Food: Catching Up With The Culinary Diversity Of The City

New Caledonia offers a wide variety of delicious foods for the tourists to enjoy during their visit to the place. New Caledonia is considered the best place in South Pacific because of its culinary diversity. There are a splendid collection of restaurants in New Caledonia which offer great food for the travelers.

Here are a few unique and must try dishes of New Caledonia:

A Perfect Sea Food Destination

Are you a seafood lover? Rush to the perfect seafood destination of south pacific and enjoy the best and delicious seafood recipes that they offer. New Caledonia is composed of the largest islands and seas where the sea boats ever day set off to catch the sea fishes and then store them in the icebergs until they are inspected by the local traders. The seafood that is the specialty of the North Caledonia is always served the fresh to the customers.

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Few sea fishes that are specifically found and are famous here are the octopus, prawns ,and shellfishes. Never miss the prawns of New Caledonia because if you miss tasting their seafood special dishes, who are going to miss a major part of the fun and excitement of eating well during your paradise tour.

Taste The Traditional Bougna

Bougna is on the best traditional food served in North Caledonia. People who love the French- influenced food ideas can get numerous to taste but the ones who are still in search of something that is a bit traditional should definitely try the Bougna dish. The dish is special because of the mix and match way that the New Caledonia restaurants use.

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The Bougna dish is made with a mix of chickens and lobsters with sweet potatoes and coconut milk. Whatever may be the dish is but the way of pacific coking style that the restaurants use is very unique. Bougna is muffled up in banana leaves and then placed in the cooking oven to cook and then served which makes the taste of the dish much more delicious.

Famous Local Venison

New Caledonia is famous for its culture of deer hunting which is done every year in the months of July to October. The Local Venison is the best dishes in New Caledonia. So if you been there for a holiday does not forget to taste these as the deer meat is the New Caledonia special food that the local restaurants offer.

The Special Bat Meat

The Dish is usually called as Civet de Rousette which is basically a bat meat. People who are not much familiar with the bat meat should definitely try this Caledonian dish because bat stew is supposed to be a popular dish there. The process of marinating the bat stews in red wine sauce before preparing the dish makes the preparation much more delicious.

New Caledonia is definitely a perfect holiday destination for foodies. Your mouth must be watering right? Well, be fortunate enough to taste the delicious French style cuisines which are mouth-watering.

Recent Tourism Developments In And Around The City

The tourism industry in New Caledonia has been reaching newer heights with every passing year. The year 2018, is the consecutive second year that the island has seen tourists are gathering up in large numbers for spending their vacation.

The statistics says that the visitors from the following countries increased dramatically which result in the overall growth of tourism on the island of Caledonia.

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Developments To Promote Tourism

Likewise, other developments were also made in order to attract most tourists. Various marketing campaigns were launched to boost tourism. The awareness among the masses was very essential in order to seek the attention of tourists.

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  • Many overseas journalists were invited to improve the public relations with this Caledonia.
  • A campaign called ‘meet your neighbors’ was also launched so as to publicize the region and extend them to the potential tourists.
  • The networks of bus services, as well as airports, were renovated instantly. This will improve the quality of services provided by the island, and as a result number of tourists will be attracted towards the place.
  • Another campaign called the ‘New Caledonia New Dimension’ had also been launched to directly target the French Metropolitan market.
  • A familiarization trip was also organized, where around 170 professionals who are either tour operators or agents, were invited to visit the island.
  • Currently, in this digital world, the island has taken to globalizing and promoting itself at the global level through digital media. They have launched their website in three languages, namely, English, Japanese and French.

It is observed the growth has been remarkable in the capital city of Noumea. They have seen a growth of around 2% in the number of tourists from different countries worldwide, which is a great achievement.

Activities That Will Keep You Busy On Arrival

New Caledonia often called as the Lonely Island has become a popular destination owing to the fact that is home to some of the most beautiful beaches and the coral reefs are just spellbinding.

The island has a lot to offer and thus once you have arrived here, you are sure to get no spare time as such as the below-mentioned list is bound to keep you busy, provided you opt for them. Have a look.

The Amedee Island Lighthouse

The Amedee island lighthouse is 56 meters high tower, and on climbing it, you will get the most exotic view of almost the whole island and its surrounding areas. It is often regarded as a tiny paradise by the tourists. It is also called “Phare” which means lighthouse in French.

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At Grand Terre, you can try snorkeling. It is in the capital of this island called Noumea. The region is surrounded by the second largest reef of the world and also forms the largest lagoon.

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Natural Aquarium

There is a natural underwater rock pool which also houses a large number of colorful fishes. Hence, the name, natural aquarium suits the best.

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Local Cuisine

The cuisine is primarily influenced by France, and the main attraction is a Melanesian dish called Boguna. The latter is made from a combination of fish and chicken along with bananas.

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Heart Of Voh

It is a tropical swamp, situated right in the middle of the mangrove forest. The forest is on the west coast of the island. It is called as heart owing to its shape of a heart. You can get to see it only by a helicopter.

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Therefore, located near Australia which is the mainland, the island of New Caledonia in France is stunningly attractive with its high-end tourist spots and exotic activities that you can enjoy.

A Traveller’s Guide To New Caledonia

From adventure freaks to history buffs, from those seeking for religious fervor to learning about Kanak culture and traditional diversity –New Caledonia is full of surprises. With a semi-tropical climate and diversified landscapes favoring the growth of the plethora of the flora and fauna –you will definitely seek out the most amazing deals to make the best out of the natural vistas. Know more about the natural scenes of New Caledonia. However, before planning for the itinerary you need to take a few things into consideration such as currency exchange, communication, transportation, accommodation and of course the places to discover.

New Caledonia Transportation

The La Tontouta International Airport is the only airport in New Caledonia, which with a ‘B’ ranking, offers extensive passenger services, great comfort and top-notch infrastructure since its opening in the year 2012. Grande Terre and New Caledonian Islands are well connected with Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne in Australia, Osaka and Tokyo in Japan, New Zealand, French Polynesia, Vanuatu and some other regional destinations.

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It is better to rent a car and explore New Caledonia as both Noumea and the airport has a number of rental services providing firms from where you will get cars to travel to Loyalty Islands and beyond. SUVs and trucks are available, but it is better to book in advance.

Karuïa Bus in Greater Noumea and RAI as inter-urban coach services are your local transportation options along with private shuttles which cover 360 stops including the bays, Museum of New Caledonia, Caledonia Maritime Museum, Ouen Toro, Botanical and Wildlife Park, Quai Jules Ferry etc. catamarans are also available to travel by sea to reach Lifou, Mare or Isle of Pines.

What To Keep In Mind While Travelling?

Before your arrival at New Caledonia, keep the essential contacts of airlines, transport companies, tourism offices or your guide, foreign consulates and emergency healthcare centers. Few other things to remember are –

  • Prior booking for visiting local tribal villages or home-cooking venue is necessary. Serving time is 11.30 AM-1 PM for lunch and 7 PM-9 PM for dinner.
  • Food and grocery stores remain open usually from 8AM-7 PM while retail stores remain open from 9 AM-6 PM generally.
  • From Wednesday to Sunday and on holidays, takeaway alcohol is banned
  • Some areas in Noumea accept Dollars and Euros although it is better to take enough Pacific Francs for hassle-free currency transaction. Banks, ATMs and currency exchange offices are there to get currency exchange done.
  • Keep your visa and passport handy as in airports of Australia or Asia will need you to verify your nationality.
  • April, May, September, October and November are the best months to visit New Caledonia for the moderate heat and lesser rainfall –weather remains best for hiking, snorkeling etc.

Thus, being said, you should also be considerate about the local culture and their taboo on naturism as well as their prohibition regarding exploration of certain places. Learning French beforehand will be a great advantage as you will find it hard to communicate with local people as they speak only in their local mother tongue.

What Budget Travellers Should Know About Visiting New Caledonia

No matter whether you are an underwater diving enthusiast or nature explorer, adventure junkie or planning to renew your marital vows on a cruise, for a budget holiday New Caledonia will never fail you. The lagoon of Caledonia being the UNESCO World Heritage Site with numerous coral and marine life lurking within will definitely be on your list, so will the Isle Of Pines for the distinct Cook Pines. Apart from being a biodiversity hotspot, Caledonian culture with Kanak community as well as Asian and European inhabitants and migrants from islands of Wallis, Tahiti, Reunion and Futuna make it an ethnic diversity hotspot too.

When you are travelling on a budget, one of the main concerns is booking hotels. Learn more about the best hotels in New Caledonia. Besides, access to healthcare, internet connection, currency exchange centers, eateries will also be your concern.

Let’s check out everything you should know before planning your budget holiday to New Caledonia –

Change Into Local Currency

As Pacific Franc or XPF or CFP is the standard currency in all over New Caledonia, it is better to exchange it with Euros with the fixed rate that is currently 119.3317 XPF for 1 Euro. If you change from other currencies like Sterling or Dollar, there will be applied international exchange rates. Traveler’s cheques are not accepted here but you can get your change from the currency exchange machines set up by the banks like BNC, BCI and BNP. You can either withdraw cash from Bank Of France or other branch ATMs after arrival or from the BCI For-ex office. Although MasterCard, VISA and American Express Card are accepted in the stores, they are not applicable for cash withdrawal from ATMs.

Check The Internet Access Fees

Both mobile and landline or public telephone booths allows you to use the prepaid IZI card which lets you to pay per call. Various retail outlets and OPT branches offer these cards which can be a great save on your budget rather than paying for ISD calls. You can get Liberte Card from the same outlets which will let you access the 3G internet connection –it would cost around 3000 XPF for voice call credits. Various internet packages are available at 1-hour, 4-hours and 24-hours basis, choose yours accordingly.

Cut Down Medical Bills

In order to cut down the additional medical bills, you need to take a few precautions –

  • Carry mosquito repellent spray
  • Avoid cooking any lagoon fish you buy from the market as being affected with ciguatera is common
  • Wear proper water shoes to avoid bites, stings and cuts from sea snakes, corals, shellfish, lionfish and stonefish. It is better to keep safe distance from them while snorkeling.

Consumption And Accommodation Costs

Although the thriving local agricultural and industrial sector shows no n significant inflation in the rates of daily commodities, as most goods are imported, it is better to stick with the fish, shellfish, meat, fuel, Asian food products and the locally grown vegetables and fruits as their prices are cheaper than the major cities.

As for accommodation, living in Noumea or the capital city will cost more than staying in the countryside bush or tribal villages. While the accessibility of general commodities will be better while staying in the main town, living among the tribes will offer you the perfect essence of living in the country.

Spend Wisely On Food And Drink

While travelling to New Caledonia, spending a bit on the artisan French champagnes and wines will never be a wrong choice in your budget travel. Check out Maison Ballande for their collection of Fauchon, Bollinger and Comtesse du Barry which are offered as samples with Lobsters and other delicacies. Golden Caboose, Workshop of Morand and Uncle Jules are some of the prominent chocolate factories you should check out to buy homemade chocolates at cheaper cost. Don’t miss out to Foie Gras or Caviar offered at the local shops or restaurants.

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Additional Guidance On Budget Traveling In New Caledonia

Apart from saving some bucks on food and accommodation while paying with Pacific Francs, you should also consider the following for your budget travelling –

  • For shopping, Noumea is the best option and you can start from Town Center to go easy on your pocket. Once you have got the general idea of the cost of the goods, you can visit the Lemon Bay, Anse Vata Bay and Plaisance Mall to choose the cheapest option

  • In order to avoid paying penalties for violating the tribal laws and decorum, always plan your visit by taking permission from the tribal representative so that you not only get discounts on staying among them or dining with them, but also develop a cordial relationship with them. Also, keep your distance from sacred or prohibited site unless you are granted permission by the tribal authority.

  • Keep your tour simple –you cannot explore all the coasts, islands and main town in one trip. Hence, determine what interests you the most by researching about the places beforehand and plan accordingly.

  • Don’t engage your whole day with activities like swimming, snorkeling, horseback riding etc. If you take up an activity or two in the daytime, leave the night time free so that you can relax and save your fund. If you spend the daytime relaxing on the beaches, the night can be spent exploring the nightclubs, restaurants and other attractions.

  • If you are short on funds, it is better to stay in Loyalty Islands or Isle Of Pines where the accommodation rate is low.

  • Book your buses and rented cars beforehand so that you don’t have to bear the extra cost of booking at rush hours after reaching Noumea.

With all the above discussed topics in mind, you can make your budget holiday memorable with activities, popular attractions and mingling with local inhabitants without burning your pocket. The five regions of New Caledonia have five distinct landscape, lifestyle and biodiversity –travel according to your preference.

The Natural Scenes That Every Tourist Will Love To See

With the limpid lagoons to the vast dry forest region, from the colourful underwater reef world to the peculiar shaped reefs –the natural wonders of New Caledonia is endless. You can spend hours relaxing on the white sandy beaches of the Isle of Pines, Lifou and Ouvea or explore the rarest of the fern species in the Parc des Grandes Fougeres. There are the rocky outcrops at Jokin Cliffs, again the Heart of Voh scores hearts with its perfect shape. While planning your quest in diversified nature of New Caledonia, you need to keep a few things in mind. Learn more about the facts to remember while visiting New Caledonia.

There are five eco-regions in New Caledonia with their distinct natural beauty. Let’s have a look at them –

Noumea –The Capital City With Bays, Isles And Hills

Apart from the cultural centres, aquariums, beaches and markets, Noumea is popular for the following –

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Amedee Isle –Known for the towering white metal lighthouse flanked by verdant palm groves and white sand, the Amedee Isle is not only historic but also one of the largest in the world from top of which you can see the Caledonian lagoon teeming with corals and reef fishes.

Noumea Islets –Besides Amedee, the islets of Goeland, Laregnere, Signal, Sainte-Marie, Canard and Maitre are famous for their coastline and marine life. Canard with its underwater trail and Maitre for its underwater life is worth visiting.

Ouen Toro –Dominating the southern region and offering a panoramic view of the city with lagoons and foothills, the Ouen Toro hill with lots of nature parks is like “green lungs”.

West Coast –Natural And Cultural Diversity

From a lenticular cliff to riverbanks, hiking trails to forested region –the natural wonders of West Coast are –

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  • Dumbea –The Fayard River, Dumbea River with natural cavities and potholes and Mount Koghi for its views of primal forest
  • Voh –Probably the best attraction of west coast with its natural mangrove plant formation in heart shape, named Coeur de Voh
  • Farino –The waterfall trail and the park filled with towering ferns.
  • Paita –Hikes to Mount Humboldt and Mount Mou
  • Boulouparis –The magnificent Caledonian Lagoon with the vibrant corals
  • Sarramea –The hike to the Dogny plateau and La Cuve Du Trou Feillet for its waterhole surrounded by bushes
  • La Foa –Learn about the fragile mangrove ecosystem while passing through the trails of Ouano’s Mangroves
  • Bourail –Poe Beach by the lagoon, the tranquil NY Waterfalls, endemic dry forest region at Deva Estate, Bonhomme rocky outcrop, double reef flanking Green Island and Three-Bay trail covering Turtle Bay, Lovers’ Bay and La Roche Percee.

East Coast –Tropical Charm And Underwater Wonders

From the mountainous region of Grande Terre to the thin coastal strip meeting ocean, the east coast boasts of natural diversity –

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  • Skin-diving at Mwara beach will offer a less-explored and exotic coast of Thio
  • Poindimie’s Tibarama Islet is dubbed as the most beautiful in New Caledonia, thanks to its long stretch of beach and well-preserved corals in the lagoon where ribbon eels are found
  • Hienghene is famous for the magnanimous Tao Waterfall and the widely known rock formation in the shape of a Brooding Hen and a Sphinx.
  • Houailou is not only famous for the lychees but also the Ba Waterfall which can be reached via a hiking trail during October through May

The Great South –Hiking Trails And Islands

Mont Dore and Yate being the two attractions of the Great South has a number of nature reserves and plateaus where hiking and biking will be perfect options.

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  • From the Mont Dore Summit to the Ouen Isle with its Humpback Whales, Green Sea Turtles and distinct Ouenite rocks, diversity in nature is perfectly depicted here.
  • Waterfalls of La Madeleine with its enormous size, hike through the Maquis shrubland and the underwater living fossils are notable in Yate. The Blue River Park, on the other hand is distinct for its hundreds of drowned bleached logs, the old growth forestry full of Cagous and the Jurassic-age landscape will take your heart away.

New Caledonian Islands – Five Different Natural Aspects

Bordering the New Caledonian mainland, the five islands will never cease to mesmerize you with their uniqueness.

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l’Île des Pins –The Isle Of Pines with its long stretch of sandy beaches flanking the four bays namely Kanumera Bay, Oro Bay, Upi Bay and Kuto Bay looks stunning, thanks to the turquoise waters creating contrast with the powdery sand.

Ouvea –Not only is Ouvea listed on the UNESCO World Heritage Site but also it is dubbed as the island close to the paradise. No urban touch is found in the white sandy beaches and the glistening atolls. The Hanawa Blue Hole surrounded by dense forestry, the shallow shark nursery and the azure blue Pleiades du Nord will be breathtaking to behold.

Lifou –Known as an island with many faces, Lifou is characterized by the pinkish sand kissed by the indigo blue water at the Luengoni Beach and the towering Jokin Cliffs overlooking the bluish green water where Manta Rays are lucky sightings.

Mare –Many legends pass about Mare where the rugged Warrior’s Leap is famous for cliff jumping. Shabadran terraces are famous for the coral reefs emerging over the vibrant waters and the Natural Aquarium carved from coral along with the Pethoen Cave in the Tropical Forest is famous for the limpid water.

Tiga –A hotspot for traditional lifestyle with the native inhabitants, Tiga is a dome-shaped island by the Coral Sea. Surrounded by corals and the confluence of blue and green waters, Tiga is famous for deep canyons, reef flats and abundance of shellfish.

So, which one among the above enchanted you the most?

It is hard to choose any one from so many natural wonders, but as each part of the archipelago has different natural vistas, you can definitely choose one from the five.

Exotic Hotels To Visit On Your First Trip

New Caledonia is defined by its flora and fauna and is also famous among the visitors because of its amazing divine adventures. Situated in the heart of south pacific region, the wide ranges of islands that are present in New Caledonia are rightly termed as the paradise because of the scenic beauty. It is surrounded by an immense coral reef that offers amazing underwater scenery along with semi tropical climate.

Planning for your first trip to the land? Well, then, let’s check out the exotic and luxury hotels to accommodate. They do have an important role to play when it comes to a trip. Isn’t it! Well, New Caledonia has a number of exotic and luxurious hotels which you can choose to stay during your trip. Let’s check out the hotels in New Caledonia:

The Beaurivage Hotel: Noumea Accommodation

Beaurivage Hotel is located in the center of the white land beach known as the Noumea and is among the best luxurious hotels. The hotel has all the modern amenities such as cable connection, TV’s, air-conditioned rooms, Wi-Fi connection, etc. The specialty of the hotel is the discounts and offers that they provide, one of which is staying for 4 nights and paying for 3 night stay. The honeymoon couples are offered with high-grade rooms which are valid for stays throughout the year. Hotel Beaurivage mainly offers three types of rooms for visitor’s Standard room, Lagoon view room, and deluxe lagoon view room and the size of the standard rooms with beach view can accommodate up to 3 to 2 adults and 2 children.

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Hilton Noumea La Promenade Residences

This is the perfect place to stay for the tourists because of its location. Various cafes, boutiques, restaurants, parlors, and spa destinations are a walking distance away from the residence. The welcoming atmosphere makes the visitors feel at home. The hotels provide fantastic leisure facilities such as outdoor pools and fitness areas for people to relax. They provide the visitors with the opportunity to choose the right place to stay from a wide range of rooms that are all convenient and luxurious. The comforts that they provide to the tourists are the elevators, the bar area, the snack shops, baggage storage, foreign currency exchange facilities, 24*7 reception facilities, etc.

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La Nea Hotel

Kone is known as the main business center for all the New Caledonian people. This place offers a wide range of hotels for tourists to come and stay during their holidays and the La Nea Hotel is one of the best option. The quiet and calming environment of the hotel makes it one of the first choices for every businessman and visitors who love calming environments. The hotel is famous for the delicious food they offer. The restaurants available in the hotel offer local as well as gourmet menus for the visitors. The hotel is just a 30 min distance from Noumea. The air-conditioned room facilities they offer are incredible. They offer a wide range of room categories for the tourists such as the Bungalow queen with 1 sofa cum bed, Family bungalows, and Bungalow twin convertible into a queen and 1 sofa cum bed. Every room that they provide has all the basic amenities such as bathrooms, showers, and balcony associated.

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Betikure Parc Lodge

The Betikure Parc Lodge is located in the peaceful valley, Bourail. The idyllic property is surrounded by tropical forests and is famous for its palm tree and mountain views. The luxurious hotels offer all its customers with air-conditioned rooms and other room facilities. They have a swimming pool on the hotel premises. The traditional foods and the French cuisines that are famous here attract numerous tourists. The hotel is composed of all modern furniture and equipment. They have a wide range of room categories to choose from depending on the taste of the tourists.

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Nouvata Hotel

Opposite to the Anse Vata Beach, this luxurious hotel stands straight in a great surrounding of greenery and tropical forests. The Nouvata Hotel offers a wide range of discount on the foods that they deliver. There are swimming pools located in the hotel premise. They provide all the basic room amenities such as satellite TV’S, WI-FI facilities, kitchen appliances, and attached bathrooms with tubs. The rooms have self-tea and coffee making facilities. In the case of standard rooms, the room services provide the customers with iron and iron boards. The L’Equilibre’ is a bar that opens at every 10:00 at night for the hotel’s customers.

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These are one of the few great accommodations that New Caledonia provides to any tourist that visits the land for the first time.