Kids

The best attractions and activities Kuala Lumpur has to offer for kids, teens and families

Travel

Family-friendly boutique hotels in Malaysia

For a dose of cultural charm, these family-friendly boutique hotels around Malaysia offer bucket-loads of Chinese history lessons behind their walls

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The best child-friendly restaurants in KL

Restaurants

Antipodean Café

Simple and unpretentious, with its menu handwritten on the chalkboard wall of the café (this particular feature has its good points and bad), Antipodean serves up delicious food with a touch of home. Choose from the mains or the luscious cakes or indulge in their all-day breakfast menu. Despite not having a children’s menu, the café does have a range of items that should appeal to kids: The porridge with honey and banana and the banana pancakes will definitely please finicky young palates. If the portions are too big, just talk to the staff and they will shrink them accordingly. The café has recently grown to include four outlets (with new premises at Mid Valley and Atria Damansara) but we’re confining our recommendation to the Bangsar and Menara Tan & Tan outlets. These have cosy kiddie areas, equipped with toys, little tables and a television showing cartoons. At the Bangsar café, even Fido is welcome to join the family’s brunch.

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Restaurants

Benbino

With stroller parking, an ample number of highchairs and a cute kids' playground adjoining, Benbino is a welcome addition to KL's selection of family-friendly cafes. Look for the giant yellow giraffe and head up the spiral staircase to this compact and comfy spot. If you can get the kids past the magical display of sweets, there's a whole menu of meals, created and portioned for small tummies. The menu is just what you'd expect from the BIG Group and it includes crowd pleasers like mac 'n' cheese, pizzas, salads and pastas. We were happy to see that many dishes sneak in a few healthy vegetables, such as the cauliflower tater tots and the cauliflower base margherita pizza. We even tried the build-your-own tacos and were surprised to find that the accompanying chicken tenders were crumbed with quinoa, which gives a satisfying crunch. If you’re not into the tapas style portions for yourself, some dishes are also available in adult portions.

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Restaurants

Green Tomato Café

It’s a shame that KL doesn’t have more alfresco eateries such as Green Tomato Café. Located in a lush green compound in the heart of KL, Green Tomato isn’t immediately visible to the naked eye, but it’s easy enough to locate. The free parking and ample space for strollers are a huge plus! Surrounded by batik-making facilities and a batik store, the café chiefly caters to art students looking for a quick bite. On weekends, families trickle into Green Tomato for simple but reliably delicious brunches. Order favourites the likes of perfectly poached eggs Benedict, freshly baked muffins, espresso beverages and refreshing fruit juices. A kids’ playground was recently set up on the lawn so encourage your little ones to play barefoot. The café can even tailor its latte art classes to suit children by swapping coffee for hot chocolate.

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Restaurants

Gula Cakery

Decked in bright and playful colours, Instagram cake shop Gula Cakery has finally opened their brick and mortar store in Kota Kemuning. The atmosphere is cheerful and family-friendly; we’re impressed with how the kids’ play area takes up more than a quarter of the café situated on the first floor. The ground floor is a roomy space for baking workshops that’s fully equipped with state-of-the-art baking facilities. The 24-year-old founder Arieni Ritzal combined her degree in early childhood education and her love for baking and turned it into a lovely family business venture: Her parents help out on the daily operations and her brother, Adrien Kent (known for his designs for Feeka, Sitka and Inside Scoop), designed the café. The desserts taste as good as they look. We particularly favoured the Nutella-stuffed chocolate chip cookies and the delectable choux pastry. We even went back the following week for their salted caramel chocolate tart and their very generous serving of crème brûlée. Besides the sweet treats, there’s also simple home-cooked fare from Arieni’s parents like nasi kerabu and nasi tomato with ayam masak merah. Baking classes are open to kids aged three and up.

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Bars and pubs

Hard Rock Cafe

No visit to a foreign country would be complete without a meal at this worldwide institution. Scratch that. No local can call themselves one until they’ve dined at their own Hard Rock Café. With rock ’n’ roll memorabilia on practically every surface, this renowned restaurant not only has a great atmosphere but pretty good food too. All kiddie meals come complete with a drink and little ones can choose from items such as the Mac-Daddy Mac & Cheese and Buddy’s Bangin Burger with Cheese or, for the more health conscious kids, a grilled chicken breast salad known as Skiddley’s Not-So-Diddly Chicken Breast Salad. Kids on their best behaviour should also be treated to the Sinful Hot Fudge Sundae – its name says it all.

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Restaurants

Huckleberry Food & Fare

Emblazoned on one wall of this café is a line by Mark Twain’s most cheeky fictional character, the vagabond Huckleberry Finn. ‘There ain’t nothing in the world so good when it's cooked right’ according to the lovable rascal. Huckleberry Food & Fare gives a nod to this philosophy by preparing its victuals with extra vigilance. Take, for instance, a seemingly simple matter such as serving juice. While most cold drinks get watered down long before you’ve reached your last sip, their freshly-made Red Velvet, a blend of red fruit juices, remained cold and sweet when we tried. The trick? Each made-to-order juice is bottled sans ice and submerged in a miniature ice bucket. Huckleberry’s thoughtfulness extends to its hot drinks as well: Milk can be swapped for almond milk if lactose intolerance runs in the family. Feeling peckish? Head to the attractive kid-friendly pastry and cake counter where your little ones can take their pick of sandwiches and sweets. For something more substantial, choose from brunch favourites including French toast, eggs Benedict and baked eggs. Since their pastries and cakes are baked onsite, there is also an open concept bakery where the kids can watch the bakers, from behind the glass, hard at work kneading dough and tossing ingredients together. The servers are extremely friendly and more than happy to pull up a high chair for your toddler, or a funny face to entertain them.

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