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cheap eats & bars: Macquarie Uni Village

Related Village: macquarie university village

Cheap food is like the bat signal for university students.

And we wouldn’t be very good at what we do unless we compiled all of that precious information into one location, would we? We’ve done you a solid and decided to tour the country to find the best places to eat, drink and have a darn good time, no matter what Village you’re from! So here it is: a compiled list of the best places to eat, drink and hang for Macquarie Uni Village residents – something every first year student should know. Thank us later 😉



Top 3 Eats

Lvl 2, Campus Hub, Gymnasium Road, Macquarie Uni

U-Bar is where the magic happens on campus. We challenge you to get through a whole Semester without checking out this joint. It goes like this:

Monday = Free pool 2-4pm

Tuesday = games day 12-2pm

Wednesday = Bingo + Happy Hour 4:30-6:30pm

Thursday = Trivia 4:30-6:30pm

Friday = Lawn bowls + Pizza AND Happy Hour 4:30-6:30pm


They also have theme nights where you get to dress up and get jiggy with a bunch of other costume-clad students. Toga parties and double denim nights may have been mentioned – the ONLY time it’s okay to wear double-denim.




The Ranch Hotel

Located: CNR Epping & Herring Rds, North Ryde

Don’t worry, if you live at the Village there is a courtesy bus that takes you to and from The Ranch, so you don’t really need to know how to get there. The Ranch is a hot spot for Village residents, since they hook you up with some pretty sweet deals. Villagers have a whole night at the Ranch dedicated to them: the bus picks you up, you get cheap drinks all night, and the bus takes you home after last drinks are called. Can I get an amen?! There are also $5 Fridays if your schedule doesn’t allow you to get silly on a weekday. Try their chilli vodka, if you dare…



TGI Fridays

Located: Lvl 4, Shop 454 Macquarie Shopping Centre, Herring Rd, North Ryde

Aptly named TGI Fridays because, ya’know, thank God it’s Friday. Celebrate the completion of your academic week of staring at clocks and Facebooking during lectures by travelling back in time to a 60s themed New York style diner! They have some favourites that you oughta try like their Loaded Potato Skins, Chicken Fingers, Buffalo Wings or their Jack Daniels Grill. But they also do a 7-day happy hour – which really should be all the convincing you need. They do just about every cocktail concoction you can think of, and you can order your food online so it’s ready when you get there. Excuse us while we move our office location to this place…




Top 3 local eats

The Ranch

Located: CNR Epping & Herring Rds, North Ryde

Yes, we are doubling up here, but there’s a pretty good reason for that. Monday at The Ranch is $10 Chicken Schnitty night (for those of you learning the Aussie lingo, that’s Chicken Schnitzel). Tuesdays is $30 for any two main meals, Wednesday night is $10 Ultimate Steak Night, Thursdays you can buy one meal and get the second half price, and Friday lunch is $15 Surf VS Turf (your choice of fish or scotch fillet with chips and salad). It just keeps getting better from here. All day every day they have a huge roast for just $12, and all produce is 100% Australian and sustainable. If you’ve been eating pizza and 2 Minute Noodles for a week, maybe pop in to the Ranch Hotel for a decent serve of meat’n’veggies, okay?



Red Ginger

Located: Shop 6, 1 Trafalgar Place, Marsfield – across the road from Reception, 2 minute walk

We love our Thai at the Village, so much so that we’re pretty sure we are Red Ginger’s best customers. If you want takeaway and you’re not sure you want to order pizza for the fifth night in a row because you’re pretty sure the delivery guy knows you and now he’s started bringing you complementary garlic bread out of pity, maybe hit up Red Ginger for a lighter option and a decent vegetable fix! You can’t go wrong with a Pad Kee Mao, but if you’re wanting something ambitious try the Chilli jam with Crispy Pork.



Zig Zags

Located: Shop 1, Trafalgar Place, Marsfield – again, just cross the road at Reception and walk for 2 minutes

Zig Zags will always hit the spot because of its affordability and convenience. Quinn is the owner, and if you get to know her she’ll learn your regular coffee order pretty quick! Head over for your morning caffeine hit, or stay a little longer in the cosy surroundings and order some food. Quinn loves her fresh produce and cooks with passion – she’s got a huge breakfast menu, a range of healthy and delicious wraps and salads for lunch, and at night you can come in for a salad or some Tapas! Order the Rolled Lamb Shank with Smoked Pancetta. Say hi to Quinn for us!




And that’s it! It won’t be hard to tick these places off the Macquarie Uni Village Bucket List and start off your student experience right – heaps of the locals swear by these places, and you’re bound to find yourself there sooner or later! If you have any more great local spots, let us know and we will review them for everyone!

See you next week,

About the Author


Amy is the Content & Social Media Specialist with Campus Living Villages. She lived at UNSW Village for 4 years, so she knows a thing or two about moving out of home and starting life on-campus!