Every morning and late afternoon, La Marina is besieged with locals, who come here to enjoy the house speciality of churros – deep-fried, sweet dough snacks – as they exchange daily gossip. Join them for a decadent breakfast of churros dipped in melted chocolate and the café’s superb coffee while watching the world go by outside on Plaza Topete, or the Plaza de las Flores as it is unofficially known. Though this place is always busy in the mornings, a team of speedy waiters ensure you’re never waiting long.
Nowadays the only historically-preserved café in Andalusia, Cafe Royalty became the place to see and be seen among Cádiz’s intellectuals and artists after its opening in 1912. It fell into disrepair and neglect following the Spanish Civil War of 1936-39 but was spectacularly restored in 2008. Now the grandest setting for a coffee in Cádiz, the café also serves a delicious selection of cakes, tarts and pastries (the apple tart is a knockout), as well as tapas and a full lunch/dinner menu.
Fancy a ‘literary coffee’? Then head to La Clandestina, a café and bookshop where you can browse the shelves for literature, poetry and comics, meet other book lovers and enjoy a coffee or tea with one of their homemade tarts (the carrot cake is a favourite among regulars and tourists alike). The interior is cosy and welcoming and also functions as a space in which cultural events such as readings and film screenings are held.
This no-nonsense bar/café is said by many gaditanos (as the residents of Cádiz are known) to do the best coffee in the city. The complete lack of tables means you have to prop up the bar next to the old men enjoying deafening conversations over their morning coffee or brandy, making Brim one of the best places to come in Cádiz to take the pulse of local life. Please note that this is a very old fashioned establishment and opens pretty much when it wants; the hours shown below, therefore, are only intended as a guide.
This charming bakery/cafe sits just opposite Cádiz’s main market and is known for doing the best homemade cakes and pastries in the city. A good selection of coffees (Irish, black, white, with cream/syrups etc), teas and ice creams are also available, all of which can be enjoyed on one of the small tables on the street outside – a perfect spot from which to observe the chaotic market unfolding. The milhojas – sheets of puff pastry interspersed with sweet fillings – are a house speciality.
If you’re visiting Cádiz in spring or summer and need something refreshing while taking a break from sightseeing, Top Coffee Shop & Juice Bar is the place to be. It offers a generous selection of fruit juices, smoothies and milkshakes all made from the freshest ingredients (the mango and pineapple smoothie is a favourite). This is also a good choice for breakfast, serving a selection of coffees and teas as well as tostadas featuring a variety of toppings.