Independent Bookshops You Have to Visit in Edinburgh
Bookshops are alive and well in Edinburgh. Both new and secondhand independent bookshops have long been an integral part of the city and it’s great to see them thriving in the digital age! To help you navigate around the city’s best and most-loved bookshops, we have put together a guide of our favourites, accompanied by local cafe recommendations. So in no particular order, let’s begin!
1. Armchair Books
- Where: 72-74 West Port
- Fancy staying a home filled to the brim with books? You will love our St Stephen Street home from home
If you enjoy buying secondhand books, Armchair Books is well worth a visit! Once you step inside this quaint little shop, you’re guaranteed to feel slightly giddy with the sheer volume of books they have managed to squeeze into the space. It’s definitely a book lover’s paradise!
Local Cafe: If you fancy bringing your newly purchased book to read at a nearby cafe, we’d recommend Lovecrumbs!
- Where: 43-45 West Nicolson Street
- If you don’t feel like braving the wind and rain to go to a bookshop, you could stay in a home that has a room dedicated to books! Look for yourself: Great King Street
Lighthouse is an independent bookshop on West Nicholson Street. The bookshop brands itself as a “radical bookshop”and sell everything from politics, history, fiction and travel writing to Children’s books, tattoo art and cookery. With such a range of books, we’re sure you’ll find something to peak your interest!
Local Cafe: Why not pop into Kilimanjaro Coffee – who is also located on Nicolson Street – for a coffee and treat!
3. Golden Hare Books
- Where: 68 St Stephen Street
- Located near Stockbridge and relatively near Golden Hare Books, Glenogle House is another sanctuary for book lovers!
While most of the bookshops on the list are located in Old Town, Golden Hare Books can be found in charming Stockbridge. Their interior is comparable to an art gallery, with each book showcased as a piece of art. It’s the ideal bookshop to visit if you’re looking to buy a present or treat yourself!
Local Cafe: You’ll be spoilt for choice in Stockbridge, but, a few of our favourites are Peter’s Yard, Patisserie Madeleine, and The Pastry Selection.
4. Till’s Bookshop
- Where: 1 Hope Park Crescent
- In the warmer months you could sit in the Meadows with a book, or curl up in the comfy leather sofa study during the colder months – we’re sure you’ll love East Parkside.
Located next to the picturesque Meadows, Tills Bookshop is the perfect place to drop in for a browse after an afternoon walk. Unlike some of the other secondhand bookshops, Tills books are well organised on shelves rather than piles. Also, if you visit in the colder months, you’ll be relieved to find out there’s a coal burning fire to warm yourself up.
Local Cafe: Cult Espresso is just across the road, and is the perfect place to curl up with a good book and a cuppa.
5. The Edinburgh Bookshop
- Where: 219 Bruntsfield Place
- Staying in our lovely two bedroom Leamington Terrace home, you’ll be just around the corner from Till’s and all the delights of Bruntsfield
No Edinburgh bookshop list would be complete without including the Scottish Independent Bookshop of the Year winner of 2014, The Edinburgh Bookshop! Nestled away on Bruntsfield’s bustling High Street, it caters for adults and children alike.
Local Cafe: Bruntsfield has a plethora of fantastic independent eateries, so you can’t go wrong! But if you’re a fan of chocolate, we’d highly recommend nipping into The Chocolate Tree – which is just around the corner!
6. Rare Birds Books
- Where: 13a Raeburn Place
- Bring your treasures from the bookstore to the lovely courtyard of our Carlton Street home and tuck in with a selection from the Pastry Section.
What started as a small bookclub by founder Rachel, has turned into an international online book club and physical bookstore in our very own Edinburgh. Championing female authors, Rare Birds Books is Scotland’s only bookshop dedicated entirely to women’s writing and this store is where all the magic happens.
Local Cafe: Just a few doors down you will find the Pastry Section where to no one’s surprise, you will find an exquisite collection of pastries and drinks to hit the spot.
Planning on visiting Edinburgh? We have a host of beautiful homes that we’re sure you’ll love!
This delightful top floor apartment in Bruntsfield offers fantastic views over the city, and the Castle! The perfect home to cosy up with a book on the sofa! We are sure you’ll love Leamington Terrace.