We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Cafe Encounter

96 Esplanade, Kaikoura 7300, New Zealand
+64 3-319 6777
Website
Share
Save
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Overview
  • Excellent50%
  • Very good38%
  • Average9%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“lunch” (56 reviews)
“muesli” (6 reviews)
“cakes” (10 reviews)
Closes in 17 min
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM Hours
CUISINES
Cafe, New Zealand, International, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options
PRICE
$$ - $$$
RATINGS
Service
Food
Value
Atmosphere
LOCATION
96 Esplanade, Kaikoura 7300, New Zealand
All Details
Write a ReviewReviews (365)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language
  • More languages

1 - 10 of 338 reviews

Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

We've been in Kaikoura for 5 days and dined here on multiple occasions. Food is lovely, fresh and wholesome with something different every day. Staff are friendly and efficient and very welcoming when we returned.

Thank MrsBPurple
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Thanks so much for your review and your return visits to us whilst in town! We appreciate it :-) We're so pleased you have enjoyed the food and the staff!

Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

What a great place. Stopped for an early lunch with slightly sick feeling son after the inland road from Lyford. Lisa is a great personality - son commented that he liked how friendly the people are here! Ate nachos (very tasty, 13 year old ripped...More

3  Thank Clare B
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Hi Clare, It was our absolute pleasure and thanks for taking the time to post your review. We are so glad you and your son enjoyed your meal and your visit to us. I shared your feedback with the team and it made their day...More

Reviewed 13 May 2018 via mobile

Was a miserable rainy day heading to a funeral, stopped here to grab a coffee and wow the place was packed so you know it’s s good place to eat! Coffee was made reasonably quickly and man was a good coffee!

2  Thank nomadmattm
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 18 May 2018

Thanks for your review. Our baristas work hard to ensure a good cup, so we were really glad to read we hit the mark for you! :-)

Reviewed 11 May 2018 via mobile

Stopped on way to blenheim. Really good coffee and food selection. Had the Kumera pie which was yummy. Plenty of seating and on a lovely day the view out to the sea is amazing.

Thank Amberlincoln
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 18 May 2018

Thanks for stopping by and for taking the time to post your review. I love the kumara pie too glad you enjoyed it! :-)

Reviewed 9 May 2018 via mobile

Good food—had an eggs Benedict that comes on a bed of hash brown like potatoes. Coffee is good—had a bowl of the Americano. It is a real bowl without handles though. Great view of the bay and mountains while you eat. Gift shop inside as...More

1  Thank Chris C
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 18 May 2018

Thanks for the review Chris and glad you enjoyed your brekkie whilst soaking up the view! :-)

Reviewed 8 May 2018 via mobile

Over the road from the beach and away from the main street, this cafe provides a great scenic outlook in a quieter area. Being a fine day we sat in the outdoor area for our lunch stop. We shared a seafood chowder and a salmon...More

Thank Barry5252
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 18 May 2018

Thanks for your review Barry. We are sorry to learn about your chowder and had we known at the time would have happily replaced this for you. We have shared your feedback with our kitchen team as part of our efforts to continuously improve with...More

Reviewed 6 May 2018 via mobile

Our meals were well done and, while not cheap, consisted of good servings. Wife's bacon and egg pie looked small but she was impressed to find a whole egg inside. Coffee was only Lukewarm. Clean bathrooms. Very busy. Friendly staff.

Thank Ezra710
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 18 May 2018

Thanks for your review Ezra. Sorry about the coffee - had you let us know at the time we would have happily replaced this for you. We are glad you enjoyed your food and the service! :-)

Reviewed 4 May 2018

Called in for several coffees and a breakfast. needless to say the cafe was very busy early as customers head out for the Dolphin encounters boat trip, but this didn't stop the staff from providing the service one expects. They are practiced hands it would...More

Thank Sid H
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 18 May 2018

Thanks for taking the time to post a review Sid! We are thrilled you enjoyed your time here and we look forward to your revisit! :-)

Reviewed 3 April 2018 via mobile

This place gets really busy with people going on whale/dolphin watching tours as the booking for tours seems to be part of the cafe. It has a nice outdoor seating area. I had the Kiwi Breakfast which I can highly recommend. Sets you up for...More

Thank Patricia186487
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 5 April 2018

Thank you for posting a review and glad to hear you enjoyed your breakfast! :-)

Reviewed 21 March 2018 via mobile

Part of the Encounter Whales/Albatross etc business but has plenty of space for passers by - and provided the best combination of cafe style (daytime) food & drink and the fabulous Kaikoura view in the town.

Thank LindyStone
DolphinEncounter, Guest Relations Manager at Cafe Encounter, responded to this reviewResponded 23 March 2018

Thanks for taking the time to post a review. Glad you enjoyed your visit to us and the view! :-)

Nearby
Nearby HotelsSee all 19 hotels in Kaikoura
The White Morph Heritage Collection
464 reviews
.07 km away
Kaikoura Apartments
423 reviews
.12 km away
Sails Motel
119 reviews
.21 km away
Kaikoura Boutique Hotel
394 reviews
.28 km away
Nearby Restaurants
Kaikoura Indian Restaurant&Cafe
133 reviews
1.28 km away
Black Rabbit Pizza
163 reviews
1.28 km away
Poppy's Handmade Ice Cream Parlour & Cafe
169 reviews
1.04 km away
Nearby Attractions
Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway
865 reviews
.71 km away
Ohau Point Seal Colony
975 reviews
.96 km away
Kaikoura i-SITE Visitor Information Centre
266 reviews
.69 km away
Kaikoura Museum
51 reviews
.71 km away
Questions & Answers
Get quick answers from Cafe Encounter staff and past visitors.
Note: your question will be posted publicly on the Questions & Answers page.
Posting guidelines
Submit
Improve this listing

Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    Service
  • Value
    Atmosphere
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Brunch, Drinks
Restaurant features
Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Free Wifi
Good for
View, Kids, Local cuisine, Child-friendly
Open Hours
Sunday
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 96 Esplanade, Kaikoura 7300, New Zealand
  • Location: South Pacific  >  New Zealand  >  South Island  >  Canterbury Region  >  Kaikoura
  • Phone Number: +64 3-319 6777
  • E-mail
Description
Ocean view cafe with a varied breakfast and lunch offerring, with GF and vegetarian options available. Great coffee and a varied selection of teas. Wide selection of cold drinks, juices and delicious smoothies! Fresh produce and daily fresh baking.
Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more. Claim Your Listing