Nepal's love affair with coffee is in full swing in Pokhara, where over 35 coffee shops have cropped up in the last five years — all touting locally grown, organic Himalayan Arabica.

Overview

Pokhara is a chilled-out lakeside city peppered with coffee shops. Although it's hard to go wrong with any one you come across, our recommendations have unique features, such as the best roasted beans in town, awesome lake views, or artsy atmospheres. And as a bonus, almost all have free wifi.

Machhapuchhre Organic Coffee

Baristas and beans at Macchapuchhre Organic Coffee (Photo courtesy of Erin Levi)

Macchapuchhre Organic Coffee sources, roasts and supplies top-notch Nepali coffee to most of the major establishments in Pokhara, i.e. restaurants, hotels and even other cafés. Lauded among locals, the coffee shop itself is simple and a little out of the way: you likely won't pass it if you're wandering up Baidam Road, as its off on Durbar Marg Lane, just up from Hallan Chowk. However, it's worth checking out if you're looking to bring back high-altitude coffee beans. The shop offers two varieties, medium and dark roast, starting at 700 and 750 Nepali rupees (about $7) for 500 grams. Stick around to enjoy a cup of coffee among locals and chat with the friendly owner.  

Durbar Marg Lane (near Hallan Chowk), Central Lakeside

Himalayan Java

 Always popular Himalayan Java has great views of Phewa Lake (Photo courtesy of Erin Levi)

You can always count on Himalayan Java for a good cup of joe—and the perfect chocolate chip cookie (if you like 'em extra crispy). The Pokhara branch of Nepal's answer to Starbucks has expansive views of Phewa Lake and is a great place to hang out or take advantage of the free wifi. If you're feeling peckish, the coffeehouse has a light food menu and decent selection of baked goods (if you're really hungry you can head next-door to OR2K). 

2nd floor, Center Point Complex, Baidam Road, Central Lakeside (near Lalupate Marg)

You and I 

Eye-catching wall art and cozy seating at You and I (Photo courtesy of Erin Levi)

New to Pokhara's buzzing café scene, You and I has already earned a special spot in the hearts of locals and travelers. Beyond its café offerings, You and I is a community art space featuring eclectic artwork from emerging artists in Nepal and abroad, and a haven for travelers in need of some TLC (the English co-owner, Amanda, is extremely helpful and caring). You could easily spend a few hours perusing the library of books, conversing with fellow patrons, or staring out onto the lake, which looks bizarrely like the English seaside thanks to a new amusement park being constructed on the marshland in front of the café. 

While it's the perfect spot for an afternoon tea or coffee, the blackboard menu featuring an all-day breakfast, wholesome vegan and vegetarian food, and specials like English cottage pie may entice you to stay for a meal. 

It's also the only café in town with fishing poles available for borrowing! 

Baidam Road, North Lakeside

Kar.ma Coffee at Hotel Karuna

Pour-over Kar.ma coffee at Hotel Karuna (Photo courtesy of Hotel Karuna)

You don't have to be a guest at Hotel Karuna, one of Pokhara's best boutique hotels, to enjoy the pour-over coffee served in the hotel's colorful lobby. While Hotel Karuna is a few minutes' walk away from the main road in Central Lakeside, coffee lovers should check it out as it's the only place in Pokhara where you'll be able to try Kar.ma Coffee, an artisanal purveyor from Kathmandu and Nepal's first coffee boutique. Kar.ma Coffee founder Birgit Lienhart sources her beans directly from her own network of small farmers in Nepal, many of which are located in the hills around Pokhara. 

Lalupate Marg, Central Lakeside

Espresso Workshop

A barista in training at Espresso Workshop (Photo courtesy of Erin Levi)

The hip and edgy Espresso Workshop, which opened at the start of 2018, is actually a barista training school from Himalayan Java. Support the talented students by ordering your favorite espresso-based drink here. 

Baidam Road (across from Center Point Building by Hallan Chowk), Central Lakeside

am/pm Organic Cafe

Enticing signs outside of am/pm organic cafe (Photo courtesy of Erin Levi)

One of Pokhara's classic coffee shops, am/pm organic cafe (open daily, 6 am-10 pm) takes it's name seriously, serving some of the best organic, locally-sourced food —from breakfast to "soup meals" like creamy broccoli turmeric — in town. It also sells a number of organic products, such as yak soaps, organic coffee, wild honey, coconut oil, and seeds, and takes the (gluten-free) cake for having the most apropos wifi password in Pokhara: "Spiritual hippie".

Shiva Mandir Marg, Baidam Road (a block away from Caffè Concerto), Central Lakeside

Perky Beans 

Lakeside seating at Perky Beans (Photo courtesy of Erin Levi)

Local favorite Perky Beans, housed in a spacious two-floor building, is the only coffee shop on this list with a beautiful outdoor seating area by the lake. It also serves an affordable all-day breakfast (muesli, croissant sandwiches, chapatti wraps, and pancakes) as well as sandwiches, salads, tasty milkshakes and a variety of mains. Take-away coffee is also available for 10 Nepali rupees extra (just a penny!). Or stay for the good wifi. 

Baidam Road (near Hallan Chowk and Standard Chartered Bank), Central Lakeside

Café Evoke

Front entrance of Café Evoke (Photo courtesy of Erin Levi)

Although its Kathmandu outpost is more renowned, featuring a great restaurant that frequently hosts live music, Café Evoke first opened in Pokhara and is located right between another renowned Kathmandu eatery, Pho99, and a local retail shop called Woven. Besides serving delicious espresso-based coffees from americanos to frappés, and teas from Ilam, Café Evoke also offers up a selection of savory items like hummus, falafel and veggie wraps. 

Baidam Road, Central Lakeside

Map

Map of Best Cafés in Pokhara
Map of Best Cafés in Pokhara