Food festivals galore

Celebrate New Caledonia’s wonderful produce, with one of the many food focused events and colourful festivals that take place throughout the year around Grand Terre and the Islands.

Adding one of these fantastic events to your New Caledonia holiday is a great way to experience the unique and dynamic culture of the destination. Take your holiday to the next level by experiencing valuable insights into local life and traditions.

Local festival in New Caledonia


March Sacred Festival of the Yam
  The festival marks the beginning of the yam harvest, and is the most important event in the Kanak calendar. When the yams are declared ready by the elders, they are pulled up and presented to the older clansmen and the chief, signalling the beginning of the harvest. The yams are blessed the following day by the priest, then distributed among the villagers.
April Giant Omelette Festival, Par Fayard
  Held annually, during the second weekend following Easter, this festival features the making of a giant omelette to commemorate Napoleon’s army being fed omelette by Southern French villagers, as a show of charity during wartime. Around a dozen chefs make a huge 3.5 metre diameter omelette using some 7,000 eggs, which is then shared by everyone.
May Avocado Festival, Mare
  Held in April, the Avocado Festival has become one of the most important cultural events in New Caledonia for two reasons; it places a high value on the work of the agricultural community; and secondly offers the possibility of a home stay experience within the tribe. Numerous leisure activities, tastings, music and traditional dances are held to celebrate the avocado.
June Cheese Festival
  Enjoy a great taste of France! The “French Cheese Festival” is an amazing buffet with over 130 cheese specialties presented by a “Maître fromagier” or cheese master.  For over 20 years, award-winning French cheese masters visit Noumea to share their incredible knowledge and tastings of an amazing variety of speciality French cheeses and wines.
June Lagoon Festival, Ouvea
  This festival celebrates the natural and marine heritage of the island, promoting all sea produce, while raising awareness about environmental conservation, particularly of the lagoon.  Musical groups, dance troops, fishing competition, seafood tasting, water sport activities and many other entertainments take place during this festival.
August Bourail Fair
  The agricultural and craft fair of Bourail, a small town on the West Coast of New Caledonia, is held each year during the weekend around August 15. Each stand combines a convivial and entertaining atmosphere with a showcase of the best authentic local products available. From stock-car racing, motocross, tasting of local specialties, sheep dogs, wood chopping, horse riding, the very popular rodeo to the Miss Bourail Agricultural Fair pageant, are all held throughout the three day programme. For those who dream of exploring the New Caledonia far west, the Bourail Agricultural Fair is one event not to be missed.
August Coffee Festival Sarraméa
  The coffee plantation in Sarraméa, just north of Nouméa, is worth checking out. The 670 acre farm is located at the foot of the Dogny Plateau. The former French President Jacques Chirac loved the coffee so much that he insisted on having it flown to Paris for his personal use.
September Gastronomy Festival
  The Gastronomy festival will offer up a fusion of French and Melanesian cuisine, featuring local delicacies, produce and a French flare all over New Caledonia.
October Vanilla Festival, Lifou

Lifou is world renowned for the quality of product with one of the most popular being the vanilla plantations, which is used widely in New Caledonian cooking. Throughout the Vanilla Festival, visitors can experience choral singing, Kaneka concerts, traditional dancing, vanilla plantation visits, guided hikes, and the Miss Lifou Tourism pageant

November Beef Festival, Paita
  At this vibrant event festival expect live rodeo, French cowboys, livestock demonstrations and food tastings – including New Caledonia’s famous “brochettes” or kebabs which will delight the senses. Other highlights of the festival on offer include helicopter tours affording panoramic aerial views of the lagoon, vintage car exhibition, arts and crafts, pony rides, markets and tours of the Paita Villa-Museum.
December Festival of the sea, Borendy
  The Festival of the Sea is devoted to marine produce including lobster, fresh and smoked fish and shellfish. Watch fish smoking demonstrations, traditional and modern dance groups or participate in weaving contests, coconut peeling or an introduction to spear shooting. The festival also includes fishing contests, football tournaments and hiking tours.