Budapest has a good number of bookshops with English-language literature and it's fairly easy to get a hold of books in English, both new and second hand. Whether you are looking for something in particular or just want to browse around, here is a round-up of the best English-language bookshops in Budapest, listed in no particular order. Happy reading!
Opened in 1992, Bestsellers is the oldest and one of the best English-language bookshops in Budapest. With over 10,000 titles in English, Bestsellers is also one of the largest English bookstores in the city. You'll find books ranging from classic and contemporary literature to collections on history, politics, science, gastronomy, travel and children's books along with an impressive magazine selection. If you don't find the publication you are looking for they'll order it at no extra charge. Bestsellers also carries French and German books, newspapers and DVDs released in the UK.
Address: Október 6 utca 11, Budapest, District 5 Phone: (+36-1) 312-1295 Website: bestsellers.hu Hours: Monday - Friday: 9 am to 6:30 pm, Saturday: 10 am to 5 pm, Sunday: 10 am to 4 pm
This friendly little bookshop, specializing in new and used books, has a great selection of fiction. The densely stacked shelves display a wide range of classic and contemporary novels from English-speaking writers and English translations, science fiction, suspense and books on current affairs, history and politics. They also have children’s books and young-adult fiction. The used English-language book section is located in the basement. Bookstation's cozy reading corner and inner courtyard make it easy to enjoy any book.
Address: Katona József utca 13, Budapest, District 13 Phone: (+36-1) 413-1158 Website: bookstation.hu Hours: Monday - Saturday: 10 am to 7 pm, Sunday: closed
Hungary’s largest bookstore chain doesn't carry the biggest selection of English books, but they have the city's most elegant bookstore and café. Housed in a beautifully restored Art Deco building on Andrássy Avenue, this store has a great atmosphere. Take the escalator to Bookcafé on the top floor and you won't be disappointed either. The gilded interior comes with chandeliers and a fresco-style ceiling. Alexandra has English-, German-, and French-language books on display on the main floor. Much of it consists of classic and contemporary literature, some Hungarian literature translated to English and a few guide books.
Address: Andrássy út 39, Budapest, District 6 Phone: (+36-1) 484-8000 Website: alexandra.hu Hours: Monday - Sunday: 10 am to 10 pm
Treehugger Dan’s Bookstore & Café
Daniel Swartz, an American expat living in Hungary since 1990, runs this independent bookshop selling used English-language paperbacks. Treehugger Dan’s probably has the biggest second-hand English book selection in Budapest with thousands of titles to choose from at reasonable prices. It's a great place to trade your quality English and American books. Many book readings and social events are organized throughout the year. They serve fair-trade coffee and tea.
Address: Lázár utca 16, Budapest, District 6 Phone: (+36-1) 269-3843 Website: treehugger.hu Hours: Monday - Friday: 9:30 am to 6 pm, Saturday and Sunday: 10 am to 4 pm, Summer hours: 9:30 am to 8 pm, daily
This little bookshop near Margaret Island specializes in English, German, French, Italian, Spanish and Russian books. They carry titles in classic and contemporary literature, children's books and a wide range of language books. The friendly staff helps you find what you’re looking for. They can also special order books from anywhere in the world if they don’t have them in stock. Students and teachers receive a 15% discount.
Address: Újpesti rakpart 5, Budapest, District 13 Phone: (+36-1) 288-0771 Website: famuluskonyv.hu Hours: Monday - Thursday: 8:30 am to 6 pm , Friday: 8:30 am to 4 pm, Saturday and Sunday: closed
Massolit Books & Café
The newest edition to Budapest's English-language bookstore scene is a branch of Massolit Books in Krakow. The name comes from Mikhail Bulgakov's great novel, The Master and Margarita, and it refers to an imaginary communist writer's union. The store specializes in Central and Eastern European politics, history, Jewish history, art and culture as well as some contemporary literature. Massolit also carries a good number of Central and Eastern European writers translated to English and several publications in Polish. They host regular author events, readings and discussions in English. Massolit also offers American pies, cakes and cookies along with coffee, tea and free WiFi.
Address: Nagy Diófa utca 30-32, Budapest, District 7 Phone: (+36-1) 788-5292 Website: massolit.hu Hours: Monday - Saturday: 11 am - 8 pm, Sunday: closed
Voted several times 'the bookstore of the year', Írók Boltja (Writers' Bookshop) is the place to go if you are looking for Hungarian fiction and non-fiction translations. They carry over 1,000 books in English, including titles on architecture, design, fine arts, photography and travel. Dictionaries and encyclopedias are also available. Írók Boltja continues the legacy of Café Japan that once occupied the spot and was a popular gathering place for writers in Budapest at the beginning of 19th century. Book launches, literary events and writer-reader meetings are held regularly.
Address: Andrássy út 45, Budapest, District 6 Phone: (+36-1) 322-1645 Website: irokboltja.hu Hours: Monday - Friday: 10 am to 7 pm, Saturday: 11 am to 7 pm, Sunday: closed
This independent bookshop near the Central European University (CEU) specializes in academic publications (great for students) and non-fiction books about the region. CEU Bookshop has one of the most comprehensive collections of English-language writings on Hungary and Eastern Europe, focusing on finance, economics, business management, politics, law, linguistics, anthropology, sociology and philosophy. They also sell publications by the CEU Press (usually about Central- and Eastern-European social issues), Hungarian literature (translated to English) and a selection of newspapers, post cards and calendars.
Address: Zrinyi utca 12, Budapest, District 5 Phone: (+36-1) 327-3096 Hours: Monday - Friday: 10 am to 7 pm, Saturday: 10 am to 2 pm, Sunday: closed
This branch of Libri, another major bookstore chain in Hungary, is devoted to foreign books. Their selection includes literature, pop fiction, history, gastronomy, travel and art. You'll also find a number of Hungarian novels, both classic and contemporary literature, translated into several languages. The English-language book section is on the ground floor.
Address: Váci utca 22, Budapest, District 5 Phone: (+36-1) 318-5680 Website: libri.hu Hours: Monday - Friday: 10 am to 7 pm, Saturday: 10 am to 3 pm, Sunday: closed