MEJ Masthead

Where to eat over the holidays in Canberra

Valeriya Lloyd


If you want to show off Canberra’s cafés to visiting family and friends or just need a break from cooking at home, we’ve got you covered with all the places to eat a lazy brunch or grab a drink over the holiday period.

If you’re heading to Sydney over the holidays, make sure to check out our list of places to eat along the Hume Highway that aren’t the golden arches.

Want to know where’s open on Christmas Day? Click here


If cooking breakfast isn’t included in your holiday plans, Buvette at Hotel Realm will be available for delicious breakfasts between 26 to 30 December and from 1 to 23 January. Buvette is closed for Christmas and Boxing Day but will be open for dinner on 31 December, New Year’s Eve.

18 National Circuit, Barton | (02) 6163 1818 | Website | Reservations can be made here

Joe’s Bar

Joe’s Bar is one of those rare venues that have fantastic availability throughout the holidays. Joe’s is open every day except for Monday 19 December and is available for dinner and lunch. Come in and enjoy the nocturnal atmosphere in the evenings and the great selections of food and wine.

69 Canberra Ave, Griffith | 02 6178 0050 | Booking | Website


With its elegant selection of zesty European food and luxurious interior, Ostani opens its doors to everyone for lunch and dinner on Boxing Day. The restaurant will be closed for Christmas Day and most of the following week but reopens for dinner on 31 December and will be available to visit throughout the remainder of the holidays.

18 National Circuit Barton | 6163 1888 | Website | To make a reservation click here


Another place for breakfast during the holidays is No. 10 Restaurant & Bar, which is open on public holidays for breakfast from 7 am till 10 am and for regular hours (Monday – Sunday 7 am till late) for all other days.

10 Bowes Street Woden | (02) 6108 4958 | Website


One way to entertain yourself during the holidays is to go and sample a brand new menu. Chairman & Yip has a great selection of treats for all lovers of Cantonese cuisine. The restaurant is open from 27 to 30 December for lunch and dinner but closed 25, 26 and 31 December. After the break, the restaurant reopens for usual hours on 20 January.

1 Burbury Close, Barton | (02) 6162 1220 | Website | Click here to make a reservation


For those who would like to spare themselves the task of preparing a banquet on Christmas Day, all Asian cuisine lovers are welcome to book in and enjoy a sumptuous Christmas Day Banquet Lunch. The restaurant will then be closed for a break until 17 January.

Shop 77-78/71 Giles St. Kingston | 02 6232 7997 | Website | Here’s the link to book a table

The Duxton

Closed for the Christmas Day but open throughout the rest of the holidays with live music on Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, NYE and NYD and drinks specials.

Macpherson St, O’Connor | 6162 0799 | Website

Some Café

Closing from 19 December and reopens on 12 January for usual hours from 9am onwards.

5/7 Murray St, Collector | 0422 132 883 

Turkish Pide House

The Turkish Pide House aka home of the Yarralumla Kebab is open throughout holidays, short hours for lunch on 25-26th from 10.30 am till 2.00pm. All the rest of days the restaurant is open for usual hours from 11 am – 9 pm.

2 Lawry Pl, Macquarie | 02 6251 3325 | Website


Lilotang is open for Christmas Eve for dinner only, closed on 25-27th, available on 28-31st for lunch and dinner, reopens for usual trading hours between 12pm-2.30pm and 5.30-10.30pm on 3rd January.

Burbury Hotel Canberra, Burbury Hotel, 1 Burbury Cl, Barton | 02 62731424 | Website 

Loading Zone

Open throughout holidays for all day breakfast & lunch between 7 am- 3 pm, on Christmas Day from 7 am till 2.30pm.

22 Odgers lane, Melbourne Building | 02 6248 6400


Ricardo’s is open through the holidays from 7.30 am till 5.30pm, on weekends from 7.30 am till 4 pm. The place is closing on Christmas Eve at 3pm and reopens on 2nd January for usual trading hours.

Jamison Plaza, 1/1 Bowman St, Macquarie | 02 6251 2666 | Website


Nookie is closing for a Christmas break on 24 December and reopens on 3 January.

Tennancy 3, 122 Alinga St (Cnr East Row), Civic | 0420 721 529


Ritual is closing from the 23 December for a Christmas break. They reopen on 9 December.

21 National Circuit Barton | 0432 329 390 | Website

Avenue C Wine & CO

Avenue C is open on Christmas Eve from 10 am- 11 pm but is then closed until then reopens with their usual hours from 4 January.

55/65 Constitution Ave, Campbell | (02) 6247 5991 | Website


Otis is available for dinner on 31 December but will be closed between 25 and 29 December. The restaurant closes again on 1 January but reopens on the 3rd.

29 Jardine Street Kingston | (02) 6260 6066 | Website | To make a reservation click here


Walter G’s pizza will remain open every day from 4.30pm to 10 pm except on 25 and 31 December.

28 Challis street Dickson | 02 6199 0022 | Website


Bicicletta restaurant will open its doors to those who would like to experience a traditional Italian Christmas lunch on 25 December. Bicicletta is also open for lunch and dinner on Boxing Day and for the rest of December, including New Year’s Eve and the first two weeks of January.

1/15 Edinburg Avenue, NewActon | 02 6262 8683 | Website | Reservations can be made online


XO will be closed over the Christmas break but will be back from 9 January.

16 Iluka St, Narrabundah | 02 6295 9696 | Website | Book online


Breizh will be open Christmas Eve from 9am until 4pm, closed on 25, 26 and 27 December and will reopen on Wednesday 28 December to normal trading hours until Saturday 31 December when they’re open from 9am until 4pm and then 5.30-9pm for dinner. They will be closed New Year’s Day but open again on January 2 2017 for normal trading hours.

15 Edgar Street, Ainslie | 6156 0346 | Website


Parlour Dining & Bar is taking Christmas off from 25 December but will welcome guests back on New Year’s Eve and reopen fully from 3 January.

16 Kendall Lane New Acton | (02) 62577325 | Website | Booking is here

Sage Restaurant & Mint Garden Bar

Sage Restaurant & Mint Garden Bar is open for lunch and dinner from 27 to 29 December but will take a break on 25, 26 and also for New Year’s Eve. They reopen for the remainder of the holidays on 3 January.

Gorman House Arts Centre, Batman Street, Braddon | 02 6249 6050 | Their website | Reservations are here

Pialligo Estate Garden Pavillions

Pialligo Estate Garden Pavillions is closed over Christmas from 24 December. However, everyone will be able to enjoy the magnificent views of the Estate’s Vineyards, Olive Grove and Canberra’s skyline featuring Parliament House and Black Mountain tower from 6 January when the restaurant reopens.

18 Kallaroo Rd, Pialligo | (02) 6247 6060 | Website | Bookings

Little Bird

Summer salads and cool sippers could well be just the thing to have for a meal over hot sunny summer days during the festive season. Little Bird has a fantastic selection of light meals that are a good choice for the hottest period of the year. Little Bird will shut down from 24 December until 3 January and will thereafter be fully available for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Corner of Macquarie street and Broughton street, Barton | Website


Vincent will be open from 4 pm to 10 pm Tuesday-Wednesday, from 12 pm to 10 pm on Thursdays and Fridays and from 4 pm to 10 pm on Saturday. The closing dates are from 23 December to 10 January.

48 Macquarie st, Barton | 02 6273 7773 | Website | Booking

Thirst Thai

Thirst Thai reopens for the holidays on 3 January, after a Christmas break from 24 December to 2 January.

20 West Row Melbourne Building Canberra City | 02 6257 0700 | Booking | Website


Muse restaurant is yet another great choice for contemporary Australian food and is open every day of the year. During the holiday period, it’s open 7am to 2:30pm on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and from 28 to 31 December. On Boxing Day and 1 and 2 January it’s open 7am to 12 noon.

69 Canberra Ave, Kingston | 02 6178 0024 | Make a reservation | Website

Greenhouse Coffee and Co

Greenhouse Coffee and Co is located on the top level of the Canberra Centre and offers a relaxing venue in which to escape from the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping. This place is known for its legendary coffee ONA, delicious food, and chic European style interior, influenced by its elegant French windows. You can spoil yourself with a fantastic cup of coffee on Christmas Eve before 5 pm and come back on Boxing Day between 7.00am – 5.30pm and between 7.30 am to 4 pm on Saturdays. Greenhouse is open every day during the summer holidays except for New Year’s Eve.

Top level Canberra Centre (next to Kikki K), Civic


Located in Braddon, Bonkers is the perfect place to spend a relaxing and entertaining evening. Try some of Bonkers’ signature cocktails and zesty food in the company of friends. Bonkers is open throughout the holiday period. Check their Facebook page for more details.

Elder Street, Braddon | 0407 283 218


Another place to check out in the inner-north is local pub The Pedlar in Campbell, which is conveniently open for most of the holiday period. The Pedlar is shut on 25 and 26 December and also on New Year’s Day but is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner on all other days throughout the holidays.

65 Constitution Ave, Campbell | 02 5110 5929 | Website


Expect delicious food and a great atmosphere at AKIBA. They’re open every day during the holidays except for Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.

40 Bunda St, Civic| 02 6162 0602 | Website


What could be better than frozen chocolate on a hot summer day? Frugii Dessert Laboratory uses only fresh and natural products made in house and also offers a wide range of dairy-free, vegan and gluten-free creations.

Frugii is open every day from 12 pm till 11 pm except Mondays and Christmas Day. It is also closed on 1 January and reopens for usual trading hours on 3 January.

Unit 57, ORI Building, 30 Lonsdale st, Braddon | 0438 366 368 | Website


If you’re after an inventive menu, then Jones and Co is the place for you. The restaurant is taking a break from 24 December to 2 January, when then reopen for the remainder of the holidays. The usual trading hours are from 12 pm to 11.30pm

 Cnr Giles & Kennedy street, Kingston | 6162 3355 | Website


A great place to hang out at with a cup of coffee and a fresh newspaper on a quiet day, Penny University offers delicious salads and burgers combined with a great range of hot and cold drinks. The café is closed from 22 December and reopens after the main holidays on 6 January, with its usual trading hours of 7 am to 4 pm.

15 Kennedy Street, Kingston | 02 6162 1500 | Website


If you’re keen to treat yourself to a late breakfast or an early lunch, Teddy Picker’s offer warm hospitality and delicious treats that could well be the highlight of your day. One particularly great thing about this venue is its fantastic selection of jams, chutneys, and pickles that have been prepared in-house.

The cafe has a great atmosphere and bookings are not essential. Just come and enjoy the friendly service and fantastic food experience. Teddy’s will close on 24 December and stay closed until the 27th. It will also be closed on New Year’s Day but reopens for usual trading hours between 7.00am – 3.30pm on weekdays and 8.00am – 3.00pm on weekends from 2 January.

65 Constitutional Avenue, Campbell | Website


If you’re located in Belconnen, there are some great cafés open for business. Little Oink in Cook is one such venue. Along with its bright and colourful interior, the cafe offers delicious coffee and a healthy menu selection for those who like to spoil themselves with a tasty breakfast or lunch.

Little Oink will be closed on Christmas Day and Boxing Day and on the 1st and 2nd of January but will be open from 8 am to 4 pm on every other day.

22 Cook Place, Cook | 6251 2688 | Website

We’ll be adding more cafés, restaurants and bars to this list as we find them. Please drop us a line at [email protected] if you know of somewhere that should be included!


Valeriya Lloyd

Val is studying Communications in Media and Public Affairs at University of Canberra and has a great passion for writing (in two languages as she originally came to Canberra from Russia). Val enjoys writing about life generally, and sometimes from a fictional perspective. She often generates new ideas in sudden moments and admits that she has at least two diaries, where she writes her notes and inspiration for future stories. She loves to meet new people and showcase their talents and originality. Val is very social person, who loves the local lifestyle and the inner beauty of Canberra. More about the Author

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