Nomad List ranked Budapest as the number 1 nomad-friendly city. I disagree, in terms of laptop-friendly cafes and air conditioner!
I’ll confess. I’m totally spoiled by the close proximity of amazing cafes in Medellín, so I absolutely hate taking public transportation or walking over 5 minutes to a cafe. In Budapest, I couldn’t bother with commuting in the heat, and I sometimes settled for the Starbucks that’s 3 blocks away from my apartment. Don’t judge! It’s the only place that opened until 10 PM even on a Sunday, offering plenty of space and air conditioner.
Maybe I should have avoided visiting Budapest in summer. Cafes in Budapest despised turning on AC even on a 36C summer day. While a lot of them looked cute and served decent coffee, they’re too small for digital nomads to camp out. I did see some shameless people camping out with laptops in a popular coffee shop with only 5 tables. Come on, don’t be that person. You pay for one cup of coffee, not their rent.
During my stay in Budapest, I had quite a few favorite cafes. I’ll share the ones that are laptop-friendly so you don’t have to go through the same struggle when you visit.
I stumbled upon Goamama Coffee when I was strolling in the Jewish District. It’s the coffee division of an elegant home decor store. That’s like a much fancier version of Ikea selling pizza after the checkout. No, I’m kidding.
I frequented Goamama because it’s the nearest one and the barista makes a good flat white. It’s a small cafe but bigger than the other mini ones in Budapest. There’s a communal table, where people work and chat. Free cucumber water. I was never a big fan of chocolate cake but Goamama’s flourless chocolate cake sold me! Try it.
Address: Budapest, Király u. 21., 1075 Hungary
Madal Cafe has three locations in Budapest. The baristas make some of the best coffees in town, and sometimes they give you a tiny card with information about where the beans are from.
I love the one near Ferenciek Tere with two floors. My favorite seat is right in front of the glass window, for sunlight and people watching. Most people with laptops would camp out on the second floor, a much quieter space. It also has outdoor seating if you like.
Address: Budapest, Ferenciek tere 3., 1053 Hungary
Image via KINO Cafe’s website.
Kino Cafe connects to an art cinema next door. You can purchase tickets right from the cafe’s booth as well. The cafe serves delicious-looking food but I only tried the iced coffee here. Not every cafe in Budapest offers iced coffee — yeah, I know, that’s why I settled for Starbucks sometimes!! It has enough tables so you won’t feel cramped working here.
Address: Budapest, 1137, Ditrói Mór u. 1, 1137 Hungary
Image via Konya’s Facebook Page
Konyha means kitchen in Hungarian. It’s more of a restaurant than a cafe, with two spacious floors and outdoor seating. A lot of working Hungarians come here for the constantly changing lunch menu. Apparently, it’s also a popular spot for students to study. It’s a place of gathering. I don’t recommend the coffee, but it’s a good place to have lunch and then continue working in the afternoon.
Address: Budapest Madách Imre út 8, 1075 Hungary
Image via Espresso Embassy.
Espresso Embassy is inside of a 200-year-old building. The cafe’s aesthetics are appealing, only if there aren’t that many tourists. Most popular cafes in Budapest always have a crowd of tourists standing outside, which is not the best atmosphere for work. There’s a communal table in the back that’s too tall for a comfortable hand rest. Definitely not my favorite cafe, but you’ll find some nomads and laptops here.
Address: Budapest, Arany János u. 15, 1051 Hungary
Kontakt boasts a “no sugar, no milk” policy, because the coffee is that good. The Goat Herder has the best vibe and great coffee as well. Budapest has a poor service attitude in general, but not here! It’s a bit out of the way but it’s a lovely, cozy place.
I hope this guide is helpful for finding laptop-friendly cafes if you need to get work done while visiting Budapest. If you’ve visited the city before, what’s your favorite coffee shop? 🙂