Cross the border for this riverside, dog friendly cafe
Riverbank of Queanbeyan is a riverside café perched on the side of a hill overlooking Queanbeyan River. From Canberra's CBD it takes 20 minutes to get to Queanbeyan, over the border into NSW. This historical city was established in the early 1800's with an intriguing convict, bushranger and wheat farming history. It was a thriving city and farming community established long before Canberra was chosen as the site of Australia's capital city.
In our family's exploration of the area, we have often driven over the main bridge in Queanbeyan and looked over to this riverside café and commented on its sunny location. On a windy day in autumn, we decided to stop in and find our own spot in the sun.
If you wish to sit inside in the cooler months, the owners close off the small inside paved area and position heaters near the tables to make it comfortable all year around.
Around the side of the café is a peaceful place to sit with tables for two or four in this scenic garden setting. For some summer shade, an ideal place to sit is under the small pergola at the back of the outdoor seating area, with hanging greenery shading your position. This outside area is also a great spot if you are popping in for a coffee whilst walking your dog along the river path. There is even a menu for the pooches, with Poochy Pasta, Canine Chook Bits and Homemade Dog Biscuits for $4.50 a serve.
The outside deck area is the ideal place to sit to catch some sun and enjoy the views down to the river. There are a few tables to sit at and a relaxing lounge to also enjoy a coffee in style. At the time of writing there is a construction zone on the other side of the river, with bulldozers and work taking place. On completion, this will become a new and improved Queen Elizabeth Park, with new playgrounds and a foreshore area for the community to enjoy.
The Riverbank of Queanbeyan doesn't have a website or Facebook page, however the following is a sample of what is on offer on their extensive menu, as of May 2016.
Breakfast is served until 12pm and includes Doorstop Toast with condiments ($6.50), The Ducks Nuts Brekkie Roll ($15.50), French Toast ($14.50 - $16.50), Breakfast Benedict ($18.50), Buttermilk Pancakes with Berry Compote ($19.50) and The Riverbank Breakfast ($21.50).
The Snack Menu is available all day and includes focaccia's ($12.50), nachos ($16.50), pizzas ($12 a serve) or a Trio of Dips ($12.50) or you could choose an entrée from the main menu. Children's meals include chicken nuggets, pasta, chips or fairy bread and come with a small milkshake or juice, ranging between $6 - $10.50.
Extensive Breakfast and Snack menus, May 2016
The separate Entrée and Lunch Menu has a restaurant selection with entrees including Soup of the Day ($11.50), Coconut Prawns ($16) and Bruschetta ($14.50) and main meals such as Pumpkin and Chickpea Curry ($19.50), Prawn and Calamari Salad ($20.50) and Lamb Cutlets, Rosemary and Cherry Tomato ($24.50).
Extensive Entrée and Main meal menus, May 2016
On our family's visit, we were eager to warm up with a steaming hot drink and sugary cake, with several tasty choices in their display cabinet. With scones, carrot cake, cheesecakes, tarts and brownies, there is a good selection to enjoy a sweet treat with a view.
Inside there is a small gallery and gift shop with local artworks and handmade items by local artists. The inside of this quaint café isn't large, however it makes up for this with friendly service and some handy local knowledge about the area.
The Riverbank of Queanbeyan is a pleasant spot to sit to enjoy a cuppa and a cake, or try something more substantial from the menu. On our visit, locals were enjoying their lunchtime meals with a glass of wine and enjoying the view and atmosphere. The popularity of this café comes from word of mouth around the community and by those spotting it as they drive across the nearby bridge. With such a unique position on the river and with a new modern parkland soon to look at over the water, the Riverbank of Queanbeyan will continue to be a popular venue for all to enjoy.
If you are visiting with kids, the local parks also have a lot to offer, as well as the many sculptures to enjoy at Ray Morton Park nearby and along the riverside walk in front of the cafe.
Platypus by local artist Neil Dickinson, along the riverside walk