The Balmoral Boathouse Cafe: Sydney’s Most Child-Friendly Cafes {Updated}

Balmoral Boatshed-4

Quick, quick, hurry up. If we pack up now we can be there in 30 minutes!

This cafe is in a lovely location, right by the beautiful Baths. There are scrumptious views over the beach and the harbour, I love watching all the bobbing boats.

[Read more...]

Sydney’s Best Playgrounds – Willoughby Park on Sydney’s North Shore (Updated)

Willoughby Park playground

The whizzing roundabout with the big climbing frame behind.

Just a few photos and an update to this post on one of our favourite playgrounds on Sydney’s north shore.

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Wizzy World, Willoughby- Sydney’s Best Kids Play Centres {Updated}

Ah, the joy I have felt whilst sitting firmly on my bottom, drinking a coffee and watching my children play!

Wizzy World is pretty close to where we live, not the closest but worth a trip when the mood takes us and there’s some cash floating around in Mum’s wallet.

This is a huge play centre, and a popular one, great for mother’s groups.

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Sydney’s Best Fenced Playgrounds – NORTH {Updated}

It was the search for the ideal fully fenced playground that set me off researching Sydney’s best places.

I had a really wild, hyper boy-child who was a serial bolter.  I could run faster than him for the first couple of years.

Then I was pregnant with number two son and it became just too dangerous to go anywhere he could escape from.

After that, the twin factor kept us safely inside fenced playgrounds.

For all those mums, dads and carers of active boys, toddler-baby combinations, twins, triplets and quads and also kids with special needs, here’s my list of the best fenced playgrounds in Sydney’s north. 

For Best Fenced Playgrounds in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs click here.

PS Click here to find fenced playgrounds in other areas of Syney.

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Balmoral Beach Playground – Sydney’s Best Playgrounds

A playground by the beach, how lovely. This small playground at Balmoral is in a fantastic area, just by the netted baths and very close to the cafe. Slurp!

It’s also right on the sand at an area where the trees shade the beach, ideal for babies and small children.

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Wannabees Family Play Town – Sydney’s Best Indoor Play Centres

wannabees dress up

Wannabees is a play centre deluxe, with the added benefit of play leaders and fantastic dress ups and imaginative play spaces.

The play centre has been set up like a small town, a play leader takes children to visit and play in different areas. It’s such fun.

Wannabees Play Town

C1/ 1-3 Rodborough Road, Frenchs Forest

Websitewww.wanna-bees.com.au

Facebookwww.facebook.com/Wannabees1 (special offers posted here/post comment for free coffee)

Opening Times: Mon-Tue 9:30 to 2:00 pm, Wed-Fri 9:30 to 6:00 pm, Sat-Sun 9:30 to 5:00 pm

This indoor play centre with a difference is really a delight for young kids. We visited recently with the twins, who are six years old and they really enjoyed it. There were lots of younger children there and some older ones too.

It’s best to book in and to arrive in good time for either the morning or afternoon session to start. Our session started at 10am, with a play leader gathering the children around the stage and starting off with the Wannabees song.  She then explained some rules like always tidying up what has been used, and keeping shoes on in the play rooms.

Here’s the list of all the places the kids can play:

Post Office
Honey Room cafe
Police Station
Fire Station
TV Studio
Supermarket
Doctors Surgery
Bank
Gym
Fashion shop
Beauty salon
Interior Design room

There’s also a large stage, a climbing wall, soft play areas and, of course, the huge play structure.

My two started in the fire station, they enjoyed dressing up in fireman’s jackets and hats and LOVED hosing out the (fake!) flames. Next they did some shopping at the supermarket with play money and then playing doctors and nurses, with me as the patient patient.

It’s lovely to do some imaginative play where the kids are also picking up some real life skills.

Cafe: large cafe has good menu and free wifi

Baby change: Yes, in children’s toilets

Parties are run by the play leaders

Map:  Click here

the supermarket at Wannabees

fireman dressups at Wannabees

wannabees play town

construction area wannabees

menus at Wannabees Play Town

I took a bazillion photos, click here to see more.

Have you been to Wannabees? 

Are you a play centre lover or loather?

Take it easy

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Wannabees Play Town – More Photos

Wannabees Family Play Town play structure

The huge play structure at Wannabees

Wannabees Play Centre

Inside the play structure, a great flying fox

Wannabees play town firemen

Two firemen anying the fireman’s pole

Wannabees play town

Doctors and nurses deal with an emergency

Wannabees

Busy in the Beauty Salon

Wannabees

At the gym, on the running machine.

wannabees cafe

The Cafe at Wannabees, plenty of space

wannabees dress ups

Dress ups and dancing to end the play session

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Play structure for the little ones

Wannabees

Soft play area for babies and toddlers

wannabees climbing wall

And the climbing wall – a small extra charge is payable to use this.

You can read my full description of this play centre with a difference on this post.

Hope you enjoy a great play if you visit Wannabee Play Town!

 

Talking Heads Cafe, Killarney Heights – Sydney’s Best Cafes For Kids

Down in the depths of darkest Killarney Heights there is a great wee kid-friendly hub with cafes, handy shops, kids art and dance classes and a couple of good cafes.

Our regular haunt is Talking Heads, it’s an excellent cafe for children, especially those old enough to trot off to enjoy the nearby playground after they’ve wolfed down their food.

My twins have a great old time, playing on the equipment, racing their cars down the pavements and generally milling around.
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How To Make Cheese – A Beginners’ Workshop

Making cheese at home is easy, after all every milkmaid worth her salt could do it not so very long ago.

But home cheesemaking is a bit of a lost art these days.

No longer here at Smith Towers!!

[Read more...]

Roseville Cinema – Child-Friendly Cinemas in Sydney

Roseville is a really charismatic, old-fashioned picture house. It’s a family owned and operated independent cinema, quite a breath of fresh air.

I’m terribly fond of it for it’s olde worlde features and its great choice of art house movies.

This was the first cinema with a ‘baby crying room’ that we ever tried… long ago now, but still remembered!

[Read more...]

Clifton Gardens Beach and Baths, Mosman – Sydney’s Best Beaches for Kids

Well, it’s not great weather for a beach post this week but here’s one anyway.

Because of course, Clifton Gardens has the lovely playground,plus a kiosk, so it’s a terrific destination at any time of the year.

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Warners Park Playground, Northbridge – Sydney’s Best Secret Playgrounds

Don’t you love it when you accidentally stumble upon a hidden treasure?

Warners Park Playground is one, it’s tucked between Northbridge and Castlecrag and you might never, ever find it. Yet it’s fab!

Only trouble was, I didn’t have any children with me! So I snapped off heaps of photos and determined to bring the children back another day.

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Sydney’s Best Cafes for Kids- Echo On The Marina Cafe

Now here’s a wonderful spot which I’d have loved to have taken my children to when they were little, but never dared.

Mine are a bit wild. They’d have been splashing off the end of the marina in minutes.

They just never did suit this tranquil, spectacularly scenic slice of Middle Harbour heaven.

Luckily, I have visited alone, and they’d be fine now. Chalk it up on the Easter holidays list.

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Sydney’s Best Beaches for Kids – Whale Beach

Just south of the millionaires’ playground of Palm Beach, around the lofty cliffs is Whale Beach.

It’s a much smaller beach, nestled between two striking cliff faces and it has the most spectacular rose gold sand.

[Read more...]

Sydney’s Best Playgrounds – Buffalo Creek Reserve, Hunters Hill

It’s always a wonderful thing to find a fantastic new playground. Here’s one that was new for the third edition of Sydney For Under Fives. It’s in a wonderful central location, great for meeting with friends who live all over Sydney.

And just look at that great flying fox, just awesome for bold little souls.

Buffalo Creek Reserve Playground

Pittwater Road, East Ryde 2113

Website: www.huntershill.nsw.gov.au

This is a fantastic space and playground, lots of open grassy areas and really good equipment. The piéce de rèsistance is a very long flying fox set just a bit up the hill from the main play area.

The playground has a huge shadecloth covering all of it, and everything our under fives might require including twist slides, spicas, monkey bars, swings. There’s also a large wooden cubby house nearby.

There are shaded picnic tables and nearby is a large sports oval, excellent if you have older children who like to kick a ball.

There is a good bike track as well so don’t forget the bikes and trikes.

Nearest coffee: BYO

Toilets: Along path at end of carpark

Shade: Yes

Enclosed: No but set far from road

Mum’s report: A lovely spot, there are good bushwalks in Buffalo Creek Reserve too. The traffic noise from Pittwater Road is sometimes a bit loud, depends on the day and time. Excellent for adventurous kids.

Extra: There is a nice boardwalk here through the mangroves. It is part of the Great North Walk, and you can walk for a long way north or south from here. See http://www.thegreatnorthwalk.com/

Map reference: Gregory’s 313 B2, Sydway 255 P14, UBD 214 G2

Parking: Yes

Bus stop nearby: Yes

buffalo creek reserve playground

buffalo creek reserve playground


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 Have you visited Buffalo Creek yet?

 

Sydney’s Best Ocean Pools – MacCallum Pool, Cremorne Point

Hop on the ferry at Circular Quay, get off at Cremorne Point and then amble along the walkway to this hidden gem on the waters of the harbour.

The views over Sydney Harbour are absolutely gorgeous. The huge trees by the pool are glorious to too. The water is refreshing, the ferries glide by, yachts bob.

Any complaints?  I don’t think so.

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Sydney’s Best Beaches for Kids- Balmoral Beach + Baths

Come on summer, come on!  We long to get down to Balmoral again!!

Balmoral is a beach of many parts, the photos here are of the baths area, which has a wooden walkway all around and is protected by shark nets.

The baths are especially family-friendly since it is close to the playground and there is shade on the beach – a huge bonus when you have babies and young toddlers. [Read more...]