If you’re a parent you’ll know that food time is ALL the time when it comes to kids. You’ll also know it can be a challenge to feed the hungry hordes without breaking the bank. We put our tiny taste testers to work to find some great family friendly restaurants on the Gold Coast.
Have a Whale of a Time at Rainbow Bay Surf Club
Rainbow Bay Surf Club sits right beside the sea where you can spot whales (in season) and dolphins dancing on the waves while chowing down on nipper meals for just $9.90. Picking up a kids activity pack for $2 will be money well spent so you can enjoy your meal in peace or treat yourself to a lovely little glass of wine while watching the waves roll in. Afterwards, take the scooters for a burn, have a swim at the beach, walk up to Point Danger or give the beach-side playground a whirl – all are within an easy stroll.
Ahoy There Me Hearties
The Pirate Park at Palm Beach is a favourite with local mums blessed with little early risers. Let the kids play on the seafaring inspired playground with a full-sized pirate ship, treasure map and binoculars while you order your first coffee from a spritely 6am at Dune Café. When the shipmates get hungry, a quick dash across the park will reward them with mini-sized smoothies, wraps, rolls and bowls. There’s a choice to eat them in the sunny alfresco area outside the cafe or as a take-away back to the playground where sheltered table seating awaits. The dog beach is nearby too – so if you have one, BYO pooch. Open for breakfast and lunch seven days a week.
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Did Someone Say Pancake Stacks?
All-day-every-day-all-you-can-eat pancakes. Its music to your parents’ ears – especially with teens in tow. For just $9.99 they’ll keep the stacks coming at Pancake Diner at Coolangatta or Pancakes in Paradise in Surfers Paradise. And for a little extra you can add some of their favourite toppings into the mix too. Why not start a new family challenge? A family batter battle – who will eat the most pancakes and who will pikelet?
Better Together at The Collective
If you’re tired of arguments over what to have for dinner, you’ll love the neutral ground found at The Collective, Palm Beach. With five different kitchens to choose from, families can sample their way around the world and kids’ meals start from just $10. Book in early and load up the table with dining options from Italian, Mexican, Asian cuisine and more for a delightful family-friendly feast. Continue the “sharing is caring” mantra by taking a stroll across the road to the beach afterwards to watch the sun set together.
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New Kid on the Block – Chapter & Verse, JW Marriott
When the family wants to get a little bit fancy, we know just the place. The JW Marriot’s Chapter & Verse appreciates kids eat with their eyes, but like a little giggle too. They’ll love tucking into the Bees Knees Burger, or slurping down a bowl of Just Like Mamas Bolognese or perhaps Chicken Little will win the day? It’s affordable dining for a five-star hotel too, with meals starting from just $11. They can choose a treat from the ice cream cart after (additional cost) and why not take the luxury to the next level by checking in? There’s a fish filled reef waiting to be discovered in the pool along with water slides and a sandy beach that begs for sandcastles to be built on it.
Brunch All Day at BSKT
Pop the toddlers in the enclosed playground complete with chalkboard, mini climbing house, toys and slide while you take a BSKT break, enjoying great coffee and ample time to peruse the health-inspired menu based on local seasonal produce. Breakfast is served all day at this Nobby Beach nook, along with a range of delicious meals that sound as good as they look and taste. Rosemary & Hemp Seed crumbed chicken breast smothered in Miso Dijon Mayo with a side of Kale & Lime Asian Slaw with Edamame anyone? A kids’ menu is available starting from $10 and the frothy babycinos are a firm favourite with little ones.
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The Place to Playdate – Lonestar Tavern
Bring the whole family and arrange to meet friends at the Lonestar Tavern where all meals come with complimentary playground fun. Kids can choose from an indoor or outdoor play space within easy view of parents, who can relax and enjoy a few drinks with friends while deciding on whether to go the juicy steaks, fresh salads or succulent seafood. Kids meals are all $10 and come with a drink of their choice. Just try tearing them away from those playgrounds though…
Did Someone Say Kids Eat Free?
Yes we did, and you’ll be surprised when you learn of the location, nestled right beside the mansions in beach-side Hedges Avenue, otherwise known as Millionaire’s Row. But you won’t find pumped up prices here. No siree, Mermaid Beach Surf Club has kept it more than affordable with kids eating free every Monday night. Children can fuel up with big bowls spaghetti Bolognese along with other club favourites and afterwards, receive a free Zooper Dooper (icy pole). Parents will find it hard to go past the legendary parmies here and the beer battered Barramundi is legendary too. You’ll find a playground in front and one nestled right behind too and that famous stretch of million-dollar beach is just a skip across the road.
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