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This Secret Book Store Is Hiding Europe's Most Beautiful Reading Spot

Picture of India Irving
Social Media Editor
Updated: 31 October 2017
From the gondola rides made even more magical by gondoliers serenading passengers with opera, to the incredible pasta, hidden piazzas and ancient bridges, Venice is beyond a doubt one of the most romantic places in the world. It’s no surprise then that this floating city is also home to the most perfect reading nook imaginable.

Libreria Acqua Alta is a book lover’s dream. Located in the vibrant Castello neighbourhood, a stone’s throw from St. Mark’s Square, it is quite possibly the only place on the planet where you will find a treasure trove of books from all over the world stored in such unlikely shelving as gondolas, canoes and even bath tubs.

This is due to the fact that when Venice’s Grand Canal rises, the ground floor of most buildings gets flooded. Obviously problematic for a bookstore, the issue is cleverly avoided by the water-proof storage.

Poppe. #libreriaacquaalta #venezia

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Then again, there are truly books all over the place in this eccentric space, a staircase/lounge area of old encyclopaedias creates the store’s quirky outdoor reading space and is certainly among the highlights of alternative uses for books, although definitely not guarded from any elements or rising tides.

The shop’s owner, Luigi Frizzo, opened this enchanted spot about 16 years ago. It has since become a must-visit for culture-loving tourists and locals alike.

Featuring old books, new books, travel guides, comics, art books, film books, cook books and everything in between, you have a choice of what to cuddle up with and maybe even a bookshop cat to join you.

Ciao. #libreriaacquaalta #venezia

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