6 DC Spots Anyone In Love With Books And Literature Should Visit

Mª del Rosario Castro Díaz Mª del Rosario Castro Díaz

Seven DC Spots Anyone in Love With Books Should Visit

Attention book lovers! If you’re in DC and are looking for places to satisfy your craving for books, this is the list for you!

Rare Renaissance manuscripts, used books, awesome French food and affordable first editions. These 6 DC spots dedicated to books and literature have it all!

1. Kramerbooks and Afterwords Cafe, Dupont Circle


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The first library café in the District, this bookshop remains one of the coolest and most popular spots for book lovers in DC. Much has changed in the neighborhood since Kramerbooks and Afterwords cafe opened back in 1976, but this DC classic certainly hasn’t.  Small but bold, this bookstore is packed full of books and has some not-so-average events including erotica slams, humor readings and books swaps. If you’re looking for a nice break from your busy schedule, make sure to grab a book and a bite at this lovely bookshop.

Find Krammerbooks and Afterwords Café at  1517 Connecticut Ave NW. 

2. Bridge Street Books, Georgetown


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This Georgetown bookstore is literally the last one standing in the area. Bridge Street Books has survived the closing of all other independent bookstores in Georgetown and it’s clear why. THE destination for all Georgetown bookworms, this quaint bookshop is known to carry unique books from across all disciplines. Bridge Street Books is definitely the go-to spot for the best books in fiction, poetry, philosophy, politics and art in all of DC. The store is now run as a non-profit after its owner’s sudden death in 2016 and continues to hold regular poetry readings.

Find Bridge Street Books at 2814 Pennsylvania Ave NW.

3. Folger Shakespeare Library, Capitol Hill


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Behold! The biggest Shakespeare Collection in the world! If you’re a book lover and a fellow thespian like myself, you cannot miss out on this wonderful collection of all things Shakespeare. It’s basically a Shakespeare-lover’s paradise. Folger Library holds the largest collection of Shakespeare’s First Folio in the world with 83 copies of the 235 in existence (That’s about a third of the copies!). In its vaults, the library holds around 260,000 printed books, 60,000 manuscripts, 90,000 prints, drawings, paintings, and other works of art, as well as quarter of a million performance artifacts. The Folger Collection is also a great resource for rare Renaissance books and manuscripts. But the best part is its reading room which looks straight out of Hogwarts.

 You can find the Folger Shakespeare Library at 201 E Capitol St SE.

4. Second Story Books, Dupont Circle


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Get lost in this book labyrinth in Dupont circle. Second Story Books is the perfect DC spot for finding rare and out-of-print books, vintage maps, prints you didn’t know you needed in your life until you run into them! Wonder around their store or browse through its outdoor shelves to find some amazing books and hidden jewels!

Find Second Story Books at 2000 P St NW.

5. Cafe Saint-Ex, Cardozo


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Café Saint-Ex may not have walls covered in books like some of the other cafés on this list, but it is definitely a must in any book and food lover’s list. This aviation-themed French bistro is named after pilot and The Little Prince author, Antoine de Saint-Exupery. The bistro offers craft beers and fresh French-inspired dishes made with locally-sourced ingredients. This place is perfect for enjoying some great food with friends and geek out over books and literature.

Find Cafe Saint-Ex at 1847 14th St NW.

6. Capitol Hill Books, Capitol Hill


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This used bookstore is perfect for finding rare books and excellent first editions. Books spread across walks from floor to ceiling and are thematically organized in rooms. So if you’re looking for cookbooks your best bet is to look for them in the kitchen… on the kitchen sink. Capitol Hill Books also has a “Weird Section” dedicated to those interested in witches, dreams and the occult. We suggest heading to this bookstore without a specific book in mind and wander around in search of something eye-catching.

You can find Capitol Hill Books at,  657 C St SE.

Feature Image:  Janko Ferlič, Unsplash

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