Being born and raised in the Northwestern United States, specifically the Seattle region means I’m no stranger to the word hipster. In fact, I’d say that word and I are long lasting friends. We’ve been through a lot together, including strange haircuts, overly artistic and moody experiments and a nose piercing and tattoo my mom would rather I didn’t talk about. That being said, when I travel I generally look for the hipster vibe in my days there. At first it wasn’t on purpose, then I tried NOT to find those little places that you’ve probably never heard of. But finally I faced it – I am a hipster, and I am okay with that. Maybe you are too – maybe we all are – but regardless, here are some of my favorite hole-in-the-wall-small-time-you’ve-probably-never-heard-of-them stops.
1. Stock Coffee Shop: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
This coffee shop is actually connected with the adjoining hotel and I absolutely fell in love with it during my time in Amsterdam. It’s not hard to see why! The staff was so incredibly nice, the food was amazing and even the tea was incredible. I was surprised how empty it was when I was there, but my hipster soul was glad of it. It’s no wonder I visited four times in two days!
2. Charlie Byrne’s Bookshop: Galway, Ireland
Ok, so this is actually a pretty popular stop spot in Galway, BUT if you walk inside you’ll understand why it’s added to my list. The whole enormous space is stacked top to bottom with vintage books (and new!) and it has that “curl up and never leave” vibe that makes me want to grab my hipster glasses and take some epic Instagram photos – filtered to the highest degree possible.
3. Art Store:: Glasgow, Scotland
When in doubt, name your store exactly what it is. It’s a kind of ironic beauty that you really can’t compare. At this store I bought a 2″ x2″ canvas which I still haven’t painted anything on it, but I kind of love that I could buy canvases that were small enough to fit in my palm. The location of this store is also pretty hipster awesome because it’s right across the street from the Duke Of Wellington statue, which can often be found sporting his crown of a hot orange traffic cone.
4. Dachkammer : Berlin, Germany
Like being surrounded by a log cabin interior without leaving the busy city? Well, this is the spot for you! Not only was it dark, poetic and all lit up with candles and dimmed lights, but it was filled with a kind of 1920’s prohibition era spirit. Whether you’re looking for a place to read moody things, or to go for a late night drink (WARNING: No WiFi here – way too mainstream), this is definitely a top spot I love.
For those days when marathoning Downton Abbey just isn’t enough, you have Cupan Tae to pull you through. Not only is this one of the cutest tea shops I’ve ever been in (or should I say “Tae shops”?) but the staff who works here is just absolutely the nicest. Not only did they charge my phone (I brought the wrong charger for Ireland) but they were attentive and the tea was sublime. A must stop shop for anyone looking for a delicious bite to eat, or a cup of tea to keep you going.
Honestly, this is all I think of when I say the words “Cup” and “Tea.”