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My top coffee places in Oxford and Bristol

I am starting 2018 in two cities – most of the week I am spending in Bristol but on Saturdays, I travel to Oxford so for this post I am going to write up my top coffee places from both locations. I have lived in Oxfordshire for over ten years and saw coffee shops come and go but here are my favourites:

  1. Vaults and Garden Cafe – I love it for its food (amazing choice of freshly made vegetarian lunches), tea, coffee and well…location: it is situated opposite Bodleian Library’s iconic building and with the cafe garden open to the public provides a brilliant place to meet friends in summer.
  2. The Yellow Submarine – I love the coffee and the idea behind this place – it is run by a social enterprise of the same name supporting people on the Autistic spectrum, so buying a coffee here means a little bit more than just a cuppa. It is located between the train and the bus station, so it’s super handy on a cold day.
  3. Cafe Loco – I also like this place because of its location – it provides a lovely view of the Christ Church and is steps away from the Alice’s Shop too (cute, magical place for children and bigger children)
  4. The Grand Cafe – said to be the first coffee shop in the UK (although some sources mention Lloyd Bank’s first London offices as the place where coffee was offered first), I love it for its grand look, tall mirrors and a really good range of quality coffees.
  5. Thirsty Meeples – very central but loved for its specific purpose: it’s a board game cafe, which means you can book a table for friends and play a board game here. Their board game store is really impressive and staff can teach you how to play many of the available games too. A great idea for kids Birthday parties;)

Now, before I start my list of coffee places in Bristol, please do note that I am very new to this city, so the below are my top five places so far (from the last two months that is;)):

  1. You & Meow (cat) cafe – I am addicted to this place because I love cats and at the moment cannot keep one at home, additionally, I find the idea of sharing a coffee with a bunch of friendly cats simply relaxing – it’s a treasure in the heart of Bristol, really (do make sure you book it in advance though).
  2. Full Court Press – really good quality coffee which will please even coffee snobs – really nice staff, tiny but friendly space with a bench in the street and a water bowl for dogs.
  3. Blue Pig Cafe – run by a lovely Russian family this place feels like second home with great coffee on the menu and best pancakes in the city.
  4. CJ’s Coffee House – one of those coffee shops where you can heal your bad day with a cuppa and a friendly chat, very local, very friendly, close to the center with a brilliant Colston street full of quirky shops if you wish to walk back to the Waterfront.
  5. Watershed Cafe Bar – great place for a friendly chat or a meeting, cafe with a view but also a great opportunity to watch an art movie or attend an interesting tech talk now and again, one for the lovers of culture or great views;)

I would love to know good places from your town or city – do let us know in comments or send us your list and we will publish it on the blog.

Photo: under CC0 licence

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