Ten incredible bookshops near King’s Cross

Loose yourself in literature at these incredible bookshops in the King’s Cross area!

King’s Cross and Bloomsbury have a long and storied literary heritage, dating back to the days of the famous Bloomsbury Group and beyond. The area has always been a hub of creative and intellectual energy. This is reflected in the wealth of bookshops that can be found here. In this blog post, we’ll be exploring ten incredible bookshops near King’s Cross. Each has its own unique connection to the area’s rich literary heritage. From independent bookstores stocking first editions to modern bookshops showcasing the latest in contemporary literature, these shops are not just places to purchase books, but also monuments to the area’s rich literary tradition. Join us as we delve into the heart of London’s literary scene and discover the best bookshops in the King’s Cross and Bloomsbury area.

Gay’s The Word

Gay’s The Word bookshop is a beloved institution in London’s Bloomsbury neighbourhood. Established in 1979, the shop has been a vital part of the LGBTQ+ community for over four decades. It is the only dedicated gay and lesbian bookstore in the UK, and one of the oldest remaining in the world.

The bookshop offers a wide range of literature, fiction, non-fiction, and poetry, catering to all aspects of the LGBTQ+ community. From classic literature to new releases, Gay’s The Word has something for everyone. The shop also carries a selection of LGBTQ+ films, periodicals, and gifts. The shop is staffed by friendly staff who are always happy to help customers find what they are looking for.

Gay’s The Word has a rich history. The bookshop was raided by the police in the 1980s. Books were seized as part of a wider crackdown on LGBTQ+ material. The raid was met with resistance from the LGBTQ+ community. The raid and subsequent events helped to bring attention to the fight for LGBTQ+ rights and freedom of expression.

The shop is not just a bookstore but also a cultural and social hub. It regularly hosts events such as book launches, author readings, and discussion groups. It is also a meeting place for various LGBTQ+ groups and organisations. Gay’s The Word is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in LGBTQ+ literature and culture.

Opening times: Monday to Saturday 11:00 – 18:00, Sunday 13:00 – 18:00.

Two minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

Daunt Books Marylebone

This recommendation is not strictly close to King’s Cross, but is so good that it deserves a mention. Daunt Books Marylebone is an enchanting bookshop. The Edwardian building’s stunning architecture is a breathtaking sight to behold, with its high ceilings, elegant pillars, and tall windows. The shop’s unique arrangement of books by country is a novel concept, making it easy to browse and discover new titles from all around the world.

As you browse through the shelves, you’ll find yourself lost in a world of travel, culture, and adventure. From books about Japan to those set in Italy, the collection of titles is as diverse as it is delightful. It’s easy to get lost in the shop’s many nooks and crannies, exploring each section and uncovering hidden gems.One of the standout features of Daunt Books Marylebone is the oak galleries, which create a sense of intimacy and coziness. You’ll feel like you’re in a private library, with the perfect ambiance for getting lost in a good book. The shop’s second floor is equally charming, with a beautiful spiral staircase leading up to it.

Whether you’re a book lover or someone looking for a unique shopping experience, Daunt Books Marylebone is a must-visit destination. The shop’s ambiance, architecture, and selection of books make it an unforgettable place to explore. You’ll leave feeling inspired and refreshed, with a newfound appreciation for the power of literature.

Opening times: Monday to Saturday 09:00 – 19:30, Sunday 11:00 – 18:00.

Two minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

Judd Book Shop

Judd Books is a well-known independent bookstore located in the heart of London’s Bloomsbury neighbourhood. Established in 1988, the shop has been a popular destination for book lovers for over three decades. The store specialises in a wide range of fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and children’s books.

The store has a carefully curated selection of books, from bestsellers to lesser-known gems. It has a reputation for its knowledgeable staff who are always happy to help customers find their next great read. The shop also has a range of rare and collectible books which are sure to delight bibliophiles.

Judd Books has a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The shop often hosts events such as author readings, book clubs and launches, making it a great destination for book lovers. The store also has a cosy seating area where customers can sit and read before making their purchase.

Judd Books is a great destination for anyone looking for a good read and a charming shopping experience. The store is a well-known spot in the Bloomsbury neighbourhood. It is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in books and literary culture.

Opening times: Monday to Saturday 11:00 – 19:00, Sunday 12:00 – 18:00.

One minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

SOAS Bookshop

SOAS Bookshop, located in the heart of London, is a unique and fascinating destination for those interested in the study of Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. The shop is run by the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). It offers a wide range of academic and general interest books on these regions.

It offers a carefully curated selection of books, from the latest academic publications to classic texts. The shop also carries a range of maps, journals, and other materials related to the study of Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. It’s a must-visit destination for anyone interested in the region and its cultures. SOAS Bookshop is not just a bookstore. It is a cultural hub for the study of these regions, making it a great destination for anyone interested in these areas of study. 

Opening times: Monday to Friday 12:00 – 16:00, Saturday to Sunday – Closed.

Nine minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

Waterstones

Waterstones Gower Street is a go-to destination for book lovers in the heart of Bloomsbury, London.

Conveniently located near the British Museum and University College London (UCL), this bookstore has been serving the community since its opening in the early 1990s. It boasts a spacious layout, with books stacked from floor to ceiling, each one offering a new adventure to embark on. The selection is vast and varied, with the latest bestsellers and timeless classics spread across the four floors.

The children’s section has books for all ages, from picture books to young adult novels. Waterstones Gower Street also offers stationery, book-related gifts and merchandise, making it a great spot to find a thoughtful present. If you’re ever in the Bloomsbury area, stop by Waterstones Gower Street to discover your next favourite book.

Opening times: Monday to Saturday 08:30 – 20:00, Sunday 12:00 – 18:00.

Nine minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

Word on the Water Book Boat

Word on the Water is a unique and charming bookshop located on a beautiful wooden barge on Regent’s Canal in London. The boat, which is permanently moored in King’s Cross, offers a wide range of new, second-hand and rare books. The selection includes fiction, poetry, children’s books, and travel guides, as well as a variety of other genres.

The boat’s interior is cosy and inviting, with a wood-burning stove and comfortable seating. The bookshelves are lined with a curated selection of books, and the knowledgeable staff are always on hand to help customers find their next great read. Word on the Water runs talks on art, technology, feminism and politics. Musicians and performers also make use of the barge’s roof stage and solar sound system for open mic sessions and there’s even an occasional poetry slam.

Word on the Water is an intriguing destination that offers a great selection of books and a cosy atmosphere. It’s a great place to spend an afternoon, whether you’re looking for your next great read or simply want to enjoy the beautiful views of the canal. The book boat is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in books and literary culture.

Opening times: Monday to Sunday 12:00 – 19:00.

Seventeen minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

Skoob Books

Skoob Books is a vintage bookstore located in London’s Bloomsbury neighbourhood. Established in 1986, it has been a go-to destination for book lovers, collectors, and bibliophiles for over three decades. It specialises in second-hand and rare books, particularly in literary fiction, poetry, and classic literature, making it a paradise for those who appreciate the written word.

The store boasts a carefully curated collection of books, from vintage first editions to modern classics, with a focus on out-of-print and hard-to-find titles. The store also has a cosy seating area where customers can sit and read before making their purchase. Skoob Books also hosts events such as author readings, book clubs, and launches, making it a great destination for book lovers and collectors.

Skoob Books is a must-visit destination for anyone looking for a unique bookstore experience, rare and out-of-print books, and a knowledgeable staff with a passion for books. The store is a beloved institution in the Bloomsbury neighbourhood that offers a unique and authentic experience.

Opening times: Monday to Saturday 10:30 – 19:30, Sunday 10:30 – 18:00.

Three minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

Collinge & Clark

Collinge & Clark is a historic and well-respected bookstore located in London’s West End. Founded in the early 1900s, it has been a favourite destination for book lovers for over a century. It offers a wide selection of books, with a focus on literary fiction, poetry, and non-fiction, as well as a curated selection of children’s books.

The shop has a spacious and well-organised layout, with books displayed on shelves that stretch from floor to ceiling, and a knowledgeable and friendly staff who are always happy to help customers find their next great read. The store also has a unique collection of rare and collectible books, making it a destination for book collectors and enthusiasts.

One of the most distinctive features of Collinge & Clark is its vintage atmosphere, the store has retained its original architecture and decor, including the creaky wooden floors, and the old-fashioned cash register, giving the store a sense of nostalgia. The store regularly hosts events such as author readings, book clubs, and workshops, making it a great destination for book lovers and culture enthusiasts alike. Additionally, Collinge & Clark has a special place in the heart of the fans of British comedy, as the store was used as the main filming location for the popular sitcom “”Black Books””.

Collinge & Clark is a must-visit destination for anyone looking for a unique bookstore experience, a piece of literary history and a nostalgia trip to the beloved sitcom.

Opening times: Monday to Friday 11:00 – 18:30, Saturday to Sunday – Closed.

One minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

The Maghreb Review & Bookshop

The Maghreb Review & Bookshop is a whimsical and magical destination located in London’s West End. The shop specialises in books, journals and other materials related to the cultures, languages, and history of the Maghreb region, which includes Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya.

The shop offers a carefully curated selection of books, from academic publications to classic literature and contemporary fiction, all of which focus on the Maghreb region and its cultures. The store also carries a range of maps, journals, and other materials related to the study of the Maghreb region.

The Maghreb Review & Bookshop is not just a bookstore but also a mystical portal to the study of the Maghreb region. It regularly hosts events such as book launches, author readings, and discussion groups, making it a great destination for anyone interested in these areas of study. The shop also has a small section of Maghrebi music, CDs and DVD’s.

The shop is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in the cultures, languages and history of the Maghreb region. A place where the pages of books will transport you to the land of the rising sun, where the stories come alive, and the bazaar is always open.

Opening times: Monday to Friday 12:30 – 17:00, Saturday to Sunday – Closed.

Three minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

Hatchards St Pancras

Hatchards St Pancras extends the tradition of the original, historic and well-respected bookstore located in Piccadilly. Established in 1797, it is the oldest bookstore in the United Kingdom and has been a beloved destination for book lovers for over two centuries. The store offers a wide selection of books, with a focus on fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and children’s books.

The original Hatchards has been a frequent haunt of literary figures throughout the centuries. It has hosted several famous authors, including Charles Dickens and Virginia Woolf. The store also has a royal warrant, which means it has been appointed as an official supplier to the royal family.

Hatchards St Pancras is located within the grand old train station. It is nestled within one of the elegant and historic curving brick arches, and is the perfect spot to browse a book or two while waiting for your train.

Hatchards is not just a collection of bookshops. It is also a window into the past, a glimpse of a bygone era of bookselling. The store has been a staple in London’s literary scene for centuries. It is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in books and the literary culture. The store’s rich history, elegant atmosphere and its association with literary figures make it a true gem.

Opening times: Monday to Saturday 07:30 – 21:00, Sunday 10:00 – 19:00.

Nine minute walk from The Harlingford Hotel.

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