Dunedin is a coastal and heritage city that is the second-largest in the South Island of New Zealand. The city is proud of its Scottish heritage and is known as the Edinburgh of the South. It is popular for something quite unusual; for having one of the world’s ugliest Victorian railway stations. It is home to the oldest university in New Zealand; Dunedin's University of Otago, unique architecture, world-renowned wildlife reserves, parks, beautiful sandy beaches and numerous cultural and historical attractions. All that and its spectacular scenery make it a popular tourist destination. The city has a high tertiary student population that also consists of Muslim students. This makes it possible for Muslim visitors to find a couple of Halal restaurants and mosques as well as prayer areas in Dunedin.
The first place tourists must visit is Cadbury World. This world-renowned attraction is located close to the city centre and is one of the most visited attractions in Dunedin. This factory is said to account for more than 75% of New Zealand's chocolate production. There are several tours that visitors can take, ranging from durations of 75 minutes to 10 minutes. Visitors get to observe and learn the chocolate production process and sample delicious fresh liquid chocolate and so much more. In addition to that, those visiting the factory can also buy chocolate at discounted prices and unique souvenirs. Cadbury World is home to the world’s largest chocolate waterfall and this alone ensures a fun, unique experience for the entire family.
Dunedin has a fantastic world-renowned coastline, and therefore those looking for some relaxation and some sun and sand are in for a treat. Tunnel Beach is located approximately 7 and a half kilometres from Dunedin’s city centre. It is known for its high sea-carved sandstone cliffs, arches, headlands and caves. But, its name comes from the tunnel that was hand carved back in the 1870s that leads down to a secluded beach. The area not only offers stunning panoramic views, but visitors will also be able to observe a variety of plant species as well as fossils such as extinct whale bones, if they’re lucky.
Another must-visit attraction, is New Zealand’s first botanic garden; Dunedin Botanic Gardens, which was established in 1863. This world-renowned garden is located on over 28 hectares and is home to over 6,800 plant species. The collection of plants at the garden include varieties from all over the world including; Asia, America, Africa, and the Mediterranean. Visitors will also get to observe some of New Zealand’s native birds while taking a relaxing stroll through gardens, or while just lounging around.
The Dunedin International Airport is the closes airport to Dunedin; located approximately 30 kilometres from the town centre. It is quite easily accessible and can be reached easliy by shuttle buses, taxis and other public transportation.
As mentioned above, Muslim students brought with them to Dunedin, a different culture, religion and cuisine. A few of Dunedin’s Halal-friendly restaurants that serve its Muslim community include; Café Nesli Turkish Kebab, Paasha, Turkish, Indian Summer Restaurant, Maki Mono, The Rainforest Restaurant, Yilmaz, The Little Hut Café, Pak’n Save, Yilmaz Gourmet Pizzas & Kebabs and Sunrise Kebabs. It is best for Muslim tourists to verify the availability of Halal food and any Halal certification before dining in any of the above.
There are a couple of mosques and prayer facilities in Dunedin that serve its Muslim community and can be used by Muslim travelers. This includes Masjid Al Huda or the Dunedin Islamic Centre and the prayer room at the Otago University - Otago Muslim Student's Association.