Best bookstores in Washington, D.C Solid State Books

The 7 Best Bookstores in Washington DC

Washington, DC is a great place for book lovers. Not only has it got lots of literary landmarks, but it also has a bounty of used and independent booksellers. For bookworms visiting the Nation’s Capital who want to get a literary fix, here are some of the best bookstores in Washington, DC.

The 7 Best Bookstores in Washington, DC

1. Solid State Books

This cool and hip bookstore is located on H Street, near to Capitol Hill and Union Market.  This independent bookstore and coffee bar has a deep and diverse selection of fiction and non-fiction books lining its shelves. There’s also a notable children’s book and young adult section. With its comfortable seating areas, this bookshop beckons you to pick up a book a stay a while.

Best bookstores in Washington, D.C Solid State Books

2. Lost City Bookstore

Lost City Bookstore is located in Adams Morgan and has had a wonderful makeover. Prepare to spend hours here just browsing the 12 tons of its used, rare and new books on the shelves. Lost City Bookstore is a hub for community activities too and there is always some exciting event on the calendar. With such a great array of stock, this really is one bookstore where you can get lost in a good book and find a gem.

Best bookstores in Washington, D.C Lost City Books

3. Kramers Bookstore

Founded in 1976, Kramers is an independent bookstore, restaurant, bar and event space. Located in Dupont Circle, this D.C institution has bookcases brimming with a large selection of books covering everything from history and politics to arts and philosophy. This bookstore stays open very late and is the perfect place to while away the hours listening to book readings, enjoying tastings and sipping cocktails and brews whilst browsing.

Best bookstores in Washington, D.C Kramer Books

4. Capitol Hill Books

Located close to Eastern Market, this Capitol Hill mainstay has been open since 1991. It is a treasure trove for book lovers with used books from all genres crammed on its shelves. Each room houses a different collection of books – the Mystery Room, the Cultural Closet, the Weird Section – even the bathroom is overflowing with books! This is a great place to find books at bargain prices and there are even tubs of free books outside the building.

Best bookstores in Washington, D.C Capitol Hill Books

5. The Lantern

In the historic area of Georgetown, just off Wisconsin Street is The Lantern, a gem of a bookstore. Here, bookcases brim with used and rare books from nearly every genre going. There is also a marvellous music selection with CDs and vinyl for sale alongside sheet music from pop to classical and everything in between. All items are donated and the Lantern Bookshop raises money to help women attend Bryn Mawr College.

The Lantern Bookstore

6. East City Bookshop

Easy City Bookshop is a wonderfully warm and welcoming independent bookstore on Capitol Hill just one block south of Eastern Market. The bookstore puts the community at its heart and is a real hub with lots of events taking place here. You can easily find books as the shop has a great layout and with well-organised shelves.  But the helpful, friendly staff are always on hand to show you around if needs be or if you just want to chat about the latest book release. You can also buy toys, gifts, art supplies and bookish items, making this a one-stop-shop for all your reading needs.

Best bookstores in Washington, D.C East City Bookshop

7. Second Story Books

Situated in the Dupont Circle neighbourhood, Second Story Books has a wide selection of used and rare books. In fact, Second Story Books is one of the largest used and rare bookstores in the world and is regularly cited as one of the best bookshops in America. A true treasure trove for book lovers, the shelves are packed floor to ceiling with titles covering all genres. Be sure to pay a visit to the Rare Book Room for a browse and grab yourself a bargain at the regular sidewalk sales.

Second Story Books and Antiques

Melanie May

Melanie is an intrepid solo traveller, endlessly curious about people, places and food. She is a fan of slow travel and loves exploring the world by mouth, discovering a culture through its food. Having backpacked her way around the world she turned her wanderlust into a career and is now a full-time travel writer.

View stories