London is an enchanting city with an abundance of quirky cafés and abstract tearooms. With thousands of students and entrepreneurs living and working in the city, it’s no surprise that many of London’s coffee shops pride themselves on being work/study hotspots. Since you live in the UK’s dynamic capital, sometimes it’s nice to ditch the student halls and study in the buzz of London every now and then. With a million cafés to choose from, we’re here to make it easy for you. Here’s our top 10 best cafés to study at in London.
The Famous Co-Working space at 'Café Kitsuné'
The first floor of Café Kitsuné is renowned as the top co-working venue in London. With less background noise than the entrance downstairs, upstairs you’ll find access to great Wi-Fi and plenty of plug sockets. The mixture of small and large tables makes it a great place for individual study or collaborative work. The reason Café Kitsuné always comes out on top as one of the best cafés to study in London is that they offer table service. You can stay for hours on end without needing to pack up your things to queue for another drink every so often (and risk losing your table).
Enjoy Music While You Work at 'Spiritland'
The modern European bar at Spiritland doubles up as a great place to spend the day studying. With plug sockets on each table, it’s easy to charge up if you need it. If a hushed, distraction-free environment makes you go crazy, then Spiritland is the ideal choice. With one of the world’s best sound systems, Spiritland churns out genres from 50’s jazz to deep electronica. The low-playing music gives a great working ambience for people that need stimulation as they study. Although the music is a mere murmur, the volume will ramp up if you stay late as city workers will head to the bar for cocktails and chats. Opening hours have recently changed at the café. It used to stay open all day but, for now, it’s better to head there on the weekend for a relaxing study vibe.
Feel Like a French Writer at 'L’eau a La Bouche'
If you fancy something a little different, you can study in the isles of the L’eau a La Bouche French deli. Depending on the time you go, you’ll either be socialising as you share a long wooden table or sitting quietly with other laptop-users (some of whom bring their dogs along). If studying around others keeps you motivated, the background deli babble will make you feel like you’re living in a movie as you read your textbooks. This quaint coffee shop also features pavement tables, so you can sit outside in the fresh air on sunny days if you like!
Feel Creative at 'Timberyard' in Covent Garden
With strong Wi-Fi, plenty of plug sockets and a great view, Timberyard is one of the best cafés to study in London to get your creative juices flowing. If you get there early, you can reserve a spot on the sofa, at a table or in front of the huge glass windows on a bar stool. Since it gets busy most days, it’s probably not the best café to sit in for the long haul. But it’s a great place to read for an hour over a coffee as you people-watch in Covent Garden. Timberyard is the ideal spot if you want to be outside but huddled up on a sofa with your laptop.
Feel the City-Buzz at Southbank’s 'Riverside Terrace Café'
On a summer’s day, you can bask in the sunshine amongst the city-buzz at the Riverside Terrace Café at Southbank Centre. With lots of tables and free Wi-Fi, you can study in the fresh air while peering out at the River Thames. It’s best to get there early if you want to grab a great table with a scenic view. And it’s probably a good idea to charge your laptop before your go (access to a plug socket is available but not guaranteed). This also isn’t the best spot for quiet reading time, but it’s one of the best cafés in London to study with a view! Plus, you can stay as long as you like and not feel pressured to leave.
Sit with fellow students at 'Yumchaa'
Yumchaa is a well-known tearoom in Soho that welcomes students as their main customers. It’s an ideal spot for co-working and comes complete with a great selection of tea. It makes our list as one of the best cafés in London to study because of its collaborative environment and spacious tables – with more than enough room for your books, notepad and laptop.
Rid Yourself of Distractions in the Basement of 'Bloomsbury Coffee House'
If you get distracted by people-watching from the windows of cafés, then Bloomsbury Coffee House in the basement is an ideal choice! This small venue with its mismatched furniture creates a cosy but comfortable atmosphere to study in for the day. Their website tells us that they keep it cheap to attract students and even offer discounts with certain student membership cards. Depending on the time you go, it can be filled with other solo workers, or full of that desirable coffee shop ambience.
Feel Shabby Chic at 'Stir Coffee Brixton'
At Stir Coffee in Brixton, you can take in the upcycled décor and sit on rustic wooden benches as you study. Stir Coffee is one of the best cafés to study in London because you can get things done on your own at the breakfast bar or with other laptop-users on the shared bench. It’s a great spot to take in the natural light by the window or cosy down in the dark corners hidden at the back. Plus, (although we haven’t seen it) it’s rumoured that you could study alongside a little black dog that hangs out by the bookshelves!
Peer Out of Stain-Glass Windows at 'The Wren Coffee'
Less than a five-minute walk from St. Paul’s Cathedral, you can study in the spacious St. Nicholas Cole Abbey amongst the stained-glass windows. With its high ceilings and plenty of tables, it’s a unique study café that’s open for working students and business people on their lunch breaks. Although you might expect a church to be unearthly quiet, the café is often full of people collaborating, making it a great place to chat with your study group or sit alone with the faint background noise. The gourmet coffee and artisan snacks are said to be pretty reasonably priced too, so no need to prolong finishing your first cup.
If you’re inspired to head on out and study at some of the best cafés in London, make sure you check before you travel about whether any special opening hours apply.
If you’re hiring a bike (which you can do almost anywhere in London for around 20p per day with a student discount on yearly membership!), then you can use the TfL app to check whether a cycle hire docking station has bikes available.
Looking for somewhere to study after hours? If you do your best work late at night (or have an early morning deadline), check out our list of 24-hour places to study in London.