When I first heard about Kyiv, the capital city of Ukraine, I often hear about its Soviet-era architectures, museums and more recently, its proximity to Chernobyl, but not many people mentioned about the coffee culture craze they have going on over here.
To my surprise, when I started to really dive deep into exploring the cafe culture in Kyiv, I stumbled upon countless amazing themed cafes, hipster cafes hidden in Kyiv rustic alleyways, and a ton of great indie cafes with outdoor spaces for one to sit in the sunlight.
It is no doubt that I am a big fan of cafes. Often time, cafes are my workspace of choice and as I am currently sitting here in another great cafe in Kyiv, why not I write about my experience exploring the cafe culture of this great city and recommend a few must-visit cafes for you, fellow travelers to try when you are here in Kyiv.
I have spent over a week in Kyiv and I have had the chance to sit in many cafes around the city and here are my top 10 favorite indie cafes that I think you should try when you are here. Let's begin with my favorite cafes of all:
Kyiv Best Indie Cafes Itinerary Map
Let's begin with one of my favorite cafes out of all that I often go first thing in the morning. Coffee and the City cafe has one of the best god damn Flat Whites I have ever tasted in Ukraine.
It comes in this small glass but you know right away that it packs a punch when you see or smell it. You can choose either a regular or specialty beans (Honduras or Kenyan on that day I ordered). The cost of coffee was around 70 UAH.
One of the reasons why I like to frequent this place in the morning is that the cafe is one of the few places that open at 8 AM near where I stayed and they have a great selection of breakfast you can choose from together with an unlimited supply of croissants and other pastries.
They also have a nice cozy air-conditioned indoor space with plenty of power sockets and outdoor space to sit in the sun and chill. The cafe is also not too far from Kyiv Central Train Station so if you are looking for a nice place to just wait for your train, this is the place to be.
This next cafe is sure gonna please the hipster heart inside you. Vagabond Cafe and Vintage Corner is a rather small hipster cafe but it's actually full of charm and friendly staff.
Vagabond Cafe and Vintage Corner is decorated in a vintage-style decor with wooden bars, polaroid pictures hanging from the ceiling and lots of greenery, it almost felt more natural being inside than outside.
They have a great selection of coffee as well, which is something you can come to expect from cafes in Kyiv and in the morning, they will also make homemade granola with fruits served with nothing but pure smile for you.
If you are looking for a nice hipster cafe to read a book and enjoy a quiet morning cup of coffee, come check out Vagabond Cafe.
The cafe is located right at the intersection between Voloska Street and Hryhoriya Skovorody Street. It's open from 9 AM - 11 PM and you can contact them via 063 574 9408 or from their Facebook Page here.
If the last one wasn't hipster enough, you are in for a treat with this one. Каштан Coffee is so hipster-friendly that it doesn't even have an English name unless you counted the Google-translated name I provided here 🤣.
Каштан Coffee is so hidden away from the main street that it took me over 15 minutes to actually find the entrance. After walking around several alleyways, I finally found this sign located on Reitarska street.
Каштан Coffee is one of the most vibrant hipster cafes in the area. Its wooden interior will give you a sense of being in someone else's grandparents home with brown furniture all around, a table full of chess pieces and an old-school vinyl music player and discs stacked messily on wooden shelves.
The cafe is a popular hang out place for young people and it is often packed most of the time. Thankfully, the cafe is located in front of a small courtyard so you will be able to sit around the area while enjoying the coffee.
Their coffee costs around 26 - 52 UAH which is not expensive at all. The entrance to Каштан Coffee is located at the center of Kyiv Old Town on Reitarska Street near Riot Division Clothing Store and once you walk inside, the cafe should be on your left.
The cafe is open from 9 AM - 10 PM and you can contact them via their Facebook Page here.
Here is another of my favorite hipster/vintage cafe that combines my 2 favorite things, books and coffee. Paliturka - Coffee & Books is a cozy cafe full of books, tucked away in the hidden alleyways of Kyiv most popular shopping street, the Khreschatyk street.
This is the best place to take a break from the craziness of the Khreschatyk shopping street and just retreat to its cozy indoor space and surround yourself with books and a cup of coffee.
Their coffee cost around 25 - 50 UAH which is pretty cheap and you can grab them with a small bite from a few of their bakery and pastry offerings.
If you are with someone, you can play chess or checkers together or if you are traveling solo, you can bring your favorite book and read here quietly away from the city streets of Kyiv.
If you are looking to explore a cafe culture somewhere that is not in Kyiv Old Town, Без Дверей Espresso Bar or Espresso Bar Without Doors is a great cafe if you prefer having your morning coffee and breakfast in an open-air environment.
With its trendy decoration of black and white decor, comfy sofa on both floors, together with its selection of coffee and pastries, Без Дверей Espresso Bar is a great place for you to grab a quick bite before you go and explore all the Kyiv tourist attractions.
The cafe is located on the Sichovykh Striltsiv St, 10, not too far from St. Sophia's Cathedral, and since the cafe is open from 7 AM - 11 PM, Без Дверей Espresso Bar makes a great first stop for coffee in the morning before you start your day.
World of Coffee is another trendy specialty cafe in Kyiv with the industrial-inspired interior, a solid selection of specialty coffee and a delicious brownie and other pastries to go with it.
It has several outside seatings if you wish to sit under the shade of the trees in the summer or you can also sit inside where there is a plenty of cozy space, comfortable sofa, and air-conditioning.
World of Coffee is also located on Ihorivska St, 12А in a hip and trendy area of Podil, a cultural center and one of the oldest districts in Kyiv which is surrounded by old architecture and tourist attractions like St. Andrew's Church, Andriivs'kyi descent and many more.
If you are looking for something more high end but yet still trendy and affordable, Milk Bar is one of the most popular places in Kyiv for people to hang out and have delicious pastries together.
It has a ton, and I really mean a TON of delicious pastries for you to pick from. You can also order proper food here together with a coffee and a dessert making it a great place to meet in the evening with friends.
It is considered to be quite expensive for Kyiv standard (60 - 200 UAH for pastries) and the prices are almost on the same level as what you would pay in Western Europe but you get what you paid for.
Their pastries are as high quality as it comes and I have nothing but praises for their services. It can get really packed sometimes so be patient and you will be rewarded with a damn delicious pastry you will ever taste in Kyiv.
If you are looking for a cool themed cafe with colorful decors, Flamingo logo, and delicious coffee, you will have to visit Cuba Coffee Brew.
Cuba Coffee Brew is a nice little cafe located not too far from Kyiv Independence Square. With its unique take on a themed cafe, full of colorful props, furniture, and posters, it makes quite a photogenic place to have a coffee.
They have excellent selection coffee, plenty of power outlets and seatings for you to relax in between exploring Kyiv's Independence Square or just do some work on your computer.
Cuba Coffee Brew is open from 8:30 AM - 10 PM. It is located right at the corner between Sofiivs'ka Street and Tarasa Shevchenka street. Its address is Tarasa Shevchenka Ln, 2 and you can contact them via 068 008 1655 or message them on their Instagram page.
If you are looking for a minimalistic cafe with a great view of Kyiv from above, I couldn't recommend ONE LOVE Coffee cafe more. It is located on the 6th floor of Pinchuk Art Centre where you will have to get through security and such but I can assure you, it is totally worth it.
The moment you enter ONE LOVE Coffee, you will be surprised at how glowing it is. ONE LOVE Coffee is decorated with minimalist furniture, almost to the point of being futuristic, all in white with metallic angular style and a little touch of wood here and there.
It's not just their perfect design sense that blew me away but outside the window, you will be able to see the old buildings surrounding the famous Khreschatyk shopping street.
They have several types of coffee, tea, and pastry for you to indulge yourself and you can have it over a bench overlooking the old buildings of Kyiv.
There are several ONE LOVE Coffee cafes so be sure to go to the right one which is on Bessarabs'ka Square street on the 6th floor of Pinchuk Art Centre. It is open from 8 AM - 9 PM and you can contact them via 044 585 0758 or via their official website.
Last but not least, if you are looking for something more traditional, almost to the point where you feel like you are in someone else's grandmother's home, Na Stanislavsʹkoho is a great place to be.
Na Stanislavsʹkoho is decorated in an old European fashion with old furniture like wooden cupboards, comfy armchairs and old sewing tables, something you would expect your grandmother to have in her home.
They serve nice coffee, masala tea (recommended) and delicious cakes as well as wines if you are in the mood. The cafe is located on Stanislavs'koho St, 3, not too far from Kyiv's Independence Square. It opens from 9 AM - 11 PM and you can contact them via 096 202 4011 or through their Facebook Page.
This is a little extra for you if you are looking to eat rather than to chill in a cafe in Kyiv. Puzata Hata is a famous local restaurant chain that serves incredible local food in a self-service manner.
You can select multiple dishes at once and then pay and the counter before you proceed to your table. It is incredibly cheap for what you get, and the local food is really really good.
Going into Puzata Hata and eat is one of my favorite things to do in Ukraine just because I know that I will have a great selection of local food, with salads, main course, a drink, and a dessert all at a price of around 120 UAH. That's a pretty good deal if you asked me
I can't recommend Puzata Hata enough. If you are in Ukraine, you must at least try Puzata Hata once! Thankfully, it's quite popular among the locals so you will find them in popular districts in big cities like Kyiv, Lviv, and Kharkiv.
And there you have it, the top 10 best indie cafes for you to try when you are traveling in Kyiv. I believe that exploring the coffee culture of a place like Kyiv is a great way to see what the younger population of the city are up to and a chance to fan out away from the tourist attractions and explore more of the youth culture you often don't get to see when traveling.
I hope you like this 10 best indie cafes in Kyiv list. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to let me know in the comments below.
The Solo Traveler’s Journal is a series of posts by BucketListly where we will follow our founder, Pete Rojwongsuriya around the world as he singlehandedly travel alone and experience different cultures, people, and historical locations one country at a time.
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