot to stop...Read More

  • 11. Katz Pyjamas Café

    $ | Café

    It's easy to miss this tiny cafe on the main street but tucked in a corner. Make a point of seeking it out—it easily serves the best lunch in...Read More

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