english bookstores in thailand

English Bookstores In Thailand You Should Visit!

As the founder of BetterLivingAsia.com and a long-time Thailand expat, discovering English bookstores in Thailand has been one of my greatest joys. With such a vibrant culture around books and reading, Thailand offers bountiful options for book lovers. From tranquil cafés where you can dive into a page-turner while sipping coffee, to bustling megastores with endless aisles, Thailand’s English bookstores do not disappoint.

Key Takeaways

Types of BookstoresChain stores like Kinokuniya and Asia Books, and independent shops like Dasa Book Café
Notable LocationsBangkok (Siam Paragon, Central World, Emporium), Chiang Mai, Phuket
OfferingsFiction, non-fiction, children’s, textbooks, and more
Prices and DealsNew books have set prices; used books are reduced price with buyback programs
Extra ServicesCafes, wifi, online ordering, author events

Uncovering Thailand’s Endless Treasures for English Book Lovers

Whether you’re looking for the latest bestseller, an obscure genre novel, or non-fiction spanning history to food writing, Thailand has you covered. As my team and I continue providing insights to enhance your life abroad, I’m thrilled to uncover the country’s numerous English bookstore gems. Let’s delve into all they have to offer and why they should top your Thailand itinerary!

Thailand: A Book Lover’s Paradise

Stepping into my first English bookstore during my early days in Thailand, I was immediately enveloped in the comforting familiarity of bookshelves filled with titles in my native language. But beyond the initial wave of nostalgia, I soon discovered the incredible selection of English books ranging from contemporary fiction to Thai history classics.

Over the years, I’ve scouted out chains like Kinokuniya with endless aisles in flashy malls, quaint independent storefronts overflowing with books outside the mainstream, and even charming English book cafés where whiling away an afternoon with a latte and novel felt like home.

With many stores offering new book deals, discounted used books, potential buyback programs, and even in-store cafes or free WiFi, Thailand’s English bookstores expertly cater to book lovers of all kinds. There’s simply nothing better than getting lost in book browsing during my Thailand adventures!

The Pillars of Bangkok’s Bustling English Bookstore Scene

As the country’s bustling capital, Bangkok unsurprisingly houses the lion’s share of English bookstore gems. Over the years, I’ve identified the major chains and independent shops not to miss.

Notable Chains

Towering over Bangkok’s bookstore landscape are mega chains Kinokuniya and Asia Books. Both offer sprawling English sections amidst their multi-level stores:


  • Japanese-owned chain with an impressive English range
  • New book arrivals are prominently displayed
  • Flagship branches in upscale malls like Siam Paragon and Central World

Asia Books

  • Thailand’s largest bookstore chain
  • Robust English section spanning fiction, non-fiction, and textbooks
  • Order books online for in-store pickup
  • The massive flagship store in Central World Mall

Independent Favorites

While the big chains are undoubtedly impressive, I’m quite partial to Bangkok’s cozy independent English bookstores like:

Dasa Book Café

  • Used English books packed into a narrow shophouse
  • Grab a coffee in their café
  • Solid buyback program – they purchase used books from customers

Open Books

  • Quirky 2-story shop near Chulalongkorn University
  • Reasonably priced used inventory
  • Classic bookstore charm and hospitality

Beyond cafés and curated shelves, Bangkok’s independent bookshops ultimately create memorable atmospheres for fellow book lovers.

english bookstores in thailand

Scouting Out Treasures in Lesser-Known English Book Havens

Though Bangkok may dominate Thailand’s bookstore scene, splendid English language options exist elsewhere for determined bookworm travelers.

Beyond Bangkok

While not as abundant, Chiang Mai and English book store Phuket house several English bookstore gems. Must-visits include:

  • Chiang Mai
    • Maya Lifestyle Shopping Center – large Kinokuniya branch
    • Central Festival Mall – Asia Books outpost
  • Phuket
    • Bookworm Library in Phuket Town
  • Pattaya
    • Bookazine Beach Road – mixed books and magazines

Hidden Gems in Bangkok

Even after years in Thailand, I’m still uncovering under-the-radar Bangkok bookshops like:

  • Neilson Hays Library – Historic private library founded in 1920, housing over 20,000 English titles focused primarily on Thai studies
  • Backstreet Books – Charming used bookshop near Khaosan Road, filled with books offered at buy 1 get 1 free deal

Part of the magic is never knowing what treasures you may chance upon inside lesser-known book havens!

IV. Endless Aisles of English Book Bounty

A core reason I’m so fond of Thailand’s English bookstores is the incredible range of reading materials they offer. From world literature classics I’ve savored since childhood to illuminating Thai travel guides, there’s something for every literary taste and area of interest.


The fiction selection never disappoints. Beyond a hefty range of bestsellers and popular mass-market paperbacks, I’ve discovered rare sci-fi finds, mystery novel series collections, and large literary fiction sections.


The non-fiction aisles are ever-abundant as well. Niche food writing titles neighbor sweeping historical accounts of ancient Siam and Bangkok city guides live beside illustrated volumes on Thai art through the ages. I am continually amazed by the book bounty.

More to Explore

Diving deeper, sprawling children’s sections satisfy my occasional inner child whims with favorites from decades past. Textbooks fill educational gaps, rare book rooms house hundred-year-old manuscripts, and even Thai literature classics are discoverable in thriving English-translated collections.

Ultimately, the sheer diversity across topics, genres, styles, and languages positions Thailand’s English bookstores as a bona fide paradise for us explorer book lovers.

Strategies for Scoring the Best Book Deals

As an avid reader and admittedly frugal consumer, I love the thrill of discovering book bargains while browsing Thailand’s English books cape. Though new book prices are typically set, the country offers abundant used book deals.

New Book Purchases

Chain stores like Asia Books and Kinokuniya sell crisp new titles at fixed prices. However, occasional sales and loyalty member discounts do arise. I once scored 20% off bestsellers during a holiday weekend Asia Books promotion!

Used Book Opportunities

Independents like Dasa Book Café and Backstreet Books are where the real steals lie. Beyond everyday reduced used book rates, these shops buy customers’ old books. So you can trade your finished reads for new-to-you titles and deals!

Used book sections in certain chain branches also proffer discounted secondhand gems for the keen-eyed hunter. Happy bargain hunting fellow book lovers!

Extra Touches That Elevate the Reading Experience

Beyond curated shelves brimming with books, many of Thailand’s English bookstores incorporate additional elements to enhance every bibliophile visit.

  • In-store cafes – Few pleasures compared to whiling away an afternoon getting lost in a book amidst a coffee shop ambiance. I’ve completed many a novel chapter seated at Dasa Book Café in particular.
  • Free WiFi – For digital nomads and keyboard warriors needing some connectivity to complement the paper book browsing.
  • Online ordering – Chains like Kinokuniya and Asia Books enable easy book requests via user-friendly websites. Then swing by to grab your book bag bounty!
  • Loyalty programs – Asia Books LINK club offers member price discounts after accumulating points. And the benefits tally as your book haul grows with each visit.

Thailand’s English bookshops prioritize customer reading experience through and through.

english bookstores in thailand

Final Thoughts – Why English Bookstores Should Top Your Thailand Itinerary

As my team at BetterLivingAsia.com seeks to help our readers enhance life abroad, visiting Thailand’s English bookstores undoubtedly sparks joy and enriches every traveler or expat experience. With Cambodian options to satisfy the casual reader to wanna-be book collector alike, a trip to the bookstore undoubtedly deserves a spot atop your Thailand to-do list!

Beyond the expansive English range, cultural immersion by perusing Thai history and literature titles can expand perspective. Plus in-store comforts like artisanal caffeine, free wifi, and potential loyal member savings simply enhance every literary adventure.

So carve time out in your Thailand itineraries for solid hours spent uncovering bookish treasures within the country’s many English book havens. Fulfilling reads surely await around every corner! Before you know it, you’ll be planning entire Thailand trips around the brilliant bookstore options like myself. Happy future reading and book bounty hunting friends!

Unforgettable Bookstore Moments

To spark future English bookstore in Thailand quests, I’ll leave you with a few of my most memorable Thailand bibliophile experiences:

  • Losing track of time tucked inside a bean bag chair devouring new book finds at Dasa Book Café
  • Attending a private function with my favorite author at Asia Books’ Chiang Mai branch
  • Wandering spellbound for hours through Kinokuniya’s multi-level maze of bookshelves


Where are the largest English bookstores located in Thailand?

The biggest English bookstores are found in Bangkok at high-end malls like Siam Paragon, Central World, and Emporium. Chiang Mai also has excellent English book options.

What is the typical cost of English books in Thailand?

New release titles generally range from 400 to 800 THB. Discounted used books can be found from 150 to 350 THB depending on condition.

Do Thailand bookstores sell new or used English books?

Most major chains focus exclusively on new books, while many independent bookshops emphasize used and secondhand English books. However, some locations have a mix of both.

Can I sell my read books back to English bookstores in Thailand?

Certain independent stores like Dasa Book Café operate buyback programs where old books can be exchanged for store credit or cash. Policies vary per shop.

What English fiction genres can I easily find in Thailand?

Most Thailand English bookstores have immense fiction ranges spanning contemporary bestsellers to literary classics across genres like mystery, fantasy, romance, general literature, and more.

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