The Sydney Instagram Café Guide

Ever heard of eating your feelings? Well, when I am not travelling overseas I’m usually dealing with my wanderlust by eating food. This means you’ll find me wandering around Sydney scoping out all the pretty & creative cafes and restaurants to satisfy my cravings! And then posting about it on Instagram, of course, because my camera eats before I do…

Instagram has not only altered the way we selfie, photograph and holiday, it’s also had an obvious effect on businesses & the aesthetics they now use to attract customers. Over the last few years I’ve noticed a massive change that’s swept across the café scene in Sydney. Think lots of flowers inside, café & florist mash ups and super creative menu offerings. As a Sydney-sider, I’m super excited to show you my favourite Instagrammable cafes & restaurants in the prettiest Australian city. So, let’s have a look at where I would recommend any local or tourist needs to visit:

The Boathouse

Casual relaxed beachy boho chic dining, The Boathouse hands down makes the best ever smashed avo on toast in Sydney. In fact, this is actually the only meal I’ve ever ordered here which is insane, I know, but it truly is that good! The avocado toast is served up on sourdough bread with a lot of tomato slices, the freshest feta cheese and topped with basil leaves. You also get served up half a lemon to drizzle over this breakfast of champions too.

Avocado toast and bacon & eggs at The Boathouse Balmoral
Perfect brunch at The Boathouse Balmoral
Iced coffee and nautical themes at the Boathouse
Iced coffee and nautical themes
Avocado toast & iced coffee at the Boathouse Palm Beach
Breakfast at The Boathouse Palm Beach

Basically, whenever I eat this Boathouse creation, I always walk out proudly feeling like I’ve instantly turned into a health nut. Which as anyone who has seen my Insta feed knows is not at all true – I adore pancakes and chocolate way too much! Boathouse also know how to create one of the tastiest iced coffees too, although this has recently changed on the menu. I say bring back the extra caramel syrup – but honestly, you can’t go wrong ordering their coffee!

Nautical coffee art
Nautical coffee art
Iced coffee and flowers at The Boathouse Palm Beach
Iced coffee and flowers at The Boathouse Palm Beach
Fresh flowers at The Boathouse Balmoral
Fresh flowers at The Boathouse Balmoral

If you can’t make it in time for brekkie or brunch then don’t worry because they also have their lunch/dinner menu. The seafood options sound amazing and there’s also cocktails, wine, beer and champagne. Which all goes down pretty nicely when you’re sitting by the water with views for days…

Champagne by the seaside at Balmoral
Champagne by the seaside at Balmoral

Balmoral Address: 2 The Esplanade, Balmoral, NSW

Palm Beach Address: Governor Phillip Park, Palm Beach, NSW

Shelly Beach Address: 1 Marine Parade, Manly, NSW

Balmoral opening hours: daily from 7am to 4pm




Four Frogs Crêperie

Whenever I’m missing France or am wandering around Circular Quay, if I’m craving some sweetness then Four Frogs Crêperie is where I find myself heading to! Here is where you will find the best made & tastiest crêpes in Sydney. Four Frogs combines traditional authentic French cuisine (and wine) with amazing service. My favourite crepe here is the one with Nutella, strawberry and banana and they also do a pretty delish chocolate milkshake as well.

Crepe with Nutella, strawberries and banana
La Simple crepe with Nutella, banana & strawberries

I was lucky enough to collaborate on Instagram with Four Frogs Crêperie last year for Bastille Day. Which was pretty awesome because it was also around the time of the World Cup finals! Their special menu included galettes with truffles; galettes are a great dinner option if you feel like something more savoury than sweet. They also provide breakfast options as well as always having something new on their mouth-watering menu!

Celebrating the 2018 Bastille Day menu at Four Frogs
Celebrating Bastille Day menu at Four Frogs in 2018

Lane Cove Address: 115-117 Longueville Road, Lane Cove, NSW

Sydney Address: Gateway Sydney, 1 Macquarie Place, Circular Quay, NSW

Mosman Address: 175 Avenue Road, Mosman, NSW

Randwick Address: 30 St Pauls Street, Randwick, NSW

Opening Hours – various (check website for details)




Cuppa Flower

Cuppa Flower is a café & florist collab, so you’re guaranteed to have some pretty photo opportunities at this place! Whenever I’m near the city and am craving fruit with muesli & yoghurt, then I always end up at Cuppa Flower. This pretty place in Waterloo has enjoyed so much success that they have now opened up a new location in Mascot.

Pancakes, coffee and yoghurt, fruit & granola at Cuppa Flower
Gorgeous brunch at Cuppa Flower

The advertising effect of sharing food pics on social media is powerful stuff. Take a look at these pancakes for instance. Served up with honeycomb and flowers, how could a creation like this not spark interest on the gram or facebook?!

Pancakes with honeycomb and pomegranate seeds
Instagram worthy pancakes!

Their drink options are pretty creative too. I love their iced coffee and recently decided to try one of their lemonade frizzy creations. Served with raspberries it was perfect for brunch on a warm summer morning.

Red velvet frappuccino and iced frizzy
Red velvet frappuccino and iced frizzy

Waterloo Address: Shop 1, 15 Allen Street, Waterloo, NSW

Mascot Address: 19-33 Kent Street, Mascot, NSW

Opening Hours: various – check Instagram for details



Two Sis & Co

Ok, so Two Sis and Co wins my vote for the most creative café menu currently in play in Sydney. How does fairy floss & a rose topping your coffee or a mermaid in your pancakes sound?! Their current offerings will definitely add some extra vibes to your Insta feed! Head over there now and try out the Spirulina mermaid pancakes – you get a message in a bottle as a gift. There’s also the matching coconut smoothie topped with fairy floss to match the seaside vibes.

Mermaid pancakes and coconut latte
Trying out the new ocean inspired menu at Two Sis & Co
Mermaid inspired pancakes with a message in a bottle
Message in a bottle with your mermaid pancakes!

If you’re a fan of wallpaper then you’ll love their feature wall with palm tree fronds. There’s usually a line up out the front and seating’s limited inside as it’s a small café. But the staff are responsive and the chefs are quick so the waiting time shouldn’t be too long here.

French toast with ice cream and fairy floss
French toast with ice cream and fairy floss
Trying out the rose latte
Gorgeous wallpaper
Hot chocolate with fairy floss
Hot chocolate with fairy floss

Address: 306 Harris Street, Pyrmont, NSW

Opening Hours: Monday to Friday – 7am to 4pm; weekends – 7.30am to 4pm



Gibbons Street Café

An airy and brightly lit café with heaps of seating, Gibbons street café has positive vibes with a menu to match! Perfectly located close to Sydney’s CBD, it’s another must see café if you love a range of menu options. I tried the mango & passionfruit mousse smoothie bowl topped with beautifully cut fruit, essentially the perfect brekkie on a warm day.

Mango & Passionfruit smoothie bowl
Mango & passionfruit smoothie bowl
Cappuccino, chai latte and iced coffee
Cappuccino, chai latte and iced coffee

There are also the popular ricotta pancakes topped with flowers as well as Banana fritters. This was also the place I tried out my very first chai latte and it was topped off with a cinnamon scroll and star anise. The menu options are extensive from baked eggs to prawn & squid ink spaghetti and the coffee is amazing too. This place is definitely on my list to visit again very soon!

Address: Shop 1, 7-9 Gibbons Street, Redfern, NSW

Opening Hours: Monday to Saturday – 6.30am to 4.00pm; Sundays – 7.30am to 4.00pm



Celsius Coffee Co

Views for days at this place which is located at the Kirribilli ferry wharf on Sydney Harbour. It was thanks to the gram that I found this small café on the water and it’s ever popular with locals & tourists. There’s usually always a line even early in the morning so be prepared to put your name on a waiting list. Whilst there is a bar style seating area and tables out the front I’d recommend you ask for one of the seats inside, so you can grab that water view photo.

Waffles and greens with eggs
Brunch by Sydney Harbour

I’ve visited there a couple of times and ordered the avocado toast as well as the berry waffles. Service can be a bit touch and go depending upon the day. The menu isn’t extensive but the coffee and the views more than make up for that!

Avocado toast with tomato & chilli at Celsius Coffee Co
Avocado toast with tomato & chilli

Address: Commuter Wharf, Holbrook Avenue, Kirribilli

Opening Hours: Monday to Friday – 7.30am to 2.30pm, weekends – 8.00am to 3.00pm




Social Hideout

Giving those London flower cafes a run for their money, Social Hideout also serves up flower walls, artwork and neon signs. Which is probably why their website claims they are “Sydney’s Prettiest Café”. They know you’re going to be taking photos and it’s like this place was designed for the gram! Outside there is even a bicycle with flowers in front of the sign ‘Guess where I am?”.

The bicycle and flower wall at Social Hideout
At “Sydney’s prettiest café” – Social Hideout

If you’ve read my Best cafes in Vienna & Salzburg article, then you already know I’m an iced coffee lover! If not, check the blog article out here for extra coffee love! But back to Sydney and it’s at Social Hideout where I ordered the most extra iced coffee I’ve ever seen. Topped with fairy floss, ice cream and sprinkles, this concoction looks like it was designed to be photographed for the gram…

Waterloo Address: Shop 4&5, 25-33 Allen Street, Waterloo

Parramatta Address: Shop 2A, 20 Victoria Road, Parramatta

Waterloo opening hours: Monday to Friday – 7.00am to 3.00pm, weekends – 8.00am to 3.00pm

Parramatta opening hours: Monday to Friday – 6.00am to 3.00pm, weekends – 7.30am to 3.00pm




The Grounds of Alexandria

The sixth most photographed location in the entire country of Australia. Yes, that’s right. An epic achievement considering there’s Uluru, Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge, the Great Barrier Reef and Bondi Icebergs to compete with… The Grounds of Alexandria has so much to offer in terms of drinks, food and photo opportunities that it deserves a whole blog article all of its own! And I have written one up, which you can check out here for a photo tour of this amazing Sydney eats & photo playground.

Address: 7A, 2 Huntley Street, Alexandria, NSW

Opening hours: various – check the website for more details




This article obviously demonstrates my current sugar & coffee/foodie photography addiction. But it also shows how far Sydney has come with its game in terms of stylising cafes & menus for the people. Sydney isn’t just in competition with Melbourne now…it’s turning up on the world stage to compete with all the major players internationally.

And whilst I’m in Sydney, until I can travel overseas again, that suits me just fine. After all, I love hashtags because they look like waffles… To follow more of my food & drink discoveries around Sydney, check out my Instagram feed. I’ll also be writing up a Part 2 of this Guide to Sydney’s most Instagrammable cafes soon. So let me know if you have any places you want to recommend or see! And let me know which ones listed here which you would love to visit!

Lauren Harding
Lauren Harding

Fashion & lifestyle blogger based in Sydney, Australia

Find me on: Web | Instagram

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  1. Kyleigh
    February 24, 2019 / 9:20 pm

    Lauren this is making me so hungry 😋 Thank you for sharing your favourite cafes in Sydney 🥞☕️😍 Delicious choices 😍

    • February 24, 2019 / 9:38 pm

      My pleasure! So happy to hear you liked the article, some good options for you to choose from the next time you visit Sydney! 🤗

  2. Irena
    February 24, 2019 / 10:15 pm

    Great blog! 😊

    • February 24, 2019 / 11:43 pm

      Thanks, glad you liked it! 🙋‍♀️

  3. February 25, 2019 / 8:01 am

    Wonderful descriptions and fotos of some of your favourite Sydney Instagram Cafes. They all seem to be amazing. Especially with you. Maybe Cuppa Flower and the Grounds would be my choice, but also the others, if I would be not too far away.
    I think you have a great reputation as a wonderful reporter, photographer and influencer about special coffee ☕️ places.
    Best wishes 🌺😻❤️🌷✨

    • February 25, 2019 / 8:26 am

      Thanks a lot Marcel, am really happy you liked it! The Grounds and Cuppa Flower are amazing places that I definitely keep returning to time and time again! Appreciate your feedback! 🥞🍯☕🙋‍♀️

    • March 24, 2020 / 2:28 pm

      Hi Nikos,
      Thanks for stopping by and so glad to hear you enjoyed your visit at Four Frogs too!
      I haven’t tried their Crepe Suzette as yet, so will make sure I do on my next visit 🙂
      Will definitely check out your review too, thanks so much for sharing!

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