Amsterdam is a city with many great street markets, and this is one of my favourites. The Amsterdam Boekmarkt sells second-hand and antiquarian books (rare books), and takes place every friday at the Spui Square, infront of the Bejinhof (great location for tourists!).
At first glance, the Amsterdam’s Book Market seems like a crowded effort to put a market (of any kind by a matter of fact) in the small Spui square, right in the middle of the city. But as you walk in, you can clearly see there are many treasures to be found and much to be seen. Many of the sellers are book dealers and have shops besides the stands at the market, some of which even deal rare books. If you look the smell and sight of old books, this is the right place to be in a friday in Amsterdam. The 25 booksellers arrive here from all over Netherlands, and as far as Groningen. The market is lively, and a bit touristy.. For a real collector, this a chance to meet the booksellers from other cities in the Netherlands. Prices might be way above the average though, just a warning. Try to deal with the sellers in dutch, will earn you some points.
What can I find there?
The books are mostly just older popular books, art and photography books, many low cost prints, old pamphlets, posters, papers or magazines, etc. The languages of the books can very from Dutch to French, German, English. If you are a collector – talk to the merchants, obviously they do not travel with all their books, but they will bring the book you need in a week after, or send it to you by mail. As on any market in any country: beware of pickpockets.
Magic Galaxies – Film & TV books on all major sci-fi / fantasy releases. So a lot of Star Wars books, Super Hero and Doctor Who books, Conan books, and even Roleplaying books.
Antiquarian Marc van Dijk – They have emphasis on history, art and literature.
Antiquarian Maximianus – Books about languages, philosophy, theology.
Antiquarian Molenaar Boeken – politics, history, humanities, special literature and modern art I recently snached a very good priced biography of Sigmund Freud there. The seller is super nice.
Antiquarian Otter – They have art books and photo books.
Antiquarian Timbuctoo – English literature, poetry, non-fiction, stories old and new, and crime. I usually look for new additions for my Agatha Christie Collection here.
Antiquarian the philosopher – As the name suggests, books about philosophy. I’m not sure about how many english books they would have.
Het Spui, 1012 WZ Amsterdam | Open on fridays from 10 am to 6 pm
By foot: ca. 10 minutes from the Dam square.
By tram: line 1, 2, 5, 13, 17 & 20 to Het Spui
By car: do not take your car there, as it will be impossible to park it nearby. Your only chance is to leave it on one of the canal streets (metered parking).