Taste of Paradise

By Carmarlena Murdaca

Taste of Paradise

Travel to New Caledonia and experience this melting pot of culinary wonders, cultural delights and natural beauty.

Known for its pristine beaches and crystal clear waters, New Caledonia is a must-see for any traveller keen to bask in its natural beauty. However, did you know the islands host a vibrant food scene too?

The islands themselves are places of diverse and distinctive landscapes, and this is reflected in their delicious and equally diverse gastronomic offerings. The archipelago, situated in the picturesque South Pacific, is unlike any other in the region. With its fusion of French sophistication and authentic Kanak culture, the destination provides a vibrant menu, which is sure to satisfy the hungriest of travellers.

There are unique and extraordinary flavours to be found in each of the destinations’ varied regions, whether they be from the blue waters of the crystal clear lagoon, the more rural ‘cowboy country’ in the west, the Gallic hub of Noumea or the traditional Kanak culture in the east. New Caledonia’s sundry landscapes deliver delicacies, fresh produce and meals that will tantalise the taste buds and are a true testimonial to the blend of cultures united on the island.

Francophiles can feast on the exclusive escargot of the Isle of Pines, or indulge the sense with dishes like gratin or mangrove crab, local venison, dauphine potatoes and croquettes at a traditional French restaurant in Noumea. In local markets, French delicacies such as cheese, wines, fresh-baked pastries and chocolates will awaken the palate – and all of this is just a few hours away!

Others may want to try the authentic flavours of the local Kanak culture, with options available to stay with a local Kanak tribe for a more traditional and unique experience. Freshly caught seafood can be barbequed by the white sand beaches, while thirsty travellers can sip on cocktails made from the assortment of mouth-watering fruits found on the islands, including coconuts, mangoes, passionfruit and papaya.

To add to the destination’s already plentiful culinary offerings, there are a variety of key gastronomic events and festivals on offer throughout the year, as well as a series of cooking classes, demonstrations and tastings.

Whether it’s fine dining, eating with the locals or enjoying wine or cheese tastings, there is something for everyone in New Caledonia.


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