The 5 best cafes in Belfast

From coffee to brunch to desserts, Belfast cafes offer it all. Take your pick from our five favourites below.

The 5 best cafes in Belfast

A sign of a thriving and metropolitan city is the litany of cafes that line the streets and squares in the centre and beyond, and Belfast is no different from the rest.

With a thriving social scene, Belfast has created some of the best cafes, perfect for socialising and chilling, and fit for all in search of a coffee stop.

Here are the five best cafes in Belfast.

5. Town Square – follow the trend

Town Square is one of the 5 best cafes in Belfast
Credit: @townsquarebelfast / Facebook

Based on Botanic Avenue in South Belfast, Town Square bridges the gap between Shaftesbury Square and Queen’s Quarter and is one of the trendiest cafes in Belfast.

The café’s extremely social opening times are perfect for its surroundings, with students, passers-by, and concert-goers able to avail of its services 7.30am to 10pm on Thursdays, 8am to 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays, and 8am to 10pm on Sundays.

Morning and lunch in Town Square are defined by coffee-drinkers, laptop-workers, and friends meeting up with each other, with a range of coffee and food on offer to start your day off right.

The cafe’s casual vibe continues into the night and is complemented by the dim lights and lit candles. In the cafe’s own words, this means “less laptops, more craic,” which is why Town Square is one of the best cafes in Belfast.

Address: 45 Botanic Ave, Belfast BT7 1HZ

4. Cafe Mauds – for the sweet tooth

Cafe Mauds is one of the 5 best cafes in Belfast
Credit: @maudsbelfast / Instagram

Situated on the Lisburn Road, Cafe Mauds stands ahead of some of the best cafes in the South Belfast strip and has earned its spot in the top 5 best cafes in Belfast.

Open 7 days a week from 9am to 11pm, Cafe Mauds is a bustling cafe and a favourite for those who have a taste for the sweet things in life.

Take your pick from the range of ice creams, mix-ins and sundaes available around the clock, or satisfy your taste buds with the sumptuous crepes, waffles and heated cookie doughs for dessert.

Breakfast is available until 12 while hot food is on the cards until 7pm. Cafe Mauds has a bit of everything for everyone and is a must-visit.

Address: 555 Lisburn Rd, Belfast BT9 7GQ

3. Hatch – for the best of the West

Hatch is one of the 5 best cafes in Belfast
Credit: @BelfastHatch / Facebook

A new addition to Belfast’s cafe scene, Hatch is situated on the Falls Road in West Belfast and has become one of the city’s most popular hotspots.

As the name suggests, Hatch is popular for the range of eggs on offer, such as the cafes “Egg-cellent” dish, a combination of free range soft scrambled eggs and chives, cheese and onions in a warm brioche bun.

Opening from 7.30am, power your day with the signature “Hatch Breakfast,” a delicious morning meal of sourdough bread, Irish bacon, a choice of sausages, black pudding, and poached eggs.

Coffee lovers are spoiled for choice, while the cafe’s “Loaded fries” are a unique creation that alone can guarantee Hatch’s position on this list.

Address: 127 Falls Rd, Belfast BT12 6AD

2. Established Coffee – the sophisticated choice

Established Coffee is a great spot in the capital of Northern Ireland

Established is housed in one of the best locations in Belfast, nestled amongst the thriving Cathedral Quarter in the heart of the city centre.

The cafe is known for its trendy customers but provides a relaxed setting for any and all of those who take the beaten roads of Belfast’s city centre.

Open from 7am to 6pm, Established has certainly established itself as one of the best cafes in Belfast with its minimalist yet charming design and sublime range of coffee on offer.

Enjoy a delicate Costa Rican flat white or Colombian decaf coffee to wash down the smoked salmon, poached eggs, or chorizo stew dish. Whilst in Belfast make sure to stop at Established.

Address: 54 Hill St, Belfast BT1 2LB

1. Maggie Mays – for a bit of everything

Maggie Mays may be Belfast's top cafe

With three different cafes throughout Belfast, Maggie Mays’ Stranmillis cafe stands superior among them and is truly Belfast’s best cafe.

Maggie Mays is well-known throughout the city for its magic milkshakes, from the conventional strawberry or chocolate to the “super speak shakes” such as the “Nutty for Chocolate” or “Banoffee Blitz.”

Lovers of an Ulster fry are treated to the all-day breakfast menu, while Maggie Mays is home to some of the best hot food in Belfast. Warm your day with the beef stew, chicken goujons, or 8oz rump steak.

Maggie Mays doesn’t forget its status as a cafe, with a plethora of coffee, hot chocolate, tea, and coffee liqueurs. The variety of the Maggie Mays menu is what makes it the best cafe in Belfast.  

Address: 2 Malone Rd, Belfast BT9 5BN

The cafes of Belfast offer a bit of everything. From breakfast to dinner, from morning to evening, your coffee cravings or hunger pains won’t go unanswered, with five of the city’s best cafes each worthy enough of your custom.