A while back I put together a list of the Top 10 Coffee Shops in Cape Town, a few perfect places to chill out with a magazine and a cup of something strong and sweet… However with children in tow life becomes A LOT more complicated (understatement of the day).
Everyday occurences take precision planning, for instance, take the humble coffee catch up with a girl friend….. no longer is your choice of venue determined by the delicious coffee, delectable cakes or divine decor – NO – it is determined by whether there is entertainment to keep your kiddies busy. Preferably safely! A jungle gym, a play area (indoor or out) or a sand pit nearby is essential when you are meeting a friend with kids in tow – yours, hers or both of yours (heaven help you!!)
So with that in mind here is a list of Child-friendly Coffee Shops in Cape Town – should you wish to inflict that upon yourself and your friends….
They are listed in vague order from Cape Point to Table Bay! (I don’t generally venture out “north” so maybe a few moms out that direction can add some ideas to the comments on this post!! Thanks)
1. Blue Water Cafe at Imhoff Farm in Kommetjie is quite a drive for most but it is always worth the effort to take a trip out to this part of Cape Town. The view from the restaurant always takes my breath away – you can see across Noordhoek Beach to Chapmans Peak and the back of Table Mountain. In front there is a large lawn and swings, a large slide and a very popular rope swing and just next door is the Higgledy Piggledy Farmyard where the kids can pet the animals too. Inside the Imhoff Village is another play area and a few fun kiddie rides too. Tel: 021 783 2007. Even further out is the Cape Farmhouse Restaurant in Scarborough located at the junction of the M66 and M65. A great option if you are looking to make your outing more of a daytrip. There is a jungle gym and play area but these are located up a rather steep incline so best suited for older kids. Bottom of Redhill Road. 3kms past Scarborough, Tel: 021 780 1246.
2. Also out in the “Deep South” of the Peninsula is family-favourite Cafe Roux in Noordhoek situated in Noordhoek Farm Village. There is a lovely lawn as well as a well-equipped playground right next to the restaurant. They have recently opened an indoor play area too which is fabulous news for those wintery days! A great atmosphere and lovely food can always be found at this venue. Tel: 021 789 2538.
3. Green Beans Café in Westlake Lifestyle Centre is a wonderful spot for slightly older kids as they have an amazing jungle gym and play area adjacent to the outdoor seating area but it is separated by a wall so unfortunately you can’t see the kids while you relax. If you go with toddlers you will probably spend the whole time making sure they don’t fall off the jungle gym or get run over by the older kids tearing around but if you have kids older than 5 that can play unsupervised it’s a good bet. The food is AMAZING and so healthy so I do love this spot for lunch too… Shop 12 Westlake Lifestyle Centre, Westlake Drive, Tel: 021 701 0100.
4. Thandi’s is a new place that has recently opened up on Main Road in Bergvliet. There is indoor and outdoor seating and a small indoor play area perfect for toddlers at the back of the shop/ cafe. Out front is a great ramp and my son’s favourite – go-karts. 139 Main Road, Bergvliet, Tel: 021 712 2229.
5. Ashton’s at Greenways Hotel is tucked away behind some very established trees and a long driveway in Upper Kenilworth. It’s not usually a place many people know about but I recently discovered it with some friends on a Sunday afternoon and had such a great time. There is a jungle gym at the bottom of a huge lawn and you can take your tea right next to it or watch the kids from the vantage point of the veranda! It was like taking a trip back in time enjoying High Tea on the lawn while watching the men play a game of croquet! Just be warned that there is an unfenced pool behind a hedge so keep an eye on the kids at all times… 1 Torquay Avenue, Upper Claremont, Tel: 021 761 1792.
6. Earthworx Nursery in Hout Bay has a lovely play area with a HUGE slide for older kids as well as some lovely secure swings, a wendy house and sandpit for the little ones. The cafe area is right next to the playground and offers the basics such as sandwiches. Again I love to take a walk through the nursery afterwards – my kids love the little paths and hiding places! La Cabane is another child friendly venue in Hout Bay (behind the garage on your way down to the beach) It has an amazing fort jungle gym for older kids including climbing frames as well as swings and a smaller jungle gym for toddlers but lately when I’ve popped in the service and atmosphere has been lacking in something… Try it out for the kids entertainment but don’t expect too much else (although I would love to hear if it’s been improved as it is a great spot!) Another great option in Hout Bay is Clay Cafe. There is a climbing wall, large sandpit and 2 jumping castles as well as the usual clay pottery items for painting. A lovely venue for an afternoon of fun for everyone! (The main photo of this article was taken here)
For contact details click the links to their websites.
7. The Gardeners Cottage in the Montebello Centre in Newlands has a little playground with a pretend tractor adjacent to the coffee shop perfect for kids up to 5. The real attraction is the lovely nursery, after your coffee meander through the rest of the centre discovering the other hidden gems. 31 Newlands Avenue, Newlands, Tel: 021 689 3158.
Just up the drag behind UCT is old Cape Town favourite Rhodes Memorial. There is a jungle gym for the kids to enjoy while you and your friend soak up the view across the city. After your coffee your kids will love exploring the huge lions and monument! Tel: 021 687 0000.
8. Millstone Cafe at Oude Molen Eco Village is a favourite for kids especially the tree house. My kids also love to have a ride on the ponies nearby. The seating is all outside rather rustic so stick with friends who have kids of their own and who prefer “organic” settings! Alexandra Rd, Oude Molen Eco Village, Pinelands, Tel: 021 447 8226.
9. Deer Park Café, Vredehoek is an old favourite with the moms of the City Bowl and even some of us Southern Suburbs moms will make the big trek to this fabulous spot. The park is fully enclosed and has such a great variety of fun things to do and the cafe has a suitably sunny spot for you to catch up with a friend or some work while keeping a watchful eye out. On a sunny day this park is full of kids with dogs and nannies adding to the fun! Always worth the outing but get there early if you want a table outside on the patio. 2 Deer Park Avenue, Vredehoek, Tel: 021 462 6311.
10. Shoreline Cafe at The Two Ocean’s Aquarium is another good indoor option nearer to town – places with safe, free indoor play places are like gold in winter. You don’t have to go to the Aquarium to visit the cafe and play area for a coffee or fish and chip lunch but you do get a discount on the food if you are a member of the aquarium! Be prepared to ignore the nagging for a visit inside… What is awesome about this venue is that there is usually a child minder on duty to ensure no-one gets hurt! The Two Oceans Aquarium is located on Dock Road at the entrance to the V&A Waterfront.
A few other options that don’t necessarily have play areas but are still good child-friendly options due to the lawns to run about on are:
Little Stream, Constantia – Klein Constantia Road, Tel: 021 794 9147.
Jonkershuis at Groot Constantia Wine Estate, Tel: +27 21 794 6255.
Chart Farm in Klaassens Road, near Wynberg Park, Wynberg, Tel: 021 762 0067.
Listers Place Tea Room at Tokai Arboretum. Tel: 021 715 4512
Kirstenbosch Gardens – there are 2 restaurants that are great for tea but the one situated lower down near the Visitors Center has a deli where you can select your own eats as well as a lawn and sandpit within easy sight of the tables. However to access these tea rooms you will have to pay the Kirstenbosch entry fee. Visit the website for contact details.
Organic at Heart in Plumstead is another recent find but it doesn’t have a play area or lawn – I just wanted to mention it as it is a great spot for those families who enjoy eating organic and it has a pretty relaxed atmosphere that seemed welcoming of kids (and the veggie garden is worth a visit too!) 23 Constantia Rd, Wynberg. Ample parking in Bardia Rd at the back. Tel: 021 797 0180.
I hope you enjoyed this Top 10 list of Child-friendly Coffee Shops Cape Town – please feel free to add your recommendations which I may not have mentioned to the comments below…
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