10 Great European Cafés
Collected by Jenna Francisco, AFAR Local Expert
A good café is a traveler's best friend. You get a place to rest, a bite to eat, and some top-notch people-watching.
Universitätsring 4, 1010 Wien, Austria
Founded in 1873, this elegant Viennese café/coffeehouse has hosted the likes of Sigmund Freud (supposedly it was his favorite coffeehouse) and Marlene Dietrich—and it’s still considered a good place for people watching. When I located it near my...
Rozengracht 2, 1016 NB Amsterdam, Netherlands
The atmosphere is heavy, the decibel level very low, and the wooden decor both comforting, and inviting. People in this café are either locals reading the newspapers while sipping a cappuccino, or, like me, tourists who just visited the Anne Frank...
Ovocný trh 19, 110 00 Praha-Staré Město, Czechia
Prague’s Grand Café Orient is the only cubist-designed space of its kind in the world. It occupies the first floor of the House of the Black Madonna, designed in 1911 by modernist architect Josef Gočár. Renovated in 2005, the...
Piazza San Marco, 57, 30124 Venezia VE, Italy
Italy’s oldest cafe has been serving coffee on a silver tray with a water chaser and a cookie since opening in 1720. Caffè Florian features a series of ornate gilded Neo-Baroque salons with frescoes and red velvet banquettes, as well...
1100-139 Alfama, Portugal
Walking throughout Lisbon one is struck by the well known 'blue hues' decorating the city with the exquisite tilework. They are indeed lovely in tone and vary in color temperature. Important to note is the welcoming yellow hue that has gained...
6 Place Saint-Germain des Prés, 75006 Paris, France
One part tourist trap, one part beloved café, Les Deux Magots is a legendary spot that everyone should visit at least once when in Paris. Most famous as the place where the likes of Simone de Beauvoir, Jean-Paul Sartre and Ernest Hemingway...
Rua Santa Catarina 112, 4000-442 Porto, Portugal
The Rua Santa Caterina is the most important shopping street in Oporto. It is a pedestrian street which is closed to traffic. Along the Rua Caterina you will find the Mercado Bolhao which is a lively market with many shops to delight the market...
11 Place du Forum, 13200 Arles, France
Once known as the Cafe Terrace, this is the place captured so colorfully in Van Gogh's painting of Place du Forum in Arles, in September of 1888. Still in operation today and now named Cafe Van Gogh, it's a lovely little spot to have your espresso...
Piazza della Repubblica, 35/r, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
Paszkowski's historic interior was originally founded in 1848 in what is now Piazza della Repubblica in the center of Florence. A great place to stop for a hot chocolate, espresso, or one of the cafe's beautiful sweet treats, Paszkowski not only...