If you’re lucky enough to be able to work remotely you know that it doesn’t come without its challenges. Sometimes you need that separation between home life and work life. So here are some local coffee shops in Durham that have an abundance of caffeine, free wireless, work-friendly layouts and a sense of community.

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The Durham Hotel

The Durham Hotel is a popular, boutique hotel downtown. It’s one of my favorite spots to work from simply because of how beautiful it is. I mean, look at that! The floor to ceiling windows gives it an airy feeling even on the rainiest of days. The staff is always exceptionally kind and we love how much space there so it never seems too crowded. 

Pros: Free Wi-fi, plenty of seating, Counter Culture Coffee, friendly staff, easily accessible bathrooms

Cons: Usually have to pay for parking

Durham Hotel durham nc
Durham Hotel Coffee Shop


You’d be hard pressed to find another outdoor space that is this beautiful, has great coffee, and wi-fi to work from. One of the best patios in Durham. They have a gorgeous bamboo garden topped off with a water fountain and koi pond, tons of outdoor seating that is pet and kid friendly. Plus, they have some unique coffee drinks you may not find otherwise.

Pros: Free Wi-fi, unique coffee drinks, plenty of space, free parking

Related: Not Your Average Cup of Local Coffee

Saladelia Cafe

Saladelia has several Durham locations but my favorite ones for working and meetings are on Duke’s campus and American Tobacco Campus. The one on Duke’s campus is just a short walk from Duke Chapel so I usually park in the lot or parking garage next to it and walk over. It’s always nice to pop in to visit the Chapel for a moment and grab lunch at the Brodhead Center afterward.

The Oak House

Oak House serves coffee roasted on site by Caballo Rojo Coffee along with wine, beer, cider, and tea from Jeddah’s Tea. AND whiskey is coming soon to the menu.
Coffee and alcohol beverages will be available all day long. You can even bring in snacks and food from neighboring restaurants to go with your beverages.⠀

Shop Durham Offer: 10% off non-alcoholic beverages using your Shop Durham card!

American Tobacco Campus

You may or may not know that American Tobacco Campus has free wifi, making it a great spot to work, study, or have meetings on beautiful days. There are plenty of tables throughout the campus to set up shop. My favorite spot is under the Lucky Strike tower or by the waterfalls. Public restrooms are available inside by the (former) Cuban Revolution. Make a pitstop at Saladelia Cafe on campus for coffee.

There’s parking in the garages or free 2 hour parking during the day on Willard Street or on Blackwell St past the Durham Bulls Stadium under 147.

Cocoa Cinnamon

If you love coffee, you have to come here. No questions. Cocoa Cinnamon has three Bull City locations and each has its own unique character. I personally prefer the Lakewood location for working because it is the largest and there is usually no issue finding seating.

Their coffee will rock your world plus you get the scent of freshly made churros while you work.

Pros: Free Wi-fi, plenty of seating, 4th Dimension Coffee, friendly staff

Bonus: Get a free churro with any drink purchase with your Shop Durham card.

Bean Traders

We are big fans of this funky cafe. The staff is always wonderful and willing to answer any questions I have about their unique drinks. The prices are affordable. Their house-made syrups make all the difference in their self roasted coffee brand. The first time you come you may question it being in a strip mall. Who has good coffee in a strip mall? Yep, Bean Traders does. The space is surprisingly large and there are plenty of outlets to plug in.

Pros: Free Wi-fi, extensive coffee menu, plenty of seating, an abundance of outlets, free parking

Bonus: Get a small cup of coffee with 1 bean purchase using your Shop Durham card.

Mad Hatter Cafe + Bakeshop

You’ll find Mad Hatter’s steps away from 9th Street. My number one reason for loving this place? The dessert. Their black and white cake is dreamy. (I love it so much it was our wedding cake!) So I tend to come here in the afternoons to work when I need a good sugar buzz. The space is large and you can usually find seating, although it can get busy during the school year because of the proximity to Duke’s campus. They have their own parking lot as well.

Pros: Free wifi, amazing desserts, free parking

Mad Hatters Photo: Ashley Grimes


I never thought that I would be frequenting hotel coffee shops to work from, but here we are again. I have a thing for these boutique hotels in Durham. Unscripted has a coffee shop by day and a bar by night. I’m a big fan of comfy couches to work on and they have an abundance of them. Their coffee is great and plus, I use my Shop Durham card to get a free cup whenever I go. If you’re from here you know that parking downtown can be a major headache. Good news is that Unscripted has its own parking garage, just have to pay hourly.

Pros: Free Wi-fi, plenty of seating, easy parking

Bonus: Get a FREE small cup of Toby’s Estate Coffee every visit with your Shop Durham card.

Triangle Coffee House

We love this spot on 9th street because it tends to be quiet and there is plenty of seating. There’s actually two floors- I prefer sitting upstairs because of the natural light. The baristas are friendly, the coffee is good, and the prices are reasonable. There are plenty of outlets which also makes it ideal for working or studying.

Pros: Free Wi-fi, plenty of seating, lots of outlets, full coffee menu, free parking

East Durham Bake Shop

Although they’ve got a full espresso bar, it takes a backseat to their insanely good baked goods. Their space is light-filled and cozy- you want to spend all day here. There’s also a bookshelf filled with children’s books to keep the kiddos entertained.

Pros: Easy parking, awesome food, friendly staff, easily accessible bathrooms

Food: Full bakery with croissants, scones, cakes, pies, and more. Their savory pies and soups make the perfect lunch.

east durham bake shop desserts durham nc

Peoples Coffee

Bypass Starbucks in favor of this local option behind Southpoint Mall. This place is everything you want in a coffee shop. Cozy, unique, great coffee, good people, custom mugs, and a beautiful atmosphere.

Address: 7830 NC-751 Suite 100

Neighborhood: South Durham

Notes: You have to get a photo in front of their hand painted mural wall.

Local’s Favorite Drinks: Mocha (Using local Videri Chocolate)

People's Coffee durham nc coffee shops
People’s Coffee

Joe Van Gogh

You can find these shops all over the Durham coffee scene with three prime locations. They even roast their own beans and you can get their coffee at other local spots like Guglhupf and Pine Cone.

Address: 1114-B W Chapel Hill St, 1104 Broad St B, 4711 Hope Valley Rd

Neighborhood: Downtown, West End, Woodcroft

Notes: Be sure to check out their lavender syrup made in house. 

Local’s Favorite Drinks: Oat Milk Latte

Shop Durham Offer: 5% off $5 or more

Beyu Caffe

Beyu is a local staple and they definitely allow everyone to Be-You. The environment, service and food are awesome. They’ve got ample seating so you can settle in and get work done or bring a crew and socialize.

Address: 341 W Main St

Neighborhood: Downtown

Notes: This neighborhood cafe is a popular gathering spot for different community organizing and social groups. 

Local’s Favorite Drinks: Caramello or Turtle Mocha

Shop Durham Offer: 10% off coffee and breakfast items weekdays before 10:30am

Beyu Caffee

Foster’s Street Coffee

The owner is an absolutely delight and is always ready with a smile. We love their oversized, comfy chairs and cozy fireplace.

Address: 530 Foster St #2

Neighborhood: Central Park

Notes: There’s a large meeting room with a TV that is available for meetings, groups, etc. for free.

Local’s Favorite Drinks: Chai Latte, Iced Mocha


Another spot that’s beautiful inside and out. Parking are been a pain sometimes but totally worth their desserts.

Address: 2706 Durham-Chapel Hill Blvd

Notes: It’s much more than just a bakery, you can also grab brunch, lunch, and dinner. They do all of them to perfection. We love their outdoor seating that’s accompanied by a water foundation and tons of greenery.

Coffee Served: Joe Van Gogh

Guglhupf durham nc bakeries

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Katelyn Belch
Author: Katelyn Belch

Founder of Best of the Bull and Shop Durham. It’s my chief goal to keep you in the know about all things Durham.