Having recently travelled with my little ones, I realised the enjoyment of finding child friendly cafes. Small things can make all the difference such as room for a pram (in my case a double), high chairs, toys, colouring in activities and kids meals.
Restaurant owners should only know the huge market in good family friendly places. We have started to put together a list of child friendly cafes and ask you to let us know about your favourite cafes and restaurants in your part of the world so we can share them with all our readers. Thanks to Suzi for your input around the Inner West.
Sydney – Inner West
Deus ex Machina, Camperdown – huge cafe, great for pram spotting – I saw a red Stokke Xplory there. Uber cool people and glossy motorbikes, as well as a men’s, women’s and kid’s range of tees and other clothing. Love the Castro cap which can fit a 3 year old (with a big head mind you!) and adult alike with its velcro adjustment strap. TrÈs groovy.
Envy, Summer Hill.- The best lychee/coconut frappes in the world, toddler-size milkshakes and opposite My Messy Room & a stone’s throw from Monkey Puzzle – a toy shop packed to the rafters with desirables for the kiddies. Fab leafy outdoor courtyard that can accommodate many strollers and squirming toddlers. There’s a round water feature in the middle which the little ones love to gallop around.
Post Cafe, Marrickville. The old post office, now a friendly cafe with a nice large floor plan. There are a couple of steps to traverse, so you may need help getting the stroller up. Staff were happy to help when I was by myself with bubs.
Sideways Deli Cafe,
Dulwich Hill – delightful new owners who make everyone feel so welcome
and give the kids endless marshmallows and Tiny Teddies. Toy Box to keep
them entertained, excellent food and the sort of coffee that a weary
parent would die for. I regularly find myself fantasizing about
drinking their coffee. usually during a breastfeed at the end of a long
day, when I really can’t have one.
Sydney – CBD
Botanic Gardens Restaurant – There is no specific menu for kids but so much they can eat from the cold meats, snacks and drinks. There is lots of wildlife and run around area near the restaurant as its in the middle of the park. Parents do need to watch kids as there are a few ponds around. There is a separate toilet block
with a baby change room located behind the building. There is also a high chair in the restaurant.
Sydney Fish Market – Buy fresh and cooked fish from the retailers and many have tables and chairs in the shops
and there are lots of shaded picnic tables outside along the jetty. For younger children the outside fencing is not 100% safe, its more relaxing for older children to sit outside and enjoy fish & chips. Pram access is really good inside or outside. Inside some shops
the kids can see fish being cleaned and there are also lots of tanks of live
fish and lobsters to look at. My toddler loves the fish markets and is entertained for quite a while. My kids also love the ice-cream van in the car park.
Sydney – Eastern Suburbs
Barzura, Coogee – Open from 7am daily this is brilliant for early risers. We are there pretty often as my toddler is up from 5:30am daily. This large
cafe has fabulous views over the beach and some tables outside on the
pavement, but it is close to the road. They have high chairs so as long as the little ones are strapped in, I always go for the pavement to people watch the passing parade of walkers and beach goers. Children are made very welcome and the menu is child friendly with many of the breakfast sides the perfect size for the kids breakfast.
Christo’s Pizzeria, Paddington – The bench seating inside or on the pavement outside is perfect for kids. The place is full of families from 5:30-6:30pm and the staff are very child friendly. We generally choose to sit outside and kids are entertained with a wooden pizza plate and a ball of uncooked pizza dough on arrival. It keeps them occupied while you order and wait for your food. It is almost like p[laying with play doh at the table however I need to monitor eating of the raw dough.
Rushcutters Bay Kiosk, Darling Point – I love this place and there are always a lot of kids of all ages. The
kiosk is right in the middle of the park with tables and chairs set
outside. There is plenty of room around the
tables to put prams and trees gives some shade. Kids can
play on the grass without getting too close to the road, the water views provide an amazing backdrop and on a sunny warm day, I love nothing more than to site there and take it all in. My favourite thing about the kiosk is the communal toys for the kids. They have bikes, doll prams, scooters, dolls, balls and lots more. I can;t ask for more than good coffee and snacks while the kids run around in the fresh air playing with toys. The sandwiches,
sausage rolls, and hot and cold drinks make good breakfast, lunch or
snack fare. Prices are very reasonable and fit the family budget. Open 7 days but weekends can be very hectic and a long wait for coffees.
Watsons Bay Tea Gardens, Watsons Bay – A garden cafe that is all fenced in so parents can relax without running after the kids. There are
tables with umbrellas, some inside seating, take away and also table service if you prefer. The cafe serves an all-day breakfast, for lunch, salads, soup and bagels. My favourite are the array of home-made
cakes, sweet crepes, banana splits and biscuits. There are high chairs and even a baby change table in the toilets. In the corner are a variety of toys to keep the kids entertained longer than the food lasts.