It’s officially summer, which means families will be out and about embracing the sunshine. While the typical summer spots will include the “triple p’s” (park, playground, and pool), lest we forget the “fourth p” – an easily overlooked but equally important summer activity that yoyomamas and yoyodadas enjoy: patio time.
We totally get that “patioing” can be tough with kids. It’s not always the most favorite family summer activity because of restaurant restrictions and so on, but luckily for you, we’ve searched high and low (and high again) across Metro Vancouver for some new and great eateries with outdoor seating that the whole clan is sure to enjoy.
image courtesy of Bellagio Cafe
The Bellagio Convention is located just outside the Vancouver Trade and Convention Centre. A large outdoor seating area with perfect views of Canada Place, it’s a great place to grab some sun and watch the cruise ships sail in and out! Menu items include kid-friendly choices like pizza, pasta and fish and chips, and their mezzanine level has a “Frozen-themed” play area for the kids (they even offer pizza-making birthday party packages).
Cats Social House is conveniently located in between Kid’s Only Market and the Granville Island spray park and playground, making this a great summer meal destination for families. While they don’t have a dedicated kids menu, they do have kid-friendly options like crunchy yam fries, nachos, macaroni and cheese (and some yummy desserts, too).
Located in the heart of Gastown, the Old Spaghetti Factory boasts a large patio right on Water Street, perfect for people and dog watching. The little ones can pick their meals from the super affordable kids-only menu that also come with a drink and ice cream for dessert (we highly recommend their popular spumoni ice cream). In addition to keeping the kids occupied with colouring activities and crayons, the restaurant’s infamous Caboose inside the restaurant is always a hit and the kiddos can weigh themselves on the old fashioned scale before they leave.
Parkside Brewery is the perfect spot for local food, local craft beer, and kid-friendly fun! This newly-opened brewery in Port Moody has drinks for the adults, juice boxes for the kids and there’s always a fun food truck on-location daily; from tacos to risotto balls to grilled cheese sandwiches, families can order food and eat it in the brewery, or picnic-style, outside on Parkside’s very own grassy lawn, which is perfect for the kids to run around on. In addition to offering some vintage arcade games (perfect for the bigger kids and young-at-heart adults), the brewery is across the street from Rocky Point Park (and even closer to the super-popular Rocky Point Ice Cream shop).
image courtesy of The Marinaside Grill
If you are on the hunt for fantastic patio dining on the North Shore, The Marinaside Grill is a great option for families. Located in the Lynnwood Marina, right below the Second Narrows Bridge, the Marinaside Grill has outdoor seating right on the water, where little boat-lovers can stare at the different vessels and do some bird-watching too! Their kid’s menu has all the faves under $7 like grilled cheese sandwiches, pasta, chicken tenders and ice cream!
July 2017 – Editor’s note: Sadly, the Marinaside Grill has closed down. Our lovely yoyomama readers recommend checking out the patio at Tap & Barrel Shipyards – tapandbarrel.com
For those in the Fraser Valley, the Harvest Store + Café is Chilliwack’s friendly neighbourhood eatery. Located across the street from a spray park and playground, the Harvest Store + Café serves breakfast and lunch items made from locally sourced ingredients. Their super delicious homemade baked goods are tempting for the little ones and include homemade donuts, cookies and their yummy hummingbird bread. The largely spaced café makes it perfect for strollers and wandering children and their back patio is the perfect spot for some summer brunch.
image courtesy of Pajo’s Fish & Chips
Walk, run or bike the fam over to Pajo’s Fish & Chips in Steveston, which has a patio located right on the water. The little ones can lookout for birds and boats, and the kids menu include fish and chips (of course), grilled cheese sandwiches, hot dogs and burgers, which all come with bottomless fries and drinks.
Looking for more great patio options? We’ve got even more listed in our article from 2014. These restaurants are all still yoyomama favourites!
featured image composite by yoyomama, photo courtesy of Pajo’s Fish & Chips