The Best Bookshops in Thailand
Bookmoby Readers’ Café is on the fourth floor of the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre | Courtesy of Bookmoby Readers’ Café
Bangkok is a home to a number of independent bookshops that stock a range of titles, so you can find your holiday read with little fuss.
Dasa Book Café
This second-hand bookshop claims to be the best one in Bangkok
, with over 18,000 books to choose from. Dasa Books has one of the largest selections of English titles in the city, in addition to a wide selection in a number of other languages. It also buys and sells second-hand CDs of all types and genres. This intimate bookshop has a handful of tables and chairs for visitors to take the load off their feet and explore the plethora of books filling the shelves. The name of the café is taken from the late Thai Buddhist monk, Buddhadāsa Bhikkhu. Dasa
translates to slave or servant, and it was eventually chosen as the name of the café because the shop believes book lovers can’t live without books and being able to read them!
Gekko Books is a cosy, second-hand bookshop that first opened in 2000. Originally spelled ‘Gecko’, the shop underwent a makeover and changed a few things up, including the unique spelling of its name and installing some well-needed air conditioning. For those bookworms who are also speed readers, fret not. This chain bookshop allows Gekko Books customers to return purchases up to three months. Those of you who do will receive 50 percent store credit of the original price of the book if the condition remains relatively similar. The two locations have separate hours, so be sure to check which one you’re headed to. The main branch is open daily from 9am to 8pm.
You might miss Passport Bookshop if you simply strode along Prasumeru Road, as it’s pretty small. This bookshop might be petite, but it’s quaint and has become a favourite spot of bookworms. The outside of Passport Bookshop is decorated with a charming set of table and chairs alongside a bright red bike. Once inside, you’ll be greeted by rising bookshelves on either side, with an abundance of titles about Southeast Asia. It’s the perfect place to gear up for the rest of your travels. Passport Bookshop also does decent tea and coffee for visitors hoping to sit down, relax and stay a while.
Bookmoby Readers’ Café
The Bangkok Art and Culture Centre is a creative hub for those working and living in Bangkok
. It may come as no surprise, then, that it’s home to one of the best bookshops in the city. Bookmoby Readers’ Café is found on the fourth floor of the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre and specialises in everything Thai, from fiction to poetry, and even picture books. The titles found here are rare ones and are not often seen in the chain bookshops. In addition to a wide variety of books, Bookmoby Readers’ Café hosts occasional author talk sessions.
This small bookshop is right off the BTS Skytrain station Phrom Phong, and visitors might miss it if it weren’t for the bright yellow sign out front. Unlike some of the aforementioned shops, Book is a little less cosy. Books are strewn all over its small shop, with stacks upon stacks of seemingly endless, unorganised titles. The chaos and sheer number of books is what many people about this shop though, and it’ll keep you browsing for titles and picking up a read out of sheer curiosity. You’ll find a good choice of English titles if you look hard enough, but a large number of the books are in Japanese, however, as the store is Japanese-owned.
These recommendations were updated on May 16, 2019 to keep your travel plans fresh.