Discover the best English-language bookshops in Berlin | Courtesy of Mundo Azul
Berlin is famous for its celebration of literature, and for native English speakers, there are a number of fantastic bookshops in the city where you can buy your next novel or literary tome. From the cosy and eclectic, to the chic and modern, this guide explores the best new and used English bookstores in Berlin.
As the number of Berlin residents who speak English as their first language continues to grow, so too do the numerous shops and facilities that cater to the community. Also ideal for the many English-speaking visitors to Berlin, the city offers a range of bookstores selling English-language literature. Culture Trip has pulled together the top new and used English-language bookshops to check out in Berlin.
Curious Fox | Courtesy of Curious Fox
Located in trendy Neukölln, Curious Fox quickly earned a loyal following when it opened in 2016. A few years on, and the new and used bookshop has become recognised for its selection of Irish and queer literature. “We try to cater for as large a range of interests, ages and taste in books as we can, and we stay in tune to what our customers are interested in,” says part-owner David Gordon. Curious Fox holds a popular poetry reading session called Isn’t Everything Poetry?, as well as quiz nights and a monthly book club.
Mundo Azul Children's bookshop | Courtesy of Mundo Azul
Mundo Azul specialises in alternative children’s literature, featuring international books from England, the US, South Korea, Germany, Latin America, Russia and a host of other regions. According to the store’s founder, Mariela Nagle, “Our focus is to give more visibility to small, independent publishers, and to let people discover wordless books, diversity within the visual language, and children’s books they have never seen before.” Mundo Azul regularly holds events for children such as book readings, workshops, theatrical performances and music. The beautiful store is colourfully decorated, and it’s a great place to take children on a day out in Berlin.
From Kafka to Kant, Saint George’s English Bookstore focuses on philosophy, theory, fiction and German history, and claims to have Berlin’s largest collection of new and used English books. Set in the heart of upmarket Prenzlauer Berg, Saint George’s is a welcome literary feature in the neighbourhood’s wide selection of shops. Since 2003, the store has been a labour of love for twin brothers Daniel and Paul and is usually buzzing with customers. They receive regular shipments from the UK, so if you can’t find what you’re after in the well-curated selection on display, they’ll happily order it in for you.
Boasting a selection of contemporary feminist authors, English translations of German literature, and a small selection of French books, Shakespeare and Sons is a truly chic bookshop. The addition of the Fine Bagel Bakery, which serves up a huge range of authentic water-boiled bagels – delicacies that can be hard to come by in Berlin – has made this store a must-visit when in the Friedrichshain neighbourhood of Berlin. Just be warned: the lines can get long on weekends. All the more reason to arrive early to get your hands on a freshly baked treat, a new book and a cup of Bonanza coffee.
The Berlin Book Nook | Courtesy of The Berlin Book Nook
Nestled in Kreuzkölln, the highly coveted neighbourhood on the border of Neukölln and Kreuzberg, The Berlin Book Nook is a tiny bookstore with a big heart. Renowned for giving great suggestions, it’s worth venturing here to pick the staff’s brains for recommendations. Packed floor-to-ceiling with used books, it’s impossible to leave here empty-handed, or at least without the intention of coming back. The owners have now also opened a sister shop in Wedding, if you’re located closer to the city’s north.
With checkerboard floors and bright red and blue shelves, this popular second-hand bookshop in Kreuzberg is one of a kind. Another Country’s system acts more like a library than a traditional bookshop, as customers pay for books and can then return them to receive their money back (minus a €1.50 charge). Owner Sophia Raphaeline has established Another Country as a quirky cultural hub in Berlin that hosts readings, social evenings, film nights and an array of other events. The shop’s welcoming atmosphere inspires visitors to browse the 20,000 or more used books or settle at one of the tables to do some reading.