Many hotels and resorts allow you to purchase your own fresh food and cook it on site - usually on a BBQ grill. Often the smaller budget places are more amenable to this, as larger hotels would prefer you to spend your money on their room service or in-house restaurant. If you wish to cook at your hotel, check when you make your booking whether this is allowed.


If you are budgeting you can often save a fair amount of money by eating breakfasts or lunches at your hotel. Provided your room has a refrigerator you can stock up on bread, cold meats, cheese, cereal, crackers etc to make snacks for yourself. You can also make your own picnics to take to the beach.


There are several deli shops on the island where you can purchase local and imported cheese, ham, salami, bread and canned goods. In the mall, Heidiland has the best selection available on the island. Near the hospital (just off the main road) Aloja has a smaller variety of similar items. South of boat station 3, Sundown deli is also good.


These can be purchased from several locations. Wet market stalls can be found on the main road towards station 3, and just off the the road near station 2. At the back of the mall there is also a substantial wet market section. The newer supermarkets - Crafts Superstore and Budget Mart - stock plenty of pre-packaged fresh and frozen meat and a selection of vegetables. Crafts is the place to go for imported/western goods.

If you are an early riser you may be lucky enough to spot a local fisherman carrying his catch down the beach. Don't be shy to ask - prices are normally lower than buying from the market.


Don't worry if your hotel won't allow you to cook your own food. Check out the smaller restaurants near the market stalls - many of these will grill your food for you for a small fee. In the mall, Smoke Resto is located conveniently close to the stalls selling fresh meat and fish, and is one of the best budget restaurants to offer this service. Nearby BlueBerry restaurant is also good.