Bookshops are some of my favourite places in the world to visit, although my bank account may disagree. They’re so peaceful, enticing….. and full of books!
To the avid readers among us, there’s never been a more pressing time to support our independent bookshops as they re-open following lockdown. Here are my picks of the bookshops on offer in Wales.
This gem is just so much fun to visit. It is so light and airy, it’s just a pleasure to be in the shop. They have beautiful displays and a large children’s section downstairs. They also have a wonderful calendar of author events and book signings. Crickhowell is a picturesque town to visit and you get the feeling that Book-ish is a valued part of the local community. The cherry on the cake is a lovely café on the premises, because nothing goes better with books than a cuppa and a slice of something sweet.
Wellfield Bookshop, Cardiff
Helpfully located on Wellfield Road, as a Cardiff resident Wellfield Bookshop is the independent bookshop which I visit most often. The staff are friendly and knowledgeable, and a browse always reveals the latest titles or new authors to hit the shelves. I always find a visit to be so rewarding and I have rarely left without a book tucked in my bag. It isn’t as pretty as Book-ish but it is exactly what a well-established bookshop should be, providing great service and the books you didn’t know you needed!
Griffin Books, Penarth
A trip to Griffin Books is always a treat, but I wanted to include them in my list for the amazing way they adapted during lockdown and beyond as they re-open. I’ve ordered with them a couple of times during lockdown, and they were able to provide a book I was struggling to find. Delivery was prompt and I paid via invoice online with ease. They moved author events online as well as hosting a Zoom book club and Facebook group for customers to discuss their latest reads. They’ve adapted so well and provided quality service.
Palas Print, Caernarfon
I had to mention this shop located in the medieval walls of Caernarfon. Known predominantly for its excellent Welsh-language stock, it also has an extensive English-language selection. As I want to expand my reading to include more Welsh authors in both languages, it is to Palas Print’s shelves (in-store and virtual) that I will turn. I trust the expertise of the staff and know I will enjoy the atmosphere in their colourful shop on my trips to North Wales.
Where have I missed? I want to explore the Wales bookshop capital of Hay-on-Wye soon, but let me know if you have any recommendations based anywhere else!