Remote jobs, freelance gigs, social media influencers, you name it: making a living isn’t synonymous with being trapped in a fluorescently-lit cubicle from 9-5 anymore. For many, all you need now is a laptop, some Wi-Fi, and a strong cup of coffee. While you can probably find all of these things in your own home, part of the beauty of flexible work is being able to move around and change things up.
For some this means getting out of the house, while other people even take this as far as to hop from city to city each week. Either way, cafes are our friends when it comes to setting up shop for the day to get some work done, and Lisbon has no shortage of these spots.
Best Overall Vibes: COMOBA Lisboa
Located in the heart of the city in the Cais do Sodré neighborhood, COMOBA is an all-around winner for its cheerful atmosphere, sweet staff, delicious (and beautiful) food and drinks, and work-friendly setup. There are areas both inside and on the patio outside specifically designated for workers, so you never have to feel guilty about still being there after your espresso has been long gone for hours. The place is warmly decorated and full of plants – a proven source of comfort and anxiety relief for our tech-wired brains – and the company is even better. Packed with people from all over the world, you’ll overhear tons of conversations about interesting projects in the works.
Best for Food: Heim Café
In the beautiful area of Lapa (where you’ll find more French people than Portuguese), Heim Café is definitely the spot to hit up if you want to have some coffee and a bite while working. Brunch is their thing, especially their decadent waffles – a plate of them is an Instagrammer’s dream come true. Food is served until the late afternoon, so if you’re torn between several of the delicious menu items, just stay there with your computer all day and keep the treats coming. Space is limited, so working from here is best if you’re on your own.
Best Place to Get S*** Done: Copenhagen Coffee Lab & Bakery
Perhaps the one that launched the whole digital nomad coffee shop scene in Lisbon, this Danish-owned and inspired establishment has been a huge success, now having three locations throughout the city (Alcântara, Alfama, and Cais do Sodré). All Copenhagen Coffee Lab locations have got the warm, ‘hygge’ appeal that everyone loves Scandinavian design for. The cafes are all very roomy and quiet, making it a perfect environment for holding one of the group meetups and business meetings that are often seen taking place here.
Best Place for Entertaining Surroundings: Starbucks Belém
You may think it’s a bit unoriginal for Starbucks to be a part of this list, but this one in particular is here for a reason: its location. Taking periodic breaks is crucial for staying productive and keeping your mind and body free of zombie mode. A day spent working at this Starbucks means you can simultaneously experience some of the best things Lisbon has to offer.
To start, you’ve got the world-famous Pastéis de Belém next door where you can pop over for an afternoon pick-me-up – they serve the best Pastel de Nata (a traditional Portuguese pastry) in the city. To offset the contents of this high-calorie treat, there are multiple monuments within close proximity that you can take a (brisk) walk over to throughout the day, like the Tower of Belém, the Jerónimos Monastary, the Padrão dos Descobrimentos, and the MAAT museum whose best feature is its exterior architecture.
Best Spot for a View: SkyBar Lisboa
To be fair, this is not exactly a coffee shop – it’s a bar, a rooftop one to be exact. But it still qualifies as an awesome place to work and meets all the necessary criteria: Wi-Fi and coffee (or other beverages if you prefer). SkyBar Lisboa’s panoramic view overlooking the whole city is insane, and being outside with some fresh air will boost your mood, overall productivity, and even get you a nice sun tan. The space is quite large, so you can move around throughout the day, and of course there is the added bonus of being able to seamlessly transition into happy hour once the workday is finished.