Sandbar Beach Cafe, Middle Park, Melbourne

Located right on the beach, a few steps down onto the sand, you can eat or have a coffee while your kids play on the sand. I’m not sure it gets better than that! 

Sandbar Beach Cafe is situated at 175B Beaconsfield Parade, Middle Park, Victoria 3206. 

  
The adult food was amazing burgers through to seafood and salads, it was all good. The children’s food however was not, the chicken and chips served up wasn’t great so my son landed up eating my burger which, thankfully, was massive. 

With or without children this is a lovely place to eat, it’s indoor setting is as nice as the outside and the service was great when we were there. 

Sandbar Beach Cafe is open 7 days a week from 8am to 4:30pm weekdays and to 5pm on Saturday and Sunday. 

If you’re interested in looking at the menu before deciding whether to make a meal of it click here for the menu.

   
 

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Brighton Schoolhouse Cafe, Brighton, Melbourne

Decent adult food, a kid’s menue and a little playground at the venue makes for a good visit. 

Located at 15 St Andrews Street, Brighton in a converted heritage-listed school house it’s a lovely space to visit whether it’s for a coffee or a sit down lunch. 

  
There is space for the kids and things to keep them distracted. It also seems as though other restuarant patrons and the wait staff are quiet accustomed to families and kids (no one blinked when my child described his need for a bathroom break at the top of his lungs). 

   
   

We unfortunately came on a rainy day so we couldn’t test out the playground but it did look like a good place for the children to play at while the adults had a real life adult conversation (if you can remember how to do it). The playground is completely fenced which is great as its adjacent to the road. We did make the most of the colouring in sheets they gave us and the amazing chicken and chips on the kids menu. On the downside the babychinos were not up to my son’s standard – you know how heigh that bar is – too much milk and not enough foam. 

  

There is ramp access to the restuarant via the back and the space is big enough that you don’t have to worry about a pram hitting everyone on your way around the restuarant. 

The restuarant is open 7 days a week which is awesome from 7:30 am to 4pm weekdays and 4:30pm on the weekends.  
It seems like it could be a hot spot so bookings for groups 4 or more on a  Monday to Friday is maybe a good idea – this is even set out on their website. They don’t however allow bookings on weekends or public holidays. 
The other bonus is that it is on the corner of St Andrews and Church, Church being a great place for a spot of shopping. 

South Melbourne Market 

The South Melbourne Market reminds me why I love markets  – fresh produce and flowers, quality food, unusual knick knacks and the odd bargain buy. 

Located on the corner of Coventry Street and Cecil Street in South Melbourne, Victoria, 3006 it takes up enough street space for you to be able to notice it immediately. The market is the whole yellow block pinned in the below picture.

  
The market is only open on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 8am to 4pm. There is rooftop parking above the market which is accessible from Coventry Street and is free for 2 hours. There is also other parking around the area including York Street. Regardless of where you park it’s a nice stroll through South Melbourne with a lot of interesting little shops. 

 

We took the pram with us through the market and there was plenty of space to manouver it and a lift to access the market from the allocated parking.

We visited on a rainy Friday afternoon and although we only spent an hour or so there we still managed to buy a beautiful muslin blanket for the littlest, a Spider-Man watch for our 3 year old, flowers, quality Italian pre-cooked meals and have a coffee. (I know how to shop, I could go into a pressure shopping situation where you have to buy things within a short time and I would win, I’m certain.)

This is a great family activity when the weather isn’t great outdoors and you’ve had enough of noisy indoor play centers. 

I reckon you could have lunch at the market after a stroll through all the stalls, just be careful with little fingers because there are a few toy stalls which tend to attract little people.