Ten top tips for enjoyable and stress-free dining with children in restaurants


Dining out with children is a magical experience and is a treat for families everywhere. Though when youngsters start to misbehave and get fractious at the dinner table, eating out in restaurants can quickly evolve from being a pleasure to a predicament!  To help ensure the meal remains enjoyable for all the family, Weetwood Hall, a popular venue for family dining in Leeds, has compiled ten useful tips for enjoyable and stress-free dining with children in restaurants.

  • Go prepared

Little ones typically remain quieter and more content when they’ve got something to play with or to distract them. If you’re going to a restaurant with the kids, make sure you go prepared with plenty of colouring pens, paper, toys, books and other distractions.

  • Go to a children-friendly restaurant

Some restaurants are a lot more family-friendly and geared towards having children on their premises than others. Before you book to eat at a restaurant do some research to check the eatery is children-friendly.

  • Visit the restaurant at quieter times

Eating out during ‘off-peak’ times, such as 5pm opposed to 7pm will usually mean the restaurant is quieter, which can mean you are served quicker – a godsend if an irate and over-tired toddler decides to throw a tantrum!

  • Order the children’s food first

Youngsters can tend to ‘play up’ when they’re bored or hungry, or both! Overcome such a quandary by ordering your children’s food first. Let your children tuck into their meal while you enjoy a well-deserved pre-meal drink.

  • Eat in a place you know

As The Guardian advises in its feature titled ‘10 rules for eating in restaurants with young children’, instead of “strolling in blind” to a restaurant with children, the more you know about the restaurant, the better, such as does it have a children’s menu and is there changing facilities?

  • Sit young children in highchairs

Most child-friendly restaurants will have high chairs available to seat young children. A highchair is ultra-handy when dining out as not only does it mean your hands are free to relax and enjoy your meal, but it will also mean little ones can eat better and be kept entertained by having something to keep them distracted in front on them, such as crayons and paper.

  • Thinking fast

As mentioned above, children can tend to become fractious and start playing up when they get bored. Time is therefore of the essence when eating out with children and therefore restaurants with a notoriously long waiting time for the food to be served should ideally be avoided.

  • Get children involved

Help keep children entertained when dining out by getting them involved. Encouraging your children to look at the menu and order their own food, can help keen boredom at bay.

  • Try to avoid too much sugar

If your youngsters are partial to becoming a tad hyperactive after consuming too much sugar, avoid sugary drinks and snacks whilst eating at a restaurant.

  • Look for children’s menus

As we all know, children can be fussy eaters. Choosing a restaurant with a children’s menu means the dishes available are more likely to cater for your child’s taste, thus helping to avoid any unwanted meltdowns or tantrums.

If you’re looking for quality family dining in Leeds that’s geared towards making children feel comfortable and at home, Weetwood Hall in Headingley has a great selection of family-friendly restaurants and bars.

For a memorable family dining in Leeds experience, head to Weetwood Hall and enjoy dining on high quality food made from local Yorkshire ingredients.

We’re also looking forward to the opening of our new restaurant ‘Convive’, which caters for family dining and the pleasure of ‘feasting together’.   

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Categories: Dining, Pub, Restaurant