I had a long list of bookish places I wanted to visit while I was in LA but unfortunately and unsurprisingly! I ran out of time. I’m travelling with a large group of people who, to their great discredit, are not particularly interested in books. In the spirit of compromise, I focused on those places that were on top of my list. They were incredible and definitely should be on your list to visit in LA.
453 S Spring St
Ground Floor Los Angeles
This bookstore was #1 on my list and well worth the visit. I was so excited when I saw the sign and held my breath as I walked through the doors. Oh my God, it’s huge! So. Many. Books! Both new and second-hand.
The store is two levels: downstairs is general fiction, comics, art and records, while upstairs contains thrillers, mystery, fantasy etc. as well as artist spaces and the amazing book tunnel. Upstairs screams instagramable! I had so much fun wandering the aisles, taking photos and resisting the urge to buy everything in the store.
This has been my favourite place on this trip so far! Put it at the top of your bookish bucket list!
I picked up a copy of We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and a bookish pin to add to my collection (the available space in my suitcase means big books are out of the question).
212 Santa Monica Blvd
A must visit! It’s an independent bookstore selling new and second-hand books as well as CDs and
DVDs. You can’t miss the bright yellow signs out front! They have a cute range of gifts too, including fun socks and stationery. My favourite thing was the bookends! They say ‘Books I’m reading’ and ‘Books I have read’.
I resisted buying anything here, but a friend picked up some second-hand books on psychology that she’s very pleased with!
100 Universal City Plaza
Although books are not its main focus, Universal Studios is a must visit for the Harry Potter fan – and after all, who isn’t? It’s also a great place to visit if you love theme parks in general! This is my second visit to Universal Studios Hollywood. I’ve also been to Universal in Florida a few times and I love going back!
The atmosphere of Harry Potter world is incredible. Music is constantly playing, and the details are impeccable. There’s so many stores to visit like Ollivanders, Honeydukes, Owl Post and so much more!
The rides were so much fun. I went on The Forbidden Journey which was great and pretty mild (I’m not a huge fan of rides! Pathetic, I know). I skipped The Flight of the Hippogriff (thrilling rollercoaster? No thanks!)
I bought the cutest Christmas decoration – Ron’s robes for the Yule Ball and a Despicable Me pin.
2911 Main St
This casual restaurant is library-themed! I got way too excited looking at the menu! The menu categories are: Short Stories (entrees), Poetry (salads),Novel (sandwiches), Collected Works (Mexican), Reserve Reading and the Stacks (burgers)
They have a HUGE selection of beers and the food is sensational! I went with the vegan enchiladas – absolutely delicious and I’m filled with regret that I won’t get to the chance to go back and enjoy them again!
The Library Alehouse is definite a must go! Unfortunately I didn’t get any photos here as it was too dark!
221 S. Grand Avenue
Not bookish related, but this gallery is a must see. There’s a free exhibition as well as a paid exhibition which is frequently updated. With only an hour up my sleeve, I just went to the free exhibition. It was so worth it though as the art is incredible.
The souvenir shop is where you’ll satisfy your bookish needs. I was extremely tempted by the hardcover copy of Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race but 1. Too heavy for my suitcase! 2. I already have a signed paperback at home! You know, I’m pretty impressed by my self-control!!
Places on my list that I didn’t get to visit:
Small World Books
1407 Ocean Front Walk
Venice, CA 90291
Angel City Bookstore
218 Pier Ave
Santa Monica, CA 90405
Los Angeles Central Library
630 W. 5th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90071
I have one more day in LA at the end of the trip so hopefully I can make it to at least one more place!