5 Bookstores to See in Beijing


If you're like me who enjoys books (regardless of language) chances are you'll be looking for a nearby bookstore. To save you the trouble of finding bookstores I've shortlisted five bookstores you can visit in Beijing if you are pressed for time.


WangFuJing Bookstore

WangFuJing Bookstore is a super bookstore with 6 floors to show for it. The downside would be its limited selection of English titles (its a local bookstore after all) apart from books they have records, office supplies, and furniture as well as music instruments located on its top floors. The sight of textbooks and maps on the first floor gives it a very academic feel (as if you were in a university library.) Its wide selection of local books and mooks (magazine books) cater to various interests such as lifestyle, crafts, and niche hobbies (including eraser stamp carving.)
Address: China, Beijing, Dongcheng, 王府井大街218号 邮政编码: 100006
No.218 Wangfujing Main Street, Dongcheng District, Beijing 100005, China
Pro tip: If you're looking for a particular book or topic you can ask for assistance at the ground floor where they issue you a receipt-like book card in Chinese (I told you its like a library.) Its best to have the written Chinese title of the book you are looking for least you want to get lost in translation.

Foreign Languages Bookstore

image from pbase.com
The best way to describe Beijing Foreign Languages Bookstore is "budget Kinokuniya." They have a wider selection of English books compared to WangFuJing Bookstore. They have special sections for English children's books, textbooks, coffee table books, and foreign language resources (which look like it spent ages on the shelves.) What impressed me was their small but updated section of Japanese Magazines which is located at an obscure corner on the third floor of the building. There is also a modest section for stationary goods as well as Hobonichis found in the same area. The building is quite old and has a bit of a Junji Ito-creeper-vibe if you happen to find yourself alone in any one of the isles or stairs. YIKES
Address: 235 Wangfujing Dajie Dongcheng District 东城区 王府井大街235号
This is further down the road from where WangFuJing Bookstore is located if you're coming from Wangfujing Station.


China Bookstore

This store is the only bookstore in the area*. The first thing you'll see as you enter are its calligraphy supplies and postcards (Beijing Post is down the road if you want to send a postcard.) Their ceramic brush holders come in all sorts of styles and its worth checking out if you're looking for small souvenirs. The books they carry are all in Chinese and mostly history books and calligraphy guide books.
Address: 86 Qianmen St, Dongcheng Qu, Beijing Shi, China, 100051

Page One

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Here's a failsafe choice if you can only visit one bookstore. PageOne is known for publishing coffee table art books. You can find PageOne published titles as well as art books by other publishers. They carry the usual selection of popular English young adult fiction and its Chinese versions. Their magazine section carries local, English and a few Japanese magazine titles. It is worth mentioning that they have very picturesque windows with a view of Sanlitun street that makes it prone to cautious selfie taking tourists (taking photos isn't allowed inside the store.)
Address: 19 Sanlitun Rd, SanLiTun, Chaoyang Qu, Beijing Shi, China, 100027
*Qianmen Avenue is also expecting to have a branch of Page one in that area soon.

The Bookworm

The Bookworm is my favorite among all the bookstores I've been to in Beijing. It is a pub/restaurant- library sans the rowdy crowd. As its name suggests, its an ideal place for bookworms to eat, drink, & read. The vibe of the place tells you that they're mostly a library but they do have a quaint section where you can buy books. They also have a book borrowing program but I am not too keen on the details. I'd say their collection of books are 60% in English because they cater to mostly English-speaking customers (hence the continental menu.) One would have to go around the whole restaurant to browse the entire collection. I spent one evening here and had a pleasant experience both reading and dining-wise. If I had more time I wouldn't mind getting lost in a book with a drink to boot.
Address: China, Beijing Shi, Chaoyang Qu, S Sanlitun Rd, 4号楼
If you're coming from SOHO Complex cross the street and past the parking entrance and you should find the Bookworm.
Pro tip: There's a great view of the Sanlitun area if you look in the right areas.

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Name: Marz Ren | AKA: 認馬摯
​Marz is a handmade stamp artist based in Quezon City, Philippines. This one-person team takes pride in making handmade stamps as mindful way of printing.

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