Despite an uncertain market worldwide, independent bookstores in Mexico’s capital are still thriving. From quirky conceptual stores, to the English-language oriented and highly specialized, these are the best of Mexico City’s independent bookstores that you need to see.
Under The Volcano
A classic bookstore recommendation on the Mexico City scene, Under The Volcano Books has a loyal following of foreign and local fans, as it is the most used English-language bookstore in the capital. Pretty much any popular tome can be found here, although it’s always crying out for (paid) donations to meet demand from customers. While it only accepts cash payments for purchasing, if you’re looking to get rid of some old books, this might also be the place to check out.
Wiser Books & Coffee
What better combination than a good book and an even better cup of coffee? At Wiser Books & Coffee, these are exactly the two things it has combined, making a visit to this independent store feel like a real event. Furthermore, it’s located in the heart of Colonia Roma, meaning it would make the perfect stopping point in a day of exploring one of the capital’s coolest neighborhoods. As for the books, here you’ll find English-language volumes, rare editions and texts from independent publishers, too.
Wiser Books & Coffee, Morelia 76, Roma Nte., Ciudad de México, México, +52 55 5207 5121
This is an independent bookstore with two branches in the city to date, although there’s a third planned for Condesa. However, we recommend stopping by its tiny spot in Colonia Roma. It’s very much a blink and you’ll miss it kind of place, but it offers up coffees, juices and a small but charming space to browse the – literally – wall-to-wall shelves of books. With titles from independent publishers, Fruta Editorial is the place to go if you like browsing and stumbling upon something unexpected.
Fruta Editorial, Eje 2A Sur 180, Roma Nte., Ciudad de México, México, +52 55 5519 2884
If you’re sensing (and liking) the trend with these bookstore-coffee shop combinations, then you won’t be disappointed by Librería Urbe. Here you can nestle in to browse your recently purchased book while sipping on a good coffee at the same time. As well as a small selection of English language texts, Librería Urbe also offers many old, rare and out of print copies of Spanish language favourites too. This is a great place to find that elusive title you’ve been searching for forever.
EXIT La Librería
Not only one of the best bookstores in the city, EXIT La Librería is one of the best independent bookstores to check out on your next visit. This is a specialized destination, admittedly, given that it sells some excellently curated art volumes and titles. If you’re looking for your next coffee table talking point, then EXIT La Librería is definitely one of the best places to check out. Even if you’re not looking to buy, go and browse the fantastic covers.
If independent art bookstores are right up your street, also consider paying a visit to the reputable Casa Bosques. Located in one of the coolest destinations in Mexico City, the quirky Córdoba 25 which also plays host to numerous clothing boutiques, Casa Bosques is a treasure trove of rare and well put-together art book collections available for purchase. From architecture to fashion, photography to music, there is a title for every art fan to be found here, and the roster of titles is constantly being renewed.
Casa Bosques, Córdoba 25, Roma Norte, Ciudad de México, México, +52 55 6378 2976
Un Lugar de la Mancha
For that traditional bookstore look, Un Lugar de la Mancha is the place you should be making a beeline towards. Weighty-looking, wooden shelves line the walls which are overflowing with an array of titles across all types of genres. Aside from the great selection of texts to browse and buy, the welcoming atmosphere in this quaint spot is a distinct bonus, as is the café offering up hot beverages and light lunches. Every now and again it hosts events that might be of interest, too.