New ZealandObservatory Café

The view of Lake Tekapo from the windows of Observatory Café

I stopped in Lake Tekapo on my way from Christchurch to Lake Ohau for an hour break from being on a bus. Some of my newfound travelling mates paid to go on a scenic flight over Aoraki/Mount Cook and the rest of the Southern Alps, while I chose to wander about the small, quaint town at the southern edge of Lake Tekapo. As a traveler, it is important to stop at the Church of the Good Shepherd to see the view of the lake from inside. In winter, it's also fun to run down to the lake and see how cold the water really is (damn cold, in case you were wondering).

Observatory Café

The actual town of Lake Tekapo is small and charming. There are a few hotels, homes, a small airport (mostly for the scenic flights that take place daily, weather permitting), a post office, and, of course, the Observatory Café. The café is spacious, and this feeling of openness is enhanced by the large floor-to-ceiling windows that prominently display Lake Tekapo. This was my first cappuccino in New Zealand, and after a night of heavy drinking and little sleeping, I needed something to keep me awake for the 4+ hours of scenic drive on a bus ahead of me. The coffee itself was only decent but the views, the friendly and quick service, and the relaxed feeling of the café was well worth the short break.

Observatory Café cappuccino

United States of Opinion
Where: Main Street, Lake Tekapo, New Zealand
Hours: 08:30 to 20:30
Phone: +64 3 680 6886
Web Site: n/a
When: 1 August 2006
Size: Regular [7/10].
Foam: Thick and rich [7/10].
Heat: Adequate [6/10].
Coffee: Strong, slightly bitter, gunge floating in coffee [3/10].
Price: NZ$4.00 [?] [3/10].
Overall: The coffee, itself, was only decent, with large coffee grinds at the bottom of the cup, but the view from Observatory Café's patio and wide windows was amazing [7/10].
Posted by: Jase Luttrell Comments