There is a street nearby Hoan Kiem lake with some local bookstores called Dinh Liet. It is the street I wrote about in “Hanoi’s Book Street in the Old Quarter“ to introduce a spot for shopping for books. Until few months ago, I thought Dinh Liet is the only book street in Hanoi, but I found another book street close to the Old Quarter.
The street is called Phố Sách Hà Nội, which means Hanoi Book Street. I drove past the street several times and it looked very similar to Ho Chi Minh City’s Book Street next to the famous Post Office and Notre Dame Cathedral of Saigon. So I was waiting for the time to visit the street and recently, I made it there.
Phố Sách street is a short 200m distance and located between Hai Ba Trung and Ly Thuong Kiet streets. The entire street is only for pedestrians, which is amazing and almost unique in Hanoi. There are small bookshop blocks on both sides of the street with plenty of seats and benches for rest or to sit to read.
I was here on a Saturday afternoon, but the street was rather empty. There were some young Vietnamese people there to take photos and hang out. But in overall, it was very quiet and relaxing.
There were about 20 small bookshops and I found that most of the shops seemed to be selling children’s books. I went into 5 – 6 shops to check their selection of English books and they were very limited. Maybe each shop has an average of 10 English books per shop. So if you’re looking for an English book to buy, I’d recommend Dinh Liet street (link to the article above) as they have more choices.
If I compare Pho Sach with Dinh Liet street, Pho Sach is a great place to come for a short walk and sit down at a cafe in the middle of the street to read because of its precious peaceful atmosphere, which is uncommon in Hanoi.
There were a couple of cafes in the middle of Pho Sach street. There was also another coffee shop called Orick Coffee by the entrance from Ly Thuong Kiet street. The coffee shop has a balcony upstairs looking over the book street.
Perhaps, a short break over at Pho Sach street can be a good rest away from the hustle and bustle of Hanoi’s Old Quarter.
Address: Phố 19 Tháng 12, Trần Hưng Đạo, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Vietnam
Opening Hours: Everyday 08:00 – 22:00