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. Bistro at the Falls Retreat

    $$$$

    It might be way out in the bush, but this restaurant could stand proud in any big city. Dine inside or out, beneath the trees,...Read More

  • 2. UMU Café

    $$

    Like many places to eat on the peninsula, this casual café does a roaring trade with mussels and seafood. But lots of Kiwi café foods...Read More

  • 3. Café 4u

    $$

    Salted-caramel, white-chocolate, and creme-custard donuts are among the decadent favorites at this central Whakatane café. However, sandwiches and savory pies are other options from the...Read More

  • 4. Cafe Nina

    $

    Jasmine vines cloak the front porch of this adorable 1890 miner's cottage. Folks come here for breakfast and lunch every day of the week, and...Read More

  • 5. Coromandel Mussel Kitchen

    $$$

    Recently reopened just to the south of Coromandel Town, this restaurant is well sign-posted but also easy to spot by the historical mussel barge at...Read More

  • 6. Go Vino

    $$

    This café’s small shared plates feature an eclectic fusion of Asian and classic European flavors with a strong Kiwi touch. Try the tea leaf salad,...Read More

  • 7. Harbourside

    $$$$

    The food and the view will vie for your attention here, as you dine on contemporary New Zealand cuisine. The menu is created largely from...Read More

  • 8. Hereford 'n' a Pickle

    $

    The meat and produce in this café and store all come from the owner’s very own farm, Kairaumati Hereford Stud. The meat is processed on-site,...Read More

  • 9. Izakai Bar and Eatery

    $$$

    The Bayfair Shopping Centre may seem an unlikely place to find one of the area's most innovative restaurants, but this is well worth seeking out....Read More

  • 10. Macau Restaurant and Lounge

    $$$

    Fresh flavors right from Asia are blended with the best of local New Zealand meats, seafood, and vegetables at this popular-with-the-locals waterfront eatery. As with...Read More

  • 11. Neros Bar & Eatery

    $$$

    Come to this indoor–outdoor bistro for casual evening dining loosely billed as Italian with pizza, pastas, and risotto on the menu. There's also a great...Read More

  • 12. Oh Sista

    $

    One of Thames's newest cafes, this place comes with a good pedigree (having been opened by the team who previously ran another popular dining spot...Read More

  • 13. Orchard House Cafe

    $$$

    Just off the road but with a backdrop of fruit trees, this is a fitting place to stop for breakfast or lunch in an area...Read More

  • 14. Pepper Tree Restaurant and Bar

    $$$$

    The standout restaurant in town showcases local produce, shellfish, fish, lamb, and beef. Lunch easily segues into dinner in the sheltered courtyard or in front...Read More

  • 15. Salt Restaurant and Bar

    $$$

    Put a slightly upscale yet still casual restaurant in a popular local hotel, with a waterside location in a vacation town, and you've got this...Read More

  • 16. Sidetrack Cafe

    $

    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...Read More

  • 17. SixfortySix

    $$

    This café boasts of being the friendliest place in town, and the day-long crowds support the claim. Inside, you'll find good coffee, fresh pastries, and...Read More

  • 18. Surf and Sand

    $

    A classic New Zealand takeout experience, this is the spot to get a quintessential Kiwi-style beachside lunch or dinner of fish, shellfish, chips (fries), and...Read More

  • 19. The Bean Cafe and Roastery

    $

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

  • 20. The Junction Hotel

    $$$

    Within one of the few hotels remaining from the gold rush days, you'll find classy pub grub in a convivial atmosphere. The Grahamstown Bar Diner...Read More

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