Armchair photo tours: Catfe, a cat cafe in Vancouver, British Columbia

Photos by Cheryl Landes

I love cats. That’s probably obvious from my choice of names for my consulting business and this travel blog. So, after I learned about the cat cafe craze, I look for them when I travel.

Catfe is among the earliest cat cafes. It’s in Chinatown in Vancouver, British Columbia, and among the most popular cat cafes I’ve visited. Reservations are mandatory and should be made at least a week in advance. If you can’t, the cafe holds a few first-come, first-served slots every day, but even those go fast.

For readers who don’t know what a cat cafe is, they have partnerships with local animal adoption organizations. The organizations provide cats available for adoption to the cafes, and the cats live in the cafes and are cared for there until they’re adopted. The cafes are open for the public to visit the cats and look for cats to adopt. There’s usually a small admission charge to help cover the cafe’s operation costs and process adoption applications.

All of the cat cafes I’ve visited sell gourmet coffee. Some have light snacks, beer, and wine. Catfe sells quiche, cookies, and coffee.


Visitors can take the food into the cat area but aren’t allowed to feed anything to the cats. Some cats try to convince visitors to feed them, although they’re fed well with regular kitty food. Here’s one I met at Catfe. I was warned about him before I entered the cat area.


The length of each visit varies at each cafe. At Catfe, it’s an hour. Other cat cafe visits range from 50 minutes to an hour.


Here are some more cat cafes I’ve visited on the West Coast:

I’ve also visited Purrington’s Cat Lounge in Portland, Oregon, before the new management arrived and remodeled the cafe. It’s on my list for a tour after the COVID-19 pandemic ends.


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