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Mar 16, 2012 12:12 AM

Toddler/Baby friendly restaurant suggestions near these attractions?

We are planning a visit to Vancouver with our two children (2 year old and a 2 month old) so sadly, our restaurant choices are somewhat limited. We are visiting from the Bay Area and are big foodies.

We are looking for good food that is friendly towards children (doesn't mind a crying infant, somewhat loud, minimal wait times) that are near our hotel and near the attractions we plan to visit.

Our hotel is in the West End Neighborhood (our hotel is near Davie and Burrard).

We plan on going to the miniature train in Stanley Park, Aquarium, tram to Grousse Mtn, Science Museum and a trip to Granville Island.

Lastly, if it's not too much to ask for recommendations for restaurants at Whistler. Our rental house is near the upper village.

Many, many thanks in advance!

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  1. you'll be here in summer months? (i assume - because you say miniature train which is open only during summer - plus hallowe'en and xmas) - sounds like fun attractions for family.

    picnics and take-out?

    there is a recent thread about best hummos - and one recommendation is near your hotel, i think.

    maybe other readers can suggest Asian for you in that area -

    on granville island, Le Baguette et L'echalotte is good bakery - it's mentioned on here i think

    if sunny, some people enjoy the take-out / outdoor tables at a place near Granville Island (walk to it) ... Go Fish - here's a photo - watch out for the seagulls diving to share your food!

    1 Reply
    1. re: Georgia Strait

      Granville Island would be my top rec for parents with toddlers. Grab a bunch of stuff at Oyama, Le Baguette, some fruit, some pastries....then head on over to the playground area for a picnic.

    2. ps - this is a useful thread - tho some of the suggestions may not be too young-people friendly

      1. Try this filter (set to kid-friendly) on Urbanspoon:

        You can set a 2nd filter to the geography and a 3rd for cuisine type.

        1. I immediately thought of Little Nest which is in East Van on Commercial Drive:

          It's not really in the areas you plan to visit, but it's easy enough and close enough to get to, and ticks off both "foodie establishment" and "toddler friendly" to a T! And in reality, it's only one Skytrain stop east of Science World if you do feel like making a detour to Commercial Drive. The only issue is that it closes early, so might be a good brunch option before Science World. On top of that, Commercial Drive is cool neighbourhood in any case - quite different than where you'll be spending your time. A tad more bohemian with some great markets. Actually, San Francisco's Polk Street reminds me of Commercial Drive. Others say it reminds them of the Haight Ashbury of yesteryear. I digress.

          Bandidas Taqueria (also on Commercial Drive) would also be a good choice.

          1. I don't have kids, but here's a few ideas.

            Miniature Train and Aquarium are in Stanley Park so you are pretty much stuck with the Park concession food. You are better off to pack a picnic. The Park is lovely so picnicing is not a bad thing. Since you are staying near Dave and Burrard you can walk to the West End Farmers' Market on Saturday (on Comox between Thurlow and Bute and right beside a nice park with a kids playground) to buy some ingredients. You can also walk down to the Aquatic Centre Howe and take the ferry over to Granville Island to choose from the many excellent picnic ingredient choices in th e Public Market. Granville Island as a whole has lots of good kids activities. For non-picnic food you are probably best off going to the Edible Canada Bistro or taking a short walk along the seawall to Go Fish (lines can be long though). There's lots of restaurants/food fair stuff on GI but none of it is exactly a foodie's pick.

            The Grouse Mountain venue is all owned by one company so you have the choice of their various restaurants. It is very tourist oriented so they cater to everyone, kids will be fine. It has been a while since I was last there but I don't remember anything particularly worth eating. Again I'd bring a picnic.

            In your neighbourhood - it is pretty well all small neighbourhood restaurants so kids are not going to be a big problem. You will probably be eating early anyway. There's the Banana Leaf on Davie just west of Burrard for Malaysian (also a good wine store, Marquis Wine Cellars, accross the street but beware alcohol is very expensive here relative to the US), there's a Thai place on Thurlow just south of Davie (I'll post the name when I remember it), the Zaatar Hummus Bar on Davie and Howe (previously mentioned by someone here).

            If you have kitchen facilities, or even if not, there's grocery stores near you - Super Value on Davie, IGA on Burrard and, as previously mentioned, the Farmers' Market on Saturday and Granville Island is a pleasant excursion if you don't take a car.

            I can't help with Whistler.

            5 Replies
            1. re: Anne M

              The Thai place is Thai Basil, good for takeout (very small dine in area) with a few standouts on the menu but still Vancouver Thai, nowhere near up to SF Bay Area standards.

              For Chinese you could try the newer Peaceful on Davie just before Seymour. Large menu so order with care and you should find some good stuff.

              There was a recent thread on Whistler.... ah, here it is:

              Not necessarily kid friendly but up to date and a place to start!

              1. re: grayelf

                Thanks Grayelf. And, yes, my recs are the best I can come up with in your area, not necessarily restaurants that will wow you.

                1. re: Anne M

                  Totally agree, Anne M, that's a tough area for reccs in general. I wonder if an opening time visit to La Brasserie might work for the OP. Some of their stuff is pretty good. I quite like the burger. Or for weekend brunch their crazy over the top poutine.

                  1. re: grayelf

                    Yes La Brasserie is an excellent suggestion. I was there last night at opening (5:00 pm) and there was lots of rooms. Starts filling up at 6:30. There was a couple with a toddler beside us and they were doing fine.

                2. re: grayelf

                  Whistler is alive with kids no problem there-I suggest Ear's-always choices for smalls and calm understanding Staff.

                  Since you have a place to cook I strongly suggest doing your victualling in the city-grocery prices in Whistler can be breathtaking.

                  A large bottle of Thai Sweet Chile Sauce for instance-which can be had for less than $3 in Vancouver-is $6 in Whistler-other prices are commensurate.

                  If they're open when you're there try to head down to Pure Bread @ Function Junction for some of the tastiest bread products produced in this province.