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Madrid is home to a number of wondrous and eclectic bookshops. While it would be too much to include them all, here are 10 that have caught our eye.
For tourists looking for a bookshop with books specifically on Madrid, La Librería is the best option. It is the point of reference for any books on Madrid: on travel in the capital, on its famous inhabitants, on its history, on its culture – anything related to Madrid is in abundance in this unique bookshop. It also has literary contests and cultural events every once in a while, so travelers who have some spare time can head to this bookshop and get more familiar with the Spanish capital.
La Central is in the center of Madrid and is definitely one of the city’s best bookshops. Not only does it have a great collection of books, but it also houses one of the best restaurants and cocktail bars in the area. Tourists and locals alike come here to enjoy its different events, such as conferences and concerts. For those travelers who want to read a book and go for a meal in one of Madrid’s top ten bookshops, this is the place to be.
Panta Rhei is one of the most attractive bookshops in Madrid. Specializing in the visual arts in general, it is better known, however, for its collection of graphic design books. They also have sections on photography, fashion, children’s books, drawing and much more. It is a fairly new bookshop, inaugurated in 2000, so its focus is primarily on contemporary society, which it showcases through its beautiful collection of books and photography.
Travelers who are looking for a bookshop that specializes in feminist literature should look no further than Librería de Mujeres. They have books in every genre and written by women from all around the world, as well as a wonderful collection of children’s stories that are written from a refreshingly feminist point of view. Their motto is ‘Books don’t bite and feminism doesn’t either’, making it the perfect destination for both feminist scholars and novices.
For visitors who love languages, this bookshop in Madrid is well worth a visit: it was named one of the best five multilingual bookshops in the world by the Financial Times. Pasajes has a great catalogue of both fiction and non-fiction books in English, French, German and Spanish, amongst many other languages. Their collection of books for learning languages is the best in the city, but they do not stop at that, they also sell maps, audiobooks and DVDs. This is a great option for tourists and locals who wish to broaden their linguistic horizons, and maybe pick up a new language or two.
The Librería Desnivel is a unique bookshop specializing in books about sports, adventures, mountains and guidebooks. They also offer maps and videos. For visitors who want to do some sports, mountaineering or simply go for a hike in the nearby Sierra de Madrid (Madrid’s mountain range), this is the place to go: the attentive staff will help you decide what books to buy and which places to visit. Apart from that, this bookshop can also be visited for its carefully looked-after interior.
Naturally specializing in comics, this renowned bookshop Madrid Comics won a prize in 2011 for the Best Specialized Bookshop. It is located in the Malasaña neighborhood of Madrid, which is a great, trendy area of the capital with an alternative scene, so this bookshop fits in perfectly. Madrid Comics is worth a visit whether you are a comic fan or not for its atmosphere, its collection and its surroundings.