A Guide to Sukhumvit’s Best Book Shops

Amazon has yet to conquer Thailand, which is both good news and bad news for book lovers.

The bad news: We can’t have the latest bestsellers shipped to our doors overnight at warehouse prices.

The good news: There are plenty of fantastic book shops on Sukhumvit worth exploring instead.

Check out our guide to Sukhumvit’s Best Book Shops…

Large Book Shops on Sukhumvit

If you are looking for English-language books, there are two chains that dominate Bangkok: Kinokuniya and Asia Books.


Kinokuniya is a Japanese chain known for its gigantic stores in Siam Paragon, CentralWorld and more recently, EmQuartier.

Whether you’re looking for a rare gem, or the latest bestseller, chances are you’ll find it here.
Kinokuniya Outside Emquartier

The downside to Kinokuniya is the sense that its choice of store locations (Bangkok’s uber-luxury malls) is subsidised by some occasionally outrageous book pricing.

฿1200 for a bestselling fiction hardback?


Kinokuniya Emquartier

Alas, for variety, selection and potential-time-lost-browsing, Kinokuniya is second-to-none.

We make it the Asian Barnes & Noble:

A great place to accidentally lose your afternoon.

Location on Sukhumvit:

  • EmQuartier, 3rd floor

Asia Books

Asia Books is the largest English-language books retailer in Thailand.

It has 70 shops across the country, with four in downtown Sukhumvit.

AsiaBook Emporium

These shops are smaller than Kinokuniya — and slightly cheaper.

They are stocked airport-style with an emphasis on the latest bestsellers. For rarer titles, search their website or see our independents below.

Asia Book Emporium

Asia Books is a good option for magazines, stationery, and the type of art and design publications that sit well on coffee tables.

Locations on Sukhumvit:

  • Emporium, 3rd floor.
  • Sukhumvit Rd, between Soi 15-17.
  • Terminal 21, basement.
  • The Landmark Hotel Shopping Plaza, 1st floor.

Independent Book Shops on Sukhumvit

Bangkok’s biggest book chains can be pricey, especially for those used to Amazon’s bargain basement economy.

So, it’s just as well there are some cracking independent shops around town…

Dasa Books

One of our favourite nooks on Sukhumvit is Dasa Book Cafe, a rickety three-storey enclave of over 17,000 second hand books.

Dasa Book Cafe

By the entrance you’ll find neatly alphabeticised towers of modern fiction; all heavily discounted. These surround a small cafe with coffee and Thai iced tea available.

The floor above is catnip for business, politics, and history buffs.

Dasa Book Cafe, 2nd floor

Up another creaking wooden staircase and you’ll find French, Dutch and German titles.

In the corner rests a graveyard of ‘Blow-Out Books’ burying some obscure bargains.

Blow Out Books at Dasa Books

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure!

Visit the Dasa website for a handy spreadsheet of every single book available in its store. New arrivals are added daily.

Location on Sukhumvit:

  • 714/4 Sukhumvit Rd, between Sois 26 and 28.

Sun Books

Sun Books buys and sells both Japanese and English second-hand books.

Sun Books Phrom Phong

The shelves are stacked high, sometimes several books deep, and in no discernible order.

The English collection is dominated by fiction.

There are two Sun Books stores, both situated close to Phrom Phong station. The store opposite Benjasiri Park has the better selection of English titles.

Locations on Sukhumvit:

  • Outside Phrom Phong BTS, between Sois 33 and 35.
  • Outside Phrom Phong, just before Soi 39.


Li-Zenn is a publishing company producing high-quality illustrated books on architecture, art, history, life and philosophy.

Its best work is showcased in a small book shop on Soi 26 — but it is only open on weekends.

Li-Zenn, Soi 26

If you’re an architecture or design fiend, you’ll enjoy flicking through these beautiful catalogues.

Visit the Li-Zenn website for a full digital portfolio.

Location on Sukhumvit:

  • Soi 26, before K-Village (heading towards Rama IV).

Novelty Value: The Bookshop Bar

For something off the beaten track, and with precisely zero books available to purchase, step inside The Bookshop Bar in Thonglor.

Bookshop Bar

This surreal den slash restaurant serves up a variety of cocktails and tasty dishes under a ceiling of floating books and staircases to nowhere.

The menu is suitably littered with puns.

It’s the only place in town selling Chick-Lit Salads with Librarian cocktails.

Bookshop Bar Thonglor

This is not a place to acquire books, but it is a visceral experience — that feels like you’ve just stepped inside one.

Worth a visit to complete your lazy afternoon.

Location on Sukhumvit:

  • Ashton Condo, Soi 38

Have we missed your favourite book shop?

Let us know any hidden gems you’ve found in the comments!