5 Unique Book Markets Around The World That Can Make Any Book Lover Swoon

What could be better than being surrounded by books? These unique book markets are every bibliophile’s dream!

Book Culture Bookspot / Libraries Lifestyle Travel

Book markets have a special charm about them- stalls and shops filled with stacks of books lined up on scenic routes and roads. There’s nothing better. From bustling, crowded streets to being surrounded by quiet and fauna, books are everywhere and there is something for everyone. So, we at Bookstr have come up with a list of some of the most dreamy book markets!

Boi Para, Kolkata, India


Fondly called Boi Para (Book Colony) by locals, the book market in Kolkata is the largest secondhand book market in India. College Street is over a mile long, filled with stalls, publishing houses, as well as bookstores. You can find books from nearly any genre!
Surrounded by prestigious schools and universities (that is where the name College Street comes from), Boi Para is also a hub for students. Offering a wide range of academic textbooks and reference books at very low prices, the streets are always bustling with Kolkata’s academics and students
Additionally, if you look deep enough, you might get lucky and find a first-edition copy of some truly amazing books!

Al Mutanabbi, Baghdad, Iraq


The historic book market of Baghdad on Al Mutanabbi Street is known for its infinite collection of books. It is also a book market where books are left out in the stalls through the night. 
Unfortunately, in 2007, the street was tragically bombed. However, over the years it has rebuilt and continues to be the heart and soul of the academic and literary community in Iraq. 
The Book Market has been a hub for students, intellectuals, as well as the older community of Baghdad for several years and continues to play a crucial role in promoting and preserving literature in Iraq. 
The street has several shops and stalls filled with books galore!

South Bank Center Book Market, London, UK


On the bank of the river Thames and under the Waterloo bridge, lies the Southbank Center Book Market. Operated throughout the year (weekends and holidays especially), this market is the perfect spot to find any kind of book you desire. From fiction and non-fiction to art books and children’s books, they’ve got it all. Additionally, there is also a large collection of antique books and memorabilia. 
Situated in the South Bank Center, one can enjoy several cultural events -such as live music performances and festivals- whilst perusing through their vast collection!
The lively and laid-back atmosphere makes for a perfect weekend outing!

Bart’s Books, Ojai, USA


Founded in 1964 as a small outdoor bookstore, Bart’s Books has now become the world’s largest outdoor bookstore, containing over 1300000 volumes of books. 
The numerous outdoor shelves that pave sidewalks and outdoor spaces are filled with books from every conceivable genre. There is truly something for everyone!
An interesting concept about Bart’s books is their honesty system. After regular hours, the bookstore continues to remain open for visitors to peruse. They have a small box where customers pay for the books they want to buy. 
Located in a scenic and tranquil area, Bart’s Books is more than a bookstore. It has been ingrained into Ojai culture, making it a popular destination for not only tourists and artists but also for locals.

Les Bouquinistes, Paris, France


Les Bouquinistes, when translated means riverside sellers. Over 200 merchants open their stalls every morning at dusks, to Parisians and their tourists. The ‘open-air bookshop’ lines the scenic banks of the River Seine. Filled with books from several languages and subjects, Les Bouquinestes is not only a popular destination for book lovers, but it is also a famous tourist destination. 
It was started in the 16th century and has since become an integral part of Parisian Culture. In fact, it was a part of UNESCO’s list of intangible cultural heritage in 2013! 
A croissant, a hot chocolate, and a walk down Les Bouquinestes. Nothing screams Paris more than that combo!

These unique book markets offer a refreshing and enriching experience for book lovers everywhere, reminding us of the endless possibilities that await within the pages of a book.

To know more about unique places to find books- read our similar articles on literary festivals here!