Child-friendly dining in Ipswich
With two kids under five, child-friendly dining in Ipswich is a must. Eating out for our family is about convenience, it’s an opportunity to chill out and enjoy some family time and the most important reason of all, it’s so I don’t have to cook!
And let’s face it, when you eat out with kids, sometimes the ‘chill out’ part can be really difficult…unless you go somewhere that caters for kids. It certainly makes all the difference. So if you’re itching for a meal out with your family, here are some of my picks for child-friendly dining in Ipswich.
Queens Park Café
Queens Park Café is definitely one of my picks to visit when I have the kids and I need to escape the four walls of home. Not only is it over the road from Queens Park where I can wear out my son so he will sit still enough to have a bite to eat, the Queens Park Café is great if you have a pram, there’s plenty of room.
When my kids are having a good day and are happy to sit quietly for a couple of minutes, Queens Park Café is a perfect spot to enjoy the gorgeous outlook over Queens Park and listen to the birds while I imagine myself sipping a cocktail on some tropical island for a couple of minutes. But back to the kids and reality.
The menu has plenty of child-friendly options and buckets of crayons and colouring books are available to keep youngsters entertained, if only for the amount of time you need to drink your coffee or eat your lunch. And of course a visit to the Queens Park café isn’t complete without a ride on F-11 ride, toddlers love it.
Moselles Springfield Lakes
Originally the Lakeside Café, Moselles is fairly new to Ipswich and offers a mix of Vietnamese and Western cuisine. The outlook onto the main lake is very relaxing, but even more relaxing is the fact that parents can enjoy a meal while the kids play on the fenced playground right next to the restaurant. I would recommend securing an outdoor table if you want your kids to be able to play, that way they’re always in your view.
Journeys Kitchen and Bar
A local favourite, Journeys has a modern industrial feel and every time we’ve visited, has had a contagious upbeat vibe. If you’re visiting the Orion Lagoon and are looking for a trendy place to eat with your kids, Journeys is just a short walk up the grassy hill.
If you take an outdoor seat at Journeys, you will actually have a view down to the lagoon. Journeys has a childrens’ play corner to keep kids occupied as well as a kids menu. If you’ve got well-behaved kids and you think they deserve a treat, I hear the milkshake towers look pretty good – Nutella brownie, banoffee crush, cookies and cream….yum!!
Forty West Café
We’ve recently discovered Forty West Café and to us it’s a real winner. Located in the Providence Estate in South Ripley, Forty West Café overlooks the Splash ‘n’ Play Adventure Park. The first time I visited this café I had an ‘ahhh’ moment as I walked in, the first thing I saw were comfy lounge chairs looking out over the playground.
Combine that with a skinny cappuccino and I was all set. If you have older kids who are confident to play by themselves while you watch on from the café, lucky you. If you have younger kids that need closer supervision, don’t worry, the café and its relaxing vibes will be waiting for you when the kids are worn out.
Whether you’re looking for a coffee and cake on a play date, a family breakfast, lunch or early dinner, Forty West serves breakfast and lunch 7 days a week and dinner on Fridays. Oh, and in other good news, they’re licensed so you can enjoy a well-deserved drink over dinner.
116 Laneway Café
116 Laneway Café is a trendy little hideaway that you can easily miss if you don’t know it’s there. I recently learnt that this cool little place is Ipswich City’s home to crazy decadent milkshakes, milkshakes that look like a work of art. They’re the perfect treat after a visit to the Ipswich Art Gallery right next door. Seriously, do yourself a favour and check them out, it’s a whole lot of fun.
But 116 Laneway isn’t just all about their indulgent milkshakes, there’s plenty of healthy breakfast options, delicious smoothies, fresh and flavoursome salads, bagels, burgers, wraps and kids meals including mini toasties, an all-day mini breakfast, sweet muffins and scrambled eggs with croissants.
What’s great about this little laneway is not only the food but its trendy and eclectic feel and its consideration for families with a designated kids area with a kids table, blackboard and toys.
If you’re looking for a relaxed pub meal with your family, Yamanto Tavern is one of our favourites to do just that. The Yamanto Tavern not only has its own kids club where kids can enjoy birthday offers, member days and a free gift when you purchase a kids meal, the tavern also has an awesome playground right next to the outdoor eating area. It’s so easy to be able to enjoy your meal while your kids have fun on the fully enclosed playground.
Spring Lake Hotel
If a kids play room is on your checklist of ‘must haves’ when it comes to child-friendly dining, you can put a big fat tick next to Spring Lake Hotel. The Spring Lake Hotel has a huge outdoor playground as well as an indoor playroom. There’s definitely kids meals on offer at the Spring Lake Hotel and to sweeten the deal (pardon the pun), all kids meals include a free soft drink and ice block.