Let’s go al fresco

Charlie's Cup (Photo from Charlie's Cup Facebook page)


by Susan Mae Loseo

Al fresco cafés have become a trend in the new normal. Whether it’s catching up with your best friends, holding client meetings, or going on dates, open air spots are perfect for socially-distanced gatherings.

              Here are seven al fresco cafés in Cebu offering not only good food and coffee, but also areas to unwind, relax, and refocus:

Matana Café

Matana Café (Photo by Toj Mehel)

              Matana Café is located along the Transcentral Highway in Barangay Busay. It offers all-day breakfast food and cyclery well-suited for those who love to dine or destress with a view overlooking the mountains or the sea. Whether you’re craving smoothie bowls, fruit shakes, pork belly or eggs, Matana Café got you covered. A bonus is its breathtaking view of the sunset.

* Open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily

21 Kilometers Coffee

21 Kilometers Coffee (Photo by Toj Mehel)

              21 Kilometers Coffee is a specialty coffee shop that derived its name from its distance from the city center, which is around 25 kilometers or 35 minutes away. It is located along the Transcentral Highway in Barangay Tabunan.

              This mountain-top cafe offers a panoramic view of a foggy landscape and mountains of Sudlon National Park. From quality but affordable brews, fruit drinks, pastries, and breakfast choices, you’ll surely have a taste of the good life in 21 Kilometers Coffee.

* Open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. , Wednesdays to Mondays only

Charlie’s Cup

Charlie’s Cup (Photo by CarlyQuin Dinoy)

              Charlie’s Cup is named after the owner’s own corgi, Charlie. It is not only pet-friendly, but it also caters to babies and persons with disabilities (PWDs). With a mini-playground, PWD-friendly restroom, large decks among treetops, and earth-toned furniture, you’ll surely fall in love with the warm and cozy atmosphere.

              This café is known best for its hot and cold beverages, from specialty coffees to lemonade mixes and other fruit-based drinks. It also offers a Big Breakfast combo that will fill you up the entire day. Charlie’s Cup is located along the main road of Transcentral Highway in Barangay Tabunan, before Balamban’s “Welcome” sign.

* Open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays; 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. on weekends


Maharlicup (Photo from Maharlicup Facebook page)

              Maharlicup is a “sikwate shop with a view” that serves popular Cebuano delicacies including bibingka, torta, puto-sikwate, and ensaymada. Its locally sourced brewed coffee also suits the Cebuano taste and preference. Maharlicup is located inside Mak’s View at Barangay Malubog along the Busay Transcentral Highway.          

              If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and experience that rustic feel, this is the place for you. Maximize this local cafe’s scenic view by chilling here during the golden hours. It’s definitely a sight to see.

* Open 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily

Crate Cafe

Crate Café (Photo from Crate Café’s Facebook page)

              Crate Café is located along the Cebu Transcentral Highway, Veteran’s Drive in Lower Busay. The serene ambiance of this quaint little coffee shop is perfect for relaxation and its al fresco dining area overlooks Cebu’s surrounding forests, providing a lovely view of the mountainside.

Its menu offers classic espresso drinks, blended drinks, lattes, baked goods and pastries. Whether you’re a sunset chaser or just looking for creative inspiration, Crate Café is worth a visit.

* Open 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Tuesdays to Sundays only

The Daily Grind

The Daily Grind (Photos from The Daily Grind Facebook page)

              The Daily Grind does not only serve good pasta and great coffee but it offers cocktails as well. It is famous among working adults and millennials as a huddle spot, a working hub or a weekend hangout site.

              This cafe is located at Pres. Roxas Street, Barangay Kasambagan in a residential area where it is tucked away from the busy streets. If you’re looking for some Instagram-worthy scenery within reach, TDG cafe got your back.

* Open 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily

Ayo-Ayo Café

Ayo-Ayo Café (Photos from Ayo-Ayo Café Facebook page)

              The first of its kind in Cebu City, Ayo-Ayo Café is a Japanese-inspired cafe-sauna-hostel. It offers accommodation, a sauna, and a bar and promotes health and wellness. For eats, it has Japanese-style burgers, croquettes, chicken teriyaki, and omurice that make you feel like you have travelled to the Land of the Rising Sun.

              This cafe aims to be a cross-cultural space where creative people of various backgrounds come together to share experiences in an open-air, comfortable, and home-y setting. Ayo-Ayo Café is located at Emilio Osmeña Street, Guadalupe.

* Open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Tuesdays to Sundays only


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