If you have chosen Port Douglas as a holiday escape with your family then you will be pleased to know that Port Douglas does ‘family friendly’ very well. As with many towns outside of the major cities under 18’s are permitted in most food and drink establishments til as late as 10-11pm, great news for parents after a few cheeky drinks past the usual bedtime hour! That being said, if you fancy a late night you will be after a venue that can keep your children entertained and provide fun for the whole family. Although my bub is just 7 months old my top five picks are perfect for children of all ages, even adults!
This was my favourite bar/restaurant in town, located on the main strip of Macrossan Street. The menu was typically Australian pub grub at very reasonable prices, special offers and ‘kids eat free’ options were also available. Tables are presented in a typical ‘booth’ style which meant highchairs were placed at the head of the table onto the connecting walkway. This was fine with only the one highchair but if you were requiring more than one child seated in a highchair this might cause seating issues. I highly recommend booking a table for dinner as it is a very popular venue, bringing in plenty of people form early evening time (see below).
What makes this place such fun is it’s nightly 8pm Cane Toad Racing Comedy Show! It is $5 admission for the show which is held at the back of the bar/restaurant. I won’t spoil the show by saying too much about it, but it’s fantastic fun for all ages! If you’re in no rush to get home hang around for the Karaoke afterwards.
Check out Iron Bar here
On The Inlet
At 5pm everyday On The Inlet, located on Port Douglas Marina, hosts it’s ‘feed George the Groper’ extravaganza. George is a giant (250kg) Groper that visits the marina daily to be fed by one of the staff. Admittedly my son was far too young to have any idea what was going on but us adults enjoyed the anticipation of waiting for George to dive out of the water and claim his fish head prize just as much as all the youngsters. The feeding of George has a pretty stunning backdrop and also coincides with the bar’s happy hour… what more do you want!?
Note that prams are not allowed at front of the bar which is the main viewing platform for George. However, you will be shown to a table where you will still be able to see George but you will need to vacate after the show if you are not eating.
Visit George at On The Inlet here
Central Hotel – Garden Bar
This Central Hotel’s huge shaded courtyard and grassed children’s play area is everything you long for if you live in the city! Also located on Macrossan Street but set well back from the road, The Central Hotel Garden Bar is a sweet oasis! Sitting back with a drink in hand whilst bubs crawled all over the place in the safety of the kid-friendly area was bliss. Seafood and Steaks are available in the Garden Bar and high chairs are provided.
We finished our evening with Trivia against some pretty competitive families, groups and couples alike. The hotel also hosts movie nights on it’s big screen so be sure to check out what’s on!
See what the Central Hotel has in store for you here
Hog’s Breath is well known for it’s family friendly vibe with it’s menu and ‘kids eat free’ offers but what makes this one so special it’s its location. Located next door to the Ballyhooley Steam Railway Station and on the corner of the Marina this is a great place for kids to watch yachts in the marina or the Ballyhooley arrive and depart the station. Why not finish off your meal with a ride on the steam train yourself!?
Daintree Ice Cream Co.
Ok, so technically this is not a restaurant and it is not in Port Douglas but no trip to Port Douglas would be complete without a visit to the Daintree Rainforest. Therefore this scenic ice cream company nestled in stunning orchard grounds is a must! All ice cream is made from home grown fruits from the orchards. A tub of four different flavour scoops is available to try and the flavours change daily based on the orchard availability/seasonality and flavour matching. Wattleseed, passionfruit, plum and sour sop were on the menu for my visit. Wattleseed tastes just like mocha but without the caffeine… yum!!
If home grown, exotic fruit ice cream isn’t enough for you to feel guilt free in treating your family to ice cream then perhaps the fact that a proportion of the land is dedicated to rehabilitation and release of native fauna will be.
This you must see.
Port Douglas is a family/kid/baby friendly haven (minus the crocs lurking in the waters) and you should absolutely consider it on your next trip to Tropical North Queensland!