The Best Cafés and Coffee Shops in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Weird Harbour | Courtesy of Weird Harbour
Weird Harbour | Courtesy of Weird Harbour
Photo of Kate Horodyski
12 September 2017

Grabbing a coffee and people-watching in a new city is always a travel highlight. Get your caffeine fix in Halifax with our roundup of the best coffee shops in the city.

The Old Apothecary Bakery & Cafe

Bakery, Pastry Shop, Cafe, Pastries, Canadian, Coffee, $$$
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Come to The Old Apothecary Bakery & Cafe for the best iced coffees and croissants in the city. All the mouthwatering pastries and loaves of bread are made on-site with high-quality ingredients, and there isn’t a single treat here that you won’t fall madly in love with.

Lion & Bright Café and Wine Bar

Cafe, Cocktail Bar, Contemporary, Pub Grub, $$$
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There is never a time of day when the North End’s Lion & Bright isn’t busy. With exposed brick walls, loud music, and communal work spaces, this is definitely one of the coolest cafés in the city. Come here for a great cup of coffee (or a cocktail) and a cool ambiance. At night, it transitions into a bar and is a popular date spot and hangout for locals.

Julien’s Patisserie, Bakery & Cafe

Bakery, Cafe, Contemporary, $$$
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Julien’s bread is practically famous in the city, and on Saturday mornings, you’ll have to brave long lines as locals come by to get freshly baked bread. It’s worth it. Enjoy a coffee and pastry inside or in their charming outdoor garden.

Steve-O-Reno’s Cappuccino

Cafe, Pastries, Coffee
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Colorful and cheery, Steve-O-Reno’s is guaranteed to put you in a good mood. The staff is friendly; the atmosphere is warm, and the coffee and food are delicious (including the best carrot cake you’ll ever have). If you miss their downtown spot, be sure to hit up their stall in the Halifax Seaport Market.


Bar, Restaurant, Contemporary, $$$
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On both the first and top floors of the Halifax Central Library and in the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, you’ll find Pavia, a European-inspired espresso bar. Its small selection of tasty espresso-based drinks, teas, and light fare attracts locals and tourists alike. At the library locations, enjoy your food and beverage on the library’s rooftop terrace. If you’re heading outside of the city, check out Pavia’s original location in Herring Cove.

Weird Harbour Espresso Bar

Cafe, Coffee Shop, Contemporary, $$$
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Weird Harbour
Weird Harbour | Courtesy of Weird Harbour Espresso Bar

The tiny Weird Harbour Espresso Bar in the heart of downtown looks more suited to Brooklyn than Halifax, with its bright, minimal, and slightly industrial elements, and that’s exactly what makes it so special. The owner here is one of the friendliest you’ll ever meet, and the drinks and snacks are delicious.

Two If By Sea

Cafe, Contemporary, $$$
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A trip across the harbor to Dartmouth is more than worth it for a trip to Two If By Sea (or TIBS as the locals call it). Just mention the name, and you’ll have people talking about their outrageously large and delicious croissants. The spot’s cool hipster vibe makes it a great place to hang out for a few hours.