City Lights Bookstore San Francisco

Image by Keith Breitbach

City Lights Bookstore – A bibliophile’s oasis

By now we all know that the “digital age” has done severe damage to the publishing business and those big box book sellers. However, I continue to count myself as someone who still enjoys the physical act of holding and reading a book. I also still love visiting an independent bookstore when I spot one.  

City Lights Bookstore is a San Francisco landmark, and it remains a favorite among visiting and local book lovers alike. It’s legendary for being the historic home of prophetic poets and beloved beatniks, but even today you will find regularly scheduled author visits with readings and book signings.

Even though the place can often be teeming with tourists, I consider City Lights as my local book shop. The three floors provide more than enough space to maneuver, and there are countless titles from which to choose. I sometimes like to venture into the third-floor poetry room where I often find myself in their rocking chair reading in relative solitude. I recommend that you also descend to the basement where you’ll find several hundred more classic and contemporary titles.

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Details about this spot



261 Columbus Avenue at Broadway, San Francisco

Telephone number


Opening Times

10:00 - 00:00 daily


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Last Changed Date: 2016-05-19 11:45:13 +0200 (Thu, 19 May 2016)