Athenaeum Boekhandel

A whimsical Amsterdam bookstore with a large selection of books in several languages.

A Beloved Amsterdam Bookstore

As with most European nations, the Dutch have a rich literary history. Perhaps the best spot in Amsterdam to explore that history is the Athenaeum Boekhandel. Open since 1966, this multi-story shop is the largest independent bookstore in the Netherlands.

Books in Many Languages

The Athenaeum occupies a whimsical space–small staircases wind up and down throughout the different rooms, and books crowd every inch of the walls, from ceiling to floor. (Not to mention the piles on several tables.) Don’t speak Dutch? No problem: the Athenaeum also has large selections of books in other languages, including English, French, and German.

Aside from selling books, the Athenaeum regularly hosts literary events, such as author readings. What’s more, it has a central location on the Spui, a lively square full of boutiques and cafés–and it’s not far from the shopping on Kalverstraat, either. The Athenaeum Boekhandel is devoted to satisfying the longings of all bibliophiles, whether they’re Dutch or not.