Nelson & Golden Bay, Family Restaurants

  • Dangerous Kitchen -

    By day, we are a café serving the best local eggs in the district and in true kiwi style, a world class coffee experience. By night, we are a caped crusading restaurant dishing out our famous pizza, freshly inspired in-season pastas, salads, burritos, hot soups, platters & desserts!  99% of our fresh produce is grown locally and either organically or sprayfree. All of our eggs are free range and all of our breakfast eggs are from local free range and organically fed chickens. We have been actively forging relationships with local growers and supporting the movement of local food production. We know where and how this food is grown.

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  • The Mussel Inn - Onekaka

    The Mussel Inn is a family friendly quirky cafe / bar / music venue with of course as the name points to - the best Mussels in town.  located in the heart of Golden Bay, North West Nelson region of the South Island of New Zealand. A two hour drive from Nelson, over the Takaka hill, through the township of Takaka and on another 17 kms towards Collingwood you will find yourself in Onekaka. We have a great outside area, under shady trees complete with large swing. Open from 11am till late, seven days a week except for for Christmas day. No bookings, no byo - take us as you find us.

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  • Morri Street Cafe

    Come and enjoy a coffee, a meal or a snack. Our children’s menu is well thought out, our baristas know their coffee very well and they also have a fine range of other hot and cold drinks. Morri Street Cafe has been multiple winners of the Best Cafe in the Nelson region over the last 17 years and runner up in the national Cafe of the Year.

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  • The Grape Escape Cafe

    Whether stopping by for lunch, brunch or afternoon tea, enjoy the ambiance of this cosy café, relax on the deck or outdoors under a sun umbrella or in the shade of a tree enjoying the garden. Great fresh food and coffee!

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  • Brigand Cafe and Bar - Takaka

    Nature comes to the fore at the Brigand Café Bar! Through the big steel gates you will discover a brush fenced and decked area with a boulder water fountain, hewn macrocarpa tables, native ferns and lush foliage. This is hospitality Takaka style. Enjoy an open fire both inside and outside. A lovely natural environment in the summer sunshine or for cosy winter days and nights. Children’s sandpit too. Try a light meal like the lamb, vegetarian or salmon salads. The spare ribs are huge, and famous far and wide, as is the generous sirloin steak. Fish of the Day, Golden Bay Mussels… the choice is impressive and the menu makes the most of fresh local produce.

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  • Jellyfish Cafe & Bar - Mapua

    Great food with Mediterranean influences – come and enjoy our seaside café and bar right on the wharf at Mapua. Open for breakfast lunch and dinner and with a great kids menu and options available.

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  • Jester House - Motueka region

    A country café, serving breakfast, lunch and ‘inbetweens’. Once you walk over the trip trop bridge past the tame eels you enter another world. The funtastic café garden is full of art and surprises. You can play chess on the giant wooden chess board or tell the kids to "get lost" in the maze. Let them enjoy the playground while you take some time to smell the roses. Take a wander and enjoy the various sculptures that you discover and be surprised by what you find. Meanwhile the tame eels live in the creek below the bridge waiting to be fed. Eel food is available from the café, $5 for the real eel deal.

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  • Penguino Gelato Cafe - Nelson

    Penguinos is a Nelson institution and has a reputation for great ice cream and gelato.  They continually create and refine wonderful new flavours, providing superb gelatos for regular customers as well as the many tourists who flock to Nelson in the summer months.  Creative and exuberant, you will have fun trying extraordinary flavours not normally associated with ice creams. 

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  • The Penguin Cafe & Bar Pohara

    Seasonal and extensive menus for lunch and dinner specializing in seafood and local produce. Gourmet pizzas to dine in or takeaway. Bar snacks available throughout the day. Kids menu available all day. Fabulous Friday night burgers. Choice of regional wines. Casual seaside dining on spacious decks, among native gardens in the courtyard area. Contemporary warm design blending into natural bush. Opposite Pohara Beach.

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  • The Beach Cafe - Tahunanui

    Located right on the beach in Tahuna Reserve, recognised for excellence, quality food and beverages - served all day long from early morning until 5pm. 7 days a week, all year round. Very kind friendly with adjacent play area.



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  • Old School Cafe, Bar and Restaurant - Collingwood

    The Old School Cafe is located half way between Collingwood and Farewell spit. The Cafe is in the original building that was once the house of learning for the children of Pakawau. Open for lunch and dinner there is plenty on the large black board menu to suit all. Indoor and outdoor dining with a full bar, pool table and dart board.

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  • Lonestar - Nelson

    "Wow" you really need to try this one! Lone Star's legendary meals, outstanding service, and famous atmosphere are now part of accepted folklore in 16 New Zealand cities. Our new menu has made it’s delectable debut with new stars such as the Ravishing Rib-eye and Hooked On A Feeling, nestling comfortably amongst old favourites, Lassoo of Hog and Dixie Chicken, to name just a few that are available for your gastronomic delight. Children are exceptionally well looked after with their own Kiwi Kids’ menu, with choices such as Barney’s Ribs, Chief Mini Drums, Chicken or Lamb Wrap, Little Big Steak, Nipper’s Fish ‘n’ Chips and heaps more!

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Map of New Zealand
  • Central Otago
  • Bay of Plenty
  • Coromandel
  • Dunedin
  • Gisborne
  • Fiordland
  • Hawkes Bay
  • North Canterbury
  • Manawatu
  • Nelson & Golden Bay
  • Northland
  • Marlborough Sounds
  • Rotorua
  • Queenstown
  • Taranaki
  • South Canterbury
  • Taupo
  • Southland
  • Waikato
  • Wanaka
  • West Coast
  • Whangarei
  • Bay of Islands
  • Tauranga
  • Gisborne
  • Hamilton
  • Napier
  • Kapiti
  • Palmerston North
  • Whanganui
  • New Plymouth
  • Arrowtown
  • Te Anau
  • Akaroa
  • Ashburton
  • Hanmer
  • Kaikoura
  • Methven
  • Mt Cook
  • Oamaru
  • Tekapo
  • Timaru
  • Abel Tasman
  • Motueka
  • Nelson Lakes
  • Blenheim
  • Picton
  • Catlins
  • Gore
  • Stewart Island
  • Central Plateau
  • Invercargill
  • Cromwell
  • Greymouth
  • Hokitika
  • Westport
  • Glenorchy

Our favourite destinations…

Auckland destination2


New Zealand’s economic heart and biggest city is also an exciting family visitor destination, situated on a sunny harbour with city beaches just minutes away from the CBD. Orientate yourself by heading down to Viaduct Harbour, wandering the waterfront, checking out the super yachts or enjoying the waterfront restaurants. Nearby is the must-visit Sky Tower along with excellent and kid-friendly museums and tons of exciting activities!


Wellington is New Zealand’s capital. Here you will find New Zealand's parliament buildings, including the 'Executive Wing', more well-known as 'The Beehive' due to its distinctive shape. Another icon to look out for is the Wellington Tram, which was the main means of public transport between 1878 and 1964.


With a population of around 400,000 Christchurch, in Canterbury, is the South Island ’s largest city, yet much of it has the feel of a small town. Perhaps that’s why it’s known as the Garden City but with the expansive Hagley Park, Botanic Gardens, Port Hills, River Avon and numerous beaches the city certainly has an open, relaxed feel that’s hard to beat.


With its well-deserved reputation as New Zealand’s activity adventure capital you’ll never run out of activities and things to do in Queenstown, but you may run out of time! With breathtaking scenery, activities and festivals, cafes and restaurants, skiing and snowboarding, shopping and wineries, this lakeside alpine resort rates as one of the world’s top vacation destinations for all ages and seasons.


Rotorua sits on the shore of Lake Rotorua, one of sixteen lakes in the area formed by hundreds of thousands of years of eruptions from the Taupo Volcanic Zone. The area is renowned for its geothermal activity and top of any activity list is to see the bubbling mud pools that are around the region for yourself. The Waimangu Volcanic Valley offers a first hand insight into the devastation caused by the 1886 eruption of Mount Tarawera and is a great place to discover steaming volcanic craters and bubbling, spitting  pools of mud!

Nelson and Golden Bay

The Nelson and Golden Bay regions, at the top of the South Island, boast enviable sunshine hours, glorious sandy beaches, safe swimming spots, lots of wildlife to look out for, and Abel Tasman National Park - an absolute must to explore, on foot, by kayak, your own craft or watertaxi.  Nelson is home to a vibrant arts and crafts community with a fabulous Saturday market, and is close to award-winning wineries and family-friendly bike tracks to take you around the coast.

Hawkes Bay

Napier was rebuilt after the 1931 earthquake and is now known as NZ's Art Deco City.  The Art Deco influence has created a unique city – nowhere else can you see such a varied concentration of art deco style. With over 2,200 sunshine hours a year, Napier is a year-round holiday destination with countless activities to entertain the kids – there's days of entertainment on Marine Parade alone, plus numerous other family-friendly trips and activities.  Add to that the beaches, walks and flat cycle paths, outdoor cafes and entertainment, and you have a perfect holiday destination!


Beautiful, unspoiled beaches, fishing, historic gum fields, kauri forests – the Far North has it all. With subtropical temperatures, it's often known as ‘the Winterless north', with warm, humid summers and mild winters.
Gateway to the Bay of Islands, Paihia is a pretty, lively beachside town and a perfect base for your family holiday. It’s your start point for Bay of Island adventures including day cruises, sailing, kayaking, swimming with dolphins and reef or wreck diving.