Fun days out on the town with preschoolers. By Kate Davies
If you’re keen to start the day with a nice cuppa while keeping the little ones amused, Rosie Jean’s café should be on your list. It’s open all day serving breakfast, lunch and everything in between so you can relax while your kids explore the toys on the terrace. For a mere $20 extra can also have access to the neighbouring Woodlands school playground. And if you want to stretch your legs, there’s the option of strolling down to the Caine Road public playground.
119 Caine Road, Midlevels, 2549 9718
This is no ordinary restaurant – it’s a florist, a butcher’s, a pastry shop, a café, a pizzeria and has a plethora of things to keep the kids busy at the back of the 4,000 square foot space. Kids can help themselves to ice cream at the self-serve ice cream bar, have a go at playing ping pong, pick up a puzzle or chow down on something yummy from the kids menu. These guys have you covered from breakfast through dinner with helium balloons for all.
On Fat Building, 57-59 Cadogan Street, Kennedy Town, 2591 0328
As indoor playrooms on Hong Kong Island go, FunZone has you covered for kids up to 12 years old. The 10,000 square foot space boasts climbing frames, slides, a ballistic air ball zone, ball pits, arts and crafts, tunnels and a specially designed toddler area for children under three. There is also a small café to grab yourself a drink and tap into some free wifi while your littlies run, explore and play. $140 for one non-member adult with one child on weekdays, $180 on weekends and public holidays.
Shop 121, The Westwood, 8 Belcher’s Street, Kennedy Town, 2258 9558
An oldie but always a goodie if you’re looking for some fresh air, the park is best entered from Pacific Place. You’ll pass the water features and the big ponds on the way in – kids love seeking out the terrapins – and you can then work your way to the big play area on the other side of the park. There you’ll find a 1,000 square metre playground on six levels. There’s a toddler specific level at the top, sandpit, huge slides, swings and something for all kids under 12. There’s also the option to pop into the aviary on the way back if you’ve got time. And for rainy days the Tea Museum has a variety of touch and play exhibits for little ones.
19 Cotton Tree Drive, Central
Right in the middle of Central is Hong Kong’s oldest park, which Hong Kongers have been enjoying since 1871. Divided into two parts connected by a pedestrian subway, the Eastern side is mainly home to a large children’s playground, aviaries, and a green house. The Western side of the park houses monkeys, raccoons, reptiles and flamigos. If you’re in need of a rest after walking around the park’s hilly 5.6 hectares, head down to the fountain terrace and grab an ice cream.
Albany Road, Central
If intimate indoor soft play and a cuppa is more your game plan for younger kids, Baumhaus, opposite Pacific Place Three on the cusp of both Admiralty and Wan Chai is a great option. For $100, you can let your little one/s discover the beautiful birch-wood treehouse while you watch on from the attached coffee shop. If you are also interested in Kindermusic classes, Baumhaus is definitely worth a visit. While they don’t accept drop-ins, you can book a trial for your little one on their website.
1/F Kar Yau Building, 36–44 Queen’s Road East, Wan Chai, 2321 5898
As toy stores go, this one is happily hands on. It sells German HABA toys and is a great spot to let little kids come and get tactile in their playroom. It’s not a huge space and will probably keep the toddler set amused more than any other age group, but it’s worth a visit if you’re in the area. The playroom is open between 11am and 6:30pm and costs $60 for 30 minutes and $120 for an hour. It may be worth calling to book a session if it’s a rainy day as it might be busy and don’t forget to bring socks.
G/F, 7 Yuen Yuen Street, Happy Valley, 2512 6353
Did you know that Hong Kong has a public toy library? You can find it on the second floor of the Hong Kong Central Library between Causeway Bay and Tin Hau. Aimed at under eight year olds, it has four play corners; Baby Play, Pretend & Imaginative play, Creative play and Activities & Games. It opens for 45 minute sessions and caters for a maximum of 40 kids per session – call ahead to reserve a spot.
66 Causeway Road, Causeway Bay, 2921 0378