New Caledonia’s Food Festival Calendar

With direct access to the world’s largest lagoon and an abundance of fresh local produce at its disposal, New Caledonia is a must-visit for Kiwi foodies looking for their next culinary adventure. The island destination’s cuisine boasts a fusion of Melanesian, Asian, Wallisian, Tahitian, and classic French flavours, making it unique and worth celebrating.

Throughout the year, New Caledonia hosts numerous food-themed festivals that celebrate the local cuisine, thriving agricultural community and significant cultural milestones. From the renowned Giant Omelette Festival where thousands of eggs come together to feed a village, to the aromatic Vanilla Festival, New Caledonia invites Kiwi travellers to savour the flavours of the South Pacific at these food festivals in 2024.

Festival of the Yam

Early March – Early April

Extremely versatile and delicious baked, fried and boiled, the humble yam is one of the most important crops in New Caledonia and a staple found in many Kanak dishes, including the famous bougna. The sacred Festival of the Yam occurs in Kanak tribes throughout New Caledonia annually and marks the beginning of the yam harvest. In tribes like the Xodre tribe in Lifou and Oundjo tribe in Kone, the festival begins when the village elders declare the yams ready. They are then harvested, presented to the chief and blessed by a priest before being distributed among the villagers. If you are planning a road trip in New Caledonia during March and April, these yam festivals would make a great addition to your itinerary as you can sample freshly harvested yams while learning about Kanak traditions.

Giant Omelette Festival

Parc Fayard, Dumbéa

27th – 28th April

This 40-year-old festival centres around the making of a giant, 3.5-meter-wide omelette, a tradition that amplifies New Caledonia’s French connection. Requiring the combined efforts of dozens of chefs and using over 7,000 eggs, the omelette symbolises the hospitality of Bessieres villagers in France, who, a hundred years ago, fed Napoleon’s army with a similar omelette. Today the Giant Omelette Festival serves as a cultural bridge, bringing together the local community and paying homage to New Caledonia’s French history. Make sure to arrive hungry, as once the omelette is cooked, it is carved up into thousands of servings for all to enjoy! After you’ve devoured your omelette, head to the nearby Dumbéa River where you can enjoy a post-brekkie swim, canoeing or stand-up paddle boarding session in calm, gentle waters.

Avocado Festival

Maré, The Loyalty Islands

28th April – 1st May

To truly get into the breakfast spirit, right after the omelette festival is Maré’s iconic Avocado Festival. This unmissable Loyalty Islands fair celebrates one of the world’s most beloved tropical fruits as farmers show off their latest harvest at the Nece Tribe. The Avocado Festival is popular among tourists as it offers a rare opportunity to partake in a homestay experience within the tribe, allowing you to immerse yourself in Kanak culture and meet friendly locals. When welcomed into a Maré tribe, it is customary to exchange a small gift such as a souvenir from your country or a 1,000 franc note as a sign of respect.

Lagoon Festival

Ouvéa, The Loyalty Islands

23rd – 25th June

The Loyalty Island of Ouvéa is surrounded by pristine lagoon waters, making it one of the best spots in New Caledonia to get fresh, delicious seafood. The Lagoon Festival aims to promote the island’s marine heritage, seafood and water sports while raising awareness of environmental issues around the surrounding World’s Largest Lagoon. At this festival, you can try one of Ouvéa’s culinary specialities, the mouth-watering coconut crab, while enjoying the fishing competition or trying your hand at a new watersport. The best way to explore Ouvéa’s lagoon is to go snorkelling, with thousands of tropical fish just meters from the shore and elusive manta rays at Southern Pleiades.

Bastille Day


14th July

On Bastille Day, the finest French cuisine is on display to mark the celebration. With a selection of wine and cheeses imported straight from France, travellers can sample authentic French produce throughout the festival. On the 14th of July, several roulettes (food trucks) are set up at Place des Cocotiers, serving up finger-licking French street food like crepes and croque-monsieur. Embracing the party atmosphere, various bars around Nouméa host special Bastille Day events such as MV Lounge, who host a fireworks display on the 13th of July and a 2-night cabaret show. While you’re in Nouméa, make sure to head to the Bastille Day parade on the 14th of July, filled with lanterns, community dances and a fireworks display.

Salon Saveurs et Traditions (Flavours & Traditions Festival)

Maison des Artisans, Nouméa

18th – 21st July

The Salon Saveurs et Traditions aims to showcase New Caledonia’s local gastronomy and the art of French cuisine. Bringing together local cooking schools and innovative creations, showcasing products from craftsmen and producers, the event creates an opportunity for young apprentices to demonstrate their skills in butchery, bakery and pastry-making. At the event, both savoury products and sweet treats are on offer, allowing travellers to sample new creations and meet those shaping the gastronomy of tomorrow. The show is renowned for producing daring mixes of New Caledonian and French gastronomy, leading to iconic creations such as tropical fruit viennoiseries and mauve yam eclairs.

Vanilla Festival

Lifou, The Loyalty Islands

22nd October

Lifou is globally renowned for its high-quality, fragrant vanilla products, with the pristine and pollution-free environment leading to a strong vanilla flavour. Vanilla is widely used in New Caledonian cooking from French classics like crème brûlée to signature Kanak sides like vanilla coconut rice. Throughout the festival, travellers can try these dishes, purchase fresh vanilla and visit the island’s several vanilla plantations as well as enjoy a Kaneka concert and the Miss Lifou Tourism pageant. While visiting Lifou, make sure to explore the island’s wild landscape, with hiking trails taking you to hidden caves and dramatic clifftops like the Jokin Cliffs.

Nouméa Féerie


1st – 31st of December

Every year throughout December, the Nouméa Féerie turns New Caledonia’s capital into a Christmas wonderland with colourful decorations, children’s activities and Father Christmas attractions. Throughout the Féerie, roulettes (food trucks) serve up delicious, festive-themed dishes daily at Place des Cocotiers. If heading to the roulettes make sure to try the sandwich poulet a la creme (chicken and cream baguette) and fried fish which are renowned throughout the capital. Christmas is also a great time to sample New Caledonia’s fresh seafood thanks to the prime weather conditions on the archipelago’s World Heritage Listed lagoon. Sample this seafood at restaurants such as Le Faré and Le Roof which specialise in fresh local produce for the best culinary experience.

For more information on the events happening in New Caledonia this year, please visit:

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