Although it is a lovely idea to go out for breakfast with your kids, unfortunately not every café has food that they will like. Some dishes may have too much "green stuff" on top or extras they will want to pull off before they take a little nibble to see if they even like it. Some kids may be happy with a baby chino and a piece of banana bread, whereas other kids may prefer pancakes, bacon, scrambled eggs or something more filling - without the chef doing anything too fancy to it. The following options are some of the cafes that our family have discovered around the region that have plenty of options to choose from - some even have a playground or colouring-in to brighten up their morning - and yours!
Where is your favourite breakfast café to take the kids? Please leave a comment at the top of this article and share your local tips. When you have hungry kids on your hands, the more ideas the better!
Colour, pigs & options for kids at Little Oink, Cook shops. Image: Original photos from Little Oink Facebook
Little Oink is a small café and a tucked-away local's secret at Cook shops, north of the city. It may be small in size but it is big on colour, pigs, delicious food for kids (and adults!) and a handy kid's corner for the littlies. There are three breakfast options on the Kids Menu, as well as other tasty treats on the counter. See here for details.
Capital Pancakes, formally the Pancake Parlour, is an old-school favourite located in the city centre. It is perfect for a cold winter's morning, as you walk downstairs into a cosy pancake haven for a sweet breakfast and colouring-in, whilst sitting in a booth. It is also handy if you have early-risers, as it opens at 7am every morning. See here for details.
Caffe Cherry Beans is a franchise café with nine locations all across Canberra. It is a favourite café with many families due its delicious food, locations inside shopping centres and variety of affordable options for both adults and kids. Littlies can choose from eggs on toast, muffins, toasted croissants, pancakes, baked treats from the counter, milkshakes, juices and of course baby chino's with marshmallows! They have a photo menu which helps kids choose what they want visually. Popular Caffe Cherry Beans are at the Canberra Outlet Centre (outside Monkey Mania), Woden Westfield (outside the toddler Playworld) and Majura Park shopping centre (outside Lollypop's Playland). See here for details.
A delicious breakfast for the whole family at Caffe Cherry Beans, Woden
Rodney's Café and Tulips Café are both located in plant nurseries on Beltana Street in Pialligo, near Canberra Airport. Both cafes are designed with children in mind, with outdoor play areas and plenty of shade on a hot summer's day. Rodney's Café is the biggest out of the two with separate dining areas, a large playground under the trees and a convenient coffee stand near the playground on weekends. See the websites for Rodney's Café and Tulips Café for more details. Also see the article Quick List: 3 Cafes with Playgrounds in Canberra, which includes them both.
The Kingston Foreshore is a scenic location on Lake Burley Griffin with a long row of waterfront cafes, restaurants and bars with a view. Although none of the cafes are particularly child-focussed in terms of menus or colouring-in activities, they all welcome families and have high chairs for the littlies. The foreshore itself is a fun walkway for kids, with stairs to climb up, walls to walk along, bridges to walk over and swans to admire on the water (although the jetty walkways have no fences, so be careful with toddlers). Our favourite spots to stop off at are Remedy for takeaway hot drinks and toasties to sit by the water with and Local Press café, for healthy smoothies and muffins.
Watch the kayakers and swans glide by, then walk along the foreshore and choose a breakfast cafe...
Dobinson's Bakery and Café is located in Bunda Street in the city centre and is popular with families as it has reasonable prices, a good-sized outdoor eating area and options for the kids including toast with vegemite and a whole display cabinet of sweet and savoury bakery items. Warning for the sweet tooths - you won't be able to leave without buying cakes to take away for morning tea! See here for details.
Canberra is a family-friendly city, so there are literally hundreds of cafes to choose from around the city. These are the ones our family have enjoyed - where is your favourite? Please leave a comment at the top of this article and let us know where you go back to time and time again. Any café which fills up their little tummies and puts smiles on their faces at the start of the weekend is a winner in every parent's book. Where will you be getting your coffee fix (and baby chino) this weekend?
Relax outdoors at the colourful Dobinson's, in the city centre. Image: Original photos from Dobinson's Facebook