If you’re a traveler with a literary mind, then you likely love to discover bookstores around the world. Some bookstores conjure images of cozy nooks and hidden treasures while others mesmerize with grand displays. Feel that exciting thrill as you find where local readers congregate and peruse their collections.
El Ateneo Grand Splendid
This Buenos Aires bookstore lives up to its name, established in what once stood as a performing arts theater turned cinema. Rows of books line the golden walls, adorned by ornate details and classic frescoes above. El Ateneo Grand Splendid has been around since 1919 and maintains its dazzling brilliance. You can find your way to this bookstore by stopping through the upscale neighborhood of Barrio Norte.
Established in 1853 with their newest location in the Covent Garden shopping district of London, Stanfords is a piece of English history in the heart of a cultural hub. It’s also perfect for wanderers, with plenty of stationery and souvenirs of map designs, as well as globes, maps, atlases and destination guides. Even the likes of Bill Bryson, Florence Nightingale, Ernest Shackleton and more have found their way through Stanfords’ bookstores.
This Lisbon bookstore’s name is inspired by classics like George Orwell’s 1984, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World and Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451. They take pride in curating a collection of literature, music and art that exemplifies the spirit of a freer society. Here you’ll find vintage vinyl records, local artists’ work and plenty of new and gently used books.
Shakespeare & Company
This Paris storefront is the quintessential picture of a beloved, local bookstore. Piles of books on tables and crowding the shelves makes a bookworm truly feel at home. But perhaps Shakespeare & Company is best known for its Tumbleweeds program, established by the founder of the bookstore, George Whitman. Travelers passing through are only asked to “read a book a day,” help out around the shop and write a one-page autobiography for the collection.
Libreria Acqua Alta
You may think it impossible to establish a bookstore in a city built on canals, but this Venice treasure came up with a clever solution to protecting its books from flooding. Storing and displaying a stock of vintage books in bathtubs, gondolas and stacked high atop tables, the Libreria Acqua Alta creates a whimsical scene made for exploring.
Join our luxe-adventure voyages to Central and South America, the British Isles, Northern Europe, Western Mediterranean, and TransAtlantic and Caribbean aboard World Navigator and World Traveller to find these gems.