Downtown Nanaimo is a hot spot for great local dining. Feel like eating ethnic food? Check. Looking for home-style goodness? Check. Just want a quick bite? Check, check, check!

Here’s a few (of many) great dining options:

Gabriel’s Gourmet Cafe

Local hotspot Gabriel’s offers farm fresh food and Asian fusion dishes. You can stop by for lunch in their eatery on Commercial Street, right across from the Nanaimo Museum. Come in to dine and sit amongst the living walls. Have a chat with the chefs as they prepare your food from fresh ingredients right in front of your eyes.


Although Noodlebox  is considered a chain, it started locally in Victoria (as a food trolley!). It has now grown to include a handful of locations in both Vancouver, Calgary, and Nanaimo! Since opening earlier this year, Noodlebox has been a popular dining spot among locals. Known for their “noodle…boxes” this Southeast Asian Noodle Bar is the perfect fit for any noodle-lover.

In addition to a superb lunch and dinner menu, Nanaimo’s Noodlebox exclusively makes Nanaimo Bar Spring Rolls. Yum!

Lighthouse Bistro & Pub

Located right on the shoreline along the Harbourfront Walkway sits the Lighthouse Bistro & Pub. If you’re looking for fresh, local seafood this is where it’s at. Sit inside in either the Bistro or Pub, or, if it’s nice enough outside, sit outdoors overlooking the harbour.

Great for friends and families, the Lighthouse Bistro is the perfect spot for a wonderful dining experience. They also serve brunch every Sunday from 11am-2pm!

Asteras Greek Taverna

Nestled among heritage buildings in the Old City Quarter, you’ll find Asteras Greek Taverna. This authentic Greek restaurant is a favourite among locals for its traditional, delicious food, its warm, inviting atmosphere, and friendly, excellent service. Try the roast lamb – it’s a favourite!

Other great options include Pho-A-Dong, Le Cafe Francais, Tandoori Junction, ACMe Food Inc., Mon Petit Choux, and King Sushi. Want to try something new? Rewsters Restaurant, located next to Modern Cafe, recently opened – they feature a few Nanaimo-theme-named menu items like the Bastion Burger!

Of course there are many more great restaurants in downtown Nanaimo. Check out our Dining page for more great ideas!

– Sean

(editor’s note: It was previously stated that Noodlebox only had locations in Victoria and Nanaimo. It has been updated to correct that error.)