If you’re travelling on a budget in most western countries, chances are you’ll be hitting the supermarket and local farmers market to find the cheapest ingredients to cook in your hostel. Food in New Zealand is quite expensive (even by western standards), but there are a number of places providing great food at a relatively cheap price. Definitely not the way to go about every meal, but if you want a change from the hostel kitchen without breaking the bank, give my top five cheap eats in Wellington a go.
The mecca for cash-strapped students and travellers, situated on left-bank Cuba Mall (Wellington’s artsy bohemian quarter). Quick service and big portions. Try their nasi goreng and roti chennai for great meals that will set you back around $10
If you’re not in the mood for satay, Wellington’s best Mexican restaurant is right next door. Authentic food and great decor, a taco will set you back around $6-8. Stay away from the beer, as although it’s amazing, the imported bottles will put a big dent in your wallet. Get here early for dinner as it is very popular and there’s regularly a queue.
Just around the corner from Satay Kingdom and Viva Mexico, KK Malaysian does amazing food at a reasonable price. Limited seating and it’s very popular so it’s easier to get your meal to go and find a nice spot in a nearby park to sit and dine.
Specifically Phoenician Falafel (in my opinion the best of the numerous kebab joints in Wellington). Located at the end of Courtenay Place in the nightclub district, it’s also right next to the famous Embassy Theatre (think the Hobbit) and makes great doner kebabs and (obviously) falafels. The added bonus is it’s less than 100m away from two of the most popular hostels in Wellington (Base X and YHA). There’s also Cuba Kebab on – surprisingly enough – Cuba Street, and Abrakebabra on Manners Street if they’re closer.
A traditional Kiwi dinner. Grabbing some fish and chips from one of the many “chippies” around Wellington is a cheap (if not entirely healthy) way to have a tasty meal. Even better is if you take them to a local beach and eat while watching the sun set across the harbour. If you’re in the CBD there’s an amazing fish and chip shop on upper Cuba Street, but you’re likely to find one every couple of blocks in the suburbs.
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