Top Eight Most Incredible McDonald’s Locations Across The World

Top Eight Most Incredible McDonald’s Locations Across The World

McDonald's outlets but with more spice!

Of all the famous logos in the world, perhaps none are as iconic as the golden arches of McDonald’s. First opening in 1937, the McDonald’s franchise has since expanded to almost every corner of the Earth! As the brand grew globally, McDonald’s always found ways to endear itself to the local communities it served. Be it by introducing menus with a local twist to offering localised toys, this well-known restaurant has always found a way to win over the locals. 

With so many outlets scattered across the globe, it’s inevitable that some McDonald’s outlets look a bit different. From a restaurant housed in a colonial-era building to one in the shape of a UFO, here are eight of the most unique McDonald’s stores around the world! 

1. McDonald’s Taupo (New Zealand)

Image credit: Mcdonald’s Taupo

From its alluring natural scenery to its charming cultural ambience, New Zealand never fails to stun and excite visitors. Well, this McDonald’s outlet in Taupo, New Zealand is no different. From the very first time you lay eyes on it, you’ll understand just why it’s so special. After all, when’s the last time you’ve seen a restaurant adjoined to a vintage luxury plane? 

Yes, the large, repainted plane outside of the store isn’t a cheap prop. It’s a disused DC-3 plane that has been refurbished and repainted. It even has about ten small tables inside where you can enjoy your meal! 

As you would expect, this McDonald’s outlet is also super popular among tourists and avid Instagrammers. So once you’re done with your Big Mac, whip out your camera and brag about your “McDonald’s meal in the sky”! 

Operating hours: 24 hours

Address: CNR Roberts & Puapehu Streets, 48 Roberts Street, Taupo 3330, New Zealand.

2. McDonald’s Downey, California

Image credit: Andrew Blackburn

Despite it’s evergreen popularity, not all McDonald’s stores are easily recognisable. In particular, the McDonald’s outlet in Downey, California is a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it establishment. Located a mere 15-minute drive away from the bustling city of Los Angeles, McDonald’s Downey is the third ever McDonald’s store to be built and it’s currently the OLDEST operating outlet! 

The reason you’ll miss it is because apart from the menu (and perhaps the large sign at the front which reads “McDonald’s”, the store bears little resemblance (if at all) to most modern day outlets! The first thing you’ll notice is that the sign only has one arch compared to the iconic two arches. You’ll also find an image of Speedee on top, who was the original mascot of the franchise! 

While the menu at McDonald’s Downey is pretty standard, the very ambience of the place is more than worth a visit! 

Operating hours: 6am – 12am

Address: 10207 Lakewood Blvd, Downey, CA 90240, United States

3. McDonald’s Imperial, Porto, Portugal

Image credit: yuka HAYASHI

Speaking of modern-day McDonald’s stores, I’m sure most of us have a general idea of what a typical outlet would look like. The massive signboard of the golden arches, the red and yellow colour scheme, and perhaps maybe even a picture of Ronald McDonald gracing the storefront. 

However, McDonald’s Imperial in Porto, Portugal, looks nothing like your typical fast food outlet. In fact, it is far from it! Opened in 1995, McDonald’s Imperial is often regarded as the most beautiful McDonald’s store in the world! It is housed in a renovated space which was once home to a famous cafe that was around since the early 1930s! 

Despite taking over, McDonald’s Imperial has retained most of the original architecture and decor, including the stained glass windows, crystal chandeliers, and the majestic bronze eagle at the entrance. It’s no wonder the store emanates an air of elegance! Apart from being an Instagrammable spot in the city in its own right, you can also sample the city’s famous Portueguese egg tarts too!  

Operating hours: 11am – 11pm

Address: Praça da Liberdade 126, 4000-322 Porto, Portugal

Also read: 15 Beautiful Starbucks Branches for Coffee Lovers Around the World 

4. McDonald’s Fuzhou SanFang QiXiang, China

Image credit:

McDonald’s Imperial isn’t the only McDonald’s outlet in the world with a contrastingly different aesthetic though! This ambient branch in Fuzhou gives patrons a sneak peek into what McDonald’s would look like if it had originated in China! 

Located in a charming enclave in the historic cultural area of the city (SanFang QiXiang – which means Three Lanes and Seven Alleys), this McDonald’s branch combines a modern interior with traditional Chinese architecture. It is housed in an old-fashioned building complete with Chinese lanterns hanging on the store front. From afar, it blends into the ambience of the surrounding areas and doesn’t look out of place one bit! 

Apart from providing the backdrop for some awesome snaps, the menu at McDonald’s SanFang QiXiang (much like other outlets throughout the city) also serves plenty of local delights. These include boba tea, pineapple pie, and burgers that incorporate local spices and sauces! 

Operating hours: N/A

Address: Nan Hou Jie, East Intersection Shangquan, Gulou District, Fuzhou, Fuzhou, Fujian, China

5. McDonald’s Rue Saint-Lazare, Paris, France

Image credit: greg_is_downtown

If I told you that there’s a McDonald’s store in Paris that doubles up as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, I’m sure you’d have your doubts. However, this fascinating tidbit of information is actually true! Located on the bustling street of Saint-Lazare (Rue Saint-Lazare), this unique McDonald’s outlet is housed in a historic building that has been around for over a century! 

From the front, McDonald’s Rue Saint-Lazare feels like a location site out of the Harry Potter books. This is especially the case when it’s viewed from across the street. Afterall, the antique-looking wooden facade, decorated with intricate carvings and ornomates makes it stand out against the two buildings that sandwich it! The inside is equally ambient, allowing you to enjoy the familiar taste of a Happy Meal in a restaurant setting that befits the city of Paris. 

Operating hours: 6.30am – 2am

Address: 119 Rue Saint-Lazare, 75008 Paris, France

6. McDonald’s Roswell, New Mexico

Image credit: Peter K.

For some of us, digging into a Big Mac at night after a long day at work is nothing short of an experience that’s out of this world. Aptly enough, there’s a McDonald’s outlet in the U.S. that looks just like a UFO. And, as you might have guessed, this flying McSaucer (see what I did there?) is located in (where else?) the town of Roswell, New Mexico! 

The story goes that after rumours of a UFO sighting in the late 1940s, McDonald’s rode the hype surrounding the incident and ingeniously built a UFO-shaped branch in the area! Adding to the extraterrestrial theme, there are even large murals of aliens and a space-themed playroom! 

While you won’t find any alien-themed burgers here, the bizarre aesthetic alone makes for a memorable experience!  

Operating hours: 5am – 12am

Address: 720 N Main St, Roswell, NM 88201, United States

7. McDonald’s Batumi, Georgia

Sticking to the theme of oddly-shaped McDonald’s stores, the futuristic design of McDonald’s Batumi in Georgia is sure to make you do a double take. After all, if not for the subtle signage, one could easily mistake this unique structure for an art museum! 

Designed by Giorgi Khmaladz, an architect from Harvard, the McDonald’s outlet in the middle of Batumi is made up of 460 glass panels which reflects the view of the man-made pool next to it. The upper level opens up into an open-air patio, further enhancing the memorable experience of dining there.  

Operating hours: 24 hours

Address: 9 Sherif Khimshiashvili St, Batumi, Georgia

8. McDonald’s @ Birch House, Penang, Malaysia

Image credit: faye.eaterydiary

Finally, there’s McDonald’s @ Birch House in Penang, Malaysia. Housed in a refurbished colonial-era building, this two-storey outlet perfectly captures the essence of Penang: a harmonious mix of modernity and cultural heritage. 

The mansion which houses the restaurant was once a smelting plant that later became abandoned before being bought over in the early 2000s. Apart from being a popular spot for locals to grab a meal at, its storefront is also subject to plenty of Instagram snaps throughout the day! 

Operating hours: 24 hours

Address: No. 73, Jalan Dato Keramat, 10150 George Town, Pulau Pinang

And there you have it, eight unique McDonald’s stores in the world for a memorable dining experience. Did we miss out any other outlets that you think should be on this list? Let us know!

About Author

Darren Yeoh
Darren Yeoh

Darren enjoys the finer things in life and loves exploring unfamiliar places on foot, guided with nothing but instinct and a good-old fashioned map. He enjoys cultural experiences and exciting adventures and is not a stranger to travelling alone. When he's not putting his travel experiences into words, he's probably sitting behind his laptop, planning his upcoming adventure.


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