Coffee is a hugely important part of Guatemala’s culture and economy. The country’s fertile highlands are home to some of its biggest and best coffee plantations, which makes Xela an excellent city to sample some of the freshest coffee that the country has to offer. If you’re staying in the city and find yourself in need of a caffeine fix, here’s where you should go.
Habitual Coffee Brew
Cafe, Coffee Shop, Tea , $$$
Habitual Coffee Brew should be the first port of call for anyone who really cares about their coffee. The beans are sourced from a plantation near Huehuetenango, a couple of hours drive away from Xela — and the drinks are all lovingly prepared. Take a chance to chat to the staff, who enjoy nothing more than sharing all things coffee to fellow enthusiasts
. Well, perhaps except actually drinking the stuff.
Bakery, Coffee Shop, Cafe, Dessert, $$$
Xela is a home to a sizable English-speaking community, mostly made up of language students and tutors, plus some volunteers. Mandarina is a hugely popular spot among the city’s expats, and it isn’t hard to see why. The coffee is top notch, however you take it. And it’s best washed down with one of the cafe’s amazing sweet treats. Try the carrot cake muffin — you won’t regret it.
Cafe Museo La Luna
Cafe, Tea , $$$
Coffee isn’t actually the speciality of this cafe. Instead, chocolate is. But as well as a range of incredible hot chocolates — they make the chocolate on site — the cafe is home to the city’s best mocha. So if you’re looking for coffee with a sweeter edge, this is the place to go. It isn’t just a cafe, either, it’s a museum: with a huge array of historical artefacts on display for you to peruse while you indulge.
Cafe, Coffee Shop, Central American
Located just off the Parque Central, Baviera Cafe is an excellent spot to relax while sampling some of the best coffee in the city
. You’ll find a strong selection of brews here, all done well. It isn’t the place to go to sample the latest in hipster coffee trends, but if you’re looking for a solid cup then this is a great option. You’ll also find a selection of snacks, alongside some larger dishes.
Ciudad de la Imaginación
Cafe, Coffee Shop, Tea , $$$
A cafe, bookshop, art gallery and cultural centre
all rolled into one, Ciudad de la Imaginación has a lot going for it. That doesn’t mean that they’ve skimped on the coffee, though, with a range of quality brews. Plus, they have regular events that are all about promoting and enriching the local art scene. Be sure to check out some of the sculpture, paintings or photography on display.
Hot Cold Coffee
Coffee Shop, Tea , $$$
Located on a quiet street just up the hill from the Parque Central, Hot Cold Coffee takes its brewing very seriously indeed. As well as the lattes, cappuccinos and espressos that are done well throughout the city, you can sample innovative brewing techniques including chemex, aeropress and v60. It’s a popular spot with locals and tourists alike.