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KudaCan – review

Bristol isn’t a big city, especially for one coming directly from London, as I did a few months ago. However, I’ve found it to be a very locally-focused city. If you live in one area, it seems you operate  as a parent there too, enjoying local friends and facilities. Trips to other parts of town seem to be quite infrequent, particularly South to North and vice-versa. This may be to do with the rather sketchy public transport offering we have, or the hills and the buggies and the walks. It’s also because we have great things to do with kids here, and a trio of play cafes of our own Bubbahub, Hungry Caterpillar Cafe and Sensory Space – reviews of the former two to be added here soon.

However, some things are worth making the trip North for. I think, if you live in South Bristol, KudaCan is one of those places. It’s a play cafe and community hub, just off the top of the Gloucester Rd. Housed in a dedicated unit with safe outdoor space at the front and a well thought out layout inside over two floors, KudaCan is a very easy place to spend time.

One of the main reasons I go is because it’s open on a Sunday, which is very useful for our household. It’s also one of the play cafes that my husband likes to visit – he finds some kids’ activities very mum-heavy and KudaCan always has a great group of Dads and Grandads.

I’m a huge fan of its fenced area of play, because of the age of my daughter. Unable to walk but very curious and cruising, the fence provides me with a secure feeling that she won’t get bowled over by older children legging it around, but also it contains the play activities and seems to focus the kids on them. Adults can leave their bags, shoes, hot drinks and other stuff at one of the nice bright orange tables and either chill with some food or drink, or join their children in the play area.

The toys and activities are bright, clean, and well thought out. There’s everything from a decent sized ball pit to a ‘domestic’ area with play kitchens and dressing up. For a cruising one year old, there’s a lot to do, grip, hang onto and grab at. There’s also a more serene baby area at the front with plenty of smaller toys and beanbags for those who might need to lie down/feed/slump exhaustedly.

Tibbs loves the slide, the large squishy soft play blocks, the circular activity table and, as usual, watching the other toddlers marauding about.

There are huge amounts of weekly activities for children and adults, from the ever popular Poco Drom’s visit to free parachute play and yoga sessions without the kids. I love the fact that all Bristol’s play cafes offer so much variety, and KudaCan really adds to that for me.

Entry fee is reasonable. I’ve not eaten a meal there but the coffee and cake is good and there’s variety for all. Pegah and her team are friendly and helpful. We first visited between Christmas and New Year, when KudaCan was one of the only indoor activities open, and I admire Pegah’s dedication to providing a really consistent community service.

We’ll continue to be regular visitors, especially on a Sunday, for a long while to come, I hope – KudaCan seems to be the sort of place where children up to around 3-4 can play happily, and older kids are well catered for with weekly classes and activities too.

 

 

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15 Comments

  1. Lia Lia

    Looks like a great place! I used to hang out with a SAHD as he was friends with my little boy and he used to say that he wished there were more Dad heavy places, this looks great.

  2. It amazes me that there aren’t more of these places in London really, such a good idea! Anything that means you can have an entertained child and eat cake at the same time is a winner in mine – and most parent’s – books. Also think this sort of thing would be perfect for when you have a second child, as it means the first one is entertained but you can also do the sitting around with your friends and the baby that we did so much of first time round. Great find.

    • It amazes me too, Gill, maybe it’s the space/cost premium in London but they are SO much more preferable than soft play supercentres.

  3. This is just across the road from me! I have always been rather jealous that my children are older now and I can’t go in and play 🙁

  4. This looks great, Bristol seems to be a great place to raise a family. x

  5. this looks like a fab place to play, and compared to where we live, Bristol is huge!

  6. I’ve yet to go to Kudacan. Heard about it ages ago. Must go visit so the big one can have a play while I chill with the little one.

  7. if i was ever to have a child, i think i’d have to move to bristol because it seems like a great place for a mum to be!

  8. This place sounds lovely – I really like community style cafes and Gloucester Rd is one of my favourite places in Bristol 🙂

    Laura x

  9. I haven’t been here but it looks great – and I love that they segregate the play – less confident little ones can be so easily put off by boisterous older ones as I’ve learnt from experience! Will have to try this place out, thank you.

  10. We’ve not been to Kudacan although I’ve heard good things! so true about crossing the city, I’ve only been to South Bristol three times in 5 years! x

  11. Kudacan looks great, I haven’t been there yet. I don’t often make my way over to South Bristol but will put it on my list to check out when I do. x

  12. Andrew Andrew

    Live just around the corner from this place so have been a few times. Used to be a good place to drop in to for a coffee while the kids play but difficult to justify going now they have refurbished. £4.50 just to go in is utterly ridiculous! Tried to make an afternoon of it but got told off for feeding my toddler a piece of fruit I had in my bag even though I had paid for a coffee. Don’t know what planet they are on. Would be in every week if they had a more sensible price. However it is now cheaper for me to go to the zoo

    • That’s a shame that you had a bad experience, Andrew. I really like Kudacan and it’s been a life saver for me on occasions.

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