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[Cafe Review] Abaco Libros y Cafe | Cartagena, Colombia

Summary //

After Belle married the Beast, they discovered their love of traveling and spent a month in South America, Belle fell in love with a cozy bookshop in the heart of Cartagena’s Old City. That book shop was called Abaco Libros y Cafe, and while they don’t sell Macarons, she was happy to read a book other than the one about Prince Charming for the 85th time.

Okay, so that’s not true, but it totally would be if I worked for Disney. What is true is that this cafe is a refreshingly quiet nook in a noisy city full of street sellers banging their carts down the bumpy, narrow streets.

Between the brick archways you’ll find rows and rows of books, even the always-dreamy ladder to get to the books on the upper shelves. It is a book store, not a library, and most of the books are sealed in cellophane (likely to protect them from the unyielding humidity), but that’s fine, because most of the books are in Spanish anyway.

As far as the coffee goes, they offer reliably good cold brew and an unsweetened blended espresso beverage that I’ve come to love. Also, in a town with less-than-reliable wifi, we’ve had relatively good luck with the connection in the small (air-conditioned!) cafe.

Details //
  • Location: Old City, just two blocks from Cafe del Mar (Cl. 36 #3-86, Cartagena, Bolívar)
  • What we ordered: We’ve had the cold brew, americano frio (iced americano) and cafe frappe (espresso blended with ice)
  • Price: 6,000 COP (~$2 USD) for cold brew and americano; 5,000 COP (~$1.50 USD) for cafe frappe.
  • Wifi:  Yes, available and reliable relatively speaking
  • Seating: Indoor seating (with AC)
  • Table service or walk up: Both
  • Languages Spoken: Spanish and English
  • Credit cards accepted: Yes, but we paid with cash.
  • Chain or Local: Local
Abaco Libros y Cafe
Scores //
  • Drink Quality: 8/10
  • Food Quality: N/A (Didn’t try anything)
  • Menu Creativity: 6/10
  • Perceived Safety: 10/10
  • Service: 7/10
  • Good for digital nomads: 7/10
  • Good for vegetarians: 6/10
  • Perceived Popularity: 7/10