restaurants to eat out in new zealand (south island)

Here are a few places to eat we tried out during our South Island + Wellington trip.

I’m not a fine dining chick and love decent food that is not too overpriced. It wasn’t always easy to choose a restaurant but the Trip Advisor app was incredibly helpful.

Bon a petit!

Lake Tekapo:

Kohan Japanese Restaurant

State Highway 8  Lake Tekapo 7945, New Zealand, Tel: 03 680 6688

Not the most obvious association NZ and Japanese cuisine?? Hell yeah!! Try some teriyaki  salmon, so fresh and delicate, just melts in your mouth. Stir fried veggies were delicious and so was the selection of sushi and sashimi.

VIew from the restaurant…

Te Anau:

The Fat Duck Restaurant, go to their Facebook page

124 Town Centre, Te Anau 9600, New Zealand, Tel: 03 249 8480

Lamb salad was sooo good, my father in-law was so keen that he had it as his main two nights in a row (he’s normally really picky), lamb burger looked really yum too!

Miles Better Pies

2 Milford Crescent, Te Anau, New Zealand, Tel: 03 249 9044

Scrumilicious pies, I tried satay chicken, so yummy and filling. Great, cheap alternative for lunch.


Aggy’s Shack Fish and Chips 

Church Street, Queenstown, New Zealand

Yummy scallops and huge portions, if you are not a pig like me, it’s enough to share between two people…

The shack

Scampi and chips

Right outside the shack

The views while you munch on your food are spectacular

Lake Matheson near Fox Glacier:  

Matheson Cafe

Lake Matheson Rd, Fox Glacier, Westland National Park (Te Wahipounamu) 7859, New Zealand, Tel: 03 751 0878

I had a vegetarian pizza which was really tasty however the chorizo one was to die for (stole some of it from my in-laws), the greek salad was good too, well dressed. We went there for lunch the next day as we absolutely love the place, the decor, the atmosphere and of course the best service. We had some amazing chunky chips with garlic aioli, and a really tasty chorizo panini. One more thing, I also probably had one of the best and biggest as well as superbly looking cappuccinos ever. This place is a must visit if you are in the area. Probably one of the best dining experiences of all times. Ahh, I almost forgot about the carrot cake! Best one ever (honestly)!

ginormous cappuccino

this pix makes me hungry…

pure indulgence


Cafe de Paris

19 Tancred Street  Hokitika 7810, New Zealand, Tel: 03 755 8933

this one is a though one… It’s slightly overpriced for the portions and the quality. I ordered roasted veggies that were on special that night and received some undercooked eggplant in a blunt sauce, not to mention the tiny size of the portion. One of the waitresses asked if everything was ok so I asked to change my order. I had some marinated grilled chicken and that was spectacular. All in all left happy in the end. The service wasn’t the most pleasant, our waitress seemed grumpy (maybe she had a bad day). My father in-law had pasta carbonara and he was pretty happy with it, the portion was decent.


Caffe Affair

295 Trafalgar Street, Nelson, New Zealand, Tel/Fax: 03 548 8295 

I absolutely loved this place, cool ambience and decor, fabulous food and good service. I had a cajun seasoned lamb salad and it was full of flavour. I completely forgot what my in-laws had but they were definitely happy.


Scopa Cafe Cucina,

Corner of Ghuznee & Cuba Streets, Wellington, New Zealand,  Tel: 04 384 6020

I probably won’t do this place justice since I ordered a main I shouldn’t have. I had spaghetti alle vongole with NZ clams…. I thought they would come with no shells and blended with the sauce but how foolish I was! I decided I don’t like mussels, clams etc that night. The sauce was hardly present and was tasteless. My father in-law had a risotto so he was happy (and safe) and his wife had gnocchi pomodoro (she wasn’t too impressed either). THe portions were tiny and it seemed as if there wasn’t much love in the food. Fragrant pizzas flying past our table, on the other hand looks absolutely great so definitely wrong food choice! The restaurant has a great casual vibe however the service is a little too laid back as no one really checked if we were happy with the meal. I will give it a go next time I’m in Wellies and get a pizza!


places to visit in new zealand

I know I’m a terribly unreliable blogger…

It has been a while but I’m back. The reason why I had a bit of a break was my holiday in New Zealand. My in-laws and I, minus my 2nd half (I know!) travelled around the South Island. I finished my adventure in Wellington while they went to explore the North Island as well. What an amazing place! The nature and the views are breathtaking, the food is to die for and people are über friendly (at least on the surface).

I spent 7 days in NZ so it was super fast and exciting. Every day was an adventure.

We landed in Christchurch, jumped into a rented car to go to Lake Tekapo. It’s this stunning blue colour with a cute old church on its banks. We spent a night then headed to Te Anau. On the way we stopped in Queenstown, absolutely amazing town. Great views once you get to the top of the cable car, plenty of sports to do and quaint lake full of people sunbathing in board shorts and bikinis ( I was wearing a hoodie…). We arrived in Te Anau in the afternoon and went to Milford Sound the next day. It should be a no 1 on everyone’s list of places to see in NZ. We had a 3 hour cruise with Southern Discoveries and loved it. We had a BBQ lunch and a knowledgable yet funny tour guide. I was  well worth it! The next day was our longest drive day since we had to get to Fox Glacier. We stopped at Lake Wanaka and had our lunch by the water then continued our journey. We decided to go to the glacier the same day since the weather forecast was not very promising for the following one. It was a bit scary as it was getting darker but worth it. Stunning views, pre-dinner exercise and we witnessed a bit of ice breaking off the glacier (sounded like an approaching avalanche…). It was raining indeed the next day so we went to Lake Matheson. It wasn’t mirror like because of the weather yet still pleasant experience to be in the rainforest while it rained. We headed to the Pancake Rocks had a wander and continued our journey to Nelson. We went to the beach in the morning, endless space, perfect views unobstructed by people. It was hight time to jump on the ferry going from Picton to Wellington. Luckily it was a nice day so the journey was fairly peaceful (bit windy on the top deck). We arrived in Wellies and wandered around the NZ capital’s centre in the evening. The next day we visited Te Papa Museum. Most of the exhibitions are free and you can probably spend days exploring six floors of the building.

In between the places we saw a number of lakes, rivers and some cute villages and towns. I absolutely love nature but I was glad to be going home. Next time is the North Island or maybe the South for a snowboarding trip? Will see but highly recommend it!

Lake Tekapo

On the way to Queenstown


Queenstown Beach

Te Anau

Te Anau at dawn

On the way to Milford Sound

First glimpse of Milford Sound

Milford Sound

On the way to Lake Wanaka

Walk to Fox Glacier

Fox Glacier in its full glory

Beach in Hokitika

Hokitika cnd

Pancake Rocks

On the way to Nelson (same day as Pancake Rocks – 1-2hrs later…)

Nelson at night

Nelson Beach

Nelson cnd

Ferry Picton -> Wellington


Wellington cnd