(AT) Cats & TEa: Tainan, Taiwan
Phone: +886 6 214 8060
Hours: Wed-Mon 11:30-20:00; Closed Tue
Entrance Fee: No
(AT) Cats & Tea: Review of (AT) Cats & Tea
Cat cafes that feature rescued felines available for adoption are rare in Asia, which is why (AT) Cats & Tea is such a stand out destination.
(AT) is located in Tainan, a large city in the south of Taiwan, famed for its unique culture, tourist attractions from previous occupations by the Dutch and Qing, and tropical heat. True to reputation, it was a sweltering day and we had just arrived after touring the nearby Confucius temple, so the AC was a welcome relief.
Not just cool and refreshing, the cafe was also bright, clean and filled with the cheerful conversation of young students hanging out and drinking coffee.
The owner, a kind and friendly woman, came over to our table with a smile and menus. I selected an iced latte while my partner decided to go against the grain and order a hot chocolate. There is no entrance fee, just the cost of food and beverages with our total coming in at 170 NT or $5.50.
Later, I was able to interview the owner and discovered she has been open for over five years. The cafe is a labor of love, and helps support resident cats, all rescues. I was surprised to hear that she has also helped facilitate several adoptions. As mentioned before, rescue and adoption is not common in Asia, and while Taiwanese people definitely love animals, the traditional method for acquiring a pet one is to buy one at the store.
Huge respect and kudos to cat cafes like (AT) Cats & Tea for helping turn the cultural tide!
The day of our visit there were twelve sweet kitties living at the cafe, including an Exotic that was abandoned by her owners when she developed health problems. She spent most of our visit peering shyly from around a corner, a sad demeanor about her. While hers was a particularly heartbreaking case, we found the majority of (AT)’s cats to be quite social and playful.
The most memorable of these was a striking ginger tabby with expressive golden eyes. One of two sisters, she jumped and climbed all over patrons’ tables, to their squeal-inducing delight. Other favorites included a chubby black and white sweetheart in the window and a pretty Calico that surveyed the scene from a perch up high, her legs crossed elegantly.
Overall, we found Tainan to be a fantastic destination and well-worth the trek from Taipei. When you go, be sure and pay a visit to (AT) Cats & Tea and support their important efforts to improve the lives of Taiwan’s forgotten cats.
Date Visited: 4/18/18