A lot of the areas around New Caledonia felt like Hawaii, especially the trees and flowers. The houses and condos reminded me of San Francisco with a European feel.
In the supermarkets I was surprised to see so many baguettes and breads just lying out in the open (take your pick!)
And I was amazed at how many people just have their french bread sticking out of their bags uncovered, or like this guy, right on the passenger seat of his car!
The wine selection in most grocery stores are HUGE! I had no idea there were so many labels of French wine.
You can also find a lot of French candies. This one is a licorice mint called Cachou Lajaunie.
Noumea also has a morning market daily from 5:00 am until 11:00 am. It was a nice place to have breakfast.
Although, when you get a grouchy French dude taking your order, you get pain au beurre (plain french bread not even toasted with butter) instead of pain au chocolat (chocolate croissant), because like I said he was grouchy and unwilling to put up with my bad French pronunciation and probably only heard pain. (TIP: walk around the market, there are other vendors with cheaper pastries and just buy your coffee from this stand. As long as you don't sit at his counter, you can stand and eat your food at the surrounding table.)
We also learned that cafe means espresso. If you want an bigger cup of coffee, remember to order a gran cafe. (But I loved the fact that they served their espresso with a dark chocolate napolitan!)
Since the selection of French wines were so large, we decided to bring some back with us. (Are these two good?) We bought them because they were really reasonable and way less than what we would pay for in Japan!
Just remember that with the new security rules, you need to pack these babies in your suitcase and it needs to go into cargo, not on board. (these made it back safely, but Note to self: next time, bring bubble wrap!)
Next post about the food (finally!) and some souvenirs...stay tuned.
Noumea Morning Market (Marche)
Open daily from 5:00-11:00
La Buvette du Marche (cafe)
inside the Noumea Morning Market