Exploring All The Local Cafes of Haren

Okay, so this may seem like more of an advertisement piece, but it’s where I am and that’s more important than maintaining my I Have Totally Not Sold Out reputation.

But who are we kidding – I’d totally sell out, given the opportunity.

And so would you.


This post certainly got dark quickly, didn’t it. Let’s see if we can jump back into your sarcastically light hearted world again, shall we?

When we lived in Groningen proper, I used to get the boys out the door, then get ready for the day, then walk into the city to my absolutely favourite place in the world to code, Op z’n Kop.

If you are local, not allergic to cats, and love cake, then GET THEE TO OP Z’N KOP. They open officially at ten, have free wifi, power sockets, a public bathroom, tons of tea options and ALL THE CAKE.

And cats.

It’s a cat cafe.

Let’s give that the proper excitement that deserves.


I miss them. A ton. And their cats. And their cake.

I think part of why it took me so long to start exploring Haren when I moved down here is that I knew that none would be as solid as Op z’n Kop. And it’s true – none of them are cat cafes, but DAYUM, there’s some solid options for Incredible Places To Work In Haren.

That should be the title of this piece, eh?

I mean, for social media purposes and such.


The first place I found because it’s the closest to our house and, frankly, was our realtor’s recommendation for an amazing lunch in Haren – Bistro Heerlijk. And they’re awesome cause, yes, they serve an AMAZING lunch.

If you like tuna salad sammiches, hoo boy.

Truly tasty.

Heerlijk, even.

Heerlijk is MORE than tasty, it’s SUPER DELICIOUS.

Of course they have free wifi, plenty of power sockets, a bathroom, all the coffee, and fresh squeezed orange juice that only randomly is a bit too pulpy for my taste.

And cake. They have HEERLIJK cake.

And while their lunch options are extensive and amazing, they don’t have anyone like me who actually wants breakfast. As a matter of fact, they NOW have yoghurt / fruit / muesli / honey on their menu BECAUSE of ME. Which is great, but when it’s the only options AND they don’t open until ten, they’re not a realistic long term option.

Thankfully, the next place I found is open at EIGHT.

Bakker Bart won me over quickly because they have One Free Refill on their cappuccinos. This is, like, SUPER rare in the Netherlands. Normally you pay for All The Refills. Yes, on soda, too. And coffee.

No bottomless coffees here.

This is why I always order capps rather than Cafe Americano – because if I’m going to pay for each and every single cup of coffee, I’m gonna get the fancy.

So Bakker Bart has the free refill along with a bathroom, free wifi, and fresh squeezed orange juice – theoretically there’s a power plug somewhere, but I haven’t found it – I also haven’t really looked, though because….

It’s a chain. It’s sterile. It’s plastic everything. It’s boring.

So I don’t really like working there despite the extensive breakfast options.

But right across the street I found Haafs Bakkerij. I wrote more about Haafs over here but the TL;DR is that while they have all the fresh baked things, open at eight, and have fresh squeezed orange juice, there’s no public bathroom, no wifi, and no power sockets.


So I walk over to Haafs for breakfast once I drop off S at school and then walk to Bistro Heerlijk OR Bij Jo.

Bij Jo is located right in the center of town, but kind of slightly out of the way and I’ve walked by it a million times and RESISTED exploring it because they have a massive sign out front advertising Leonidas.

Leonidas is amazing Belgian chocolate and let me tell you absolutely cannot resist amazing Belgian chocolate.

This Girl.


But when I was thinking I should explore all the local places to write and code in Haren, I knew I had to step foot into this adorable little cafe and let me tell you who is an Absolute Bij Jo Convert.


Let me tell you about how low my standards were when I walked into Bij Jo – I asked if they had free wifi. YES! And power sockets? YES! And a bathroom? YES!

Okay, but most important, can I have a cappuccino, please?


Now, sadly, they open at nine, but let’s talk about a little bonus that I didn’t even know to ask for – A SPACE HEATER.

Now that’s enough positives to warrant resisting the biggest negative of all – all those chocolates calling my name RIGHT BEHIND ME.


So far.

I’ve resisted.

Plus, I mean, I could go the opposite direction and eat all the chocolates I can to build up an immunity.


Also? They have High Tea.

So I have to resist that as well.

Send help.






One response to “Exploring All The Local Cafes of Haren”

  1. […] one point I looked over at one of my favourite cafes, Bij Jo’s, and it was […]