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Photograph: Anna Kucera

The best cafés in Sydney to work from

The world is your office with these Sydney cafés stacked with snacks, caffeine, and, of course, free Wi-Fi

Written by
Divya Venkataraman
&
Time Out editors
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As we ease into a post-lockdown world of loosened restrictions, with a spring in our steps and a new appreciation for wearing clothes with zippers, many of us are also navigating a new kind of working environment. Many people who had the privilege of working from home are continuing to do so, while many others have new, more flexible working arrangements.  

Now that we can venture out, we've pulled together a list of excellent cafés in Sydney that make for good workspaces, and most importantly, fulfil that holy grail criteria among cafés: free (and decent) Wi-Fi. The longtime flexi-workers and freelancers among us have been in on these spots for a while, but for those who are still settling into the WFH life, here's where to start – for when you feel like a little change of scenery. 

Just be mindful that cafés are adapting to life after lockdown themselves, and many are operating with time limits for seatings. Don't linger for hours with a single coffee, respect social distacing and capacity restrictions, and tip, if you can.  Basically, just don't be a dick when dining out

RECOMMENDED: The best spots for banh mi in Sydney

Bread and Circus Wholefoods Canteen
  • Restaurants
  • Alexandria

With a communal vibe and long, wooden tables, you won't feel guilty about nabbing a solo spot and staying for a little longer than it takes for you to finish your soy latte here – the fresh flowers and stacked fruit and veg are also good for diffusing any pent-up pre-deadline stress. 

Three Williams
  • Restaurants
  • Redfern

If you go outside of the lunchtime rush, Three Williams' cozy, underground setting will make you feel like you're a world away from its bustling Redfern surrounds. Hot tip: the pea and avocado smash is perfect one-handed nourishment when you're tapping away at your keyboard. 

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Kawa Café
  • Restaurants
  • Surry Hills
  • price 1 of 4

This sun-soaked café on the Surry Hills' sunset strip is known for its strong coffee and super-tasty toasties. Idle here for a while, the café's pace is definitely slow and steady. 

Berkelouw Books, Paddington
  • Shopping
  • Paddington

Oxford Street has undergone more changes in recent years than Shane Warne’s face, but Berkelouw has remained a fixture. The second floor is where you'll also find the store's café that looks out over Oxford Street; it's the perfect place to hunker down and watch the world go by. 

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Rising Sun Workshop
  • Restaurants
  • Newtown

If the buttered toast-infused breakfast ramen wasn't enough to get you there, Newtown's Rising Sun Workshop is also a great place to settle down with the books – and you need brain food to work, right? 

  • Restaurants
  • Surry Hills
  • price 2 of 4

With its floor-to-ceiling windows, Orto Trading Co is light-filled,  expansive and tucked into a side street in Surry Hills alongside some very good culinary company – vegan-friendly restaurant Mark and Vinny's and Japanese favourite Izakaya Fujiyama are right outside. The Wi-Fi is strong, the coffee is rich, and the scene is perfect for getting down to business. 

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Black Toast
  • Restaurants
  • Annandale

At the back of Annandale, there's a little secret world. Tiny and unassuming from the outside, Black Toast opens up out the back into a big rambling space giving you room to breath and think. Sit in front of the picture window with more natural light than you know what to do with, and get cracking.

Southside Charmers
  • Restaurants
  • Cafés
  • Redfern
  • price 2 of 4

With its eclectic interiors and spread out tables, Southside Charmers in Redfern is a good spot to hunker down with a laptop and some brunch – just don't get too distracted, its stream of well-dressed clientele make it also an ideal spot for people-watching.

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Gardener's Lodge Café
  • Restaurants
  • Vegan
  • Camperdown

Take the immersive approach and write your history essay in one of the city’s oldest buildings – the gateway to the University – that was built beside a traditional waterhole of the Gadigal people. A dose of the café's Flying Pig coffee won't go astray, either. 

Maisy's Café
  • Restaurants
  • Neutral Bay

So your deadline is six hours from now and all you’ve got is a blinking cursor and a sinking feeling: sleep isn't exactly an option. Thankfully, the staff at Maisy’s won’t be sleeping either. They’ll be feeding and watering you through the small hours at this 24-hour café on the north side of the bridge.

Hungry?

  • Restaurants
  • Cafés

Aussie breakfasts are legendary the world over, and we damn well know how to do them right here in Sydney. From the best cheese toastie around to that liquorice bread, here's our list of where to go and what to order at the best cafés in Sydney.

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