The festive season is upon us and that means that the child-friendly holiday entertainment needs to be planned. Don’t panic, we’ve got you covered with a list of fun, exciting eateries the whole family can enjoy. Boasting everything from sand pits to seaside swings, this list of family restaurants with kiddies’ playgrounds and tasty mini menus are bound to keep the little ones busy while you enjoy a rested lunch and that much-needed glass of vino.
A Churrasqueira (Brackenhurst)
In its still-new location, this famous, authentic Portuguese restaurant is popular for peri-peri chicken and prawns. The kids’ menu offers items like fish fingers and chips, and beef sausages, and the ultra-modern play gyms and a race track in the playground gardens will help them work up an appetite. There are also milkshakes, not just for the children but delicious ones inspired by Magnum ice creams for the adults.
Angelo’s Kitchen (Bryanston)
In Italian tradition, the whole family is welcomed here. The little ones are supervised outside in the playground with its jungle gym and jumping castle. Children are also invited to assemble their own pizzas.
The children’s ages are taken at the gate and thereafter they’re introduced to their age-specific, miraculously designed four-storey playgrounds. (Suitable for children aged from six months to 12 years.) The friendly child minders ensure they’re in good hands. Parents can relax with a glass of wine on the big stoep while their children engage in sand art, finger painting and clay moulding. Inside is a media room, with all the mod cons: PlayStation, Wii, Xbox and movies. The library is stocked with deliciously interactive books and there is lots of comfy seating. The food is good here, too, for adults and kids.
Delta Café (Craighall)
Delta Park offers seemingly endless playing, running and gambolling in a natural, veld paradise, where it’s easy to forget you’re in the city. There’s a jungle gym, plus horses and ponies for riding. The café is cute, with a kids’ menu featuring beloved burgers, sliders, pastas and ice creams. For adults, the breakfasts are really good.
Happily Ever Laughter (Bedfordview)
The entire place was created for children and their families. The garden is a wonder world of brightly coloured, safe features like mushroom houses, twirly slides, a plastic-bikes track, a selection of good toys and set-ups. The menu is very stylish, including a sushi section, and the breakfasts are fabulous. Kids’ dreams will come true with all their favourite dishes, starting with scrambled eggs, fish fingers, spag bol, pancakes and milkshakes in jars. Parents can look out from the deck while their offspring have a really good time.
Moyo (Zoo Lake)
This is a great setting. The face painting is for everyone, but children love it most. The youngest members of the family can also learn African dancing, enjoy crafts, play morabaraba (a strategic board game) and have African stories read to them. The food is best ordered platter style by adults under the umbrellas or from the buffet over weekends. The kids will be happy with their Bolognese, wors and chips, sliders and other clever dishes, along with milkshake-sodas.
Ri’stretto Al Fresco Cucina (Morningside)
You can generally rely on Italian restaurants to encourage whole-family meal attendance and enjoyment. This was once Papachinos, so it has a history of welcoming bambinos. The large outdoor play area has slides and there are child minders to help. Children can create their own pizzas, or go for faves like toasted cheese and chips or mince with sweet potato. The breakfast menu is wonderful for adults and the pizzas, breads and sandwiches are good, too.
The Silver Birch Restaurant (Randpark Ridge)
This famous tea garden is known for scones, jam and cream, among other delights. There are many ways to use the place and many seating areas. People with children like to be in the thatch lapa, if not in the kids’ area. The latter is a big, monitored playground, well equipped with a giant jungle gym, slide and jumping castle. The child minders are wonderfully experienced and everything is under CCTV cameras as well. Kids will love the pizza-making experience or one of the 16 amazing meals on their menu.
The garden is well established and adorned with a play area, so parents can spend hours sitting under the trees indulging in the scrumptious food. Make sure you’re there early on a Saturday, though, this place is very popular. Parents can expect classics with a South African twist like boerewors rolls with pancetta, tomato smoor and horseradish cream, while the Tots and Tantrums menu is well known and loved by kids. They can look forward to toasted sandwiches, spaghetti, ice cream floats and goodies like Sticks and Stacks, a snack platter for kids filled with carrot batons, cucumber sticks, sliced smoked chicken and sliced panini.
The Blue Crane (New Muckleneuk)
Blue Crane has recently had a revamp; the play area has been upgraded, too, with new jungle gyms. The stunning location, enclosed on a nature reserve, is perfect spot for parents to enjoy delicious food while their little ones are safely playing a few steps away. The kids’ menu includes the usual suspects: toasted sandwiches, fish fingers and burgers. For bigger appetites, there are South African delights like bobotie spring rolls, oxtail and lamb curry. Their milk tart also happens to be one of the best in the city.
While their other branches aren’t suitable for kids, this store caters for little tots with a beautiful, modern play area. The brightly coloured jungle gym is big and beautifully maintained. The menu offers classic Crawdaddy’s meals like jalapeño cheese steaks, chowder and generous seafood platters, while kids can enjoy ribs and calamari.
This popular spot for families across Pretoria is known for delicious pizzas, generous portions and fantastic child-friendly facilities. Their playgrounds are designated for different age groups with friendly child minders and well-maintained equipment. Make sure to send your kids to the pizza-making section where they get to roll out, decorate and bake their own pizzas. The menu includes everything from thin-crust pizzas to burgers, steaks and wraps, while the extensive kids’ selection includes breakfast options, hot dogs, a few pasta dishes, crispy chicken, ribs and calamari.
Toni’s Fully Furnished Pizza Company (Menlo Park)
Parents from across the capital bring their kids to play on the beautiful jungle gyms while they get to relax with a cup of coffee (or something a little stronger) and eat some of the city’s most delicious pizza. The kids’ menu includes childhood favourites like Hawaiian pizza and spaghetti Bolognese.
Willow Feather Farm (Irene)
Children are encouraged to run and play on the expansive lawns and get to know a variety of farm animals, from potbelly pigs to llamas. The tea garden is open from 8am to 5pm daily; parents can look forward to standard tea-garden fodder like a variety of quiches, salads and fresh bakes, while the ‘piglets’ can feast on chicken nuggets, burgers or the healthy box of fresh fruit, mini cheeses, vegetables and grilled chicken strips.
Arts Café (Glenwood)
A supervised play area and kiddies’ menu will appeal to parents and little ones alike.
Blue Zoo (Berea)
The scenic outdoor seating area overlooks a jungle gym, swings, a play house, sand-art area and play tables. A children’s menu offers everything from mini breakfasts and toasted sarmies to fruit skewers and waffles.
The venue offers a child-friendly menu along with a secure, supervised play area and an animal farm. Other activities include sand art. Parents can pampers themselves at the hair and beauty salon or enjoy a cuppa and light lunch while the little ones play.
Chez Nous (Westville)
A spacious indoor play room is supervised by a child minder and offers a host of activities, including games, Xbox, comfy bean bags and movies. Children will receive a toy on departure with every meal ordered from the kiddies’ menu.
Circus Circus Beach Café (Snell Parade)
A secure area on the beach allows children to play; there’s a jungle gym, sandpit and a kiddies’ menu. Please note they do not host children’s parties.
The Giba Café (Pinetown)
Located within the Giba Gorge Mountain Bike Park, this healthy café offers a kiddies’ menu as well as the numerous activities taking place in the park. These include an obstacle course, water activities and more. (Entrance fees apply.)
La Piazza (Ballito)
This North Coast restaurant offers both an outdoor and indoor play area for the littlies. The large grassy lawn boasts a giant, bright-orange royal palace where the kids can climb and slide to their hearts’ content. Indoors, let them enjoy a pizza-making class while you sample Italian fish dishes, pastas, pizzas, or specialities like osso bucco and pan-seared duck.
Lucky Bean (Assagay)
In addition to a kiddies’ menu, this magical family venue caters to children aged six and below with a large indoor play shed, play garden, babies’ play area, three fantasy playhouses and more. Entrance is free for adults, R20 for the first child and R15 for each child from the same family. The venue is also hosting a special holiday programme with activities like marshmallow decorating, playdough workshops, and fridge magnet sand-art.
Nonna at Makaranga (Kloof)
Nonna invites children to run and play with a large stretch of astro turf, an outdoor playground with a natural timber gym, and a special eating area, where they can roll their own pizza dough and partake in a range of arts and crafts. All play areas are in close proximity to the restaurant so parents can keep an eye out. Pizzas here will keep the whole family happy.
All Olive & Oil branches cater to children with a designated kiddies’ room featuring DVD players, PlayStation, Lego, colouring books and more. In addition to a great kiddies’ menu, kids under the age of 12 can eat for free on Sundays. (One child per adult ordering off the main à la carte menu.)
Pallet Jacks (Hillcrest)
Unique decorations at this family-oriented restaurant include an enormous indoor play area for the kiddies, complete with fake grass. Large, colourful enclosed slides, ladders and giant aircraft add some bright excitement for the young ones. Toddlers have their own separate play area, so the older kids can enjoy the jungle gym, toy-car racing and tunnel sliding. Cheesy wood-fired pizzas and homemade pastas keep everyone’s hunger at bay.
People’s Park Café (Moses Mabhida Stadium)
As this sidewalk café is positioned right across from a large playground, kids can enjoy a number of fun facilities including a jungle gym, swings, an interactive fountain and kiddies’ bikes to rent. A kiddies’ menu is also available.
Piggly Wiggly (Midlands)
The kids will love the large outside play area with a jungle gym and swings, while the putt-putt course and candle-dipping activities will appeal to the whole family. A limited kiddies’ menu is available but pizzas and burgers will also fill tummies.
Prep Room (Glenwood)
A grassy playground for the little ones completes the scene at this new family-friendly spot. The small kiddies’ menu includes dippy eggs and soldiers, burgers and fries, and creamy milkshakes. You can also hire out the venue for parties.
Sage Café (Salt Rock)
The centre has a fun play area, fantasy play houses and sand art to keep the young ones entertained. The kiddies’ menu offers hearty breakfasts and lunches including sausages and chips, spaghetti Bolognese and toasted sandwiches.
The Shed (Salt Rock)
The restaurant is housed in a refurbished shed, making it perfect for enjoying the sunny weather. Find a seat at the high bar tables or grab a shadier spot overlooking the litchi orchard. It’s relaxing and comfortable with rolling lawns for little kiddies to play on. Keep the hunger at bay with pizzas and milkshakes.
Waterberry Coffee Shoppe (Ballito)
A kiddies’ menu features adorable items like ‘Micky’s rumbly tummy melted cheese on toast’, ‘Candy’s bestest flapjacks and syrup’, and ‘Maddison’s chicky strips and chips’ while a jungle gym and sand art activities give parents a few hours off.
Yellowwood Café (Howick)
A large garden area, jungle gym, and a family of miniature horses, pigs and other farm animals will delight children of all ages. They also have a small bike track and a large children’s menu.
The playrooms are equipped with PlayStations, DVD players, flat screens and other toys. There is also an indoor jungle gym and dedicated child minder.
Blue Water Café (Imhoff Farm)
The rolling lawns at this daytime spot are perfect for the little ones. A jungle gym, camel rides, face painting, farmyard visits, and paint ball are all available on the premises. A tasty kiddies menu is also available and the space is able to host fun birthday parties.
Bon Amis Restaurant at Bloemendal (Durbanville)
A lovely outdoor jungle gym and a children’s menu will keep the little ones happy. There are firm favourites like burgers, hotdogs, toasties, and pizza as well as some gourmet mini shakes. The kids’ menu also features fun activities on the back.
Café Paradiso (Gardens)
An exciting range of children’s projects is available, including icing cupcakes and making pizzas or chocolate chip cookies. A children’s menu includes items like fish fingers, chicken nuggets, ice cream cones and more.
Café Roux (Noordhoek)
Situated at the charming Noordhoek Farm Village, Café Roux overlooks a large playground with a jungle gym, slides, seesaw and more. A kiddies’ menu features items like toasted sarmies, mini burgers and vanilla ice cream in a cone.
Clay Café (Hout Bay)
Let the kids play on the jungle gym or grab a brush and paint their own pottery item to be fired in the oven. The littlies menu features tasty items like pizza, hot dogs, and toasties.
The Company’s Garden Restaurant (Gardens)
The spacious outdoor area is built for play, with hanging wicker playhouses set amongst the trees and a life-size chess board. A kids’ menu features favourites like cheese toasties, crumbed chicken strips and burgers.
Deer Park Café (Vredehoek)
This popular neighbourhood restaurant borders on a fenced park where you can find swings, jungle gyms and plenty of grass for kids to run around. A kiddies’ menu is available, with orders of fruit salad cups, spaghetti Bolognese, toasties, chicken and chips and a healthy finger salad with cream-cheese dip.
Die Damhuis (Melkbosstrand)
Kids can order hotdogs, fish fingers and more from the kiddies’ menu, and play in and around the beachy lighthouse-style jungle gym.
Dunes Beach Restaurant (Hout Bay)
The restaurant overlooks a large sandy area with a jungle gym, swings, slides and more. A children’s menu offers ocean-themed treats like fish and chips and calamari and chips, but there are also pizzas for fussy eaters.
Dutch Haven Bistro (Durbanville)
Children aged four and older can play on the jungle gym with swings and a slide, while those under four have a designated play den. The restaurant has a number of other activities available, including colouring-in books and clay. A kiddies’ menu features items like toasties, chicken strips, braaied marshmallows and pancakes, while Purity and finger snacks are available for the toddlers.
Durbanville Hills Restaurant (Durbanville)
A safe play space with a jungle gym, slide, a fish pond and more is available in the downstairs area of the restaurant.
The Easy Dig Café (Sunnydale)
Located inside the lush garden setting of Harry Goeman’s Garden Centre, the café offers a large play area with a jungle gym, swings, slides and more. Kids can also visit all the birds in the large aviary.
The Foodbarn (Noordhoek)
In addition to a great kiddies’ menu, the restaurant overlooks a grassy play area with a gorgeous jungle gym, a seesaw, swings and more.
Foresters Arms (Newlands)
The little ones are all welcome at this buzzing Newlands pub. Energetic kiddies can enjoy the tree-covered play area while you tuck in to the popular pizzas and ice-cold draughts. Children under 12 can also enjoy menu items such as beef burgers, calamari strips, pizza, and chocolate brownies.
Franky’s Diner (Sea Point)
Children can take their pick of burgers, corndogs and chicken nuggets from the special kiddies’ menu and play in the indoor play area and jungle gym. The venue also hosts birthday parties.
Kirstenbosch Tea Room (Newlands)
The menu features kids’ options, and colouring-in books are available if the little ones get bored. Alternatively, the sprawling lawns of the Kirstenbosch Gardens are ideal for a family picnic. (Entrance fees apply.)
Massimo’s (Hout Bay)
This local favourite has a jungle gym at the entrance of the restaurant and a secure space at the back with various types of play equipment. While there isn’t a kiddies’ menu, children can order smaller pizzas or half pizzas.
Millstone Café and Farmstall (Pinelands)
Situated in the Oude Molen Eco Village, this outdoor restaurant offers pony rides and has a Wendy house. Fresh, organic juices, wood-fired breads and good coffee will keep adults happy.
Octopus’ Garden Restaurant (Muizenberg)
A children’s playground features a jungle gym, a tree house and other games while the restaurant offers a special kiddies’ platter, among other treats.
Ons Huisie (Bloubergstrand)
Kids are entertained in a safe playground with child minders on hand. The restaurant has ensured that the play area is a smoke-free environment and has provided additional tables next to the space so parents can keep an eye on their little ones. As for the tiny tots’ grub, expect treats like fish fingers and chips, creamy penne with ham, pancakes, and ice cream.
Open Door (Constantia)
This elegant restaurant’s menu has a dedicated section for the youngsters and a lovely outdoor play area. Mini foodies will love the gourmet options such as the roasted chicken breast and broccoli bake, the spaghetti with pea sauce, crispy bacon and parmesan, or the cookies and steamed milk for pud.
This Groot Constantia spot is perfect for a sunny outing with the whole family. The kids can play on the expansive lawns while adults enjoy some vino and a light lunch or picnic. The kids can enjoy a basket filled with yoghurt, sandwiches, fruit, Jelly Tots and Flings.
Soet Bistro (Durbanville)
A designated kiddies’ section called ‘Jol Kol’ offers a space for the little ones to play and the parents to sit back and relax. Here you can find high chairs, little play houses and beautiful murals covering the walls. A children’s menu is also on offer and includes favourites like pizza, flapjacks and toasties.
Spiro’s (Hout Bay)
Kids can play in a monitored indoor play area or the outdoor jungle gym. The menu features a small selection of children’s meals with dishes like calamari, pork ribs, chicken schnitzel, pasta and milkshakes.
Tables at Nitida (Durbanville)
Big, beautiful lawns, a dedicated children’s play area and a kiddies’ menu will please parent and kids alike. Hungry tots can enjoy toasties, fish and chips, ham and cheese pasta, bowls of fries, and ice-cream cones.
Bertus Basson at Spice Route (Paarl)
A creative kiddies’ menu allows them to build their own meal and includes a colouring sheet on the back. Once their plates are clean, they will receive a giant cookie to decorate. In addition to these tasty treats, the venue’s sprawling lawns offer plenty of space to play.
BICCCS stands for Bread, Ice Cream, Cake, Croissant, Coffee and Sandwich, and offers a range of delicious sweet treats and smaller meal portions that the kids will love. A safe outdoor play area offers entertainment in the form of a jungle gym, slides and swings.
Bistro 13 (Stellenbosch)
A lovely tree-covered outdoor play area is ideal for families while a kiddies’ menu is perfect for those fussy eaters.
Bodega Restaurant (Stellenbosch)
Kids can order off the special children’s menu and play on the fully equipped jungle gym and in the sandpit. The kiddies’ menu is only available for those under the age of 12.
Bossa Social Café and Bar (Somerset West)
Kids can explore the safe play area and jungle gym and order off the large kiddies’ menu.
Café Blanc de Noir (Stellenbosch)
A fun outing can be had here with delicious pizzas for the whole family. The little ones can order off the kiddies’ menu with dishes like ham and pineapple and margherita pizzas, and peppermint delight for dessert. There’s also an outdoor jungle gym for them to explore.
Café des Arts (Franschhoek)
This quaint café has a huge shaded courtyard where children can run, play and ride their bikes. The venue is located away from the main road.
Enjoy a peaceful picnic in garden with kiddies’ picnic baskets filled with yoghurt, chips, juice and a boerewors roll or peanut-butter-and-jam sandwich.
This family restaurant boasts a large, secure kids play area and a dedicated children’s menu. The venue also hosts children’s parties.
With one of the largest jungle gym playgrounds in the Western Cape, this scenic venue is the perfect spot for a family lunch. The kids’ menu offers items like cheesy eggs and toast, a regina pizza, cheese grillers, mac ’n cheese, and chicken strips.
Eight at Spier (Stellenbosch)
The restaurant terrace overlooks rolling lawns with a wooden jungle gym. A special children’s menu is available, and there’s a kids’ clubhouse with fun activities and child minders for those staying at the hotel.
Eight to Go at Spier (Stellenbosch)
Eight to Go offers a selection of gourmet picnics, including a children’s picnic with favourites like ham-and-cheese rolls, fruit yoghurt, root crisps and cookies. Please note that picnics must be booked in advance.
Franschhoek Station Pub (Franschhoek)
They have a safe outside area for the little ones with a jumping castle, swings and jungle gym. A children’s menu with burgers, chip baskets and chicken strips is also available.
Lekker Neh at Weltevreden Estate (Stellenbosch)
The Carnival @ Lekke Neh is every kid’s (and parent’s) dream. Expect a large enclosed play area and jungle gym, dedicated child minders, pizza-making activities, an ice-cream stand and more.
Leopard’s Leap Rotisserie (Franschhoek)
This gorgeous estate has a jungle gym and a massive lawn for children to run and play. A very simple children’s menu is also on offer, but the desserts will tempt even the adults, with offerings like mini Rice Krispies treats, Peppermint Crisp tarts, chocolate brownies and cupcakes.
The Millhouse Kitchen (Somerset West)
Children will love the large garden and jungle gym. A specially designed ‘Little People’ menu – with a cute colouring-in section – features everything from pizzas and toasties to bangers, chips and peas.
Mont Marie (Stellenbosch)
A wooden jungle gym offers hours of fun, while the menu features a dedicated kiddies’ section of chicken strips and chips, burgers, pizzas, and ice cream.
Skilpadvlei Restaurant (Stellenbosch)
The menu includes kiddies’ meals of toasties, ribs, fish fingers and pizza and the in-and-outside play-area offers plenty of entertainment for children.
Southey’s Bistro & Wine Bar (Somerset West)
Kids will delight in the large, shaded jungle gym, jumping castle and waterslide. The children’s menu offers a variety of favourites, including hot dogs, ham-and-cheese pizzas, fish fingers and desserts. There’s also a fun ‘Eskimo Cocktail’ made with slushy water to hydrate the kids for free.
Stables at Vergelegen (Somerset West)
There’s a safe space for children to play outside in the sun. The menu offers a nice selection of kiddies’ options like mac ’n cheese, sticky chicken and chips, grilled steak and veggies, and toasted ham and cheese.
Stone Kitchen (Wellington)
In addition to the expansive lawns, a well-equipped play area with a jungle gym, sandpit, toddler play area, swings and board games keeps the little ones entertained. A tiny tots’ menu features treats like scrambled eggs and sausage, a beef burger with fries, pizza, and Ola ice cream or pancakes for dessert.
Taste at Laborie (Paarl)
A secure play area sits alongside the large open terrace. The kiddies’ menu offers treats like mac ’n cheese with bacon, free-range chicken schnitzel with fries, and chocolate brownies with vanilla ice cream.
Creation Wines (Hemel-en-Aarde Valley)
Enjoy the afternoon wine tasting at this exquisite location while the kids entertain themselves with a variety of toys in the dedicated playroom. Creation also offers a surprise pairing designed to teach children about flavours. The kiddies’ pairing includes juices, flavoured milks and a selection of healthy nibbles for them to experiment with.
Delicatessen at Tokara (Stellenbosch)
Tokara Delicatessen offers a laid-back and child-friendly setting where visitors can enjoy a scrumptious breakfast or a light lunch. In addition to the rolling lawns and outdoor play area, the kids can also cosy up indoors by the fire and keep busy with toy boxes, colouring-in books and storybooks. There’s a kiddies’ menu and plenty of treats in the deli shop.
Simonsberg Café (Stellenbosch)
At Simonsberg Café you can relax by the toasty fireplace while the kids enjoy fabric and ceramic painting at the Funky Monkey creative centre. If it’s a crisp and sunny winter’s day, go-karting and a jungle gym will be on the cards. A great spot for hosting children’s parties
Vredenhof Organic Estate (Stellenbosch)
With a playground that has a castle, a pirate ship and a gypsy caravan to captivate the kiddies, Vredenhof Organic Estate is a brilliant place for your lazy weekend lunch. The play area is partially under cover, so kids are protected come rain or shine.
Have we missed one of your favourites? Let us know in the comments section below.
Please note that while we take care to ensure that all our information is correct, some offers and details might change without our knowledge.