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The World’s Best Outdoor Dining Experiences

Vacationing abroad often offers many amazing opportunities to dine out under the stars.

4 min
Outdoor dinner at Lion Sands Narina Lodge Hotel, South Kruger in South Africa
Author: Kat Barber

While the COVID-19 pandemic shook up many aspects of our lives, there was one definite silver lining. We’re talking about dining outdoors, a habit that’s become the norm for many of us over the past year.

Enjoying a meal alfresco is a universal pleasure the world over. Vacationing abroad offers many amazing opportunities to dine out under the sun or stars. What’s more, spending more time in the great outdoors is one of our top travel trends for 2021.

There are numerous spectacular venues around the world where you can dine alfresco and savor delicious cuisine. So we want to introduce you to five of the best outdoor dining experiences which are not only memorable but also allow you to enjoy COVID-19 safe travel, too.

1Enjoy a feast in the ocean at The Rock Restaurant in Zanzibar

This brilliant alfresco dining venue gets its name from its breathtaking location – a large rock surrounded entirely by the crystal-clear waters of the Indian Ocean. It’s flung just off Zanzibar’s south-east coast and is the ideal outdoor dining experience for sun-seekers and ocean vistas.

When it comes to the food itself, The Rock Restaurant serves up a tantalizing range of mostly Italian-inspired dishes. Seafood also features heavily, from fresh lobster linguine to platters loaded with crispy calamari, king prawns and grilled octopus. 

You can reach the venue by boat from the shore, or you can choose to wade through the shallows in low tide. Once there, you’ll have a choice of tables that are all under cover and feature uninterrupted views of the ocean thanks to the restaurant’s open design. 

The World’s Best Outdoor Dining Experiences
The Rock Restaurant in Zanzibar

2Sample local delicacies in Bolivia’s Uyuni Salt Flats

For a meal like nothing you’ve ever experienced before, you can’t beat a picnic on the Uyuni Salt Flats. They’re located in Bolivia and are the largest area of salt flats on the planet!

While there are very few restaurants, you can still enjoy a one-of-a-kind outdoor dining experience. Book one of our tailor-made Uyuni tours and experience multiple alfresco meals on numerous islands within the salt flats. Sample mouth-watering Bolivian delicacies such as salteñas (similar to empanadas), charque (jerky) or pasteles (sugary fried dough).

3Picnic in the plains at the Samara Game Reserve in South Africa

A safari experience in the great outdoors is a prime option for COVID-19 safe travel. South Africa is a fantastic place to glimpse amazing animals in their natural habitats at one of the best African safari parks.

Samara Game Reserve sits 140 miles north of the country’s southern coastline and it’s a wonderful destination for spotting wildlife and soaking up the African savannah scenery. As a guest at the reserve, you’ll have the chance to indulge in a range of outdoor dining experiences. Samara Game Reserve’s wilderness picnics are offered to all guests who stay for more than three nights. 

You’ll be transported to a magical location, such as a vast Karoo riverbed or one of the peaks of the Samara Mara, where you’ll settle down on a blanket and tuck into a picnic basket of treats. You could also sit down for a more formal experience with a table, chairs and a bespoke menu.

Outdoor dining experiences in Africa on the wine lands of the Cape South Africa Tour.
Picnics make the best outdoor dining experiences

4Outdoor dining experiences in the treetops at Pacuare Lodge in Costa Rica

If you’ve always wanted to visit Costa Rica’s verdant jungle interiors, you’ll be well-placed at Pacuare Lodge. Nestled right at the heart of Limon Province on the edge of the Rio Pacuare, the ecolodge is home to a truly extraordinary restaurant. 

The Nest, as its name suggests, perches in an ancient Ceiba tree approximately 60 feet above the forest floor. It’s essentially an open-air treehouse that perfectly blends into the scenery and allows guests to immerse themselves in the sights, sounds and smells of the jungle.

Ideal for those with an adventurous side, you’ll access The Nest via zipwire. Sit down at the single table and dine on local fare, appreciating the venue’s absolute privacy. While it’s not for the faint of heart (or those afraid of heights), it is a gastronomical experience which will stay with you forever.

5Savor gourmet bush tucker in the Uluru desert at Tali Wiru

Uluru is one of the most iconic landmarks in Australia. Surrounded by a vast empty landscape, this makes it the perfect place for an outdoor dining experience at Tali Wiru.

Tali Wiru, meaning ‘beautiful dune’ in the local Anangu language, encapsulates the magic of fine dining under the Southern Desert sky.

Experience an authentic bush tucker feast beneath the Australian sky at this open-air restaurant. Part of the Ayers Rock Resort, the sophisticated venue welcomes you to dine on delicious local cuisine in the middle of the desert. The food is made using local produce and you can expect spectacular dishes including grilled meats, fresh fish and decadent hors d’oeuvres. 

Not just a delicious dining option, Tali Wiru is an entire experience in itself. Guests are transported to the remote venue from their accommodation and greeted with champagne. You’ll also have an exclusive didgeridoo performance, as well as the chance to hear stories of local legends. To top it off, every course is paired with premium Australian wines. 

Outdoor dining experiences await at Uluru in Australia
Dine outdoors at Tali Wiru overlooking Uluru

Add these outdoor dining experiences to your itinerary

Our destination experts are ready to arrange fantastic dining experiences during your journey of a lifetime. Get in touch today. 

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Posted In:  Africa Australia Bolivia Costa Rica South Africa Guest Posts food foodie outdoor dining restaurant review