February 13, 2023
12 mins Read
Hamilton Island restaurants dish up a raft of memorable meals, where world-class culinary creations roll out amid dreamy Whitsunday views and that imitable island atmosphere. Alternatively, after a day filled with exploring some of Hamilton Island’s finest activities, or perhaps a once-in-a-lifetime day trip, you might be more in the mood for an easy, breezy takeaway dinner to be enjoyed in the comfort of your superb accommodation. Whatever you’re craving, there’s a sensational eatery to suit, and our list of the best Hamilton Island restaurants should help make your selection a little easier.
Dine on fresh fare that blends colourful Asian flavours with modern Australian style at one of the most popular Hamilton Island restaurants overlooking the white sands of Catseye Beach. Inspired by the hawker-style street food of South East Asia, the menu at Coca Chu is designed to be shared and includes dishes like the tiger prawn betel leaf with peanuts, lime leaf, coriander and coconut, the crispy half duck with sour plum sauce, Sichuan pepper and lemon, and stir-fried Asian greens with mushrooms, chilli garlic and oyster sauce. Plus, the vibe is lively and loud, so bringing the entire family will prove just as memorable as securing a waterfront table for two.
With its contemporary Italian menu coupled with an elegant yet cosy atmosphere, Romano’s is one of the most romantic Hamilton Island restaurants on offer. Start your evening with a pre-dinner cocktail at the bar before taking your seat, which will ideally be at one of the tables on the deck overlooking the shimmering waters of Hamilton Island Marina. Inventive standout dishes include slow-cooked beef pappardelle with tomato sugo and smoked almonds, gnocchi bolognese with traditional pork and veal mince ragu, and the chargrilled swordfish with whipped mash, traditional Sicilian vegetable caponata and lemon. Book well before you travel, as this place is endlessly adored.
While its name, taken from the Aboriginal word ‘bombora’, reflects the shallow, colourful patches of reef dotted around the waters of Hamilton Island, Bommie Restaurant’s innovative Australian menu reflects its more immediate surrounds.
Located in the architecturally striking Hamilton Island Yacht Club, this award-winning Hamilton Island restaurant is one of the best places to indulge on the island.
Relaxing in its sophisticated candlelit dining room, decorated with floor-to-ceiling sculptures by artist Glenn Murray, you’ll dine on locally sourced, seasonal produce crafted by executive chef Trent Dawson into decadent dishes like the Coral Sea barramundi with mussels, roast kohlrabi, yuzu broth and wild rice stuffed vine leaves, plus the genius Great Southern Lamb with vegetarian saag aloo, milk solids and cashew yoghurt. Opt for Bommie’s $150 tasting menu for the complete experience.
Experience the taste of a Mexican cantina in one of the most bustling Hamilton Island restaurants by the action-packed marina. TAKO is a bright, cheery waterside eatery that draws together flavours from right across Mexico. Your tastebuds will travel all the way from coastal-inspired ceviche to Oaxaca mole, and Mayan delights from the Yucatán Peninsula to the humble taco, a national dish.
Tuck into a series of share plates, including fried barramundi with house-made pineapple hot sauce, spiced cauliflower with mint yoghurt and guacamole and Mayan-style chicken with crema and corn salsa. Mains include the stellar crispy pork belly with corn puree and the seared wagyu skirt steak with chimichurri and tortillas.
Round off your journey with churros paired with chocolate sauce and caramelised condensed milk, or chargrilled pineapple with whipped coconut cream. Elastic waistbands are encouraged.
If you’re staying at the exclusive qualia resort and seeking an elevated experience, a table at Pebble Beach is not to be missed.
Set at the water’s edge in the dreamiest location within the luxury property, offering a sweeping panorama of white sand and neighbouring Whitsunday Islands, the restaurant is led by executive chef John Kennedy. Celebrating modern Australian cuisine in magnificent fashion, it shines a light on local produce including vegetables grown on Hamilton Island itself.
Prepare for a sublime long lunch or make a dinner reservation to experience qualia’s signature dining experience, a fine-dining tasting menu matched with Australian and international wines. Think maron with porcini, Granny Smith apple and sesame, paired with a 2020 Forest Hill gewurztraminer, cuttlefish with pearl barley, koji and braised shallot paired with a 2020 Shaw & Smith M3 chardonnay, Wagyu with variations of onion paired with a 2017 Two Hands ‘Ares’ shiraz, and artichoke with caramel, golden sultana and honey whiskey paired with Campbell’s ‘Liquid Gold’ classic topaque from Ruthergeln in Victoria. An experience you’ll never forget.
No island holiday, particularly one with an epic collection of beaches and dramatic swimming pools, is complete without a post-sun helping of takeaway fish and chips.
On Hamilton Island, the place to be is Popeye’s Takeaway. There’s market fish available daily, as well as homemade potato scallops, beer-battered onion rings and other fresh seafood. Choose the Seafood Basket packed with prawn cutlets, crumbed squid rings, beer-battered fish, a seafood stick and chips for a sample of Popeye’s finest.
A great family spot overlooking the blue water and bobbing masts of Hamilton Island Marina, the popular eatery also cooks up kid-friendly chicken chippies and fish dippers, plus pineapple fritters, pork dim sims and grilled haloumi burgers. Delicious.
A few minutes’ stroll down the waterside Front Street from Popeye’s, located in the heart of the Marina Village, the Pizzeria and Gelato Bar is another laid-back Hamilton Island restaurant perfect for families. Serving up barista-made coffee and 30 rotating flavours of gelato from 2pm until late alongside a mouth-watering range of more than 20 thin-crust pizzas, it’s all about indulging holiday-style.
You’ll find all the classics including a Margherita, Super Supreme and Hawaiian, as well as gourmet creations stacked with pancetta, bacon, mushrooms and carbonara sauce (the Carbonara), sweet chilli prawns, cherry tomato and bocconcini (the Sweet Chilli Prawn) and pulled lamb, olives and fetta (the Braised Lamb). Also available are vegetarian and gluten-free options, plus vegan cheese. Nab a curbside al fresco table for a chilled-out dining experience.
Another eatery offering beautiful views across Hamilton Island Marina, Manta Ray is where to head for a low-key meal with plenty of choice. As a bonus, if you’re a guest staying at the Reef View Hotel, Palm Bungalows, or any holiday home booked through Hamilton Island Holiday Homes, you can take advantage of Hamilton Island’s Kids Stay & Eat Free program, which is also applicable at Pool Terrace, Sails and TAKO restaurants.
Look for fish drifting off the outdoor dining deck and gaze at lolly-pink sunsets while you delight in dishes like prawn linguine, pan-seared salmon, corn-fed chicken, confit duck leg and a fabulous kids’ menu featuring main meals for mini-me’s accompanied by a drink and ice-cream. There’s also a fun, laid-back bar area that stays open for drinks from midday until 10pm.
Sometimes, all you really want is something simple while you’re on holiday and surrounded by lavish options. Enter the Hamilton Island bakery of your pared-back dreams. Located in the heart of the Hamilton Island Marina Village, Bob’s Bakery offers gourmet meat pies, flaky sausage rolls, buttery croissants, humongous sandwiches and fresh sushi rolls daily.
If you’re craving something sweet, load up on Danish pastries and all of your favourite classic bakery treats, baked to perfection on-site. Celebrating a special occasion on the Island? Bob’s is also the go-to for made-to-order cakes, so there’s no need to stress about trying to drag something over from the mainland. Doors open from 6.30am to 2pm every day.
qualia isn’t the only accommodation offering its own deluxe dining experience. The stunning Beach Club, an adults-only hotel located right behind Catseye Beach, plays home to the excellent Beach Club Restaurant, offering a poolside dining experience to its guests.
Blending up a range of fruity cocktails and cooking up a menu filled with the freshest of seafood done with extreme finesse, the restaurant combines quality fare with outstanding views out across Catseye. Expect dishes such as the chilled Moreton Bay bugs presented on a green papaya salad, chilled Queensland tiger prawns done with a celeriac remoulade and tomato and caper salsa, New Zealand salmon with pommes puree, cauliflower velouté and green peas, and a whole market fish. Not a seafood fan? The Flinders Island ‘salt grass’ lamb rack or the 200g grain-fed, centre-cut eye fillet should do the trick.
It’s one street away from the action of Catseye Beach, however the airy Pool Terrace restaurant offers its own side of waterfront views along with quality meals and impeccable service. Located within the Reef View Hotel, right beside the property’s trademark Reef View Hotel Pool, this Hamilton Island restaurant offers a range of meals to help you fuel up ahead of a big afternoon, or help you wind down after a morning spent swimming.
Keep your sunnies on as you feast, overlooking the glorious lap pool, on share plates including mac and cheese croquettes, Szechuan pepper fried squid, pork and prawn wontons and crudo fish with coconut cream and a squid ink cracker. If tummies are really rumbling, there’s also the salted snapper and mushroom risottos, a classic cheeseburger with chips, the poached tuna salad and the battered barramundi with Asian slaw.
One of the most scenic Hamilton Island restaurants is undoubtedly the Clubhouse Restaurant, part of the Hamilton Island Golf Club and located atop Dent Island. You’ll feel totally immersed in the dazzling Coral Sea as you spy glistening waters below, plus a glimpse of Passage Peak, one of Hamilton Island’s most picturesque walking trails.
At the Clubhouse, which requires you to set sail from Hamilton Island itself to Dent Island, humpback whales have been spotted from large glass windows that allow almost every table in the house an enchanting view. And the best is yet to come. A brilliant, seasonal menu that works inspired magic with local produce includes torched salmon with sushi rice, seared scallops with pancetta, chicken breast with Jamon croquette, caramelised fennel, brussels sprouts and chicken jus, and a lamb rump with parsnip puree, minted salsa verde, baby carrots, pistachio and hung yoghurt.
The dress code is smart casual so leave your singlets, denim, boardies and rubber thongs at your accommodation.
A great spot to grab a casual meal between your day’s activities, Sails restaurant is located at the centre of Hamilton Island’s most happening hub, right next to Main Pool. Offering hearty meals and views out of Catseye Beach plus the Instagram-friendly Dolphin Pool, Sails also serves a lavish daily buffet breakfast, available to anybody staying on Hamilton Island.
The restaurant’s a la carte menu features small plates including bocconcini pasta salad, karaage chicken and salt and pepper squid, in addition to larger meals such as the reuben sandwich with pastrami, swiss cheese, sauerkraut and fries, and the pork belly burger with house-made kimchi, chipotle mayonnaise and fries.
Missing your favourite pub fare from back home? Make a beeline to the local Hamilton Island pub, the Marina Tavern, overlooking the Hamilton Island Marina. Seats are sprawled out across its large outdoor deck, which offers the perfect meeting spot for large groups.
Generous pub classics are the biggest hits on the menu here, with four terrific Parmi options taking centre stage, plus a range of burgers and wraps, battered or grilled barramundi options, porterhouse and scotch fillet steaks and a selection of salads. The selection of snacks are worth a squiz, too. Choose from cheesy garlic bread, onion rings, Buffalo chicken drumettes and more as you sink cold ones long into the afternoon.
Lagoon-style pools and dining extravaganzas extend to visitors of all ages thanks to the wonderful assortment of Hamilton Island family accommodation ...
It’s the dream of every parent: the perfect family holiday, where tears and complaints are left at home, replaced by smiles and squeals of excitemen...
Times have changed for Hamilton, the Whitsundays’ best-known island. Here is our beginners guide to understanding how to have a great Hamilton Islan...
In 2012 an elegant simplicity and a fine attention to detail turned a corner of Hamilton Island into the best resort in the world. Is that still the c...
It’s the perfect summer escape if you’re after simple luxury – and no one knows it better than former Vogue Australia editor, Kirstie Clements ...
For the best travel inspiration delivered straight to your door.$29.95
LEAVE YOUR COMMENT