Whether it’s the quiet hum of stress breakdowns or the disturbing industriousness of engineering students, the library isn’t always the best place to get things done. Here are a few study spots that are off the beaten track-and great for all-day just-me-and-my-textbook marathons.


Head to the Toronto Reference Library (789 Yonge St.) for big tables and a soothing atmosphere. Manic Coffee will brew you some delicious latte-art while you pore over giant textbooks. For comfort food while you study, Future Bakery (483 Bloor St. W.) is a good day-time study spot. They have couches, poutine, perogies and cake-but at night it gets super crowded. For somewhere off the beaten track, try The Common (1071 College St.) at College and Dufferin. Fair-trade coffee and free wi-fi. Perfect. For a truly soothing place to hole up with your text books, head to The Sublime Cafe in Kensington Market. They offer not only coffee-but vinyl records for sale.


Presse Cafe (3501 ave du Parc) is the go-to place for a lot of McGill students to study, but expect to be distracted and have to fight for a spot. Instead, a good idea is to venture off the beaten path: try Cafe Pi (4127 blvd St-Laurent) for a Parisian café experience, complete with old men and chess boards, or Salon B (4231 blvd St-Laurent) where there is free wireless, a ton of outlets and fabulous art adorning the walls to encourage activity in your cerebellum. You also have to visit the famous St-Viateur Bagel & Café (1127 ave du Mont-Royal) for delicious bagels and specialty coffees in a café with European charm.


In Vancouver, a day it’s not raining is a day you’ll find amazing spots to study-everywhere. But for those deluge days, there are some cozy spots to hole up and get work done. J.J. Bean J.J. Bean on Commercial has just the right amount of chaos going on to keep you focused without feeling lonely-and the richest, yummiest mochas. Calhoun’s (3035 W. Broadway) late-night hours and cheap food and drinks mean you’ll find students there til dawn. Wicked Cafe offers coffee to delight the most discerning of Portland-bred coffee hipsters, and has big tables that are great to spread out on.