The Rainforest Cafe, London

I don’t normally do restaurant reviews because we have what could be politely described as an unrefined palette, but The Rainforest Cafe isn’t an ordinary restaurant.

As the name suggests, the restaurant (not a cafe!) is set in a rainforest theme, with elephants, monkeys and various other animals. The only thing missing is the rain and humidity (thankfully!)

Set in a basement in Piccadilly Circus, you can’t actually see the restaurant from the street, and you access it through the ground level shop (handy for post meal-nagging for a present!!). However, don’t let this put you off – the decor is amazing and creates such an atmosphere and sensory experience for the little ones (and big ones!)

Heidi was besotted by the elephants that were next to us and was even more amazed by the Rainforest Cafe mascot “Cha-Cha” who came round for meet and greets during the meal. It is a dining experience that is somewhat unique to say the least!

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Cha-Cha!!

In terms of the actual food, the service was really quick (the food was served before the drinks!!) and was of good quality. I had burger and fries – at the end of a busy London weekend, that was all I could face and Heidi had chicken and fries. Both with drinks came to just under £40, which is expensive for a Yorkshireman, but coming here is a one-off treat, rather than a daily occurrence. The staff were very child focused and were happy to talk to the children a s much as the adults!

Children get a colouring pack but there is the option to buy an activity pack, which comes with an animal mask. If truth be told, the excitement of eating in such a cool place was more than enough stimulation and is probably not needed – however, it would be a good way to navigate the shop at the end of the meal!

We went on a Sunday late afternoon and the waiting area was full and so booking is a must do – the website is so easy to navigate and we were seated within 5 minutes of arriving at the restaurant. As mentioned, the restaurant is in the basement, so pushchairs are left upstairs (not sure there is a lift). In terms of toilets, there are baby changing facilities in the Gents, which is good to see.

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As I said previously, the cost will be prohibitive for some, but this is perhaps the coolest restaurant that I have ever been in and so child focused, so it is well worth a visit if you’re wanting a treat.


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