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  • Why are These 10 Travel Destinations Unusual?

    Everyone wants to go to France, Maldives or the US for a vacation but if you would like to experience something slightly different from touristy destinations, we've collated quite a few amazing places that you could explore! Pristine, secluded beaches, historically rich cities, and a diverse range of terrains in one place – this list has got it all! Keep reading to find out what are the 10 most unusual travel destinations off the beaten path.   1. Red Beach, Panjin, China Credit: Wikipedia Yes, you read that right – Red Beach – also referred to as “ Red Carpet Beach” by locals. The Red Beach national corridor is one part of the Liaodong coastline extending for 118kms. It garners more than 2 million tourists annually, so why not be one of that 2 million and enjoy the absolute splendour of this magical landscape. The vibrant red colour is given by the seep weed which grows from summer to autumn. Panjin is a coastal town with a lot to offer to travellers – beautiful countryside, hot springs and ancient towns offer much for sight seeing and leisure. You can get to this scenic coastal town by a long distance bus. You can even take a train from Beijing to Panjin. There are a few halal restaurants within the province such as Ming Mings Dumplings, Yifeng Moslam park and many more. Check the China foreigners guide for more restaurants.   2. Popeye Village, Malta Credit: @popeyemalta on Facebook This fun, quirky town was originally a film set for the famed “Popey” Musical starring the ever wonderful Robin Williams. So, this should be one of the top destinations to visit on your list! Located next to the turquoise sea, this colourful town is for the young at heart, especially for all you Popeye the Sailor-man fans. The town hosts many events throughout the year and has many guided tours. You can find accommodation at Melliha, there are many hotels and getting from there to Popeye village is very easy, you could just walk the 2Km distance or take a bus from there. The bus routes tend to change in Malta so refer the Malta Transport website for all the information you need. There are many Halal restaurants scattered around the islands and it is very easy travel in Malta, since the islands are small and the distances aren’t that long. There are many Turkish restaurants and a few Indian restaurants which are Halal friendly.   3. Pamukkale, Turkey Credit: @Pamukkale.Hierapolis on Facebook Located in the picturesque southwest of Turkey, this pristine white locale is the stuff of dreams. From the white terraces to the crystalline green pools, Pamukkale, Turkeyis a dreamscape worth experiencing. Pamukkale translates to “Cotton Castle” and rightly so, it is also the home of the well preserved ancient Graeco-Roman city of Hieropolis. An all in one location with its travertine limestone formations, hot springs, ancient temples, bathouses and necropolis all rolled in to one, this is a definite once in a lifetime adventure you should take. Bathe in the beautiful warm pools like the Romans once did, and explore the remains of a once great spa city. The easiest way to get there is to board a flight from Istanbul to Denizli Cardak Airport, Turkish Airlines offers flights to Denizli. Denizli is 65km away from Pamukkale, you can opt for an airport shuttle, or you can get a bus from the Denizli bus station – the ride is 40mins. There are many hotels in the city that suit all budgets, as well as many Halal friendly restaurants in the area, so you can easily find food without having to worry about Halal authenticity. Some of the best restaurants are Mhemet’s Heaven, Cadde Grill House and Yildiz restaurant; you can do a quick Google search and find many Halal friendly restaurants easily.   4. Giethoorn, Netherlands Image by Michel van der Vegt from Pixabay Beautiful, serene, quiet, green, these are a few words that describe Giethoorn, a water village also referred to as ‘Dutch Venice’, however minus the crowds and commercialisation. It is an idyllic village setting, with fewer roads and more canals, most areas are not accessible by car – it is either by foot or by boat. The canals are lined with pretty, traditional Dutch thatched roofed houses and almost each house has their own boat, even the mail man uses a boat! It is best explored by joining a canal cruise or by opting for a guided tour with the help of local skippers. You can get to Giethoorn from Amsterdam in one and half hours if you are going by car, you can opt to hire a cab or rent a car and drive by yourself. There is no direct way you could get to the village by public transport, if you really want to however, you could get the train from Amsterdam to Steenwijk, and then catch a bus from Steenwijck to Giethoorn – this trip will take two hours. Accommodation wise, there are a number of hotels within the village, or you could even opt to stay just outside the village. It may be a little difficult to find Halal friendly places in this area, however, there are a few restaurants scattered around the Overjissel province where Giethoorn is located.   5. Socotra, Yemen Image by danielshimmin0 from Pixabay  An island that is a part of an archipelago in the Indian Ocean, a surreal, alien landscape that is sure to leave you mesmerised. It was recognised by UNESCO as a world heriatage site in 2008, and is referred to as “the most alien looking place on Earth”. It is so isolated that it’s wildlife is unique to the island and have evolved to adapt to its dessert environment, it is home to a very distinct species of tree known as the Dragon’s Blood Tree, aptly named as it oozes blood red sap. The Bottle Tree is a quirky tree that looks like the foot of an elephant with pink flowers on the top, referred to as desert rose. The island has its own version of birds, such as the Socotra Sunbird, Socotra starling and Socotra grosbeak. The only native mammal on the island is the bat. It is best to book a tour to better explore the island and get more insight. You can reach the Island via Sanaa, the capital of Yemen; get a flight to the Sanaa Airport and from there a get flight to Socotra. You could even go for a direct flight to the island through the Arab Emirates, Felix Airways has scheduled flights from Sharjah to Socotra and back. Don’t expect luxurious resorts and hotels here, it is mostly eco-friendly and you will find five hotels, one eco lodge and many eco-camp sites. Since the island belongs to Yemen, their cuisine is mainly Halal, so you don’t have to worry about trying to find authentic Halal fare.   6. Taha’a, French Polynesia Credit: Tahaa Whilst Bora Bora garners most of the crowd, Taha’a is almost overlooked, but that doesn’t mean this flower shaped island has nothing to offer. If you are looking for a romantic escape or just a few days of pampering, Taha’a will definitely fulfil your dreams. A true island paradise with rolling hills, and valleys covered with banana, watermelon and coconut groves. It is the home of the world’s most priced Tahitian Vanilla, making up for 80% of the export from French Polynesia. The whole island is intoxicated by the scent of vanilla and will draw you in with its white sandy beaches, coral reefs, and absolute seclusion. The only way to access Taha’a is by boat from her sister island Raiatea. You will have to take a flight which may have stop overs at Paris, Auckland, or Los Angeles, from where you’ll fly to an airport closest to Taha’a depending on the airlines. There are many resorts and hotels to stay at in Taha’a, the more reputed hotels can be on the pricier end of the spectrum. It may be difficult to find Halal food in Taha’a, however, their cuisine mostly comprises of fruits of the sea and fruits of the land, therefore most of the food are Halal friendly.   7. Isle of Skye, Scotland Credit: @IsleofSkyeScotland on Facebook The mystical Isle of Skye which translates to “Cloud Island” from ancient Norse, it is the second largest of Scotland’s islands and the most beautiful! Magical and mysterious, the island boasts deep lochs, towering cliffs and moors, as well as incredible wildlife – a nature lovers dream! Rich in history and culture Skye is a great place to explore, with places like the Mealt Waterfall and Kilt Rock, the Old Man Storr, the Fairy Pools of Glenbrittle, Dinosaur footprints at Staffin Beach, Dunvegan Castle and many more. The closest airports are the Glasgow Airport and the Inverness Airport, from which you can opt to drive to Isle of Skye or take a bus. There is no railway on the island; instead it offers buses and local coaches. The island is full of quaint little cottages that you can rent out; some offer self catering whilst others offer bed and breakfast. The town of Portree is where most tourists stay at; it is the capital of the island and has many hotels, cafes and supermarkets. If you really want to experience Skye, then opt for camping. It is fairly easy to find Halal food in the Island as there is a population of Indians and Pakistanis who live there. They are quite a few good Indian and Pakistani restaurants, as well as some Bangladeshi ones.   8. Bagan, Myanmar Credit: @WonderBaganMyanmar on Facebook This Buddhist temple city was once the capital of an ancient Kingdom, however, now it is an important archaeological zone. Bagan is often compared to Cambodia’s Angkor Wat and may even be a rival to Machu Pichu, however, this ancient city has a charm of its own. Witness the majesty of the golden stupas in the temple plain and catch the sunset over the Irrawaddy River. You can witness the beauty of Bagan by Hot Air ballon, the ancient city is a sight to behold 2000 feet up in the air. You can even get more close and personal by biking it on the ground, exercise and a view! Don’t forget to check a local market as well, and get as many souvenirs as you want, also add local festivals to your itinerary as you will be able to taste the best of Burmese hawker food. Flights arrive at the Nyaung-U Airport and it is a 10min taxi ride to Nyaung-U town centre, whilst it’s a 20 minute ride to Old Bagan or New Bagan. When travelling to Bagan it is advisable to go through a travel agent, as they will make sure you have a safe and enjoyable experience. However, if you do want to travel independently, do a though search on travel requirements and hotels. The more luxurious hotels and resorts are located in Old Bagan, whilst more mid range and budget hotels are found in Nyaung-U and New Bagan. Nyaung-U is Bagan’s largest town, this is where you will find most of the restaurants and hotels, however, it tends to get quite crowded. There are few high end restaurants that serve Halal food, whilst other restaurants will be willing to serve Halal food on request. Most stalls or small restaurants may not have the regular Arabic Halal sign but instead will indicate the availability of Halal food by the number “786” (this is a substitute used within South Asia), therefore look for this sign when looking for Halal eateries.   9. Lake Baikal, Russia Credit: @baikalia on Facebook Known as the “Pearl of Siberia”, Lake Baikal is a crescent shaped lake which is a whopping 1637 metres deep and contains a fifth of the world’s water! It is the world’s deepest lake, and is bigger than Belgium. Due to these properties it has been declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO. Summer is the best time to visit Lake Baikal, you will be able to see its natural beauty in all its glory, with the lake’s clear blue waters, and the mountains. Some areas have remained the same since the ancient times – almost untouched or changed by weather. During the winter the lake turns into an expanse of powder white ice and snow, you can enjoy a fun dog sledge ride over its hard surface. You can get to Lake Baikal by flying to Moscow and then boarding a plane to Irkutsk which is 65km away from Lake Baikal or Ulan-Ude which is 150km away from the lake. If you want to have a more interesting journey, you can use the Trans-Siberian Railway and hop on a train from Moscow to Irkutsk which is 3 days, Beijing to Irkutsk which is 2 days, or the train from Vladivostok which is 2.5 days. After which you will have to board a bus from Irkutsk bus station to Lake Baikal, the journey takes 10mins. The best route to take is Mosco -Slyudyanka, it takes 4 days and you will be dropped off right at the shoreline of Lake Baikal. You can stay at the hotels and hostels located around the shoreline of the lake or even camp out or stay on a boat. Finding Halal food may be difficult especially if you are travelling by train; therefore it is better if you pack your own, like instant noodles and other small snacks. When booking a room make sure they provide a stove or small kitchen as you can prepare your own meals that way. You can get grocery shopping done at nearby cities like Irkutsk, which is just a 10min bus ride away from Lake Baikal.   10. Arashiyama Bamboo Forest, Japan Photo by Satoshi Hirayama from Pexels Located in Kyoto, the Arashiyama Bamboo Forest is a must see place before you die, photographed multiple times, but you have to really be there to experience it’s green mystique. The bamboo grove is a great spot for a quiet walk or bike ride, rows of bamboo swaying in the light breeze is not a sight to be missed. Absolutely beautiful and pure, it should be a must visit when in Kyoto. The best way to get to Kyoto is by Kansai Airport, afterwards you can board a train to Arashiyama. You can use the Japan Railways, Keifuku Railways, or Hankyu Railways. There are many hotels and guest houses in Arashiyama, and they are available for every budget. There are quite a few Halal restaurants scattered around Arashiyama, as well as shops. You can find a full Halal menu at the Yoshiya restaurant just 10mins away from the Japan Railway Saga-Arashiyama train station. They introduced this Halal menu in 2018, and have served Japanese Halal food since.   Book your flight and pack your bags, your unusual adventure awaits you!...

  • Nature Junkie? Here's Why New Zealand Should Be On Your Bucket List

    On the other side of the world, New Zealand has a huge reputation on the globe for being an exotic destination, from endless fields to mountains touching the sky, to the mythical looking lakes, it is a MUST to go to New Zealand if you're a nature junkie. Read on to acquaint yourself with the enchanting combinations of Islands. Find Mosques or Prayer Places Near You in New Zealand New Zealand is a combination of 2 main islands and 200 smaller Islands, the most known islands include Fiji, Hawaii, New Caledonia, and Tonga. The capital city is Wellington, yet the most populated city is Auckland.  Due to the location of New Zealand on the globe, summer is from December to February and is considered the best time to travel to experience the natural gifts, New Zealand can offer. The temperatures vary from 20 to 30ºC, a perfect milieu to explore and experience New Zealand. Narnia on Screen Picture Credit: We Heart It Te Whanganui-A-Hei Marine Reserve, New Zealand The beauty of New Zealand has often been represented in mythical and dystopian films, hence it is the country of choice for many directors. The lush scenery, crystal waters complimented by beautiful coves, planes of sand and tall wheat fields are the home to movies like Narnia, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and The Last Samurai.  The natural beauty is boundless in New Zealand and a huge contributor to tourism. There is a whole ton of activities you can do in New Zealand such as whale watching, sea-kayaking and Bungee Jumping. Due to the wide variety of natural landscapes, the 'adventure tourism' in this country is vast with tramping and camping all available for you! In addition to the thrilling, relaxing and once in a lifetime experience, New Zealand is also home to a wide variety of World Heritage sites, such as Hawaii’s Volcanoes, Greater Blue Mountains Area, Great Barrier Reef which can be accessed through scuba diving escapades, Henderson Islands which is one of the most remote Islands in the world. The heritage sites are endless, exploring Moai history and culture as well as natural phenomenon underwater, over volcanoes at high altitudes or on the ground. If you are a natural escapist but also enjoy the hustle and bustle of the city, fear not for New Zealand ranks highly in health, quality of life and education which is reflected in the city life. The extremely modern cities follow the form of any major cities, with national museums, aquariums and buildings for a panoramic city view. Not to forget, New Zealand boasts a huge choice of theme parks and water parks, perfect for families, couples and friends. Islam in New Zealand has been gradually growing, especially within the Maori community. It is estimated that Islam is the fastest growing religion among the oldest community in New Zealand. It has been recorded that within 7 years there was a 28% increase in Muslims. This naturally means that it is not difficult to find delicious halal-certified foods in New Zealand. Ranging from the Pacific cuisine which includes seafood, and lamb to global cuisine from India to the Middle East. Find Halal Restaurants Near You in New Zealand So, what are you waiting for? Brush up on your New Zealand lingo, pack your bags light, clear your mind in preparation for a re-connection to nature and go explore the other side of the world....

  • Top 5 Family-Friendly Activities in New Zealand

    There is no doubt that New Zealand is a must visit country for a family holiday due to its pristine natural beauty and Kiwi ingenuity. Another important aspect is that this 'land of the long white cloud' is listed as one of the safest countries in the annual Global Peace Index. It’s certainly a family-friendly destination filled with loads of fun activities to do, connecting you with nature and has and abuncance of outdoor activities as well as indoor activities. Moderate climate aside, New Zealand serves families with great facilities and amenities. After all, New Zealand is also known, at least among Kiwis, as the ‘best place’ to raise kids. Worth to mention here is that this country is free from dangerous wildlife and reptiles – due to its volcanic soil and remoteness.  Be it visiting with an infant, young toddlers, small kids, or teenagers the list below gather 5 things you can do when visiting New Zealand as a family. Your family holiday can be a self-made itinerary or via a tour operator. It can cover a wide range of budget for your family – budget-friendly or luxurious. The activities can range from very active, medium, to mild adventure or you can simply watch and relax. The 5 must do activities below are curated by a theme of activity which guarantees you a memorable and enjoyable family holiday – other than the usual playground or theme park. Check out the Halal Food Guide launched by Tourism New Zealand   Hiking and Walking The fabulous nature in New Zealand is a playground itself for kids to walk freely and to hike the National Park with clear marking route. The best hiking destination in North Island is Tongariro National Park with many short walking routes around the Whakapapa Village. There are more options for easy hiking in the South Island – one notable walk is around Mount Cook National Park. Also, you can choose to pick any park in the city to enjoy the tranquility and let your small toddlers roam freely – we love Domain and Albert Park when in Auckland. If you prefer city walking, take advantage of many waterfronts, or the seaside walking routes in beautiful cities of Auckland, Christchurch, and Queenstown. Tongariro National Park Website: Manawatu-Wanganui 4691, New Zealand Facebook Mount Cook National Park Address: Canterbury 7999, New Zealand   Beach and Water Activities New Zealand pride itself with many beautiful beaches – and they are free with public amenities. Families with babies or young toddlers can simply soak in the sun while having a picnic. One unique beach is Hot Water Beach, Coromandel where you can dig the sand to build your own hot water pool during low tide before a swim in the ocean. Boating (for whale or dolphin watching), cruise and kayaking are enjoyable for young kids. Don’t forget to order the classic Kiwi fish and chips and enjoy them by the beach. If fishing is your hobby, take your family to an ocean deep fishing, or how about learning to fly fishing. Hot Water Beach, Coromandel Website: Hot Water Beach, 3591, New Zealand   Geothermal activities There’s no place like Rotorua and your kids will certainly be intrigued by the smell of stinky sulfur. Walk around the colourful geothermal park, view the force of geiser, and get dirty in the mud pool. Kids will also be amazed at the Maori performance dance and get them to learn the culture of Maori people. Sulphur Point, Rotorua Address: Hatupatu Dr, Rotorua 3010, New Zealand   Indoor Activities Picture Credit: The Kiwi Birdlife Park, International Antarctic Centre (Christchurch) and Kelly Tarlton's Sea Life Aquarium (Auckland) are worth visiting so kids can learn about various nature and interesting animals in New Zealand. Every town has its own museum and collection, pick any that suits your kid’s hobby. For example, Puzzling World is one of the best family activities in Wanaka. Kiwi Birdlife Park Website: Upper Brecon Street, Queenstown 9300, New Zealand YouTube International Antarctic Centre, Christchurch Website: 38 Orchard Rd, Christchurch Airport, Christchurch 8052, New Zealand Twitter Kelly Tarlton's Sea Life Aquarium, Auckland Website: 23 Tamaki Dr, Orakei, Auckland 1071, New Zealand Facebook | Twitter Puzzling World Opening Hours: Everyday (8.30AM-5PM)                       (except Christmas Day)Contact: +64 3 443 7489Email: 188 Wanaka-Luggate Hwy, Wanaka 9382, New Zealand Facebook | Instagram | YouTube   Adventure Activities Picture Credit: Assuming the parent is brave enough to send kids exploring the adventure activities, the opportunities are endless. Horse riding is a great family adventure to explore the beach and countryside. Bungy jumping is permittable for kids 10 and above, and zorbing for lesser age limit requirement. Other family adventures that are less challenging but still high on the fun factors are jetboating, visiting the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, mountain biking, or trying out the luge (part go-cart, part toboggan). You and family can have a go at skiing, snow tubing, snowboarding, tobogganing or even play with the snow all year round at Snowplanet in Auckland. Winter activities best enjoyed in Whakapapa, North Island and Queenstown's Coronet Peak and The Remarkables - both in South Island, offering family-friendly ski fields. Waitomo Glowworm Caves Website: 39 Waitomo Village Rd, Waitomo Caves, Otorohanga 3943, New Zealand Snowplanet, Auckland Website: 91 Small Rd, Silverdale, Auckland 0992, New Zealand Facebook | Twitter Coronet Peak, Queenstown Address: Coronet Peak 9371, New Zealand The Remarkables Address: The Remarkables Ski Area, Queenstown 9300, New Zealand 10 Hidden Beauties of New Zealand Book a Halal Trip with us!...

  • Halal Food Guide Launched by Tourism New Zealand

    Breath taking landscapes, icy cold mountains, crystal clear waters, greenery as far as the eye can see, all these phrases would never be sufficient to describe the natural beauty New Zealand comprises of. Due to its natural features the country is an iconic location for film makers, to add that beautiful zing to movies. Well if directors all over the world fly thousands of miles due to the indescribable beauty of this country, it is without a doubt that New Zealand is a country that must be visited by any travel junkie. For Muslim travellers however the most tedious task in visiting a country with a Muslim minority in the community would be finding locations to obtain halal food. New Zealand is a country very well known for its tender and juicy roasts, barbeques , pies and mouthwatering desserts. It would be such a pity if any Muslim traveller was to visit this beautiful country and stick to vegan only dishes due to halal concerns specially if you are a person who loves tender and succulent meat. The Tourism New Zealand has decided to assist the huge crowd of Muslim travellers visiting the country each year by providing support to ensure that all Halal travellers are able to locate and find halal food at ease without any disappointments. In order to do so , they have issued a Halal food guide which features the list of restaurants, cafes, bakeries, supermarkets and grocery stores where Muslim travellers would be able to locate halal food in New Zealand and eat to their hearts content without having any concern. Download the New Zealand Halal Food Guide here! Check out our Locals Guide to New Zealand! In 2016, The Halal food guide was previously released, featuring 567 halal listings of restaurants, cafes and supermarkets but the newer version features 289 more options added to the previous listing. The Halal Food Guide of New Zealand was compiled on the initiative of Tourism New Zealand along with the cooperation of "The Kiwi Muslim directory" (which is a portal where halal businesses, organizations, prayer locations and times are listed) and "FIANZ" (The Federation of Islamic Associations of New Zealand).   User-friendly Picture Credit: Picture Credit: I am sure you have all experienced typing and searching through the internet for halal food options in any country that you may have visited. Reading each and every review, thousands and thousands of clicks and searches can make any trip frustrating. But if New Zealand is your next destination for your trip all you have to do is to download the halal food guide and you are good to go ! The Halal Food guide is designed so that it is user-friendly. The halal guide uses a symbol to categorize the three types of halal-friendly outlets available in the list. The categories included are; Certified by FIANZ: green circular symbol with a capital “F” in the centerMuslim-owned: purple circular symbol with a white tick at its centreVegan-only: green leaf symbol These symbols help any halal traveller to clearly identify and choose an eatery of their choice. Please note that the vegetarian eateries included in the guide are not halal certified or muslim-owned, but are claimed to be purely vegan. Hence, please check with the members of staff regarding any oil or other ingredients that may be impermissible (in Islam) before consuming. The Halal Food Guide of New Zealand covers a range of cities of the beautiful country, and the halal restaurant list is organized in a way which will easily enable Muslim travellers to locate halal food nearby. The guide is mainly divided into two sectors; one which is NORTH ISLAND and the other which is SOUTH ISLAND. In these sectors, you will find a list of the major cities of each island and the restaurants featured along with the addresses, telephone numbers and contact information. Therefore if you have any concern regarding the food served or any menu inquiries you can dial the phone right away. North island is further divided to Auckland (central, north, east, south and west are further divisions), Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Rotorua and Lake Taupao, Hawke’s Bay, Taranaki and Whanganui, Wellington and Wairarapa and finally Manawatu . On the other hand, the South Island is further divided into Nelson and Marlborough, Canterbury, West coast, Southern Lakes, Dunedin and Southland. So whether your holiday to New Zealand is among the busy city lights in Auckland, or among the hills of Waikato or even at the Majestic Canterbury or maybe a mixture of all the cities over a couple of weeks. You will be able to locate restaurants, cafes, and even supermarkets out and about New Zealand, thanks to the halal food guide.   North Island Central AucklandIn Central Auckland you would be able to locate an abundant of spots to eat without any hassle what so ever. In this city, you will find a total of 72 spots featured, out of which 18 are vegan-only diners (not halal certified) and the rest of the restaurants are either owned by Muslims or certified by FIANZ. There also 9 bakeries and snack food places available in the halal food guide and five meat and grocery stores which are all certified by FIANZ for selling halal meat. North AucklandAt Northern Auckland you would be able to find some great spots for some Arabian food especially if you are a fan of grilled kebabs and chicken. The halal food guide includes 15 restaurants and 2 grocery stores in which you will be able to locate halal food . East AucklandAt East Auckland there are no halal bakeries and snack food options listed in the halal guide. However, there are 11 restaurants out of which three are beautiful restaurants that serve pizza, and are all halal certified. Southern AucklandIn Southern Auckland , you will have no worries buying yourself a good cut of halal meat to whip up a warm meal at home. The Halal Guide shows 16 meat and grocery stores that are either Muslim-owned or Fianz certified. Apart from the meat shops, the Guide includes a list of 5 bakeries and 34 restaurants which is quite a bigger number compared to East and North Auckland. Out of the 34 spots included in the halal guide, only 3 locations are vegan-only restaurants which serve traditional south Indian food while the rest of the locations are halal certified. West Auckland and WhangareiOptions are rather limited in these two locations. West Auckland is listed to have around 13 restaurants and a couple of meat and grocery stores. Most of the halal certified restaurants weigh towards the Indian and middle eastern cuisine. In Whangerei, there are only 2 locations listed in the halal guide, one being a grocery store and the other being a vegan-only Indian Restaurant. Hamilton, Morrinsville, Te Awamutu, Te Aroha and Te KuitiThese locations which are all situated just below Auckland contain quite a number of halal friendly restaurants but are not very much as concentrated as Auckland. There are a total of 7 restaurants throughout the 5 locations with Hamilton containing the majority. There are also a total of 3 meat and grocery stores throughout the 5 locations. TaurangaIf you are fond of visiting the beautiful volcano of Tauranga, your halal food options will be among the four restaurants included in the guide in which the majority is influenced by the Middle Eastern cuisine. Rotorua and Lake TapuoAdmire the beauty of the volcanic landscapes and geothermal fields of Rotorua and cruise on a beautiful boat ride along the magnificient Taupo lake while dining in one of the seven halal restaurant options available in the area. Majority of these restaurants are influenced by the middle eastern cuisine where you would be able to enjoy a yummy kebab platter and middle eastern flat breads. Unfortunately there are no halal grocery stores or bakery and snack food outlets recommended by the Kiwi Muslim directory. Hawke's BayEnjoy a stroll down beautiful lanscapes of the Hawke’s Bay and enjoy the beautiful climate of the region. While you are at it, you will have 8 options of restaurants to choose from. A highlight restaurant in the region is "Café Anatlia Turkish Cusine" which will serve you some mouth watering food to munch on during your beautiful stay. New Plymouth, Whanganui, Taihape and HaweraHalal food options are rather limited in these areas, with two meat and grocery stores at New Plymounth and Whanganui and all four locations have a total of seven options of restaurants to eat from. Although there are limited options of Halal food options, these areas are incredibly beautiful with their natural landscapes for you to admire. I definitely recommend that you give these places a go, while keeping track of your pit stops for some of the halal restaurants mentioned in the guide. Wellington and MastertonThis little stop before jumping over to South Island offers some great halal eateries for you. Both areas combined have 15 food options to choose from, 4 of them being vegan-only cafes and the rest of the eateries are Muslim owned for you to stock up on the meat.   South Island Nelson, Marlborough and MurchisonSo for our first stop at South Island, I have got to say halal options are rather limited in this area, with only 4 restaurants recommended by the halal guide. ChristchurchEnjoy the beauty of the Garden city of Christchurch which is adorned by beautiful flora as far as the eye can see. While you are at Christchurch make sure to dine at some of the best resturants in the area which are included in the halal guide. Pick your spot from the 10 restaurants and 5 halal-friendly grocery stores as per your preference. Unlike the other regions mentioned earlier, Christchurch has a variety of restaurants with different cuisines to choose from during your halal holiday to New Zealand. DunedinDunedin is a very great stop to all the Wildlife enthusiasts who visits New Zealand. It also has some great spots to grab halal food as seen on the list. With 12 options on the list, 11 are muslim-owned and one is a vegan-only eatery. Unfortunately the halal guide does not recommend any meat or grocery stores in the area. Queenstown and WanakaThe adventure capital of New Zealand which is Queenstown comprises of 2 recommended halal food outlets for Muslims where both are Turkish Restaurants, the same goes with Wanaka which has only one option in the list. From the guide it is clearly visible that halal food options are very much concentrated around North Island of New Zealand in which Central Auckland has an abundance of eateries for you to choose from. There are lesser options in the South Island, but be adventurous and don't miss the chance to go out and about the country while having the nearby halal restaurants in mind. Since there are telephone numbers and addresses included in the guide, planning your holiday to New Zealand is definitely going to be a piece of cake. Get your bags packed and head to the beautiful land of New Zealand where exciting thrills, beautiful landscapes and delicious food awaits you. For further information visit   For more travel guides, check out our Halal travel blog or download the Halaltrip Islamic travel app to help locate Halal restaurants and prayer locations near you....

  • Find 9 Best Halal Food Places Near me in Auckland, New Zealand

    Auckland is a multicultural city with the easiest access to Muslim friendly eateries in New Zealand. While you can enjoy a variety of cuisine from Middle Eastern to Portuguese, Italian, Indian, Chinese, and Malay, the distinguishing factor is fresh ingredients and quality produced that is widely available in the country is used in the cooking. New Zealand is famous for its lamb, beef, seafood and fresh vegetables. At Auckland Airport there are no Halal-certified outlet or vegetarian eateries. You will be limited to outlets that sell non-Halal items but serve options for seafood at Hayama Sushi, and vegetarian at Urban Market Cafe or Pita Pit (their 3 locations in the city centre are Halal friendly). There are also international chains such as Burger Kings, McDonald's, and KFC though they are not Halal-certified. If you are into juicing, you could not go wrong with Tank Juice Bar. However, at close by Mangere suburb nearby the airport, you can find the closest Halal-certified joint called Airport Kebabs & Pizza who specialized in wood fire pizza and kebab. This guide is to recommend Muslim friendly outlets in Auckland Central Business District (CBD) within walking proximity and route covered by Link bus services for you to easily get around. Other than Queen Street, the bus will link you to charming inner suburbs of Ponsonby, Parnell, and Newmarket. The list goes beyond the kebab outlets on the main Queen Street (Istanbul Kebabs and Pizza, Kebabs on Queen) and excluded the International chain such as Long John Silver’s (3 locations in Auckland serve a Halal menu), Nandos (chicken is sourced from supplier who is Halal certified) and Burger Fuel (meats are Halal certified and they can cook your burger separately using fresh utensils). We’ve compiled 9 best Halal food eateries in Auckland city centre which cover a variety of cuisines and price ranges for breakfast, lunch, dinner or simply for snacking around the city. Credit-   1. Uncle Man’s Restaurant & Takeaway Uncle Man’s Restaurant & Takeaway is an authentic family-owned joint on K Road serving all you can think of when comes to  Malaysian cuisine. You will not go wrong with freshly made roti canai and murtabak. Try the beef rendang, biryani rice, curry laksa, Penang laksa, chicken rice, mee rebus, or coconut rice. For Halal Chinese meals, you will not disappoint with mee hoon soup, flat rice noodles with gravy, wonton soup or char kuey teow. If you after Western food, they also offer burgers, chicken schnitzels, steak, fish, and chips. Affordable prices in a simple yet clean setting, this will satisfy any of your craving for homemade Malaysian meals. Location: 277 Karangahape Road Contact: +64 9-377 1799 Website: here for more information about Uncle Man’s Restaurant & Takeaway   2. Mamak Malaysian Restaurant Mamak Malaysian Restaurant is located at the elegant cobbled stone of Chancery Square in the heart of Auckland CBD. They use Halal meats on the menu. A regular feature in local media, this is a place to savour exotic Malaysian cuisine (blend of Malay, Indian and Chinese) such as spicy beef rendang, char kway teow, coconut fragrance rice, kuay teow mee Soup, curry chicken hor fun, seafood laksa or "Mamak" Mee Goreng. Other than typical Murtabak, roti canai, and satay to choose from the menu, they also serve pan-fried leek dumpling, spicy soft shell crab, and sambal grilled prawn. Open for lunch or dinner, you can choose to seat inside or outside while you wash down the meal with teh tarik (bubbled tea or pulled tea) or iced coffee. A nice spot to rest your leg after exploring nearby Albert Park and meandering High Streets precinct. Be mindful that this is a fully licensed eatery so expect consumption of alcohol on the premise. Location: 50 Kitchener Street CBD, Chancery St, Auckland, Contact: +64 9-948 6479 Website: here for more information about Mamak Malaysian Restaurant   3. Nickie’s Thai Restaurant Nickie’s Thai Restaurant is an established and one of the city’s longest-standing Thai restaurant which popular among local. They are proud of serving full flavoured Thai dishes using traditional recipes and quality ingredients besides using the Halal meat. You will encounter delicious Thai delights such as massaman lamb, steamed whole snapper, tamarind snapper, stir-fry roasted duck, sizzling beef, and BBQ chicken. Drop by for lunch or dinner after strolling along beautiful Parnell Road to dine in a traditionally decorated restaurant. Please note this is a fully licensed restaurant which means alcohol is served in the restaurant. Location: 34 Broadway Newmarket Auckland Contact: +64 9-520 0015 Website: here for more information about Nickie’s Thai Restaurant   4. Popa’s Pretzel Popa’s Pretzel offers freshly made pretzels in the traditional way or with a filling of savoury or sweets. The signature filled pretzels will not disappoint you – try the Kiwi classic cheese and marmite, or Arabic twist cream cheese & zaatar. Other than these, there are pretzels dogs, pies, and Banh Mi pretzels. If you haven’t had manakish (Arabic round flatbread) before, they serve from meat to vegan toppings. Get the Lebanese mincemeat with pomegranate & herbs or pretzel dog for some energy to roam the city. Location: 350 Queen Street Auckland City Contact: +64 9-222 2855 Website: here for more information about Popa’s Pretzel   5. Little Algiers Cafe Little Algiers Café owned by Jamaldeen offer warm and hospitable experience in a very relaxed atmosphere to satisfy your breakfast and lunch. You will receive Algerian welcome with some French flair. The authentic African and Mediterranean menu items await you in store so you can enjoy the generous portion food. All day breakfast is offered which includes eggs benedict (on a hash cake or toasted bagel), spicy baked beans cassoulet, and Little Algerian big breakfast. For lunch, you can order from a wide selection of burgers, and wraps but we could not help to like the Little Algiers mezze ((garlic pita, feta cheeses, olives, hummus, boiled eggs and homemade dips). Sip a cup of espresso before you head back to wander around the hip and arty K Road. Location: 551 Karangahape Road Auckland Contact: +64 9-336 1560 Website: here for more information about Little Algiers Cafe   6. Celine Mediterranean Cuisine Celine Mediterranean Cuisine is a dining place in the cozy Middle Eastern setting, good vibe and not far from iconic Sky Tower. The authentic menu serves comfort food with a solid taste from the eastern Mediterranean such as shakshuka, bamya (lamb and okra stew), grilled halloumi, and kofta in tahini or tomatoe. Either washed down with mint tea and then stay a bit longer for a shisha delight, this could be one of your memorable night in Auckland. Location: 12 Darby Street Auckland Contact: +64 9-377 0228 Website: here for more information about Celine Mediterranean Cuisine   7. Betsia Kebabs & Chargrilled Burgers Betsia Kebabs & Chargrilled Burgers appeared in local guide Metro: The Best Cheap Eats in Auckland 2012. They provide good portion and friendly service tucked on a street behind upper Queen Street. They pride in the use of fresh local ingredients, handmade sauces and meats marinated in a special recipe. For kebabs, it’s all about cajun chicken, Adana, souvlaki, chicken satay, or chilli lover. For chargrilled burgers, you will discover that their beef burger is served using 100% prime beef patty hand mixed using their fresh ingredients. Try the blue cheese, camembert or avocado burger. A flair of curry can be enjoyed here too as they serve rice dishes such as butter chicken, tender lamb curry, and chicken curry. Enjoy their Turkish apple tea or latte before continuing your tour of Auckland city. Location: 9 City Road Auckland Contact: +64 9-366 7691 Website: here for more information about Betsia Kebabs & Chargrilled Burgers   8. Revive Cafe This fresh, healthy and wholesome joint was spearheaded after a couple came back to Auckland from a healthy retreat. This vegetarian haven could be your cleansing after all those kebabs you’ve been consuming. We love that the salad bar menu changes weekly and the hot dishes change daily. Please check the menu as you could be savoring on Russian stroganoff on one day or Mexican chilli beans the next day. Healthy dessert treat awaits you – how about almond cacao brownie or plum & ginger slice? Situated in good CBD location on quiet streets for you to revive yourself. Location: 33 Lorne Street & 24 Wyndham Street Auckland City Contact: +64 9-303 0420 Website: here for more information about Revive Cafe   9. Raw Power Cafe Vegetarian or not, you will find Raw Power Cafe to satisfy clean eating with its generous portion and the self-service concept from the salad bar. Open for breakfast, you will discover vegetable big breakfast, eggs benedict, omelette, scrambled tofu and lemon pancakes. For lunch go with tofu burger, falafel pita pocket, tofu hash mushrooms or pumpkin corn fritters. This little cafe is situated in the heart of the city, a perfect place to unwind with your healthy kale smoothie or beetroot latte. Location: Floor 1, 10 Vulcan Lane, Auckland Contact:+64 9-303 3624 Website: here for more information about Raw Power Cafe If the above does not satisfy you, there are plenty of Asian food court in Auckland CBD which serves Halal eateries under one roof. Visit Ponsonby International Foodcourt (few blocks away from Ponsonby Mosque) for Zap Lai Laos Food and Roti Shop. Or Food Alley Foodcourt for Malay meals at Kampung Delights. Wondering how to find nearby Halal food in Auckland? Don’t forget to use the Halaltrip app to locate Halal food places on your mobile in Auckland so you won’t miss out on the best halal food...