Great Places to Get Coffee in New Zealand (Some of Them Might Surprise You)

Coffee lovers, you’re in for a treat if you’re in New Zealand. Before traveling there I had never considered that it might have a strong coffee culture…but it certainly does. From the busy streets of Wellington to the quiet corners of small towns, you’ll find perfect coffee stops to pick you up as you explore.

Below I list for you our picks for the best places where we got coffee during our road trip through New Zealand. They’re arranged in the order in which we stopped. Some of these places might not be what you’re expecting, but they all served great coffee.

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North Island

Shire’s Rest Cafe (Hobbiton), Matamata

If you’re a fan of “The Lord of the Rings,” The Shire’s Rest Cafe in Matamata is a must-visit. This café is located at the entrance to the famous Hobbiton Movie Set.

You can enjoy your coffee while taking in the picturesque views of the beautiful green hills of the Alexander farm. The café offers a variety of coffee drinks, snacks, and light meals. It’s a great place to grab a bite before or after your tour.

Flat white coffee drink in a brown cup with a matching saucer on a wood table. Next to the flat white are a map and brochure from the Hobbiton movie set attraction.
You might not guess, but the Shire’s Rest Cafe at Hobbiton does a great flat white. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

MOOMAA, Marton

MOOMAA in Marton stands out with its setting (it’s sort of in the middle of nowhere) and atmosphere. In addition to being a cafe where they serve great coffee and baked goods, you can also shop for home decor items.

MOOMAA’s lovely decor, service, and delicious food make it a great place to stop on your drive through the North Island.

Cheese and herb scone on a white plate with pats of butter. Next to it on a wooden table is a small black cup of black coffee.
The staff at MOOMAA described their cheese scones as “award-winning.” If I could I would give them all the scone awards in the world. I enjoyed mine with a long black. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Cable Top Eatery, Wellington

Cable Top Eatery in Wellington offers some of the best views in the city. Situated at the top of the Wellington Cable Car track, the café has a beautiful lookout over the city and harbor. There is seating both indoors and outside.

You can sip on a fantastic cup of coffee while soaking in the views. The Eatery also serves a variety of non-coffee drinks (like the homemade kombucha Hubby tried), and tasty food, including vegetarian and gluten-free options.

Coffee drink in a black cup on a red saucer. In the background through the window you can see the city of Wellington, New Zealand.
Enjoy a flat white with some views at the Cable Top Eatery in Wellington, New Zealand. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

South Island

Sandfly Cafe, Te Anau

Sandfly Cafe in Te Anau is a gem worth visiting. It’s known for its excellent coffee and delicious food, and it makes a perfect stop before or after exploring Milford Sound or Doubtful Sounds. In fact, we loved this place so much that we ate there twice!

We loved the very friendly service and the amazing variety of food with many vegetarian and gluten-free options.

A flat white in a white cup next to a white plate with a savory muffin and herb butter.
Sundried tomato and feta muffin and herb butter with a flat white at Sandfly Caffe, Te Anau. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Patagonia, Queenstown

Patagonia in Queenstown offers not just coffee but lots of amazing desserts. Located in the heart of town, you can sip on a cup of freshly brewed coffee while enjoying lovely views of Lake Wakatipu from the upstairs dining area.

Patagonia is most famous for its chocolate and ice cream, so it makes a great place to stop at nearly any time of day.

A coffee drink with a lion's face in the foam in a black cup with a saucer. The cup sits on a table. Through the window in the background you can see a lakefront with a dock.
The lion’s face in my Patagonia flat white delighted me. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

Big Fig, Wanaka

Big Fig in Wanaka is known for its focus on sustainability and “slow food served fast.” It’s located right at the Lake in the main shopping area, making it a convenient and popular choice. 

Their coffee is top-notch, and you can grab a quick, healthy meal alongside your brew. Seriously, the food and coffee there are uh.may.zing

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Sir Edmund Hillary Cafe, Aoraki Mount Cook

For coffee with a mind-blowingly beautiful view, head to Sir Edmund Hillary Cafe at the Hermitage Hotel, Aoraki Mount Cook. Located among stunning mountain scenery, this cafe honors the legacy of the famous mountaineer.

You can enjoy a cup of excellent coffee and a yummy snack while taking in views of New Zealand’s highest peak, Aoraki/Mount Cook. The cafe also offers a variety of tasty snacks and meals, making it a great place to relax after hiking or exploring the area.

Flat white coffee drink in a red cup on a black saucer. The cup and saucer sit on a table outdoors and in the background there is a picturesque mountain scene.

The Greedy Cow, Lake Tekapo

The Greedy Cow in Lake Tekapo is a favorite place for visitors. Stop by near any mealtime, and it will likely be pretty full there. 

Located near Tekapo’s lakefront, it’s an ideal spot to pause and enjoy a drink. You can get your coffee to go (which is what we did) and then take a lovely stroll to the famous Church of the Good Shepherd.

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Fairlie Bakehouse, Fairlie

Fairlie Bakehouse in Fairlie is more than just a place for coffee. It’s also well-known for its pies. Their coffee is excellent, a good complement to their baked goods.

This spot was recommended to me by the proprietor at the Aoraki Court Motel in Aoraki Mount Cook National Park. I’m so glad we decided to take the time to stop here.

An artistic coffee drink in a black cup with saucer on a light-colored wood table. Next to it is a round, pie-like pastry on a white plate with a splattering of brown speckles.
Apple shortcake with a flat white at Fairlie Bakehouse. Photo: Plan, Ready, Go.

The bottom line

There are so many great places to get a good flat white or long black and enjoy New Zealand’s robust coffee culture. It’s one of the simple pleasures of traveling through the beautiful islands of New Zealand.

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