Where to Eat With Kids on the Gold Coast

Where to Eat With Kids on the Gold Coast

18 Oct 2023

If you’re bringing kids here on holiday then Gold Coast family friendly restaurants will be at the top of your hit list. Keep the clan well-fed and fuelled up for fun times at cafés with playgrounds close by, alfresco venues with room to run around and beachfront bistros serving up delicious children’s menu options. Even the fussy eaters will find something to munch on!

Below are some of the best family friendly restaurants Gold Coast has got to offer, for breakfast, lunch and dinner.


Dune Cafe  |  Palm Beach

Yo ho ho! Who’s up for breakfast in the pirate park? Dune Café at Palm Beach Parklands sits right next to a gigantic ship that pocket-sized pirates can play on (pictured) while their bacon and egg sliders are cooking. And best bring your bathers for a post-breakfast dip in the beautiful lagoon which the outdoor tables overlook. 

Signature sourdough toast and excellent coffee make this the perfect place for for a family brunch or morning tea. It's right next to one of the Gold Coast's favourite dog beaches so salty sea dogs are welcome too. (Image: Tourism & Events Queensland)

Where: Palm Beach Parklands, 945 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach

Sandbar  | Surfers Paradise

Spread out, relax, soak up some sunshine and settle in for a big breakfast at this beachfront Sandbar with a quirky menu offering smoothie bowls, pancakes, toasties and super shakes. We hope you’re not in a hurry as it might take the rugrats a little while to choose.

Where: 52 The Esplanade, Surfers Paradise 

BSKT Cafe  |  Mermaid Beach

BSKT is a bit of an icon on the coast, famous for serving up organic, gluten-free deliciousness with a family-friendly vibe. Throw the kids into the fun play area while you sit back with a matcha latte and try to choose between the Cocowhip breakfast bowl and a BSKT Healthy Eggs Benny.

Where: 4 Lavarack Rd, Mermaid Beach

Randy Wallhole  |  Southport 

Call dibs on ‘Randys’ bright orange couch in this cute hole-in-the-wall café where you can tuck into bagels, eight different kinds of jaffles and kid-faves like Coco Pops and Fruit Loop bowls. Wash it all down with Toby’s Estate coffee and chocolate brownie milkshakes. What a way to start the day!

Where: 21 Nind St, Southport

Custard Canteen  | Palm Beach

After a morning splash and paddle in Tallebudgera Creek treat the family to a welcome breakky or morning tea at Custard Canteen. With lots of outdoor seating, sandy feet are fine at this laidback cafe, which is famous for their Portugese Tarts. Find a spot under the striped umbrellas and tuck into to heavenly menu items like Butter Boy Benny (eggs, bacon and hollandaise on a toasted croissant), burgers, muffins and decadent cookies.(Pictured main image, courtesy of Toursim & Events Queensland.)

Where: 1525 Gold Coast Hwy, Palm Beach

Next Door Espresso  |  Tweed Heads South

If you find yourself down the Southern end of the GC, this cool neighbourhood café Next Door Espresso will certainly hit the spot. With a delicious seasonal menu and a glimpse of the Terranora Creek, the kids will love a seat under the beach umbrellas for a divine apple crumble porridge or organic brioche french toast. Mum and dad will also love the smooth, local roast Moonshine Coffee and an ‘old mate benny’ – it’s a win-win.

Where: 56 Dry Dock Road, Tweed Heads South

Pancakes in Paradise | Surfers Paradise

You won’t have to ask kids twice if they want to eat at Pancakes in Paradise - the answer will always be YES! Get your day off to a flippin' good start with a stack of Canadian buttermilk pancakes and an expansive breakky menu, or make a meal of it for lunch. Choose from kid-friendly dining like nachos, hot dogs, chicken schnitzel, burgers and a decadent dessert menu featuring creative pancake combos.

Where: 3046 Surfers Paradise Blvd, Surfers Paradise



The Collective  | Palm Beach

If you’re tired of arguments over what to have for dinner, you’ll love The Collective in Palm Beach. You can order anything off the multiple menus of five different restaurants under one roof. It’s an innovative way to dine which works perfectly when everybody wants to eat something different.

Book in early and load up the table with dining options from Italian, Mexican, Asian cuisine and more for a delightful family-friendly feast (kids’ meals start from just $10). Take a stroll across the road afterwards to burn off some energy on the beach and watch the sunset together.

Where: 1128 Gold Coast Hwy, Palm Beach

Surf Clubs

Our surf clubs have it all when it comes to laid-back family lunching. Order schooners and slushies and sit back and watch the surf while the kitchen whips up classic seaside bistro fare. From north to south, they’re all pretty great. Take your pick.

Beach BBQ 

Get ready to throw another prawn on the barbie, Gold Coast style. Our coastline is dotted with shady forshore parklands offering free BBQ facilities, so why not assemble an esky of snags, tomato sauce, buns and icy beverages and set the family up beachside for an easy Aussie lunch? Chose from our top 10 GC picnic spots.

Gemelli Italian | Broadbeach

For the best pizza and pasta in town, our pick is Gemelli Italian, where brothers Paul, Alec and James will treat you to their brand of homestyle, handmade Italian goodness. Small peeps can choose from the kids’ meals – which include a scoop of gelato – or they can tackle a metre long pizza. Delizioso!

Where: 2/2685 Gold Coast Hwy, Broadbeach

Tarte Bakery and Cafe | Burleigh Heads

The Parisian style bakery in Burleigh Heads boasts an incredible pastry selection plus luxe lunch options and all day breakfast, which is always a hit with kids. 


Take a seat on the sunny sidewalk terrace for an a la carte menu that includes toasties, cheeseburger, soup or salad and munch as you watch passing pedestrians. Or choose from Tarte's delish takeaway options including gourmet bagels, sandwiches and smoothies. With beachfront parklands and playgrounds a short walk away, load it all into the pram for a  picnic where the kids can run free. Check out their incredible Tarte Beachhouse in Currumbin too. (Image: Tourism & Events Queensland)


Where: 1748 Gold Coast Hwy, Burleigh Heads

Theme Park Eats


Our theme parks have progressed waaaaay beyond hot chips and dagwood dogs (though you can still get ‘em if you want ‘em). These days the parks serve up gourmet, gluten-free and all things gluttonous and GOOD. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.

Hinterland Pubs

Our Hinterland serves up some stellar pub lunches, from The Bearded Dragon in Tamborine (where the mini wildlife warriors can meet snakes and lizards), to Eagle Heights Tavern overlooking the coast and the Wattle Hotel at Oxenford – home to a kids play area that will keep them busy long enough for you to enjoy your ‘parmy’ and chips in peace.

Closer to the coast, Mermaid Beach Tavern, The Dog and Parrot Robina and Benowa Tavern also have kids play areas to keep the little ones busy, and a great pub feed to boot.


Paradise Centre  |  Surfers Paradise 

At the beach end of Cavill Ave the Paradise Centre presents a tempting selection of food options for hungry families. Dine at kid friendly restaurants like TGI Fridays, El Camino Cantima or Wahlburgers or Hero Sushi. And for dessert, it’s icecream cones all round with both Ben & Jerry’s and Gelato Messina serving up scrupmtions scoops of creamy confection. Take a wander down Cavill Ave after dinner to enjoy some entertainment from the local buskers and see Surfers Paradise all a-sparkle at night. 


Where: 2 Cavill Ave, Surfers Paradise


Gold Coast Burgers

We can’t think of a better option than a scrumptious burger loaded with all the good stuff. It’s a cuisine universally loved by kids, and exactly what they need after an action-packed, sun-drenched day on the Gold Coast. Bring the fam and tuck in the Gold Coast's best burgers.

Bazaar, QT Hotel  |  Surfers Paradise  

What kid (and adult) doesn’t love a buffet? This one is rated the best on the coast. Bazaar’s marketplace-style set up offers made-to-order dishes, a dumpling station, delicious salads, slow roasted meats, seafood galore and a dessert bar that’ll have the mini food critics mesmerised. Book a family table and make sure dad wears his elastic-waisted pants.

Where: 7 Staghorn Ave, Surfers Paradise 

Surf Clubs

Family dining at it's finest, with ocean views to boot. With budget friendly prices and excellent children's menus, Gold Coast surf clubs are the perfect choice for an easy, casual breakfast, lunch or dinner. The added bonus is that they’re all very close to beaches, playground and outdoor areas.  Palm Beach Surf Club, Tallebudgera Surf Club and Kurrawa are all famiy faves.


Longboards Laidback Eatery & Bar | Surfers Paradise

As the name suggests, this is casual, family friendly dining at its finest. The surf-themed restaurant is positioned poolside under the iconic Q1 building. Keep kids happy at Longboards with garlic bread, popcorn chicken and fries, and a dedicated menu for little ones, which includes a drink. Grown ups can tuck into a juicy burger (choose from beef, pork, chicken or vegetarian) plus cocktail jugs, frosty beers and specials almost every day of the week.

Where: 9 Hamilton Ave, Surfers Paradise 


Miami Rice  |  Miami

Located underneath The Outrigger Resort lies this hidden Asian Fusion gem, Miami Rice. With a super friendly environment, fast service and a great selection of tasty Chinese and Malaysian dishes – some say the best on the coast – even the fussiest of eaters will be pleased. The little ones will love the authentic experience and of course, the deep-fried ice cream to finish things off.

Where: 2007 Gold Coast Hwy, Miami 

Beach Burrito  |  Coolangatta  

You don’t have to wait until Taco Tuesday to enjoy this Mexican delight, Beach Burrito. With an affordable menu offering, the family can relish over Californian inspired traditional faves, like pulled pork or shredded beef tacos starting from just $6 each. The casual dress code (where thongs are totally acceptable) and beautiful ocean view – as the name suggests – makes for a perfect end to an action-packed outing or relaxing beach day.

Where: 72/80 Marine Pde, Coolangatta

Gold Coast offers an enchanting blend of natural beauty, great weather, family-friendly attractions and delightful dining experiences. For more wonders and insider tips, explore the Destination Gold Coast blog. Pack your appetite for adventure and embark on an unforgettable culinary escapade. Your next family-friendly dining delight awaits! 

Ashleigh Bailey
Ashleigh Bailey

As a newcomer to the Gold Coast tourism scene, Ashleigh is a lover of exploring and sharing all things the beautiful Gold Coast landscape has to offer. You’ll find her a regular amongst the local café scene and the scenic beach breaks. And when’s she’s not writing and practising her craft as an avid Digital Marketing Professional, she enjoys relaxing at her home in the GC’s southern neighbour of Tweed Heads.


Destination Gold Coast acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we are situated, the Kombumerri families of the Yugambeh Language Region. 
We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging, and recognise their continuing connections to the lands, waters and their extended communities throughout Southeast Queensland.