An Insider's Guide To Paddington: It's Not Just For Adults
By: Suzanne Mitchell, ellaslist
Paddington is more than just 'the nice end of Oxford Street'. The gorgeous backstreets of this historic Sydney suburb is where it really shines. I remember when a Saturday browsing through the many shops was my idea of bliss……… but rather than feeling jibbed, I now choose to experience it with my young family. Check out my top tips for a day out in Paddo.
Park the car, and stroll along Paddington Street to experience the beautiful wide tree-lined street. Rumour has it fairies and trolls live in those big tree trunks and under the footpath in the tree roots.
Walk towards Alimentari, a buzzing authentic Italian cafe that serves great coffee, paninis, cakes, and antipasto plates (plus great salads and pastas for lunch). Grab your breakfast or morning tea snack takeaway. Walk through the cafe to the back room and courtyard and you will find a back door that leads to a laneway. This sets you neatly next to the entrance to the Union Street fenced playground. You can sit and enjoy your Alimentari coffee and snacks while the kids enjoy the playground that has a slide, swings, monkey bars, binoculars and bridges. Try to ensure the littlies have covered shoes as the playground has bark flooring and toes can get messy. Plus bring a hat and sunscreen for this one, as the park has tree coverage around the edges in the seating areas but not over the equipment.
Wander up William Street, to find Just William an amazing chocolate shop at 4 William Street. Let your kids pick out their chocolate treat from the front window, and then experience the smells of a real chocolate shop as they enter the store. The selection process has been known to take up to 30 minutes for our family.
Crossover Oxford Street and head towards Paddington Library. It was updated in 2017, and has a specific and well designed air-conditioned children's reading area, that has cool rocking chairs for the kids to play and read on. Make sure the chocolates are consumed well before the fingers hit the shelves!
If you are getting peckish, check out Saint Peter, awarded ‘New Restaurant of the Year’ in the 2018 Good Food Awards. You can get a taste of it with the kids, as they serve take away fish and chips for around $20. Grab your takeaway and head to the Paddington Reservoir Gardens (the old Water Reservoir) at 251 Oxford Street, just 2 minutes from the library. Check out the space, it’s a relaxing haven right in the heart of the suburb. You can lounge on the chairs, dip your toes in the pond, or if you are organised kick a ball or swing a hula hoop. If you are there at sunset, go to the top level, and grab a sun lounge to watch the sunset over the city, while your kids run around on the grass lawn.
For dinner (or lunch) there are two great kid friendly options. Italian Bar, at 438 Oxford Street, serves tasty pizzas, antipasto and salads. The vibe is edgy and authentic… make your way downstairs to the outside courtyard that has a cool grape vine hanging from the trellis and a foosball table to entertain the kids while you sip on the vino.
Micky’s Cafe, at 268 Oxford Street, is an old fashioned diner that takes you back in time, with with big leather booth seating. Serving authentic milkshakes and thickshakes, Micky’s has an extensive kids menu to suit all tastes. Most days Micky’s has a $10 meal deal, and in the late afternoon a cocktail happy hour. Micky's has colouring in materials as well as plenty of board games and card games to keep the family busy.
Let us know if you have any more tips for Paddington!