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
1. ALTO, Arin
With its little playground, lovely garden and delicious food, this is one of the most fun places in the Valley to meet friends for lunch or to bring the kids for a day out.
Owner Barbara Gilpin is well known for her fresh, spongy doughnuts, but her creative mind also blesses ALTO with some unique dishes in the valley. Think: tofu scrambled ‘eggs’ on fluffy white bagels; pork or chicken boa buns; healthy Bali bowls, and pad Thai, for example.
Service is super friendly, and you’ll feel like family here in no time!
Location: 2nd Paradero, Arin (on the pista)
One of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for: Sweets and donuts, as well as a smattering of Asian foods.
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 u
nique – 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.
One of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for: Warm service, community vibes.
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
One of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for: Grilled trout, hearty vegan food.
Looking for some of the healthiest food you’ll ever eat anywhere, ever? Pajarito Sano offers delicious, homemade vegan food, at great prices!
Almost everything you’ll eat here has been grown organically in the owners’ garden. Mayten and Andy, the couple behind Pajarito Sano, also cook everything themselves.
The most famous dishes are probably the vegan tacos and Andy’s wonderful falafel served with hummus topped with a rich dollop of extra virgin olive oil, but you’ll also adore Mayten’s gorgeous desserts and creative menu of the day, which offers three courses.
But another thing I love about this place is their healthy drinks. Their Gerson therapy based juices probably cure death!
Location: Yucay, on the pista beside the petrol station. Open Thursday to Sunday, 12-6.
One of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for: Healthy, organic food.
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
One of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for: Incredibly good food, bread and desserts.
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
One of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for: Beautiful views, peace and quiet.
This eatery in Calca has 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 used to be one of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for vegetarians. However, lately, they’ve added a separate menu with meat-based dishes, which is, in my humble opinion, a bit off-putting for the vegans amongst us.
Location: Calle Bolivar 785, Plaza De Armas, Calca
One of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for: Plant based food.
9. Mishki, Urubamba
Be prepared to get addicted. Mishki makes some of the BEST ravioli in the whole wide world. I mean, native Italians will even be impressed! But that’s not all. This mom-and-daughter owned cafe also does amazing wraps, empanadas, quiches, desserts and coffees.
Location: Barrazibal, near the pista, in Urubamba.
One of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for: PASTA!!!
Missing Indian food? El Cafe Feliz is one of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for you! Whether you want a creamy paneer, crunchy pakora or spicy curry, you’ll find it here, alongside many other dishes. For example? Their big, all-day breakfast is popular, as is their hearty veggie burger.
Personally, I adore the variety of drinks here. Dandelion coffee, mushroom coffee and golden milk are just some of the more unusual beverages. There are also loads of smoothies and juices to choose from, too.
Location: Centre of Pisac. Call: 946 662 938
One of the best cafes in the Sacred Valley for: Indian food