Cat cafés are exploding in popularity around the world, and they’ve even become so well-known that the phrase “cat café” is now a recognized term in the Oxford Dictionary of English. This is your ultimate cat café directory!
People love them so much because they offer something unusual yet familiar at the same time; a chance to have some food and drink while playing with a big number of friendly kitties.
It’s believed that the first ever such café opened in the city of Taipei in Taiwan back in 1998. Called the “Cat Flower Garden” it was an instant hit with locals and soon enough tourists started flocking from around the world to come visit. The Cat Flower Garden quickly encouraged a number of copycat (pardon the pun) cafés in Taiwan, Japan, and many other countries. There are now many throughout the world, giving people a chance to play with cats for a while.
The typical cat café setup invites customers to come in and buy simple food and drink — think milkshakes, coffee, sandwiches, and the like — while playing with the café’s resident cats. Some places might have just one cat or they might have more than a dozen. But they all tend to have very good temperaments and enjoy meeting the many strangers who come through the door. And when you’re done, you can typically find plenty of cat toys and other goodies to buy.
Find The Perfect Cat Café
The ultimate worldwide cat café directory below features some of the best such places around the globe, so no matter where you live, you should be able to find one near you.
If you’re interested in visiting one of the cat cafés on the list, be sure to check their website first to see if they’re open for business or if they are closed at the moment.
Be aware that the current coronavirus pandemic means that many countries have put restrictions on which businesses can be open, so some of the cafés listed might be temporarily closed. You can email or call them to see if they are open, and if they are then you can go ahead and make a trip to enjoy a truly one-of-a-kind dining experience.
Note that some of these very small independently owned businesses don’t have their own websites. If that’s the case you’ll find links to TripAdvisor and other websites that will have more information on the café including a phone number, email address, and even some pictures of the venue, as well as reviews about their service and the quality of the menu.
This is the original Cat Flower Garden and has since been renamed to Café Dog & Cats because it now features pooches alongside the kitties. Reviews of the café have stayed very positive ever since it opened. It has a pretty lengthy menu of food and drinks, but visitors do have to buy at least one drink before coming in and playing with the cats.
2. Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium
At this London-based cat café you are allowed to pet and play with the cats but you can’t pick them up or restrain them in any way, which is a guideline you’ll have to follow at most cat café locations. Among the many perks of this place is the fact that you can have a traditional English high tea with scones and jam and other snacks if you book it in advance.
3. The Bag Of Nails
Also located in England, in the city of Bristol, is The Bag Of Nails, which is more like a cat pub than a cat café but still operates on the same basic concept. Even though the pub’s name is The Bag Of Nails, locally it’s also known as The Bag Of Cats because of the more than one dozen kitties lounging around inside. Expect pub food and drinks, including alcoholic beverages.
4. Romeow Cat Bistro
You’re promised something truly indulgent and elegant at this café, which calls itself a bistro and prides itself on a fancier menu than most cat cafés. Here’s how the place describes itself: “By placing itself at the crossroads of different needs, Romeow Cat Bistro elevates the concept of Cat Cafè: not a simple bar that houses cats, as in the Japanese tradition, but a refined bistro, open from the morning for a rich and healthy breakfast; for lunch for a quick meal or a tasteful trip around the world; in the afternoon for a relaxing snack; at dinner with a rich proposal of original dishes and tastings that range in kitchens all over the world.”
5. Cat Town
Many people consider this to be the original cat café in the United States, and many others soon followed. There are several aspects of Cat Town that make it stand out from the later competitors, including the fact it’s a non-profit and isn’t trying to make money for a private owner. Instead, their noble focus is all about trying to encourage people to adopt kittens, and you can even adopt one while you’re having one of Cat Town’s great snacks or drinks. By visiting this establishment you’re helping out with the great goal of cat rescues.
6. Crumbs & Whiskers
Over on the east coast of the United States, Crumbs & Whiskers also advocates for cat rescues and adoptions. You can enjoy some light refreshments while playing with kitties and even start the process of adopting one to take home, so you can have a nice snack and help a good cause. Here’s how the café describes its goal: “Our mission is to help homeless cats, and to make people really, really happy. Our culture is innovative and purpose driven within our tight-knit team. Our partners are local rescues that pull cats from high-risk shelters.”
7. The Cat Lounge
Auckland, New Zealand
Describing itself as New Zealand’s sole cat café, this place offers lovely food and drinks while also helping people who are interested in adopting cats. The café does a number of regular fundraising activities to help out with local charities, so you know that when you dine here you are helping out with those great causes. There are several cats who roam the café, which features both an indoor and outdoor dining area.
8. The San Antonio Cat Café
San Antonio, Texas
Back in the United States, this is another very popular cat café. They’re working on a brand new location with a whole host of fantastic new attractions for the kitties and customers alike, including but not limited to: kitty cuddle and play time, movie nights, a beer garden, live music, “wine and whiskers” events, expanded food options (including snacks, buffets, cookouts, catering and food trucks), birthday parties and private events, outdoors games like cornhole, a summer camp and “camping with the kitties” event, holiday parties, and much more.
9. Café Chat L’Heureux
This cat café up in Canada was created in December 2013 and features not only a nice range of things to eat and drink but also a gift shop with plenty of cat-themed goodies. “The Café Chat L’Heureux is a cafe/restaurant open to everyone where one can enjoy the company of cats while savoring beverages and quality products. It is a relaxation space to enjoy a prolonged contact with cats in an optimized space for human/feline interactions. The Café Chat L’Heureux also wants to provide benefits of cat-therapy,” according to its website.
10. MiaGola Café
Considered by some to be Italy’s first cat café, the MiaGola Café has the typical mix of wonderful food and drinks along with very friendly felines. One great attraction of the menu here is that it has an extensive list of vegan and vegetarian offerings, meaning everyone in your group should be able to find something on the menu that they can eat. Like many other cafés it also has a gift shop, so you can get a souvenir of your memorable visit.
11. Pounce Cat Café + Wine Bar
Savannah, Georgia and Charleston, South Carolina
There are two branches of this cat café in the southern United States, and one way that Pounce stands out is by offering a wine bar along with the regular menu items and ability to play with the resident cats, usually numbering between 15 and 20. Pounce also works very hard to increase cat adoptions, and talks about this effort on its website by saying, “Since our launch in December 2016, we have found over 1,700 cats and kittens in South Carolina and Georgia their furrever homes! (ME-WOW!) By housing shelter cats in a cozy cafe in the middle of the city, we significantly increase shelter cats’ visibility and their chances for being adopted!”
12. Temari no Ouchi
This might just be the most unique cat café on the list, because it has been designed to look like an enchanted woodland that you might find in a fairy tale book. It’s cheaper to go here after 7pm, so if you don’t mind staying up late, you can save so money by going later in the day. Once you’re inside you’ll be rewarded with a setting that looks like it would fit right in at a Disney theme park. And even better, the menu itself is fantastic and has a huge range of snacks that are expertly made and will further enhance your enjoyment of this cat café.
13. Cats Republic
St. Petersburg, Russia
Cat cafés are apparently all the rage across Europe because they’ve even made it to Russia. At this destination you will be able to enjoy all the usual perks of a cat café, but also get to explore a museum dedicated to cats, as well as buying a memento from the on-site gift shop. Cats Republic describes itself as “a part of Cats Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia. This is an authentic place, one of a kind in the country. This place combines a little cozy café, a small club, a souvenir shop (all items are cat-related), and a ‘cat therapy’ hall.”
14. Pee Pee´s Katzencafé
Claiming to be Berlin’s first cat café, Pee Pee´s Katzencafé has a fun and laid back atmosphere with plenty of nice treats on offer on the menu. The website’s charming greeting is a taste of the good time you’ll have visiting this venue, as it says, “A heartfelt welcome to Berlin’s first Cat Café! The cats Pelle and Caruso are waiting for your visit. Also waiting for you: fresh prepared homemade pastries and delicious cakes in addition to some hearty dining. Stop by and enjoy with us a relaxing and refreshing time in a beautiful, friendly atmosphere.”
15. Meow Parlor
New York, New York
This is yet another United States cat café, showing how widespread they are across the nation. Head to Manhattan to visit this café, where you can get something to eat or drink, play with the cats that live in the building, and even adopt some. Here’s what Meow Parlor promises you’ll be able to do when you visit (although certain time and age restrictions apply): “Rent time to relax with our free-roaming cats. Purchase food or beverages from Macaron Parlour and enjoy a sweet treat in the company of a furry friend. Adopt a cat. We are also an adoption group and all of our cats are adoptable through our nonprofit division, Meow Parlour Cats, Inc.”
Brooklyn, New York
Another New York-based cat café, this destination is entirely volunteer run and puts its focus on cat rescues and adoptions. “At Brooklyn Cat Cafe, we are proud to be one of the earliest cat cafes in the US, and the first to launch in New York City’s most populous borough. We’re the only cafe in the city run by a non-profit animal rescue organization. Our mission is to save our city’s cats, and we advance it by offering a hip and inviting destination where cat lovers of all ages can interact with adoptable animals — and one another — while learning about pet rescue and care together too,” the café says on its website.
16. La Gatoteca
The name of this Spanish cat café translates in English to “the place with a large number of cats,” and that’s a very honest description because one any given day you might find 20 or more kitties wandering around the café. It also features an extensive book collection, so you could have a coffee and read a book while petting one of the resident cats. Like many other cat cafes, La Gatoteca also places an emphasis on cat adoptions — but you don’t have to want to adopt a kitty to come here. “It is not necessary to come with the idea of adopting a cat, simply visiting us and enjoying our cats helps them to socialize and be filled with play and human affection. The project also gives our visitors the opportunity to interact with cats without the responsibility of final adoption; it also helps us demystify false information about the figure of the cat and its character, raise awareness about responsible ownership and the current problem of animal abandonment,” according to the cat café’s website.
17. Cat Heaven
Cape Town, South Africa
Another cat café that claims to be the first in its home nation, Cat Heaven is proving immensely popular with residents and tourists alike who come to hang out with the friendly cats that live there. “We serve catfee (coffee), tea, soft drinks, water, etc. and a variety of tarts, muffins, cakes,” according to its website. There’s also a very large gift shop on site. And if you’re interested in adopting your own feline, Cat Heaven is also a major proponents of cat rescues and can offer your advice on getting your own cat — including adopting during your visit. So you could arrive without a pet and leave by giving a kitty a loving new home.
18. Nyafe Melange
Cat cafés remain a big draw across Asia, and Nyafe Melange is another great example of one of the better ones that you can visit. The interior features a big number of perches and other areas for the resident cats to hang out, as well as a menu with a good range of food and drink items for you to enjoy. Reviews of the cat café are all very good, so it’s a perfect place to visit if you are in Tokyo and want to spend a few hours hanging with some friendly kitties.
San Francisco, California
KitTea’s website perfectly sums up the reason behind their decision to open, saying, “Our purpose is to not only save cats, but also show humans just how relaxing and heart-warming they can be. Slow down, sip some high-quality tea, mute anxiety, and support rescue cats. We provide high-quality care to our permanent resident rescue felines and foster and feature cats from rescues in order to socialize and find them homes at each cat’s own pace. Whenever possible, we go outside of the area to shelters to rescue high-risk cats in euthanasia shelters.”
Food & Felines: How To Start Your Own Cat Café
Interested in starting your own cat café?
It’s hard work, but it’s possible.
Cat cafés appear to be constantly growing in popularity, after starting in Japan and then quickly being copied in other countries. Today there are said to be 100s of these fun places around the world. The typical cat café is home to a number of friendly felines that visitors can pet and play with, all while they enjoy a menu of tasty snacks and beverages.
Of course, with cats wandering the establishment, we’re not talking about five-star fine dining linen tablecloth restaurants — but cat cafés were never designed to offer that. Instead, they are a cute and quirky combination of a petting zoo for cats with a place to grab a fast bite.
If you’re a huge kitty lover and looking for a business opportunity, you might be thinking about launching your own cat café. If that’s the case then there are many different important factors that you should know about trying to create your own food and drink venue.
Do cat cafés make money?
The good news is that it’s not impossible, and many cat fans have opened cafés in major cities and other locations and continue to enjoy great success with them.
But it’s important to be realistic and you need to be aware of certain cautionary factors that might make it harder for you to realize your cat café ownership dreams.
Checklist of what you need for launching your own cat café
Any business is going to need a solid plan of action before it launches, and there are number of important steps that you need to take if you want to start your cat café.
- Create a business plan
This should be your very first step. It’s a pretty dry thing to do but a business plan is a necessary outline of how you intend to fund your café, get it up and running, and make profitable. Unless you are independently wealthy and have the finances to launch a café, you’ll need this plan to tell potential investors why it’s going to be a viable business. The business plan needs to include details on how you intend to operate — everything from your planned hours of operation through to the menu that you will offer.
- Secure funding for your café
Use your business plan to approach friends, families, and others about potentially investing in your cat café. You’re going to need a lot of money to create a café, and some estimates online say the average café owner needs about $100,000 to cover all expenses including rent, furnishings, food and drink stock, salaries, and more. If you don’t have this money on your own you will need to make sure the funding is in place before you can even consider trying to officially launch your café.
- Review local rules for café owners
Depending on where you live, the local government might have different rules and other policies about what you can and cannot do when opening a café. Spend some time researching online about which permits and other permissions you would need before you can open a cat café. It can be a lot of time and work and you might need to pay a licensed professional to help you out. But getting all the necessary approvals upfront will save you a lot of time and potentially costly headaches in the future.
- Find a suitable location
This is perhaps you most important decision because the location of your cat café could be the difference between it being a flop or a huge success. If it’s in a very remote part of town that is hard to get to, you risk not having many customers. Try to find areas that have a lot of foot traffic and are very simple for people to get to, or park near. That increases the chance that you will get more visitors to your café.
- Work with local organizations that rescue cats
Below in this guide you’ll find some cat cafés listed that are non-profits who work with cat rescue groups. These establishments work by having the various kitties that live in the café up for adoption, so you could not only show up for a snack but take a feline friend home with you. Teaming up with one of these organizations will help to publicize your café while at the same time helping to find homes for cats.
- Have a decent website to showcase your café
Any business that wants to succeed needs to have a great online presence, and that’s just as true for cat cafés. Make sure that you have a professional-looking website to promote your café. It should list all the important details like your location, the menu, and what visitors can expect. Your goal with your website is to make your café seem like an unmissable destination for locals and visitors alike.
Be aware of COVID-19, but don’t let that stop your cat café plans
Of course, the COVID-19 pandemic is throwing all our plans into flux and it’s a particularly difficult time for any kind of food and drink venue, not least a cat café. Social distancing requirements and lockdowns have made it difficult for many restaurants and other eateries to stay afloat, so it’s understandable if this might discourage you from opening a cat café.
However, because the process of creating a cat café and finding the right property and getting the various local permissions to open will take many months, you could start the work now and be ready for opening in 2021 or later when the pandemic is hopefully over or receding.
If a cat café is something that you have your heart set on, don’t let the coronavirus keep you from realizing your dreams. Stay optimistic that you will make a success of your plan, and keep working toward a date when it will be safe for you to launch your furry friend café.
Get inspired by popular cat cafés from across the globe
Looking for some inspiration for how to design your own cat café? Check out the guide below to learn more about these fun businesses from around the world.
And as with any business during the COVID-19 pandemic, be sure to call or email the café you want to visit in advance to make sure that they are currently open.
- Neko no Jikan
This cute café is among those that claim to be one of the first such establishments in the world. It has a nice menu of local treats, as well as a friendly family of kitties that are all on the younger side (mostly kittens, and up to about three years old). It’s open every day of the week but even with that flexible schedule it’s recommended that you call or email in advance to make a reservation. And there’s also a cute gift shop on site so you buy a memento to take home and always remember you time at this location.
- Le Café des Chats
This café is designed to remind visitors of an old-fashioned team room with its luxurious furniture and laid back theme. If you visit, you’ll find about 12 cats roaming around the café for you to pet or simply hang out with. They are either strays or abandoned pets that the café has taken in to look after. One of the biggest draws of this venue is the fact that they have four professional cooks on site handcrafting the desserts and other snacks, so you know that you’re going to get a very high quality meal.
- Catmosphere Cat Café
Chiang Mai, Thailand and Sydney, Australia
There are two locations of this cat café, and they are typically open every day of the week. Neither of the venues will charge you an entry free, but they do require that you buy at least one of the items off their menu. Once you have bought a drink or something to eat you earn up to 15 hours of time in the café. But note that during particularly busy times this café can reduce that amount of time down to about three hours. Both locations are very popular, so you can expect them to be busy most of the time.
- Kattencafé Kopjes
Opened in 2015, the Kattencafé Kopjes was initially funded by a crowdsourcing campaign, which further helps to underscore just how popular cat cafés can be. There are typically 12 cats living at the café at any one time. A really nice aspect of this café is that it teams up with two local cat rescue operations — the Dierenleed Foundation in Amsterdam North and the Amsterdam Animal Shelter. That means you’re helping out these fantastic organizations if you pay a visit and spend some money there.
- Café Neko
Also located in Europe, this is an incredibly popular cat café for tourists and local residents alike. There are on average about five felines that call this place home at any one time, and you can expect them to be moving around the place while you eat and drink. The menu is an interesting mix of standard café fare alongside some Japanese specialties courtesy of the owner, Takako Ishimitsu, who is from Japan. There’s also a list of what you can and can’t do with the cats, so read that before you sit down because it’s important that you respect the rules of the café if you’re going there.
Olomouc, Czech Republic
Europeans definitely embraced the idea of cat cafés because this is yet another destination on that continent. Their hours vary, so you should check their official Facebook page before planning a visit. But what they offer typically remains as the same three things: coffee, cakes, and cats. You can enjoy a nice warm brew and freshly made slice of cake while you pet the kitties that live here. Many of the kitties that are here are rescue cats, so it might take them some to feel comfortable around you. As long as you are patient you are bound to have an enjoyable time at this café.
- Cat Café Budapest
It’s very convenient to find this café, because it’s right in the heart of Budapest, which is Hungary’s capital city. The menu at this location offers typical food and drink you’d expect at a regular café, but it has the added bonus of also a decent selection of beers if you’re looking to drink one or two while you’re there. If you want to eat, you can order the paninis and cakes are the most popular items. And sometimes the café hosts adoption events and talks about cats, so be sure to check its schedule online.
- Maison De Moggy
Relax in the cute wicker furniture at this Scottish cat café that boasts an extensive menu and a great selection of drinks. The food is perhaps the biggest draw here, because they make most of their items in-house, including some truly delicious cakes and other bites. It’s also an ideal venue if you are gluten free because they have a section of the menu that caters to that dietary restriction. You can expect to find about 10 cats roaming the establishment on any given day, so there should always be a furry friend to play with.
New York City, New York
Over in the United States, this café pitches itself as offering just as much benefits to the kitties that it’s rescued as it does to the customers that come in to eat, drink, and play with the cats. The place has received plenty of media coverage, including a glowing review by the New York Timesthat said, “At Koneko, a new cat cafe in downtown Manhattan, just who is rescuing whom?” Check out the café’s website for its schedule of fun events, including Thirsty Purrsdays and Kitty brunches, among other entertainment. It’s a fun, laidback place for you to unwind while hanging out with friendly felines.
- The CatCade
Expect a very kind of cat café when you visit the CatCade, because unlike a typical sit-down venue with tables and chairs and a regular menu, you’ll be visiting cats that are lounging around some classic arcade games. There’s a big selection of games and gaming systems for you to play, or if you would prefer a relaxing visit there’s also a very large and comfy lounge where you can get some food and beverages and simply hang out with the many cats that call this quirky establishment their home.
- Pause Cat Café
Described as “a safe haven for both cats and cat lovers,” this thoughtful café in England is not only a nice place to get a snack or drink while playing with friendly cats, but also prides itself on promoting “animal welfare, ethical eating, volunteering and community projects,” according to its website. It has a fairly eclectic menu of snacks all made from locally purchased ingredients, offering something for every taste. And if you are thinking about giving the Pause Cat Café a visit you should check its website for the schedule of upcoming events to see if it’s hosting one that interests you.
- Tabby Teas Cat Café
Also located in England, the Tabby Teas Cat Café is open every day of the week except Monday and offers a typical café menu of things to eat and drink. When you visit this place you’re helping out good causes, because the café works with two local animal rescue organizations — Mill House Animal Sanctuary and Pet Samaritans. As the café describes itself on its website, including with a cute cat pun, “Our aim is to provide a relaxing and calming environment for both customers and cats to enjoy each other’s company. Whether you are coming with a group of friends, or venturing by yourself for some kitty cuddles, we’re sure you’ll have the purr-fect time.”
- Crazy Cat Café
Promising every visitor “purr-fect relaxation,” this Australian cat café is open every day of the week and offers a wide-ranging menu that includes both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, such as milkshakes and more. It features a Cat Lounge where you can hang out with the various kitties that live here, as well as other general seating areas. If you have young children you should be aware that children ages 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult when entering the Cat Lounge.
- Tinker’s Cat Café
Salt Lake City, Utah
When you visit this North American venue you can enjoy a calm and relaxing atmosphere while you enjoy the various featured items on the menu, as well as the company of the cats that are here every day. Unlike other cat cafés that don’t charge an entry fee and instead have a minimum menu order requirement, Tinker’s Cat Café has a fee of $8 per hour to enter its lounge where you can play with the cats, although this drops to $6 per hour for children ages 10 and younger, and free for ages three and younger, with the money paying to care for and feed the resident cats.
Kritter Kommunity Contributor