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Josefsplatz 1, 1015 Wien, Austria
Entering the Austrian National Library is a momentous moment in one’s life. This place looks like something out of Harry Potter. I wasn’t allowed to use my tripod inside for this triple exposure four-shot panorama but it obviously...
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1005 W Burnside St, Portland, OR 97209, USA
An iconic name in Portland retail—as well as among readers who have never been to the city—Powell’s has multiple locations on both sides of the Willamette. The downtown store remains the one best suited for visitors to explore,...
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84 Marylebone High St, Marylebone, London W1U 4QW, UK
Daunt Books really is special. Even if you are not a big reader, it is well worth a visit because the space is so beautiful and filled with exceptionally well-chosen books. Daunt is the ultimate antidote to the Amazon generation and connects you...
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Av. Santa Fe 1860, C1124 CABA, Argentina
Buenos Aires is a city of readers—it supports more bookstores per capita than any other place in the world. The crown jewel of the librerías here is the Ateneo Grand Splendid. Housed in a theater where music legends such as Carlos...
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Tempt fate at the Monkey Paw’s Book-O-Matic machine, where for the price of a toonie you’ll be delivered an archaic tome in the vein of Elementary Arabic, Vol. 3. I’ll let you know how my studying gets on. The Monkey’s Paw...
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1331 Main St, Cincinnati, OH 45202, USA
Iris Bookcafé sources its coffee from local roasters (of which there are a number in the area) and maintains a selection of used and rare books covering the spectrum between art and photography to Americana, drama, and poetry. Iris also has...
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476 5th Ave, New York, NY 10018, USA
The main branch of the New York Public Library is one of the country’s grandest Beaux Arts buildings, a temple to learning on Fifth Avenue between 40th and 42nd streets. At the end of the 19th century, John Bigelow, who oversaw the Tilden...
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18 Parnell Square N, Rotunda, Dublin 1, D01 T3V8, Ireland
Sure, you fall in love with Paris through the literature about the city—Hemingway immortalized Paris, F. Scott Fitzgerald spent time there and so did James Joyce. However you can do the same with Ireland. JJ is still beloved in his native...
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6 Liberty Street, Savannah, GA 31401, USA
Nothing makes me happier than stumbling upon a really great bookstore, and this one in Savannah takes the cake! While strolling down East Liberty Street in gorgeous Savannah—my favorite of all the beautiful Southern cities—my husband...
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96 S Grant Ave, Columbus, OH 43215, USA
The Columbus Metropolitan Main Library has served the community for over 100 years with the motto, “A fountain of learning: Our treasures are within and open to all.” Today it’s a great place to visit either to read,...
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1 Rue de la liberté, Fort-de-France 97200, Martinique
If this library doesn’t look much like your average Caribbean building, there’s a reason for that. It’s not. The entire library was first built in France back in 1889, then shipped piece by piece to the island Martinique as an...
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R. Marquês de São Vicente, 476 - Gávea, Rio de Janeiro - RJ, 22451-041, Brazil
Instituto Moreira Salles, founded by the late Walther Moreira Salles, a banker and diplomat, houses thousands of historic photographs, books, paintings, and recordings. The auditorium hosts film screenings—a nod to his son, Walter Salles,...
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Biltmore Estate Dr, North Carolina 28803, USA

A self-guided tour of the Vanderbilt family’s 8,000-acre estate in Asheville, North Carolina, takes you through gardens bursting with roses and azaleas, and past pools filled with koi and pineapple-scented water lilies. The centerpiece is...

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4000 15th Ave NE, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
When visiting Seattle, make sure to stop by the University of Washington—one of the most beautiful college campuses in the United States. Cherry trees, lakeshore, and views of glaciated Mt. Rainier surround a cluster of Neo-Gothic buildings....
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220 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA
For a dose of culture, head to Park Life in the Inner Richmond. The goal of this gallery-cum-retail space is to feature today’s most engaging contemporary art. Located in a 1,400-square-foot former furniture store, Park Life showcases 10 exhibits...
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Sainte-Avoye, Paris, France
Just down the street from the charming Carreau du Temple, an open-air market square in the Haut Marais that recently reopened after heavy renovations, sits OFR: a bookshop-cum-gallery that houses an extensive collection of multilingual art and...
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Spui 12, 1012 XA Amsterdam, Netherlands
We woke up on day two, intending to wander around, grab lunch and then spend the rest of the day in the park. However, our host suggested a book market only open on Fridays. Within minutes of the suggestion, we were out the door, armed with...
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48603 CA-1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
The Henry Miller Memorial Library is a bookshop–cultural center dedicated to the bohemian author who once called Big Sur home. It has become a hot spot for concerts by the likes of Gillian Welch and Arcade Fire and a Thursday night summer...
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37 Rue de la Bûcherie, 75005 Paris, France
Located at 37 Rue de la Bûcherie, a stone’s throw from the Seine and draped in the shadow of Notre Dame, is what should be proclaimed one of France’s national treasures: the Shakespeare and Company bookstore. This is...
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1521 10th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122, USA
The Elliott Bay Book Company is the Seattle bookstore and, thankfully, survived its move from Pioneer Square to Capitol Hill with soul and towering cedar bookcases intact. Elliott Bay lost a significant chunk of square footage during the move...
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4519, 261 Columbus Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133, USA

In an age when many independent bookstores have surrendered to the advance of chain stores and Amazon, City Lights is a true survivor. Since it was founded by poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti in 1956, it has served as a gathering place for San...

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R. das Carmelitas 144, 4050-161 Porto, Portugal
A blend of neo-Gothic and art nouveau, the enchanting Livraria Lello bookshop dates to 1906 and is rumored to have inspired J.K. Rowling’s Hogwarts in Harry Potter
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17-5 Sarugakucho, 渋谷区 Tokyo 150-0033, Japan
A short walk from Daikanyama Station is one of the metropolis's iconic bookstores, Tsutaya at T-Site. Designed by Klein Dytham Architecture, the Tsutaya bookstore is celebrated not only for the beauty of its three buildings but also for the...
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686 Fulton St, Brooklyn, NY 11217, USA
At this independent bookstore, sunlight streams onto industrial tables covered by books. They’ve got a range of titles about New York, Fort Greene, and photography.—Jason Lampkin
See all of Jason Lampkin’s favorite places in Fort...
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835 W Harbor Dr, San Diego, CA 92101, USA
My favorite independent bookstore, located in Seaport Village, is Upstart Crow—a mix of eclectic nostalgia items amongst coffee drinks and stacks of books. Here is where you find peace amid the tourist busy bodies.
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2246 Broadway, New York, NY 10024, USA
Westsider Rare and Used Books is a great off-the-beaten-track shop where you can check out books ranging from Oscar Wilde to Malcolm Gladwell (two of my favorites), to “rare and used books” in other languages. The treat is really in...
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Universiteto g. 5, Vilnius 01131, Lithuania
Ask my college age nephew and he’ll tell you that the only thing he does when he goes to his campus bookstore is to get books and other study materials he needs for his courses. It’s an in and out kind of place. You don’t linger...
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1701 Wynkoop St, Denver, CO 80202, USA
Known for hosting readings by big stars in the literary firmament, Tattered Cover Book Store originally opened in 1971 in a mere 950 square feet of space in the Cherry Creek North area. The enterprise has grown to...
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154 W 10th St, New York, NY 10014, USA
Three Lives bookstore in the historic West Village caters to serious book-lovers. The individually owned store and its employees are warm and full of character—it feels like you wandered into your best friend’s (large) library in which...
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1/46 Hall St, Bondi Beach NSW 2026, Australia
Stacked between an internet café and a grocer stands this little gem of a book shop and café. I came here after a windy day at the beach, had a cup of tea and perused the endless lists, not to mention brilliant layout, of their book collection....
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225 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10016, USA
The JP Morgan Library's grand, old-world elegance immediately transports you to turn-of-the-century New York. And at that time, there was almost no one more powerful than financier JP Morgan. He launched U.S. Steel and even served as the...