Here are five study spots in London for when the library just isn’t cutting it
No more chaotic Costas and Prets for you
Are you bored of your uni library? Feel cramped in your student accomodation and need a place to bash out an essay? We’ve all tried to be productive in a Starbucks or Costa but been overloaded and distracted by crowded spaces. There are some real benefits to switching up where you study. It can make you feel more motivated and creative, and as we know after two years of not being able to, leaving the house is great for your mental health. It can even help with retention, so you’re more likely to remember what you studied if you were in a different place.
Next time you’re traipsing around your uni library, unable to find a spot for you and your mates, take a field trip to one of these study spots and get swotting.
Shaman is a workspace designed for people who work or study from home and need a change of scenery. There’s free Wi-Fi and a stylish, modern vibe full of people obsessed with Notion.
Their menu has a lot to offer, from your standard espresso to protein shakes, and a “Shamaniac”, which has coffee and CBD oil. They also have breakfasts, pastries and sandwiches, ranging from £3 to £7. Luckily, you don’t need to buy anything in order to use the space, so you could get away with bringing a flask.
If you live in South London this might be a good place for you if you enjoy the artisanal, hipster vibe. Just make sure to get there early, as it’s open 7:30am-3:30pm and the seats can fill up quickly.
Foyles, Leicester Square
This cafe has lots of drink and lunch options, even serving beer and wine, if that’s what you’re into. Admittedly, it’s a little expensive, because my iced latte cost £3.95 (in this cost of living crisis!). It did come in a cute mason jar though, so I’ll give it a pass.
It’s open 9am-9pm so it’s great for all you midday risers. It can get busy, but it’s not difficult to squeeze on to the end of a bench, and there are tables by the window further away from the lunch crush. There were lots of people also working, so it definitely has a slower pace than your average coffee shop.
Neighbourhood Organic, Kentish Town
This cafe is one of the most aesthetic places to work, open 8am-6pm, it’s great for a study sesh when you want to be surrounded by other people working. If you visit without work to do, there are designated laptop free tables where you can go. The cafe has a selection of sandwiches, paninis, baked goods and desserts. They also do a delicious fry up. It is on the pricier side, but if you have a couple extra quid to spare, just try it for the vibes.
Coffee Matters, Bethnal Green
Coffee Matters has the perfect vibes for an autumnal, dark academia study session. Relaxing music, good coffee and two floors allowing plenty of space to sit. Upstairs has a more light, airy feel with lots of plants, and downstairs has a fake fireplace, sofas and a more cosy atmosphere.
Open 7am-7pm, you’ll be able to work well into the evening with free Wi-Fi and lots of food and drink options, ranging from your standard coffee and paninis to superfood smoothies and vegan options. A latte and sandwich came to £9.50 as it costs a little more to eat in.
You are not hard-pressed to find coffee houses in East London, but Coffee Matters is perfectly set up to work with loads of plug sockets and peaceful vibes to focus. Bonus points for the Halloween decorations.
Wellcome Cafe, Euston
The Wellcome Cafe is just inside The Wellcome Collection, a museum and library. It’s a big, open space that wasn’t too busy, with people working and reading or just stopping for coffee. It’s open 10am-6pm, and even at lunchtime it wasn’t hard to find a spot. There’s free Wi-Fi, of course, but I struggled to find many plug sockets, so make sure everything’s charged before you go.
Food includes salads, toasties, pastries and cakes, and you’ll have all the typical drink options. My toastie was an eye-watering £7.45, but the coffee was a more reasonable £3.30.
The Wellcome Cafe is a relaxed, modern space that’s not far from Euston Station. If you’re burned out from studying, visit the museum and library for free, and get some inspiration.