Cat Café Budapest (District VI)

There are two unrelated cat cafes in Budapest of the same name. This review is for the one located in District VI at Révay u. 3.

Three Maine Coons and seven mixed-breed rescue cats are permanent residents of Cat Café Budapest. The cafe is very large, consisting of a front room with regular tables and chairs, a back room with lounge seating and a variety of cat-climbing structures, and additional tables on a second level.

A wide variety of drinks are on offer, including 18 types of tea (770 Ft or $2.80), a variety of flavored espresso-based drinks, hot chocolate, beer, cocktails, and soda. One unusual drink is the cat-puccino, flavored with peanut butter and cinnamon. I didn’t try it, so I can’t judge whether coffee and peanut butter make a good combo! Let me know if you are brave enough to sample it.

Food is limited to cakes (740 Ft or $2.70 at 275 forint to the dollar), panini (890 Ft or $3.25), and a few other baked goods. The cafe is located in the city center, so it would be a convenient spot for an afternoon snack and a rest after spending the morning walking around the city. There was a “full” sign on the window and a line outside when I first tried to visit, so a reservation would be wise if you have only a limited amount of time. On my second attempt the cafe was half empty, meaning more one-on-one time with the cats.

Location: Révay u. 3., 1065 Budapest
Hours: Every day, 10:00 – 21:00
Admission charge: No
Reservations: Yes
Price of a latte: 750 Ft ($2.75)

 

 

Whiskers Cat Pub

Several days ago, I was wandering around the neighborhood where I was staying in Budapest and noticed the sign for Whiskers Cat Pub. The place was clearly a new business, and there was a bit of construction still going on inside. Fortunately, they opened their doors a few days later, four hours before I had to head to the airport to leave Hungary. I had the honor of being the pub’s first customer and spent my last afternoon in Budapest there. Whiskers is owned by the same people as Cat Cafe Budapest (review coming soon).

The first thing you notice when entering the pub is the glass walkway overhead. If you’re lucky, you’ll see the underside of a cat or two perching above you. The cats are confined to a glass-walled upstairs room and a walkway that leads from the cat room to the enclosed spot above the front door. There are plans for another walkway on the other side of the pub, providing more opportunities for cat viewing.

The downstairs room has a simple and clean décor, and the high ceiling makes it feel even more spacious that it is. There are a few details that let you know it’s a cat café, including the engraving on the tables, the table legs made into scratching posts, and the cat paintings on the walls.

There are four resident cats. One is a Cornish Rex, and the other three are rescue cats of various colors. All were quite friendly, with the Cornish Rex winning the award for the most affectionate café cat I’ve ever met.

The pub offers a variety of cat-themed mixed drinks such as a Purricaine and a CATmopolitan, as well as draft and bottled beers. Coffee drinks are also available. Pub snacks such as nachos and pretzels are sold, but they don’t offer full meals. Service is friendly, and English is spoken.

As a solo traveler, it can be difficult to walk into a pub at night and strike up a conversation with strangers. I anticipate that it would be much easier in a cat pub, as you instantly have something to talk about with anyone you meet. I’m looking forward to returning to visit at night the next time I’m in Budapest. I’m sure it won’t be too far in the future.

Location: Semmelweis utca 17., Budapest 1052
Hours: 12:00 – 24:00
Admission charge: No
Reservations: No
Price of a 0.5 L mug of beer: 490 Ft ($1.80)

 

Cat Cafe (Budapest)

Note: There are two spots called Cat Cafe located in Budapest. This review is for the one located at Damjanich utca 38.

Walking into Cat Cafe is like entering the home of someone who clearly loves his or her cats and lets them rule the house. There are scratching posts, cat toys, and empty cardboard boxes strewn about. The chairs have scratch marks, and after sitting on the sofa you might want to use one of the cafe’s rollers to remove fur from your clothes. The decor is simple and not over-stylized, but you’re probably looking at the cats more than anything else anyway.

The cafe has four permanent resident cats who were all being lazy and doing what cats do when I visited at around 2 pm. Luna, a British Shorthair, was extremely cute (that face!) but it was impossible for me to win her over. She lolled about and showed her belly, only to then resist my pats. Oh, cats! I had better luck with the others, especially Sushi, a huge Maine Coon who was happy to get some ear scratches.

Service was friendly, and the woman who was working explained the system to me in English. There’s a set price for a slice of cake and as many drinks as you wish. It’s also possible to get one glass of beer. Cake options included lemon cream, chocolate cream, and honey and nut cream. I ordered the chocolate, and it reminded me of a more grown-up version of the Ho Hos I ate as a kid. I also got a cappuccino, which arrived decorated with a cat face.

There’s no time limit on a stay, and there are some board and card games available. The cafe has two rooms. The front room has regular tables as well as two seats at a low table a few steps up in the window alcove. The back room has sofas. The cafe is below ground level, making it a bit tricky to get well-lit photos, particularly in the back room.

Location: Damjanich utca 38, 1071 Budapest

Hours: Wednesday & Thursday 2 pm – 8 pm; Friday 2 pm – 10 pm; Saturday noon – 10 pm; Sunday noon – 8 pm

Admission charge: 1790 Ft (approximately $6.50), with various discounts are available for seniors, students, children, admission after 8 pm, etc.; cash only

Reservations: Possible by email on their website

Price for a latte: N/A