I have put together this guide of the 12 Best Magnetic Island Restaurants & Cafes which includes the best spots for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and drinks!
Magnetic Island is a must-see destination when visiting Townsville. Only a short ferry ride away from the mainland, this small island is a tropical paradise.
Apart from the many awesome things to do in Magnetic Island, there are multiple cafes and restaurants that will keep your body fueled through all your adventures. With a wide variety of cuisines ranging from delicious freshly caught seafood, which is a part of almost every menu around Magnetic Island, to authentic Thai, as well as Mexican and Italian, no one will leave the island hungry.
RELATED ARTICLE → 30 THINGS TO DO ON MAGNETIC ISLAND
Watch the sunset and enjoy a cocktail at one of the many beachfront restaurants located right at the Horseshoe Bay or enjoy an interactive breakfast with Koalas and other native animals in a true Australian outback setting. Magnetic Island might be a small island, but it has a lot to offer on every (culinary) level.
This Magnetic Island Restaurants Guide will help you narrow down your choices and explore what different restaurants all around the island have to offer and to hopefully help you save time on that very important decision-making process of, ‘Where should we eat?’
MAGNETIC ISLAND RESTAURANTS – OVERVIEW
Please see below for an overview of the Best Magnetic Island Restaurants & Cafes that you will find in this guide:
- The Early Bird Cafe
- Cafe Nourish
- Barefoot Art Food Wine
- Scallywags Cafe
- Man Friday
- Marlin Bar
- Gilligan’s Cafe & Bar
- Noodies on the Beach
- Shaka Cafe
- Mamma Roma
- Thai Again
- Breakfast with the Koalas + Bush Tucker Brunch
Alma Bay, Magnetic Island
12 BEST MAGNETIC ISLAND RESTAURANTS
There are many great restaurants and cafes for you to try while visiting Magnetic Island, each offering a variety of local, fresh and healthy food to suit everyone’s tastebuds.
It can sometimes be a little overwhelming to decide where to get a meal that is going to fuel your body with enough energy to go and explore a new place. I hope this Magnetic Island Restaurants post will assist you as a helpful guide.
So without further ado, here is my guide to the 12 Best Magnetic Island Restaurants and Cafes!
#1 THE EARLY BIRD CAFE
Located right along the popular Horseshoe Bay cafe strip, this is the perfect place to sit down and enjoy a delicious breakfast while gazing out upon the crystal clear ocean. There is a reason why Early Bird cafe is mentioned as one of the best restaurants on Magnetic Island on multiple platforms.
It is owned by a lovely Italian couple that makes sure the food they serve is fresh and contains only the best locally sourced ingredients.
There are plenty of vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options available to cater to anyone’s individual needs and tastebuds. The Early Bird’s menu will leave no one disappointed while the views will leave everybody stunned.
Open daily from 7:30am – 2:00pm (Sun 1:00pm).
#2 CAFE NOURISH
Another one of the top restaurants on Magnetic Island with beautiful views over Horseshoe Bay beach, serving Fair Trade Organic coffee, a variety of teas and Chai as well as smoothies, freshly squeezed juices and delicious wraps, sandwiches, cakes, and other mouth-watering treats.
Vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options are available and always served with a heartwarmingly friendly smile. If you are looking for a relaxing place to sit down, unwind, and let the sun kiss your salty skin after a morning swim in the beautiful turquoise waters of Horseshoe Bay, Cafe Nourish is the spot for you.
Open daily from 7:00am – 2:00pm (weekends till 3:00pm).
#3 BAREFOOT ART FOOD & WINE
Barefoot Art Food & Wine is a multi-award winning Magnetic Island restaurant and a must-visit while on the island. The beautiful views and warm atmosphere of this restaurant make it a great venue for a romantic holiday date night as well as an important business dinner or a big family get together.
The menu includes an extensive wine list to go with the high-quality seafood platters and gourmet desserts. The service is excellent and the in-house art gallery featuring the work of local artists complements the wonderful dining experience.
Vegetarian and gluten-free options are available, vegan options are limited.
Open Thu – Mon 11:30am – 3:00pm & 5:30 pm – 9:00pm. Closed Tue & Wed
#4 SCALLYWAGS CAFE
Scallywags Cafe is a fairly new cafe located in the very heart of Nelly Bay.
On their menu are delicious healthy meals and fair trade coffees in a fun-filled, family-friendly atmosphere with a theatrical pirate crew. Live music and fire shows during dinner time ensure a great vibe while enjoying their excellent food.
With plenty of vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options, everybody’s needs will be satisfied.
Open daily for breakfast, lunch, and dinner from 7am – 8pm.
#5 MAN FRIDAY
In the heart of Nelly Bay, is one of the quirkiest Magnetic Island restaurants that offer Mexican as well as international cuisine. Enjoy fajitas and enchiladas while watching possums roam the beautiful tropical garden.
Vegetarian and vegan options are available and if you don’t feel like ordering soft drinks or Sangria from their menu, the BYO fee for drinks is only $3. Take away is available most nights as well.
Not to worry if one of you feels like Mexican and the other can’t get enough of the yummy fresh-caught fish that Magnetic Island is famous for, like in most Magnetic Island restaurants, you’ll find fish and chips on the menu too.
Open Wed – Mon 6:00pm – 9:30pm. Closed Tuesdays.
#6 MARLIN BAR
Looking for live music and a chill vibe paired with generous portions of delicious food? This is where you want to go. The variety of meals is excellent and caters to every appetite and you won’t be disappointed with their drink menu either.
Whether you fancy a cold beer, a glass of wine, or a tropical cocktail, the bartender at Marlin Bar has got you. Wednesday is Steak Night and Thursday night is Parmy Night!
Don’t feel like seafood? Try their juicy burgers, served on a toasted brioche bun with hot, crunchy chips.
What more could you ask for when searching for the best Magnetic Island restaurants?!
Oh, and you can bring your pup too because dogs are welcome, and you can enjoy the tasty meals and good vibes together with your furry friend. Just make sure you call ahead and book a table as it can get very busy, especially on the weekends.
Open Mon – Fri 10:00am – Late & Sat – Sun 8:00am – Late
#7 GILLIGAN’S CAFE & BAR
At Gilligans’s Cafe & Bar, you can enjoy breakfast, brunch, or lunch, accompanied by a very generous selection of alcoholic beverages on their drink menu. Treat yourself to a mimosa or two, I mean you are on holiday after all.
This Magnetic Island themed outdoor restaurant takes you down memory lane while you enjoy the massive breakfasts or indulge in their delicious burgers. Vegetarian and gluten-free options are available and your pet is welcome here as well.
Open Wed – Fri 8:00am – 3:00pm & Sat – Sun 7:30am – 3:00pm. Closed Mon & Tue.
Image: Trip Advisor
#8 NOODIES ON THE BEACH
Looking for somewhere to watch the sunset over Horseshoe Bay while sipping on an exotic cocktail? This little Mexican restaurant on Magnetic Island will not disappoint. Buy a jug of any cocktail or margarita and you’ll get to enjoy it while wearing a free sombrero!
Noodies on the Beach are open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and besides being known for their cocktails and margaritas, their food and coffee are quite the treat as well.
Try the garlic prawns or the paella as they are highly recommended by fellow travelers for a reason. Just give them a call upfront and secure yourself a table at this fun place as it is only open on weekends and books out fast.
I guarantee you don’t want to miss this place on your list of Magnetic Island restaurants to try!
Open Fri – Sun from 8:30am. Lunch from 11:30am
#9 SHAKA CAFE
Start your day right, with a delicious, healthy meal by the beach at Shaka Cafe. Don’t miss out on this little gem, said to have the best smoothie bowls on the island.
Choose from their wide variety of tasty smoothie bowls, pressed juices, or pair a cup of freshly brewed coffee with their yummy raw treats. All while listening to good tunes right along the beach at Nelly Bay.
Open 5 days a week, Thursday – Sunday from 7am – 1pm.
#10 MAMMA ROMA
Italian Restaurant Pizza and Cafe Mamma Roma serves authentic Italian dishes with lots of vegetarians, vegan as well as gluten-free options available. Sit back with a glass of wine and enjoy live music every weekend.
Make sure to ask for their daily specials at Mamma Roms and I highly recommend treating yourself to a piece of Tiramisu after your Pizza or Pasta. You were out exploring or at the beach all day, you deserve it.
Open Tue – Fri 5:00pm – 8:00pm. Sat – Sun 11:30am – 13:30pm & 5:00pm – 8:30pm. Closed Mondays.
#11 THAI AGAIN
You have already been on Magnetic Island for a couple of days and are looking for something other than seafood to change things up a little?
Thai Again is known to be one of the coziest and casual Magnetic Island restaurants with reasonable prices, serving 100% fresh authentic Thai cuisine and caters to a wide range of dietary requirements from vegetarian to vegan as well as gluten-free. Take away is also available.
Open daily 5:30pm – 9:00pm
Thai Again – Magnetic Island Restaurants
#12 BREAKFAST WITH THE KOALAS + BUSH TUCKER BRUNCH
This is by far one of the most unique Magnetic Island restaurants for breakfast and brunch!
Every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday you can enjoy your first meal of the day within a scene typical to outback Australia.
During the course of the morning, you will be greeted by native Australian animals including the koala’s Pebbles and Amaroo, and Harry the wombat.
It is more than just a breakfast, it is an interactive experience that will teach you about sustainability principles and will connect you with a team of great people that have a true passion for the wildlife and Magnetic Island.
The menu is seasonal and offers vegetarian and gluten-free options. Vegan options are limited.
Wed, Fri & Sun 8:30am – 10:00am
Prices: From $70 (children under 2 free of charge)
WHERE TO STAY ON MAGNETIC ISLAND
There are dozens of accommodation options to choose from in Magnetic Island, so I have narrowed it down to a few of the best places to stay to fit the needs of budget backpackers, luxury travelers, and everyone in between.
See the list of Magnetic Island accommodations below that I personally recommend:
LUXURY: PEPPERS BLUE ON BLUE
MID RANGE: DANDALOO GARDENS
BUDGET: BUNGALOW BAY KOALA VILLAGE YHA
FOR ALL OTHER PLACES TO STAY IN MAGNETIC ISLAND, SEARCH ON AGODA OR SEARCH ON BOOKING.COM
MAGNETIC ISLAND MAP
HOW TO GET TO MAGNETIC ISLAND
Magnetic Island is an isolated island located 8km offshore from the coastal town of Townsville in Queensland, Australia.
The best way to reach the island from Townsville is with the Magnetic Island Ferry which takes just 25-minutes on the passenger ferry or 45-minutes on the car ferry.
I have put together a complete guide which includes everything you need to know about the Magnetic Island Ferry to help you plan your trip ahead of time.
FULL BLOG POST → HOW TO GET TO MAGNETIC ISLAND
MORE AUSTRALIA TRAVEL GUIDES
The coastline and hinterland areas along the east coast of Australia boast countless beaches, lakes, waterfalls, hikes and many more fun-fuelled adventures waiting to be had!
This is what Australia is all about and what I love to share with you in my detailed destination guides.
Click on the links below to see more related posts:
- Hamilton Island: 10 Things To Do In Hamilton Island
- Agnes Water: 17 Things To Do In Agnes Water
- Yeppoon: 10 Best Beaches In Yeppoon
- Brisbane: Things To Do In Brisbane
- Gold Coast: 3 Day Gold Coast Itinerary
- Fraser Island: Fraser Island Day Trip
- Springbrook: Springbrook Waterfalls
- Byron Bay: Things To Do In Byron Bay
- Crescent Head: 9 Things To Do In Crescent Head
- Forster: 7 Things To Do In Forster
- Port Macquarie: 7 Best Beaches In Port Macquarie
- Sydney: Things To Do In Sydney
- Kiama NSW: 3 Awesome Things To Do In Kiama
- Melbourne: Things To Do In Melbourne
LONELY PLANET – AUSTRALIA
One of the best books to take on your trip is the Lonely Planet Australia Travel Guide!
BUY NOW ON AMAZON → LONELY PLANET AUSTRALIA
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WHAT TO PACK FOR MAGNETIC ISLAND
Everyday Backpack: One of the best backpacks on the market! The Nomatic 20L Backpack is perfect for on the go adventures. Featuring multiple storage spaces for valuables, drink bottles, chargers, notebooks and more. This sleek backpack was designed for you.
Universal Power Adapter: Don’t leave home without one! I highly recommend getting this Universal Power Adapter so that you are able to charge all of your electronics when you’re on the road. Compatible in Asia, UK, Europe, Africa, USA, SA and Australia.
Hidden Money Belt: I never go on a trip without one! The best thing is they are always out of sight, hidden beneath your clothing. With RFID blocking, they are perfectly designed to keep your credit cards, cash and other valuables safe when you’re out adventuring!
Waterproof Phone Case: A waterproof phone case is a must-have item! This universal case will keep your phone safe from water damage, sand and scratches during your adventures. Suitable for all smartphone models.
Portable Charger: One of the best portable chargers on the market! The Anker Power Bank keeps your phone and accessories charged on those longer adventures. Featuring 2 USB charging ports, rechargeable battery, works with iPhone, iPad, Samsung, Oppo and Android.
Microfibre Travel Towel: To pack a towel or not to pack a towel? A standard bathroom towel can take up a lot of space in your travel bag. Get your hands on a quick-dry Microfibre Travel Towel which is perfect for the beach, backpacking, camping and general traveling.
Rain Jacket: A light-weight rain jacket is an absolute must when traveling! North Face waterproof rain jackets come in both men and women sizes, featuring a breathable mesh lining and adjustable hood that can be tucked away inside the collar.
Kindle: The best alternative for books! Kindle e-readers are perfect for long haul flights, reading on the beach or a quiet evening away from the bars. Kindle’s are waterproof with rechargeable batteries and adjustable light settings to suit indoor/outdoor conditions.
Packing Cubes: My favorite item in my backpack! Perfect for organizing your shirts, pants, jackets, socks, underwear and more. This 5 Set Packing Cubes makes packing easier and more efficient, adding extra space in your bag for your next trip.
Activated Charcoal Tablets: Want to avoid food poisoning? Most of us have been a victim of travelers diarrhea from eating street food. Organic Activated Charcoal Tablets are fast-acting and will rid your system of the bad bacteria that causes stomach upset.
MY CAMERA GEAR
Everyday Camera: The most affordable mirrorless camera on the market! I personally use the Sony A7ii Mirrorless Camera on all of my adventures. It’s compact, lightweight and super easy to use for all levels of photography. A 28-70mm Sony lens is also included.
Drone Camera: Take your photography to new heights! The DJI Mavic Pro 2 Drone is at the top of the game when it comes to high-quality images and video, easy to control functions and traveler-friendly capabilities. I guarantee you won’t regret purchasing one.
GoPro Hero 8: One of the most popular cameras on the planet! I love using the GoPro Hero 8 for all of my underwater shots and fast-paced adventures. The GoPro Hero 8 captures the best moments with its wide range of functions that are very simple to use!
Camera Bag: My favorite camera bag I have ever owned! The Lowepro Protactic 450 AW II Camera Bag features a waterproof rain cover, drink bottle holder, padded compartments for cameras, drones, lenses, accessories and it also has a laptop pocket.
Selfie Stick: Everyone loves a good selfie, right!? The Sandmarc Metal Edition Selfie Stick is sleek, stylish and can extend to 1.2m. I find it much easier to take photos and videos with the GoPro when it is mounted to the Sandmarc Selfie Stick!
Camera Tripod: The Joby GorillaPod is suitable for all cameras. This tripod is easy to use and perfect for setting up a time-lapse video or even using it as a selfie stick. The legs are flexible so you can wrap it around a tree or a pole to get creative with your shot.
GoPro Dome: Have you ever wanted to capture those under/over water shots with the GoPro? This epic underwater GoPro dome housing is the best camera accessory to have to create the perfect 50/50 shot. I use mine every time I am in the ocean!
Memory Card: The best thing about SanDisk Extreme Pro is that it delivers maximum speed for images and videos. Having 64GB of storage means that you can store hundreds of files on this SD card for 2-3 days and not have to worry about running out of space.
External Hard Drive: As a photographer, my images and video files take up a lot of space on my MacBook so I use the WD Elements External Hard Drive to store everything. With 4TB worth of storage space, this is more than enough for 1 years worth of content.
ONLINE ENGLISH TEACHING
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Before you go from this Magnetic Island Restaurants post, don’t forget to check out My Online Shop!
I’ve got a wide range of digital products for sale and I’m sure you’ll find something that will come in handy during your travels!
SEE MORE → MY SHOP
FINAL THOUGHTS OF RESTAURANTS ON MAGNETIC ISLAND
I hope you enjoyed reading this article and if you have any questions about Magnetic Island Restaurants, please leave a comment below and I will get back to you as soon as I can!