Our Favourite Hangout Spots: The Best Cafes in Colombo, Sri Lanka

best cafes in colombo sri lanka

Coffee and chill, anyone? If you’re looking for a charming café where you can get some work done or catch up with your friends while indulging in a lovely brunch, Colombo has you well covered. Sure — there are plenty of options around the area, but we’ve picked out the crème de la crème of coffee shops. Here are some of our favourite cafes in Colombo where we love to hang out and enjoy a good cuppa.

Café Kumbuk

Cafe Kumbuk outdoor seating
Photo from @cafekumbuk

If you fancy having breakfast whilst surrounded by nature, then head to Café Kumbuk. Named after a local tree species, the Kumbuk tree, the café’s highlight is its natural surroundings, with abundant foliage in every corner you look. The space is quite intimate, seating only 30 patrons at a time, so make sure to go early and order their healthy and organic dishes made from local ingredients. They also have a fantastic selection of vegan food and, of course, specialty coffee by Temple Grounds and tea by Peekoh Tea. The cafe also hosts different types of art workshops and is pet-friendly, too! So if you enjoy arts, coffee, meeting new people (or pets), and culture, then this cafe in Colombo is definitely the place to be.

Address: 3/1 Thambiah Avenue, Independence Ave, Colombo 00700, Sri Lanka
Hours: Daily 8am – 6pm

Gallery Café

Gallery Café outdoor seating
Photo from Paradise Road The Gallery Cafe

This hip café located in Colombo’s art district is a favourite among creative souls. With its artsy ambience, Gallery Café is ideal for a lovely brunch, an afternoon coffee, or a romantic date night. This cafe is housed in a colonial bungalow that renowned architect Geoffrey Bawa once owned. The café has retained its original charm, with its walls decorated by vibrant artworks from local artists. They serve up innovative fare with global influences, like coconut milk French toast and Sri Lankan hoppers with curry. The Gallery Cafe often hosts live music, poetry readings, and workshops, which means there’s always something happening at this cultural hotspot. Be sure to check it out!

Address: 2 Alfred House Road off Alfred House Gardens, Colombo 03, Colombo, Sri Lanka
Hours: Daily 10am – 12am

Barefoot Café

Barefoot Cafe in Colombo
Photo from @barefootgardencafe

For a taste of Sri Lanka’s unique culture, head to Barefoot Café. Established by artist Barbara Sansoni, this iconic institution has been promoting handloom textiles, books, art, and music since 1964. After going through the gorgeous displays of silk rugs, quilts and other textiles, you’ll find a beautiful hidden garden in the back, filled with rustic tables and tropical flowers where you can sit down and enjoy a lovely cappuccino. While the café is local, its Western menu attracts many tourists, especially around lunchtime, so be prepared to wait if you come during these hours. With live jazz music, book readings and a shop featuring handcrafted goods, Barefoot Café is a memorable place to spend an afternoon discovering Sri Lanka’s rich artistic heritage.

Address: 704 Galle Rd, Colombo 00300, Sri Lanka
Hours: Daily 10am – 7pm

The Black Cat Cafe

Avocado Toast from Black Cat Cafe
Photo from Black Cat Cafe

The Black Cat Cafe + Stay is a charming little nook in Colombo, renowned for its homemade ginger beer and being a pet-friendly bed and breakfast. Located in the upmarket Cinnamon Gardens area, this establishment is housed within a beautifully restored mansion from the 1920s. The cafe’s interior exhibits a minimalist and vintage-cool aesthetic that is totally Instagram-worthy. The coffee here is made from locally sourced roasted beans and is best paired with their scrumptious sandwiches or pastries. The Black Cat Cafe also provides bed and breakfast accommodation, making it a convenient option for travellers seeking a cosy spot to rest their heads.

Address: 11 Wijerama Mawatha, Colombo 00700, Sri Lanka
Hours: Daily 8am – 9pm

Coco Veranda

Coco Veranda Filicori coffee
Photo from Coco Veranda

One of Colombo’s most celebrated cafés, Coco Veranda, is renowned amongst locals and tourists alike for serving superb gourmet coffee to tantalise the tastebuds. What makes their coffee so special, you may ask? Well, they’re made from Filicori beans that were imported all the way from Bologna, Italy. A shot of espresso is enough to fuel you throughout your day of exploring the beautiful city of Colombo. The café also presents an expansive menu of culinary delights and some of the most decadent cakes you’ve ever seen. The light wooden interiors and plush seating make it a very inviting place to dine and exchange stories with your friends or family.

Address: 67 Dr CWW Kannangara Mawatha, Colombo 00700, Sri Lanka
Hours: 9am – 9pm

Whight and Co.

Whight and Co best cafes in colombo
Photo from @whight.co

Whight and Co. Café sets themselves apart from all the other cafes, because not only do they serve some of the finest coffee in Colombo, but they also grow these beans themselves on their plantation and roast them fresh every day. Their gourmet blend is called Ruby Harvest, and for coffee connoisseurs, this is a 100% Arabica special blend that will go down smoothly and wake you up in an instant. Set within a colonial-era building, this is a favourite meeting place for both locals and tourists alike where they get to catch up or people watch while enjoying a great cuppa.

Address: 24b Alfred House Ave, Colombo 00300, Sri Lanka
Hours: Daily 8 am – 6:30pm

Seed Café

Seed Cafe
Photo from @seedcafesl

Seed Café is a lovely little place serving up gorgeous grub and top-tier coffee – perfect for a brekky or brunch. The cafe has a tropical chic interior, with colourful tiles and bohemian decor, making it a perfectly Instagrammable spot. You’ll find a wide selection of healthy and vegan fare with loads of delicious options to choose from. While the menu may not have much for the sweet tooth, you won’t be disappointed with their wholesome and nutritious dishes, which not only taste good but are plated beautifully as well. Seed Café is a popular spot for tourists and digital nomads, and it’s popular for pets too! You’re sure to spot a cute doggo whenever you visit this place.

Address: 60 Horton Pl, Colombo 00700, Sri Lanka
Hours: Daily 8am – 5:30pm


The Grind Coffee
Photo from @thegrindlk

The Grind Coffeehouse is a new addition to the Colombo dining scene serving beautifully presented dishes and top-notch coffee and matcha. This is a sister cafe of the previously aforementioned Seed Cafe. Their menu includes things like avocado toast on sourdough bread, an omelette paired with a quinoa and kale salad, a superfood granola bowl, and a variety of cakes and pastries, making it a perfect place for breakfast, brunch, or afternoon snacks. They also offer numerous vegan choices that will have you second-guessing on turning into a full-pledged vegan (if you’re not already). An important thing to note, however, is that they don’t allow laptops or offer wifi during busy hours, so make sure when you go for lunch, you’re there to eat and relax — not work.

Address: Access Towers 2, 00200, Sri Lanka
Hours: Daily 8am- 8pm

The t-Lounge by Dilmah

t-lounge by Dilmah
Photo from @teatimerocks

Tea lovers, we haven’t forgotten about you! t-Lounge by Dilmah on Chatham Street is the perfect spot for any tea aficionado visiting Colombo. You’ll find an excellent range of designer and gourmet teas here, including the extremely rare and special tea – the Ceylon Silver Tips and Seasonal Flush.  This is an elegant and upscale place designed around the appreciation of fine tea; complemented by light and delectable snacks. It’s absolutely the place to go if you want to experience the best of Sri Lankan tea.

Address: Chatham St, Colombo 00100, Sri Lanka
Hours: Daily 8:30am – 7pm

Recommended Articles