11 Bookstores in Lisbon You Need to Visit

Written By Mihaela Gutu

If you think that Portugal is all about tiles, visual arts, and architectural and historical treasures, we’re here to tell you otherwise – it’s a haven for bibliophiles as well!

So, if you’re worried you won’t be able to satisfy your natural bookish instinct, just add some of the bookstores mentioned in this article to your must-visit list!

Make sure to instruct whoever accompanies you how to convince you in a friendly way to leave without buying too many books and spending hours there! We do know how tempting these atmospheric places can be for bookworms!

Without further ado, let’s set on a bookish journey through Lisbon, unraveling its most beautiful (and quite famous!) bookstores!

11 Bookstores in Lisbon You Need to Visit

Whether you’re looking for a famous bookstore in Lisbon, a tiny hidden bookish gem, or a bookstore with English books – we’ve covered everything! Take your traveling journal out and write down the most intriguing ones!

1. Ler Devagar

Location: R. Rodrigues de Faria 103 – G 0.3, 1300-501 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Sunday – Wednesday: 10 am – 10 pm; Thursday – Saturday: 10 am – 12 am

Ler Devagar is not only a bookshop. It’s a whole cultural project that’s been welcoming visitors for almost 25 years. It’s a space where people are free to express themselves and, without a doubt, one of Portugal’s most widely recognized locations for culture enthusiasts.

Over the years, Ler Devagar changed its location several times. Since 2008, though, the store has been located at LX Factory, a creative hub filled to the brim with art, music, fashion, multimedia, and other forms of expression highlighted via unique events. As such, it seems only natural for Ler Devagar to be located in the heart of LX Factory, in the heart of Lisbon’s most famous cultural hub!

This bookshop should undoubtedly be on any bookworm’s list of bookstores to visit in a lifetime. It occupies roughly 600 square meters of space, has a 14-meter high ceiling, and over 40,000 new books. If you prefer buying used books, you can choose one from the 10,000 second-hand titles in the store.

In addition, you’ll be able to see the permanent exhibition gallery for Objectos Cinemáticos, enjoy a cake at O Bolo da Marta, and look through the products at the Ouvir Devagar music shop.

By far the most enchanting part of this bookstore is the fact that it’s intertwined with the old printing press, which fills the building with an atmosphere that makes one feel as if they’ve stepped into the past.

Ler Devagar. Photo by francesbean (Flickr)

2. Livraria Bertrand

Location: R. Garrett 73 75, 1200-203 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Every day from 9 am to 10 pm

If you go for a walk to explore the neighborhood of Bairro Alto, particularly the Baixa-Chiado region, you cannot not spot Livraria Bertrand. It’s a fascinating building with a charming facade that catches the eye of any book lover!

And if its unique exterior and interior design, as well as its extensive collection of books, aren’t enough – what if we told you that Livraria Bertrand is the world’s oldest operating bookstore? It was, in fact, recognized by Guinness World Records in 2011, so you can check for yourself that we’re not making this up!

The bookstore survived earthquakes, a civil war, and the establishment of the Republic, which is why it’s renowned as a building standing on a rich historical foundation.

If you’re a true bookworm, you’ll probably spend hours in this bookstore – so, we must admit, it’s a bit dangerous if you haven’t planned to spend a whole day in a bookshop!

You’ll delve into the history of Portuguese literature while exploring the spaces dedicated to Aquilino Ribeiro (where the writer actually spent time reading), José Saramago, Almada Negreiros, Sophia de Mello Breyner, Alexandre Herculano, and Eça de Queiroz. In fact, the store was once the meeting point of various literary gatherings attended by some authors mentioned above.

Furthermore, the entrance from Café Bertrand (where you can savor Portuguese and international dishes) takes you to a mural depicting Fernando Pessoa, signed by Tamara Alvers.

Is there anything to add? Of course! But we won’t – you’ll have to experience the charm of Livraria Bertrand yourself during your next visit to Lisbon!

Livraria Betrand. Photo by Vernaccia (Flickr)

3. Livraria Trindade – Alfarrabista

Location: R. do Alecrim 36, 1200-018 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Sunday – Friday: 10:30 am – 7 pm; Saturday – Closed

We must warn you – Livraria Trindade – Alfarrabista is not just another bookstore in town. If you want to enjoy the nicely designed covers of contemporary books, go for the other options we’ve mentioned.

On the other hand, if you want to travel back in time by flipping through old and extremely rare books, Livraria Trindade – Alfarrabista is your go-to choice. However, you won’t only delight in awe-inspiring old books but also other antique pieces, like rare paintings or vintage decorative elements.

Ever since you set foot inside the store, you’ll find yourself immersed in a completely different atmosphere, as if you’re not even surrounded by the busyness of Lisbon’s historical center!

4. Mundo do Livro

Location: Largo da Trindade 11 13, 1200-466 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Sunday – Friday: 10 am – 6:30 pm; Saturday: 11 am – 7 pm

Located in Bairro Alto, close to Teatro da Trindade INATEL, Mundo do Livro is yet another century-old bookstore that focuses on old books, documents about Portugal’s history and culture, as well as antique maps, postcards, and prints.

Some of the books, if you’re lucky enough to find them, are even signed by their authors – a few even bear their dedications!

Prepare yourself – you may end up spending hours looking through the store’s collection, trying to find hidden gems you may want to take back home! 

5. Livraria da Travessa

Location: R. da Escola Politécnica 46, 1250-096 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Monday – Saturday: 10 am – 10 pm; Sunday: 11 am – 8 pm

Livraria da Travessa is located right next to the National Museum of Science & Natural History on Rua da Escola Politécnica, close to Rato metro station.

The history of this bookstore dates back to 1975 when it was called Muro. Back then, it was located in a mall in Rio de Janeiro. Over the years, the bookstore chain extended nationally and overseas, the Lisbon store being the first to open abroad.

Livraria da Travessa is one of Lisbon’s most notorious bookshops. It brought to Portugal hundreds of Brazilian titles that have never been on the Portuguese market.

So, if your reading challenge includes exploring less-known books written by foreign authors, give Livraria da Travessa a go – we’re sure you’ll find some bookish jewels there!

6. Menina e Moça

Location: R. Nova do Carvalho 40-42, 1200-000 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Monday – Friday: 3 pm – 2 am; Saturday – Sunday: 4 pm – 3 am

If you’re a bookworm but also enjoy spending your evenings out, do not miss out on Menina e Moça – a bar-bookstore. Sounds a bit odd, right? This is its charm!

According to the owners, the bar-bookstore pays tribute to the Portuguese authors and the country’s gastronomy. The staff strives to connect locals and internationals through various reading and cultural events and, after all, represent a provocation for anyone walking past it.

In the end, it’s not quite common to see a bookish place on a so-called night street, right? Let’s not forget about the design of this bar-bookstore, which conquers anyone stepping inside it.

7. Stuffout

Location: R. Quintinha 70c, 1200-368 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Closed on Tuesday and Wednesday; open from 11 am to 7 pm on other days

A tiny yet incredibly cozy bookstore located between Bairro Alto and Principe Real neighborhoods in Lisbon. It primarily sells second-hand books, but rest assured – many of them are in excellent shape!

By focusing on used books, the store aims to promote sustainability and encourage readers to give these books a second chance, as they are perhaps even more valuable than new ones.

Stuffout has books in both Portuguese and other languages, and all are at affordable prices. For example, an edition from 1970 of a book by Herman Hesse costs only 5 EUR, and it’s still in quite good shape.

8. Under the Cover

Location: R. Marquês Sá da Bandeira 88B, 1050-060 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Monday-Friday: 11 am – 7 pm; Saturday: 12 pm – 6 pm

If you’re looking for an unconventional bookshop, Under the Cover should definitely be on your list. It’s located near the Calouste Gulbenkian Museum – a tiny shop with an unmistakably blue facade that sells international magazines, books, journals, and artworks.

It provides visitors with any type of printed material – from art and fashion to food, architecture, and music. However, we must warn you that you probably won’t find too many fiction books there. Non-fiction pieces, on the other hand – there are plenty!

9. Salted Books

Location: Calçada Marquês Abrantes 96, 1200-720 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: to be confirmed with the store

Salted Books is a bookish gem well hidden in the heart of Lisbon. It is located close to Museu da Marioneta and is a little haven for any bibliophile, even more so because all the books are in English.

Although it has opened its doors only recently, the store gained instant recognition among both locals and foreigners due to its authenticity and transparency. If you’re lucky enough, you may even attend some of their events, so don’t miss out on this one!

10. Livraria Sá da Costa

Location: R. Garrett 100, 1200-273 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Every day from 9:30 am to 12 am

Livraria Sá da Costa is the highlight of Baixa-Chiado. Located right next to A Brasileira, the famous cafe that breathes Portuguese history and culture, Livraria Sá da Costa complements it with its own charm and piece of history dating from the 1920s.

Since it’s a second-hand bookshop, you’d expect it to have books in Portuguese only, right?! Well, we’re here to tell you otherwise. You’d be surprised how many there are in other languages – rare editions even!

Once you enter the bookshop, you find yourself surrounded by antique pieces – paintings, vinyl records, old, authentic azulejo tiles, postcards, and many other collectible objects.

Then, as you advance through its many rooms, you’ll discover quite impressive collections of books. One small room, for instance, is dedicated to classics – they’re in Portuguese but the editions are absolutely fascinating. A true bibliophile will experience the greatest joy only by admiring them!

Livraria Sa da Costa. Photo by Rui Ornelas (Flickr)

11. FNAC

Location: there are multiple FNAC stores in Lisbon, but you can go for the one in the Baixa-Chiado – Armazéns do Chiado, R. do Carmo nº 2 Loja 407, 1200-094 Lisboa, Portugal

Hours: Every day from 10 am to 10 pm

FNAC is another store where you risk spending at least a few hours browsing through the hundreds of books that may soon become new titles on your TBR list.

What we like about FNAC is that it has multiple editions of various titles, particularly classics, which never cease to impress us. We’re sure you’ll find some that will fit perfectly on your shelves back home!

And, luckily for bookworms, FNAC is also an electronics store, so you can even check out the latest Kindles – there’s no harm in having a tiny Kindle, right?! It’s always a good idea to have an ebook waiting for you to finish a physical book, isn’t it?!

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