Auckland has nearly 2,000 eateries, ranging from fine dining restaurants to cheap market stands, with culinary options to please any traveler’s palate and budget. The North Island harbor city is a showcase for fresh-caught seafood and farm-to-table cuisine. Here’s an introduction to a few foods and activities in the City of Sails.
Though it’s still easy to find traditional Kiwi fare (think minced lamb and shepherd’s pie), Auckland takes much of its inspiration from the Pacific Rim with Asian- and Polynesian-influenced cuisine. Multi-ethnic night markets and food truck stops offer street food like beef bulgogi and pork belly buns, while oyster bars are plentiful alongside seafood hot spots doing creative fusion: soft-shell crab burger, anyone? Gourmet restaurants complete the culinary scene; try manuka honey–glazed lamb ribs followed by locally sourced, artisan-made ice cream. Pavlova is not to be missed with its crisp meringue topped with fruit and whipped cream.
- Follow a guide through the Auckland Fish Market or Otara Market and sample specialty products, including baked goods, sourced by local food purveyors.
- Stroll around the street food stalls of Queen Street or pair gourmet food with New Zealand’s award-winning wine on nearby Waiheke Island; there are multiple itineraries to follow.
- Visit local watering holes, from classic pubs to cozy bars, on a tasting tour of craft beers or cocktails made with seasonal ingredients.
- Delight in a 3-course dinner served during a sailing cruise on Waitemata Harbour.