Top Cafes with a Kids Play Area
Contrary to popular belief, taking kids out to eat can be both fun and relaxing. It’s all about finding the right place. First, you need somewhere that has the right attitude. Find a place that appreciates when your boisterous kids burst into song, or even into tears. You’d be surprised how many actually do, and you don’t need to give up on going somewhere ‘nice’. Second, choose a café with its own play area and BOOM, your kids will love it and you get to sit and enjoy a delicious meal, without cooking or washing up.
Here are our favourite cafes with a play area in Sydney.
Eat N Chill Café, Naremburn
If you are after a serious dose of healthy, pop into the Eat N Chill Cafe (formerly Sprout Wholefoods Café). You don’t need to worry about children being tempted by sugary or fried foods here, with a kids menu of delicious treats with no processed foods or refined sugar. For breakfast they offer meals like buckwheat pancakes with sugar-free ice cream and lunches are along the lines of baby brown rice nori rolls or hummus with veggie sticks and rice crisp-bread. There is a grassy area out the back for the kids to play which features a cubby house and play car, so mums and dads can enjoy their wholesome meals and Little Marionette coffee in peace.
Double Roasters, Marrickville
Great food, great (single origin) coffee and a beautiful oasis out the back with sunshine, succulents and a brand new cubby house with slide for the kids. What's not to love about Double Roasters? The kid's menu is cheap and cheerful, including cheese and ham toasties and Turkish toast with jam, while adults will love the banana bread with caramelised banana and ricotta.
Twinkle Kids Cafe, Burwood
While this one is more of a play centre that charges entry, it also has a great cafe - and as a bonus, you receive a $4 credit to spend in it. Hello, coffee! The kids are in absolute heaven at Twinkle with a huge colourful ball pit to jump in, slides, a multi-level enclosed play structure, dress-ups and dedicated baby areas. Make sure you wear socks yourself because parents are expected to ditch the shoes too! It can be hectic on a weekend so try mid-week (it's cheaper too). Located in Burwood Plaza (not Westfield!) which is like stepping back in time, I dig it.
Vanilla Cream Cafe, Annangrove
Hidden away within the historic Amaroo Park, in Annangrove, families from the Hills District are loving Vanilla Cream Cafe. Not only does it have a cute play area and cubby house for the kids, it also has a delicious range of sweets and desserts freshly made on the premises. But don't take our word for it, locals have been raving about owner and baker Kerry's 'Vanilla Cream Collections' baked goods for years.
Tradies, Caringbah and Gymea
Become a member at Tradies so kids can play in the super fun Max’s World themed kids clubs. Staff will lead activities like painting and crafts as well as games and movies in a fun and stimulating environment at Tradies Gymea’s Willow, Caringbah's The Loft and Helensburgh’s Flame Tree Grill restaurants. That's right - you can leave your kids (aged 3-12) to be looked after by qualified carers while you dine. Don’t forget to make a booking!
Lab Kitchen, Five Dock
Lab Kitchen is an unassuming cafe that has a delightful surprise out the back. A backyard complete with swingset, slides, bikes, books and toys galore. Apartment dwelling kids of the inner-west will love spending time here while their parents enjoy a coffee and a bite from the Korean-Aussie fusion menu.
Shuk, North Bondi
Tucked away in a quiet suburban street, this café/deli/bakery is taking North Bondi by storm with its Israeli-inspired menu and freshly baked delights. It’s easy to miss the play area at Shuk, but walk past the main entrance and push open the back door to find a courtyard with a kids oasis in the middle. It is fenced and can be seen from any of the tables. The play space is suitable for babies and toddlers and includes a kids’ sized table so little ones can munch on the go. There is a small kids menu and they are open breakfast lunch and dinner.
Cafe 2773, Glenbrook
Created with families in mind, Café 2773 has a large grassy area with a cubby house and a little farm with miniature pigs, chickens and a veggie patch. If the sun is shining, grab a blanket and enjoy a picnic on the grass. The all-day breakfast menu offers everything from “hipster fritters” to the “the caveman” and there is an extensive lunch and dinner menu including burgers and salads using local produce where possible. At nights and on weekends they also serve pizzas and they even roast their own coffee. If you’re not a local, this is the perfect leg-stretcher on your next trip to the Blue Mountains.
The play space here is contained in a room off the back terrace, so you’ll need to grab a table out there to keep an eye on the kids. The menu at Bitton is described as French-Australian so it’s a great excuse to indulge in a crepe or a cheese plate and glass of wine. The kids’ menu (or menu pour enfants) is just a little bit posh, with things you’d imagine your kids eating in Paris, and they have babycinos, baby milkshakes and baby smoothies. And if you amour Bitton, you can hire the terrace for your next birthday party or function. If your little bundle of energy tires of the play space, grab a takeaway and head to the park and playground right across the road.
Crayz Espresso, Matraville
The ambience here is welcoming, just like the staff and the smell of homemade muffins. The play area at Crayz Espresso will be especially popular with arty-crafty types, with everything budding artists need, including frames on the wall for displaying their masterpiece. The selection of jaffles are a popular choice with kids and the burgers at lunchtime are known to be delicious. Grab a meal, or just a coffee and one of those oh-too-tempting muffins and watch the kids creating away in this neighbourhood gem.
Flower Power, Terrey Hills
The Vines at Flower Power garden centre is a favourite amongst the kids of Terrey Hills. Once you're done checking out the flowers, kids and parents will love hanging out in the cafe, where they can enjoy lunch and a play in the playground. There's also a great one in Milperra which has a Frankies Food Factory in it - and real ducks!
While Ikea is some parent’s idea of hell, it can actually be quite a fun outing as long as you don’t have much actual shopping to do. The restaurant and café are set up perfectly for families. Kids’ meals of meat, chicken or veggie balls and mash are under $4, and they have plastic everything and high chairs galore, not to mention heaps of space. Head to the centre of the dining room where a round play area keeps kids entertained and contained at once. They also have drawing up the back when it’s busy. Just near the restaurant is the children’s section of the store, where there are a few tents set up and children can play, while you sneakily grab a few things. The toys and art supplies are really good value - great to tuck away for Christmas or last-minute gifts.
Chow Bella Cafe, Lidcombe
Have a play and a feast at the kid-friendly Chow Bella Cafe. It is a spacious cafe with a decadent desserts display, a menu of international cuisine (featuring the likes of Korean fried chicken burger, spaghetti bolognese and the indulgent Nutella Bomb milkshake) and the highlight: a shaded outdoor play area. Mums can sit near the play area and have a chat in peace whilst kids are happily occupied. Read our review about Playing And Feasting At Chow Bella Cafe.
Flying Swallow, Bonnet Bay
Situated in Bonnet Bay in the Sutherland Shire, Flying Swallow is a child-friendly, Asian-fusion cafe with a fantastic indoor play area, serving coffee and brunch menu in the mornings, including pancakes, bacon and eggs, a toastie and muesli - all for $7.80 each. There is also a selection of Dim Sims all day, and a relaxed evening atmosphere, suitable for family dinners and casual catch-ups with friends.
Mowbray Eatery, Lane Cove North
Image via inthecove.com.au
A modern, child-friendly café, Mowbray Eatery has an impressive menu for adults and kids and a cute fenced playground, with play equipment on a soft ground which is perfect for preschoolers. Grab a table on the deck for a full view of the play area while you sip on your Toby’s Estate brew! They also do delicious homemade treats like homemade biscuits and muffins.
Little Rock Cafe, Baulkham Hills
Little Rock Café has a fun, easy-going atmosphere that makes it a winner when grabbing a coffee with kids in tow. The kid's menu has a range of choices for both breakfast and lunch including their popular old school spiders! The gated, all-inclusive play space is outdoors but undercover, and best suited for under 5s. You can keep an eye on the kids from an outdoor table, plus there is a range of children’s books available to read at the table while waiting for a meal.
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Jul 19 2019
Flying Swallow in Bonnet Bay is a hidden gem in the Sutherland Shire. There is a park nearby and they have a kids play area too! Worth a visit!
Nov 07 2016
Ruby niks at Miranda Westfield is great too with a generous size play area and good menu
Jan 05 2016
Stain Cafe @ Lane Cove Excellent food with a fenced playground. Also right next to the library where we go first to borrow some books & toys