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Maria Martens
Created byMaria Martens

A book-lover's guide to Amsterdam

Featured Guide
This guide is for those who can never pass by a book shop without at least taking one look inside. Amsterdam has a variety of bookstores, but the priceless places are those that are hidden within the maze of canals, bridges and alleys. Many of these carry wonderful antiquarian items, including original first and early editions in Dutch and a few in German or French. In Amsterdam you can also find museums that are centered specifically on books, such as the Bible Museum and the Ritman Library, which has a truly unique collection of original texts on mysticism, alchemy, and hermeticism. 
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The Ritman Library

The Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica, or the Ritman library, is one of Amsterdam most hidden but wonderful treasures. Offering a unique collection of manuscripts (focusing on first and early editions) from the hermetic tradition, the library has a collection in the thousands of volumes,...

De Friedesche Molen

Tucked away in a small side street off of Spuistraat, is this small vintage bookstore. It is run by the owner, a reserved but friendly older gentleman, who will gladly talk to interested customers. His collection is diverse, ranging from 19th century Dutch and German literature to a whole range of...

Bijbels Museum

If you’re a book lover and a history buff, there is no way you can miss the chance to check out Amsterdam’s Bible museum. Located on a lovely bend of the Herengracht, the Bible Museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday. The museum’s collection includes the first bible printed in the Netherlands....

Architectura & Natura

Close to the Anne Frank House, you will stumble upon this bookstore specializing in architecture and natural history. Larger than it looks from the outside, they have a really comprehensive collection, particularly on the study of urbanism. You will not only find material on Dutch cities and...

Spui Book Market

Each Friday, book sellers and collectors from all over the country gather on Amsterdam’s Spui square for the weekly outdoor book market. The square is actually a central point for books: surrounded by book stores, mostly catering to a Dutch and English readership, and magazine stands with issues...

Het Fort van Sjakoo

Since the late 1970’s, this bookstore has been providing material (books, music, magazines) on the subjects of politics, political theories, anarchism, socialism, social movements and more ‘radical ideas’. The bookstore itself is run by a collective, of whom many individuals were very much...

JOOT Books

JOOT stands for Just Out Of Time. The contents of this book store can be placed throughout time – but the store itself is completely cool, calm and modern. Here you can find more than just books – they also have prints, lithographs, photographs and vintage posters. Plus, a few signed book editions here...

Stadsarchief Amsterdam

Those who would like to take a more in-depth view into the history of Amsterdam are welcome to visit the ‘city archives’. The archives are located in a large building with a history of its own, which you can learn more about during one of their guided tours. You can choose to take a general tour or a more...

Eduard van Dishoeck

As you roam through the canals and the ‘9 streets’ of Amsterdam, pop into this antiquarian book dealers. The van Dishoeck family has been specializing in the book and print trade for five generations now, and you are likely to be as much fascinated by their specialization as by the items they have in...

Antiquariaat Hoogkamp

Just across from the Rijksmuseum you will find this small and quaint antique prints store. Their print collection contains vintage human anatomy illustrations, plus they also carry a variety of old maps and city plans. Apart from originals, they also have a large collection of fine quality...