The best English-language bookshops in Rome
While bookshops are the kind of store that are typically more useful to expats than the average tourist, people’s travel customs have changed dramatically over the last few years, and so some of you out there may be wondering just where some English-language books are located in the city to fill up on unusual travel guides, to find translation of local classic authors or pick up something to read on your travel back home – quite simply put!
Not only bookstores are a great place to put the finger on the pulse of the cultural discourse as it’s perceived in the city you’re visiting: bookshops (any bookshop!) are also a perfect place to make chance encounters, to start conversations and, of course, they are also stunning landmarks in and of themselves.
So, without further ado, here are some of our favorite places in the city – all of them in the city center!
We would be remiss if we didn’t mention this branch of a famous, nationwide chain of bookstores. This one specializes, as the name suggests, in foreign languages – so you will also find books in Spanish, French or Russian. A go-to place for all students wanting to buy books for their language courses, it offers non-fiction and fiction and features a great section with DVDs and Bludiscs with rare finds and arthouse movies.
On Via Vittorio Emanuele Orlando, 84/86 (Baths of Diocletian)
Anglo American Bookstore
Established in 1953, it is one of the oldest of its kind in the city. It is smaller than other similar stores, but don’t let be deceived by its diminutive size – it’s packed to the ceiling with great titles (and it’s super close to our Paradiso Penthouse!).
On Via della Vite, 102 (Spanish Steps)
Open Door Bookshop
Mainly focusing on rare and used books, it does sell tomes in Italian, too. A must-visit for anyone strolling through Trastevere’s alleys, with a passionate owner that engages in conversation with the customers. You can reach it easily if you’re staying at our Casa di Fenizio apartment.
On Via della Lungaretta, 23 (Trastevere)
Almost Corner Bookshop
While Open Door is more geared towards antique and second-hand books, Almost Corner specializes in new titles, and being in the thick of the Trastevere nightlife it’s one of those stores where tourists stumble upon as if by accident – as a result, is one of the most well known places for English book lovers in Rome. It is no more than 10 minutes on foot by our Wanderlust managed accommodation.
On Via del Moro, 45 (Trastevere)
Literally steps away from our very own Governo Vecchio 69 flat, this bookstore is an offshoot of celebrated Altroquando bookshop, which specializes in Italian tomes. When the owners were running out of space a few years back, instead of letting go of the English section… they decided to open a whole new bookstore for it. Another must visit!
On Via del Governo Vecchio, 80 (Piazza Navona/Campo de’ Fiori)
Please keep in mind that this list is not exhaustive in the slightest, nor it is intended to neglect bookshops that specialize in different languages (example: the Stendhal French bookstore on Piazza San Luigi de’ Francesi, metres away from Pozzo delle Cornacchie).
Virtually any bookshop will offer titles in other languages, and there are many more stores selling exclusively foreign language tomes!