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Lonely Planet’s Ranking of the World’s Greatest Bookshops

By Edward Nawotka

Lonely Planet has put out a top ten list of the world’s greatest bookshops, which is led by San Francisco’s City Lights Books. The top three are rounded-out by Librería El Ateneo Grand Splendid in Buenos Aires and Livraria Lello in Porto. Also on the list, are several stores which we’ve covered here, including London’s Daunt Books, Shakespeare & Co. in Paris and The Bookworm in Beijing.

And let us know what your favorite bookshop is in the comments below.

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  1. Kangayayaroo
    Posted November 18, 2010 at 2:38 am | Permalink

    Powell’s City of Books, Portland, Oregon, USA should be top of this list. Combines new and used. Main store takes up a full city block. No subject uncovered. Reader’s paradise.

  2. Bruce
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 6:08 am | Permalink

    Please give us the exact URL or the link. It’s a waste of time to go to Lonely Planet and then — as is the case for me — not to find the list to which you refer.

  3. Eilif
    Posted November 19, 2010 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

    Lonely Plant’s World’s Greatest Bookshops URL: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/usa/travel-tips-and-articles/76233

    I completely agree with Kangayayaroo, Powell’s should top the list. Used to have an apartment 6 blocks from Powell’s, but I lived in the bookstore. They have a great independent/small press section, a lovely rare book room, every book you ever wanted and some you don’t yet know you want, and a cafe with decent espresso and delicious pastries where you can read for hours.

    Now I’m in SF, and while City Lights is a well curated store, it can’t compare. If you’re looking to browse poetry, it _is_ better, but for anything else, I’d prefer Powell’s and sooner turn to another of SF’s many bookshops. One of the nice things about the Bay Area are the specialized bookshops each with their own personality versus the inescapable gravitational force that was Powell’s that kind of kept me from exploring any other option in Portland.

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