The Southern Alps and Fiordland Restaurants

Queenstown, as the main regional resort, has the widest range of restaurants. Throughout the area, menus focus on local produce, seafood, lamb, and venison. Wine lists often highlight South Island wines, especially those from Central Otago and Gibbston Valley. Cafés and restaurants driven by the summer tourist trade shorten their hours in winter. Dress standards are generally relaxed, with jeans or khakis acceptable almost everywhere. At high-end places, particularly in Queenstown, you'll need to reserve a table at least a day in advance.

Outside of Queenstown and Wanaka dining options can be limited. In summer, meals of some sort are available almost everywhere, but outside the high season, there are fewer options in the smaller settlements and they don’t tend to stay open late.

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  • 1. Cafe Mondo

    $$ | Café

    Tucked into a sheltered courtyard off the main street, this is the place for refreshing, eclectic cold drinks like the Mondo Combo, a blend...Read More

  • 2. Discover Milford Information Centre

    $$ | Café

    Formerly the only pub in town, the Discover Milford Information Centre is the only place in Milford Sound to buy a coffee, snacks, and counter...Read More

  • 3. Joe's Garage

    $$ | Café

    There are now 10 outposts around New Zealand, but Queenstown is where the Joe's Garage concept began—good coffee in a laid-back, friendly spot...Read More

  • 4. Poppies Cafe

    $$$$ | Café

    For years Poppies has been turning out good food in Twizel. Meat, seafood, pizza, and pasta are complemented by organic produce from the garden...Read More

  • 5. Provisions

    $$ | Café

    With a welcoming atmosphere and lovely garden Provisions is a delightful place to have breakfast or lunch. The blackboard menu is enticing and...Read More

  • 6. Sandfly Cafe

    $ | Café

    The Sandfly Cafe just may have the best coffee in town, and a hearty breakfast from bacon and eggs to delicious corn-and-coriander fritters...Read More

  • 7. The Boat Shed Cafe & Bistro

    $$ | Café

    This charming historic wooden building in the Frankton Marina used to be the New Zealand Railways Shipping Office and is right beside the lake...Read More

  • 8. The Old Mountaineers Cafe, Bar & Restaurant

    $$$ | Café

    This cozy, very personable café/restaurant has big picture windows for grand views of the outside and all sorts of interesting mountaineering...Read More

  • 9. Vudu Cafe

    $$ | Café

    This Queenstown institution is so popular it's opened a second venue, so if you can't get in to the main café try its "mini-me" version (Vudu...Read More

  • 10. Café Fe

    $ | Café

    Located a short drive up the Cardrona Valley Road, Café Fe (Fe as in Mt. Iron) has great views, comfortable seating inside and out (including...Read More

  • 11. Joe's Garage

    $ | Café

    Sitting above Blue Moon in the Mall, this branch of the Queenstown's café provides a sunny, quiet spot away from the tour-bus crowd. The menu...Read More

  • 12. Naff Caff

    $ | Café

    If all the adventure activities here have you racing, you can get a delicious breakfast egg-and-bacon panini to go here, along with some great...Read More

  • 13. Observatory Café

    $ | Café

    Despite the space-alien lava-lampy décor, this café offers down-to-earth food such as salads and fries, burgers, quiche, sandwiches, salmon...Read More

  • 14. The Grind

    $ | Café

    The Grind, on the outskirts of Queenstown in the Frankton Industrial Park, is a lovely place to enjoy views, brews, and fresh-baked goodies. ...Read More

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