Coffee in Portugal is much more than a routine; it is a ritual that comes, in some cases, with its own “cathedrals”, the Cafés. A Route of Historic Cafes has been created to explore 23 of the most beautiful and artistic Cafés in the country. From North to South of Portugal, here is a selection of cafés not to miss.
Located in Porto, Café Majestic opened its doors in 1921. With exquisite Art Nouveau decoration it was frequented by famous personalities like the actresses, writes and many personalities. In 2011 it was included in the 6th most beautiful Cafés in the world.
Located in central Avenida dos Aliados, Café Guarany dates back from 1933. Guarany’s Deco features a marble high relief featuring an Indian and 2 paintings by Graça Morais that depict the Guarany tribe. The ambiance appeals to the 20th century Brazil, one of the world’s foremost coffee producers.
Café Santa Cruz
The 16th century building located in Coimbra that now houses the Café Santa Cruz has been the location of a church, former police station, funeral house and a setting for a firing squad. Nowadays it is the “home” of university students that study in one of the most respected universities in the world, the Universidade de Coimbra.
Café Martinho da Arcada
Martinho da Arcada is the oldest café in Lisbon dating back from 1782. Several literary personalities were regular customers to this café located in Terreiro do Paço. The writer and poet Fernando Pessoa was one of them and up until today his table remains reserved for him.
Café A Brasileira
Honoring about one of Portugal’s favorite writers, Fernando Pessoa, the Brasileira has a statue of him right outside in its esplanade (he was a regular). Located in Chiado, one of the most iconic sceneries in Lisbon, A Brasileira is a tourist’s favorite.
This Templar Café is located in the center of Tomar, a city known for its role in the famed Knights Templar. Open since 1911, the Art Deco building is still a multiple generation meeting point.
Café A Cadeia Quinhentista
The Café, bar and restaurant, Cadeia Quinhentista is a 16th century building that used to house the former jail in the Alentejo city of Estremoz. It is a “passport” to the medieval ages thanks to the well-preserved details from its construction.
In the beautiful city of Évora besides the Temple of Diane, you can find the Café Arcada, in Giraldo Square. Open since 1942 it is a favorite for the locals but also tourists that can enjoy some fine pastries in the historic center of the city.