Whether you are a new student or a seasoned pupil in College Park, it's important to know the moves when it comes to food here at UMD. You want to know where to go that is both wallet and taste-bud friendly on a night out, and you want to know where to go for your average day in a dining hall. Here is a list of suggestions and recommendations that is necessary for your survival if you're a foodie and go to the University of Maryland.

1. South Campus Dining Hall is the OG

tofu, chicken, broccoli, stir-fry
Ellie Haun

There are four dining halls on campus that vary widely with operating hours and student satisfaction: The Diner and 251 North on North Campus, Hillel for those who eat kosher, and the almighty South Campus location.

251 North is located on the edge of campus and is generally pretty quiet. Hillel is predominantly for those seeking a kosher menu, and The Diner is vastly populated with freshman and sophomores who tend to live in residence halls. While there is nothing wrong with any of these locations, it generally seems that the quality and variety of food is more bountiful at South Campus, which is located closer to on-campus apartments and various academic buildings.

In addition to the buffet-style setup that is within every dining hall, South Campus is home to Seasons 12, which is a *must* if you are craving Mongolian Stir-Fry or have never tried it. Based on my experience, there tends to be a wider variety of options for those who are vegan or vegetarian as well!

2. The Maryland Dairy is Dangerously Good 

This sweet shop is located in Stamp Student Union, and it has had 90 years of operation to perfect its taste. If your sweet tooth is relentless and you are craving any fresh treat ranging from a hand-spun milkshake to a hefty sundae, this is just the fix. Try a classic like cookies 'n cream or go for a signature flavor like "Fear the Turtle," a vanilla, white chocolate and caramel masterpiece. My personal favorites would have to be a tie between their S'mores or Mocha Fudge Swirl, but I just really love chocolate.

3. The Blaze vs Lotsa Feud

Everybody loves pizza, right? Even better, everybody (especially college students) loves the ability to have an affordable, quality pie in a short amount of time. This concept is what makes Blaze Pizza and Lotsa Stone Fired Pizza so insanely popular — you can build your own or select a signature personal-sized pizza and be on your way in a matter of minutes. Both locations use a high-powered cooking oven and provide a casual atmosphere for friends to gather. Additionally, both are located close to campus on Route One and are an easy walk or bike ride away.

As a freshman, I became immersed in this feud almost immediately. UMD Students tend to try both and then choose one to typically gravitate towards for a variety of reasons. I made my choice, and you will have to make yours if you haven't already. Or, you could just like both equally and break the competitive norm. 

4. Late Night Pizza and Cookies

chocolate, sweet, goody, cake, pastry, chocolate cookie, candy, cookie, cream
Jocelyn Hsu

Pizza Kingdom and Insomnia Cookies—both offering later hours than other places and cheap prices, these chain food spots are a rite-of-passage you must take after one of your first nights out. Located directly next to campus, you can treat yourself to a jumbo slice or a cookie a la mode. You'll definitely find these places more populated on Friday and Saturday nights for obvious reasons. I am a huge fan of the double chocolate chunk cookies and the pizza fries. Yep, those are a thing. 

5. Ten Ren's Always Hits the Spot 

Have you ever had bubble tea? You know, flavored tea with (or without) milk and fun tapioca pearls at the bottom? If you are a soon-to-be or current student, you have to go to Ten Ren's and get some. This restaurant, located on Baltimore Avenue, is the place to be for all your Asian fusion eats. In addition to a wide variety of teas and bubble tea smoothies, they offer hot food such as cream cheese wontons, pork rolls and decadent waffles on the weekend. There is nothing better to me than sipping on an iced Vanilla Chai or Peach tea on a warm day. Ask your friends to meet here for a study session too! There are additional bubble tea places that are popular too, like Kung Fu Tea and Jumbo-Jumbo Cafe.

6. Pho Thom

ramen, noodles, pho
Milana Yemelyanova

Also located on Baltimore Avenue, this casual restaurant offers a wide variety of authentic Vietnamese and Thai food in a calm atmosphere. The portions are large and the rich flavors of the various soups, rice dishes and appetizers can't be beat. I will loyally vouch for their garden rolls (which include a lovely mint garnish and tasty peanut sauce) and their various types of chicken, beef and tofu pho. You'll find the restaurant in a consistent buzz on the weekends and always full of students during lunchtime who can attest to the great taste. I ate here during my freshman orientation and have been hooked ever since. 

7. The Coffee Culture on Campus and Beyond

coffee, espresso, tea, ice
Kelsey Emery

In college, you become reliant on caffeine to power you through those long hours and difficult assignments. The Coffee Bar in Stamp is a vendor for Starbucks, so you can grab a Caramel Macchiato or Americano when your eyes start to droop or if you have that dreaded 8 am.

Smaller booths sell coffee in academic buildings or you can grab a hot cup from the dining hall, but there are no quaint coffee shops or the beloved Dunkin' Donuts directly on campus. I know many students who would love a Dunkin' closer to campus, and luckily, a second one opened under the apartment complex Terrapin Row. (There is a Dunkin' and Baskin-Robbins location farther down Route One but it is not easily accessible without a car.)

There is also a full-service Starbucks located near Baltimore Avenue and there are unique coffee shops close-by, like Vigilante Coffee Company and The Board and Brew, which also offers board games and trivia nights. 

8. Love chain restaurants? No problem, we've got plenty.

sweet, bread, pastry, pancake, McDonalds, sausage, breakfast
Alex Frank

Sometimes, you really just want a footlong from Subway, chicken nuggets from Chick-fil-A or a burrito from Chipotle. Stamp holds a food court with plenty of options, and Route One supplies the rest. SaladWorks or Sweetgreen are good for those looking for a nutritious bite to eat, while a hearty bowl of pasta can be created at Noodles and Company or a big sandwich can be consumed at Potbelly's. If you like to stick in your foodie comfort zone, you can definitely do that here no matter where you come from. Chains offer affordability and consistency. These restaurants are always full of UMD students. 

9. We have plenty of local gems, too. 

bread, bagel
Hannah Bibbo

When chatting with fellow students, a few places come to mind on the topic of exciting foodie finds: Fishnet on Berwyn Avenue serves casual seafood dishes with a street-food twist, College Park Diner and Bagel Place on Baltimore Avenue serve great breakfast and lunch essentials, and Krazi Kabob near Baltimore Avenue offers a unique twist of Mexican and Middle Eastern eats.

On campus, the Maryland Food Collective in Stamp is an environmentally-friendly and student-run spot that serves sandwiches, organic drinks and a variety of hot foods. If you make a conscious effort, you can try something new and CP-oriented almost every weekend in a semester. 

10. Did I Mention That Location Matters?

beverage, wine, cocktail, water
Jami Harrison

Many students choose to come to UMD for its proximity to an essential city for internships and experiences: Washington DC, of course! Many Terps, including myself, take the occasional trip into our nation's capital to explore or attend an event. Where there is a city, there will be food, and lots of it. Any type of cuisine you could imagine can be discovered in DC, and unique experiences can be paired on your adventure.

Grab a cup of joe and play with furry friends at the Cat Café in Georgetown, savor a fancy meal at the Alice in Wonderland inspired Mad Hatter Restaurant on Connecticut Avenue, or try a decadent candy-decorated cocktail or dessert at the Sugar Factory in Union Station. The possibilities are endless, and if you ask anybody on campus, I'm sure they will have a great recommendation.