So, updates! I switched to part-time in December and now work 30 hours per week and have Fridays off. I’m trying to learn to code, so every Friday I’ve been parking myself in some cafe to work on the freecodecamp.com curriculum. This means I’ve been going in search of new cafes to work in every week and have gone through quite a few now. I will document them here for anyone else in my same situation. All you digital nomads passing through Berlin, students looking to get some work done, etc. this one is for you!
A note about my own preferences: I prefer to work in cafes that are bigger, so I don’t feel like I’m taking up one of the few seats or am constantly under the watchful eye of the cafe staff. I sorta like to get lost in the crowd when working. Berlin has an endless about of small, cozy, quirky cafes with minimal seating, but I continue to find it difficult to find bigger, more spacious cafes here.
So. Please let me know if you have a favorite working cafe that’s not on here, or if you discovered a gem on a visit.
By the way, if you’re planning a trip to Berlin be sure to check out my Berlin Vegan Guide!
Last Updated: 28 January 2017
First, check out this list of libraries in Berlin with public wifi. Libraries are great places to get some work done!
Happy Baristas (Neue Bahnhofstr. 32)
Right by Ostkreuz, this place has some fancy coffee and TONS of vegan cake. They make their own almond milk to use as a non-dairy option for coffee and it’s delish. Only downside is there is only one table where you’re allowed to use laptops, a big table with high stools that fits six people. It’s never been full when I go, so I’ve never had a problem, but I guess if you go during a lunch rush or something you might not get a place. Get a Nitro coffee, it’s coffee on tap that comes slightly carbonated, and the vegan carrot cake!
Shakespeare & Sons English Bookshop (Warschauerstr. 74)
I had one of my most productive working sessions to boot here, something about being surrounded by books. First of all, they have the. best. bagels. in Berlin. They also have soymilk and there’s always a couple vegan baked goods and tofutti cream cheese as an option for the bagels. There’s lots of tables, but it also seems to be favored by Berlin’s student population so depending when you go it could be hard to get a place. Their wifi connection kicks you off after two hours, but there’s other open networks you can join after that. Get the cinnamon raisin bagel with tofutti cream cheese and a flat white. Donuts usually sell out by the end of the day.
Amerika-Gedenk-Bibliothek (Blücherplatz 1)
Everyone always forgets about libraries, but they’re such a great place to get work done. The Amerika-Gedenk-Bibliothek is huge and has tons of places to work, as well as a little, very affordable cafe. Last I went they hat a bagel with hummus option for vegans, too. Libraries are great when you don’t want to spend your meager paycheck on coffee and cake while trying to get stuff done. This library also has a ton of English books, which you can check out with a library card. You need a registered address in Berlin to get a library card, but it only costs €10 year.
Betahaus (Prinzessinnenstraße 19-20)
Okay, everyone already knows about Betahaus, as it’s one of the most popular coworking spaces in Berlin, but it’s still worth a mention. The cafe in front is big with lots of tables and they built a cool little library loft. Wifi is open with no password, outlets are easy to come by, and they expect people to come with their laptops so they’re not weird about it. In fact, pretty much everyone there is on their laptop. They have soymilk for coffee, and often a vegan entree. They have vegan baked goods, but not always. Maybe if more people ask it will become a regular thing.
Brammibal’s Donuts (Maybachufer 8)
Brammibal’s swooped in and fulfilled a vegan donut niche that Berlin never even knew it was missing, but now can’t live without. Holy mother are their donuts delicious. Turns out, their cafe is also quite good to work in! Just avoid the lunch rush times. If you get there close to closing time, the donuts will probably be sold out. They have a backroom, which I like, and everything is vegan so you’ll never run out of stuff to eat. They also have savory food like sandwiches, as well as the donuts, cake and cookies. And coffee and hot chocolate of course. If you go Tuesday or Friday you can swing by the outdoor Turkish market right outside and snatch up some great deals on veggies, spices, hummus, etc. Password for the wifi changes once per month, but it’s always posted on the counter.
Sankt Oberholz (Rosenthalerstr. 72A)
Another stand-by. You’ve probably already heard of Sank Oberholz, but it’s still a great place to work. Two floors and TONS of seats, but most of them still managed to be filled. I always manage to find a place to sit, but often you need to sit down with some strangers/new friends (?). This is probably one of my favorite places to get work done because of the size, but it’s about 45 minutes away from me so I often don’t want to travel that far. They always have vegan carrot cake and banana bread, a vegan sandwich and some yogurt/pudding options. Plus soymilk for coffee and they even sell phone chargers. Outlets are easy to find, you can’t go wrong here.
What many people don’t realize is that they’ve opened another location Zehdenickerstr. 1 just too blocks away. It was built as an extension to the above location, so if the first place if full or you just want a change of scenery try that one!
Westberlin (Friedrichstr. 215)
This place has a great layout for a good working cafe, nice design, although it’s a bit pricey being in the business tourist center of Mitte. Nice and big, open wifi and they have a vegan orange cake option as well as some vegan salads and yogurt cups. Of course also soymilk for coffee. Only downside is I found the techno playing a bit too loud and angst-inducing, but it could have just been because I was totally stuck on a programming problem and drank too much coffee.
Le Labo (Charlottenstraße 2, 10969 Berlin, note the zip code as there’s more than one Charlottenstraße!)
“A cozy cafe during the day and a 1920’s style liquid nitrogen cocktail bar at night.” I actually discovered this place at a coworking meetup years back, and wrote most of my getvisagermany.com eBook there. They have soymilk, lots of outlets, and last I went there was a vegan sandwich option, though not sure if it’s still there. A nice solid spot in Mitte with an attached coworking space.
Haus Berliner Stadtbibliothek (Zentral- und Landesbibliothek) (Breite Straße 30-36)
This is another one of Berlin’s main, bigger libraries. This one also has a lot of English books and a cafe, and an open wifi network. I highly recommend checking out some of Berlin’s impressive libraries. After all, you’ll never feel guilty for taking up space as the whole point of libraries is to provide a place to read, research, work and study.
K-fetisch (Wildenbruchstr. 86)
This as an alternative queer cafe/bar in Neukölln. It’s big and has a great layout for working, and a wood-burning stove in the winter. You can only use your laptop at certain tables so if you go during a rush it can be hard to find a place. They have soymilk for coffee, wine, beer and always a couple vegan cake options. Please note they have a very strict policy about nationalism and flags. Do not go wearing a flag of any type, whether it’s on your shirt, on a pin, on your laptop, etc. They will ask you to leave if they see it.
Leuchtstoff (Siegfriedstr. 19)
This is a really cool cafe in Neukölln near Hermanstraße. They’ve built couches up on platforms, and are always moving around the layout and changing it up. They have a backroom where you can work without feeling in the way, but it is quite popular and not super huge. They’re very vegan friendly and have both savory and sweet vegan options. Fancy, high quality coffee options. I used to live down the road from this place and go here all the time. It’s a very quirky Berlin kinda place.
Pele Mele (Innstraße 26)
It’s an all vegan cafe with a coworking space out back. I go here all the time with my friend Sam from Indefinite Adventure. Sometimes it’s a bit small of a cafe for me to do work in, as I start to feel like I’m in the way after a couple hours. They don’t seem to care so much though, so maybe it’s just self-imposed. Outlets are easy to find, and everything is vegan so you can get countless cakes, cookies, smoothies, sandwiches, etc. to eat. They also do vegan brunch every Sunday.
On My List, But I Haven’t Tried Yet
Agora Collective (Mittelweg 50)
BASECAMP (Mittelstraße 51-53)
Bonanza Roastery (Adalbertstraße 70)
Goldberg Bar Cafe (Reuterstr. 40)
Populous Coffee (Maybachufer 20)
Starbucks (multiple locations – click here) – I know, I know.
This groups meets every Monday and Wednesday, usually at one of the big libraries or at Basecamp. According to their group, “We are a group of freelancers, entrepreneurs and homeworkers who like to take a break from working at home and meet some ‘colleagues’. We meet up and work on our projects, bounce ideas off each other and meet some new people in the process.” They also have a Telegram chat group where people post where they’re working that day so people can join.
Freelance Friday (multiple locations)
This meetup group is worldwide, but they host a coworking event about once a month in Berlin at a different space each time. Have a look at their calendar here, or search Facebook for “Freelance Friday Berlin”.
There you have it. Please share with me any other good places you find in the comments and I’ll check them out! This post will be updated as I find new places.