The best cafes in the Sacred Valley offer something for everyone!
By Chere Di Boscio
Let’s face it – there’s not much to do in the Sacred Valley – and we like it that way! One of the most fun activities, of course, is to go for coffee, alone or with friends.
Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for businesses to come and go here, so it’s good to know all the tried and tested eateries and cafes. The ones that are open regularly; whose menus can be relied upon, and which serve the tastiest food and drink.
Here below is my personal selection of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley – in no particular order.
The Best Cafes In The Sacred Valley
With its beachy vibe and eclectic decor, this is one of the most stylish places in the Valley to meet for coffee. It’s located on the prettiest street in Urubamba, and offers a small menu of light fare in addition to coffees, teas, and other non-alcoholic beverages. My favourite? Their homemade sodas, which are basically concentrated juices blended with soda. I also love the array of chic magazines and books available to leaf through, and of course, there are plenty of gorgeous clothes, bags and home decor items on sale here, too.
Location: Berriozabal s/n cuadra 1, Urubamba
Set in a stunning garden at the heart of the colonial town of Yucay, the cafe in the Sonesta hotel is an adorably rustic affair with some of the best coffees and teas in the area. For example? My favourite is the (naturally) brightly pink-hued apple, clove, cinnamon and arampo tea blend. Typical sweets like cookies and cakes, as well as lunch can be enjoyed here: choose from quinoa burgers and fries, chicken sandwiches or juicy hamburgers. Don’t miss the homemade ice-cream parlor beside the cafe, either!
Location: Plaza Manco II 123, Yucay
A favourite with the locals, this friendly cafe is known for its incredible views of the Apus and tasty food – especially their homemade ice creams (with vegan options). Flavours are really unique – think: strawberry, basil and black pepper, raspberry coconut and ginger. Daily specials typically include dishes like falafel bowls, veggie curries and black bean tacos. This is one of the few cafes that also has a licence to serve alcohol, and they also make a killer chai latte!
Location: Paradero verde, Huaran, just off the pista
Attention coffee lovers: this place is your pusher. Your dealer. You’ll be so addicted to the wonderful brews prepared by the owner, Jose, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without them!
In fact, Jose actually studied how to be a coffee barista. Which is to say, he took a course on everything anyone could possibly need to know about coffee: the different kinds of beans, roasts and grinds. The various methods of preparation. Which brews have the most – and least – caffeine. Anything you want to know about coffee, just ask Jose!
So of course, the java here is supreme. All coffees are made with an organic blend from Quillabamba. But there’s also tasty food on offer! Try various sushis, wraps, sandwiches, and desserts. And did I mention the other drinks, such as juices, chai tea, and cocktails are also sublime? Tip: the hot chocolate here is the best I’ve ever tasted!
With its huge playground for kids, this is a popular restaurant/cafe with families. It’s more a restaurant than a cafe, with an extensive menu of healthy food that includes falafel wraps, salads, soups and fish dishes.
One of their most popular plates is the grilled trout, which comes sizzling hot on a cast iron grill, served with Andean veggies and potatoes.
Their fresh juices are superlative, and I love how their main plates come with a small soup or salad of your choice.
Location: Av. Mariscal Castilla 563, Urubamba
Once upon a time, Migas was merely the best bakery in the Sacred Valley. Now, sourdough and gluten free loaves, croissants and pastries are just the icing on the cake here (pardon the pun!) Migas del Valley is now a full on restaurant, offering rich, creamy coffees, a variety of teas, and an extensive menu of sandwiches, pizzas and other tasty dishes.
The menu of the day is always well worth a try, and includes a soup, drink and main dish.
There are also loads of yummy packaged local foods, organic soaps and cosmetics, and handmade chocolates for sale in the shop connected to the restaurant.
Location: 559 Calle Bolivar, near the plaza, Urubamba
This eatery is the best restaurant in Calca! They have a lovely garden, and their daily specials – priced at only 15 soles – are second to none. They come with a soup, main plate and tea – I guarantee you’ll leave full and satisfied! International dishes like Pad Thai, green curry and veggie sushi feature, as do delicious juices, kombucha, coffees and turmeric and chai lattes.
This is definitely one of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for vegetarians.
Location: Calle Bolivar 785, Plaza De Armas, Calca
Looking for some of the healthiest vegan food in the Valley? Look no further than Pajarito Sano! They’re open from Wednesdays to Saturday, and feature delicious dishes such as tacos, falafels, sweet potato brownies, sandwiches, soups and more! Everything is organically grown by the owners themselves. And for just 20 soles, you can get a daily menu that includes a salad, soup, main, drink and dessert. Wow, right?
Location: In front of the plaza, on the pista in Yucay