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Bookshops Worldwide Women Love to Browse

Laos...girl reading

In Luang Prabang, I'd like to recommend L'Etranger (French for foreigner) bookstore and cafe. Address: Ban Aphay (near the Hive Bar). This is a briliant second-hand bookstore with a whole wall of books to rent for about US50 cents a day. You'll find an amazing collection of books on Laos and south East Asia in general. Part bookstore, part café, this is the place to linger over a pot of tea or a fruit shake and read your new purchase.


I just spent a month in Merida, capital city of the state of Yucatan, Mexico. The English Library on Calle 53 was a life saver for me. Run by volunteers, it's a great place to pick up tips on getting around in the city, and they sell used paperbacks if you're desperate for something to read in English. The library is open five days a week and two evenings.
Jan, Canada

A great bookstore in Oaxaca is El Amate Bookstore on Macedonio Alcala 307. It carries almost every English book in print on Oaxaca and Mexico as well as many books on culture, history, folk art -- great for browsing and cruising --very friendly place!
Selma, Vancouver, Canada

My favorite bookstore in Mexico is Alma Libre Books. You will find them in the quiet little seaside town of Puerto Morelos, which is about 25 minutes down the coast from Cancun. Robert and Joanne, the Canadian owners, welcome you warmly as if you are family every time you visit. The shelves are crammed with an amazing assortment of new and used English books and they even have some for those who are able to read in Spanish. I am able to browse for hours to pick the next books to become my new treasures. I always stop by for a chat and a good book every time I am in town. It is well worth a visit for the bookstore and to experience Puerto Morelos. Also, if I want to check for a special book in advance I e-mail them through their website and often they have it waiting for me. Great town, great book store!
Suzanne, Playa del Carmen, Mexico


One of my favorite haunts in Mexico, girl readingSan Cristobal de las Casas, in the southern state of Chiapas has a bookstore called La Pared (just off the Zocalo) and its run by an American woman. Besides new books, she also accepts trades and donations, and kept me in reading materials during my six months in that area. This mountain town itself is a joy, a colonial treasure with cobbled streets and the opportunity to visit indigenous villages nearby.
Annie, Sarasota, USA


To all other Journeywoman readers I'd like to recommend, Pilgrims Book House in Kathmandu, Nepal. It's located in the center of Thamel, the bustling tourist center of town girl reading(with a branch in Kopendal District). Everyone knows where it is, just east of the venerable Kathmandu Guest House. Sorry not to give an address, but there are none as we know them in Kathmandu. Great collections feature S.E. Asia focused: travel and touring; mountaineering; Buddhist and Hindu religion, practice, culture, art, and history; current political/social events; maps; yoga; out of print collectibles; antiques; trinkets; cook books; gifts galore; clothing and household textiles, and Feed n'Read where you can enjoy delicious fresh Indian food, chai, and just squeezed juices in a garden. Knowledgeable staff in each section of the big shop know all their stock, speak English and will help you. Owners Pushba and Rama Tiwari are often there. They take credit cards and ship. Website:
Joyce, California, USA

New Zealand...

Here's my favorite bookshop 'down-under' in Auckland, New Zealand.girl reading It's called Hard to Find Book Shop (but worth the effort) in Devonport. Address: 81a Victoria Road. Telephone: +64 9 446 0300, email: Devonport is a lovely village in Auckland - just hop on a ferry across the harbour from downtown and enjoy the quiet relaxed (and more genteel) part of the city.
Karen, Whangarei, New Zealand

The Women's Bookshop in Auckland, New Zealand won independent bookseller of the year in 2005. It's a really lovely place to visit and has a regular calendar of events. Take a peek at their website. The staff are great and I think it would be a haven for travellers to New Zealand.
Fe, Auckland, New Zealand


In Auckland, I'd like other members of the Journeywoman Network to know about The Women's Bookshop and in Wellington and Auckland, there's Unity Books. Their website, doesn't come close to reflecting the truly wonderful experience of browsing in this store, the great service, and their stunning and comprehensive range of New Zealand books.
Marion,Wellington, New Zealand

Nicaragua...girl reading

I visit Granada, Nicaragua every three months and one of the places I enjoy going to every time is Maverick's. It is a wonderful bookstore with new and used books and magazines, as well as arts and crafts from Latin America. The expat community gathers here to catch up with what is going on over a great cup of coffee or freshly made fruit juice. There is always something delicious to munch on as well. Nadine, the proprietor who came from Canada, is a most gracious hostess. It's like home away from home!
Micky, Canada


I'd like to recommend Cho Lon (Holland Village, Singapore) to other Journeywoman readers. For me, Cho Lon is by far the best bookshop in Singapore. It’s a bit off the beaten track but don’t let that put you off – taxis are plentiful and cheap in Singapore and it’s really worth the effort. Inside, it feels like being in the library of an eccentric collector – there’s usually some interesting music playing in the background and the books, all in English and covering everything from sport and history to food and children’s books, are displayed in small groups. Then again, books aren’t Cho Lon’s only temptations – there’s also a collection of unusual furniture, clothing and jewellery from all over Asia.
Elizabeth, Paris, France

girl readingCheck out my friend's bookshop, Books Galore selling mostly used (second-hand) books -- Fiction (Novels), Non-Fiction (Self-Help, Inspirational, Motivational, Business, Fashion, General), Children's Books, Comics, and Imported Magazines. Best bookshop downtown selling and renting used books. No regrets walking into Romie's bookshop 'coz I've been buying used books and magazines from Romie since 1991. This is the man who has been selling books since the good old school days at Bras Basah Road. He will gladly answer all your questions about books. 14 Scotts Road, #05-107 Far East Plaza, Singapore 228213. Telephone Numbers: 67328773 and 93852696.
Vincent, Singapore




girl readingI've just returned from Barcelona and while there, found a wonderful second-hand, English-language bookshop. It's called Hibernian Books and it has a great selection of books. They also have a 'buy back' policy so once I'd read them I returned them and bought more. Mind you, I didn't get much money back for the ones I returned but, frankly, I was happy to be able to keep replenishing my reading supply.
Sandra, Victoria, BC, Canada


I'd like to tell other travelling women about Caves Book Store in Taipei.girl reading Sorry, I can't remember the street. It is a large street on the way to Tien Mou.

EDITOR'S NOTE: I believe it is located on Chungshan N. Road in the bustling downtown area of Taipei. They have an excellent assortment of children's books as well, I'm told.


Along the busy and dusty streets of Bangkok, I found a cool retreat in which to while away a few hours. Skoob is a quaint bookstore on the 2nd floor of a small mall called Penny's Balcony. Skoob sells used and new English and Japanese books, has a small corner to relax with a cup of Lavazza coffee and cookies while you browse. The ambience of relaxation is enhanced with some quiet jazz playing in the background, and there's a rack with a small selection of jazz CDs that visitors can purchase as well. Skoob carries a fairly decent range of books given their limited space, and I'm sure all readers will find at least a couple of books that will interest them. It also has a great trade-in program for books so you could always bring any books that you've finished reading and trade them in for other books on their shelves. Address: 2nd Floor, Penny's Balcony, Thonglor 16, Sukhumvit 55, Bangkok. Website:
Caroline, Hong Kong


Billed as "Bangkok's Funkiest Secondhand Bookshop," Dasa Book Cafe, off the BTS Sukhumvit Skytrain line is a great little bookstore. They've got two floors of quality second-hand books and the owner is more than happy to help you find that 'perfect' book for your holiday reading pleasure. The desserts aren't too bad either! Check it out next time you're in Bangkok.
Catherine, Bangkok, Thailand

When in Bangkok it will be worth your while to seek out the Kinokuniya Bookstoregirl reading on the 3rd floor of the Emporium shopping centre on Sukhumvit Road. The Phrom Phong stop on the Skytrain goes right to the door. Kinokuniya is an excellent store with books on all aspects of Thai and south-east Asian life, art, history and reference, current fiction titles, a terrific children's section and very helpful staff. Once inside it is difficult to leave empty-handed.
Lauren, Hamilton, Canada


Look for other bookshops:
Page 1: Australia, Bali, Bulgaria, Canada, China
Page 2: Ecuador, France, Germany, Greece, Hawaii, Holland
Page 3: India, Israel, Italy, Japan
Page 4: Laos, Mexico, Nepal, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand
Page 5: United States
Page 6: United Kingdom


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