Carturesti Carusel is the most beautiful bookstore in Bucharest, located in the heart of the city, on a historical street from the Old Town

Step Inside The Most Beautiful Bookstore In Bucharest

Since I was in high school, the Old Town of Bucharest has gone through a lot of changes and restoration processes, making the liveliest part of the city today, preferred by locals and tourists alike. The most famous place there is Lipscani, an important commercial street in the 19th century, filled with beautiful Neoclassical and Baroque buildings where recently a new bookstore has opened its doors. Named Carturesti Carousel, it’s the most elegant shop in town and it will enchant you the minute you walk inside. Let’s have a look!

My favorite bookstore in Bucharest is Carturesti so I was excited when I saw photos in JanuaryΒ from their new location on Lipscani 55, a historical building in the Old Town, which in 1903 was owned by a family of bankers, but it was later seized by the communists and turned into a shop.

Starting this month, it’s the new cool place in the city, where everyone came to take a look at the joyful design and maybe buy something too. It’s also a hipster’s favorite spot in the Old Town. πŸ˜‰

Take a look by clicking on each image to see it in a bigger size.

So what can you find at Carturesti Carousel?

A little bit of everything. The basement became the multimedia section, where there are music albums, movies, or comic and manga books. On the ground floor you can spend a lot of time browsing their excellent selection of teas (and teacups or kettles), as well as their quirky selection of gifts and Romanian souvenirs. If you are looking for a book, then the first and second floors are for you, and in addition to this, on the first floor you can also find a section for contemporary art. The last floor is reserved for a bistro with a view of the entire store, but since it was so crowded, I haven’t had the chance to try anything, but I did see some delicious-looking cakes. There’s also an elevator if you want to quickly get to the yummy stuff. The nicest part however is between the second and third floors, a level where you can grab a pillow, sit down and read a book in peace. πŸ˜€

My honest opinion: after the initial reactions that included “WOW, it’s so pretty!” and “OMG they have the new Imagine Dragons album!!!”,Β  I realized it’s not too focused on the books, you quickly forget that you are in a bookstore. It seemed like there wasn’t enough space for all the books (even though they have a lot of them), but of course, this may have been my impression because the place was packed with people, so I’ll go back again soon.

Regardless, I am very happy the new Carturesti has opened in the Old Town of Bucharest and I’ll recommend it to everyone who visits the city. Would you like to go?

Packing my Suitcase

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  • Oh wow, it looks incredible inside!

    • It really is awesome! πŸ™‚

  • It looks so cool! And it’s always nice to see a bookshop so busy. It does look a lot newer than I was expecting though, and I’m not always a fan of this sort of “faux-historic” architecture. Are those pillars original features do you think?

    But overall, I like it!

    • I don’t know how the building used to look, but they could be original features.

  • It looks beautiful. in Australia bookstores are a dying breed. Everyone has a kindle or other electronic reader. Perhaps it is a wise move to focus on other things as well as books.

    • I don’t know how many books are bought here, for me Carturesti has always been my go-to place for travel guides, music albums and tea πŸ™‚

  • My God, Vlad…this is TORTURE!!!
    Although Carturesti doesn’t really have books in my native language, it’s still my favorite bookstore in Romania. There’s one in Cluj where I used to spend HOURS reading and just looking around..They have an awesome collection.
    LOVE LOVE LOVE the post! (you should do more on your hometown).
    An extra reason to visit Bucharest πŸ™‚

    • I am planning to write more posts, I just need time to get out and take photos, haha. πŸ˜€ Let me know if you come to Bucharest πŸ˜‰

  • We walked past the shop but now I wish I had gone inside!!! Oh, well. At least I got to find out and see more through your eyes πŸ™‚

    • When were you here? It opened on February 12. I hope you did have a great time in Bucharest! πŸ˜€

  • What a beautiful bookstore, I want to be there! πŸ™‚

    • I hope you can visit it! πŸ˜€

  • Huh, this is really gorgeous AND very similar in vibe to NYC’s Union Square Barnes & Noble, which has become An Establishment of sorts. Moscow’s most famous book store, on the other hand, is kind of a grim throwback to the utilitarian, constructivist late Soviet roots. Not particularly charming at all.

    • I just googled that Barnes & Noble, it looks really beautiful! πŸ˜€

  • looks amazing inside! great photos πŸ™‚

    • Thank you! πŸ˜€

  • Love book stores and this looks like a gorgeous one, I could totally see myself wasting a day there!

    • I’ll gladly show you around should you ever come to Bucharest πŸ™‚ I send a lot of time when I go to Carturesti as well, that place is dangerous for my wallet, haha.

  • galanda23

    Wow! Really beautiful. Sort of like Barnes & Noble here, in the States. I can hardly wait to go visit the book store myself when I’ll be in Romania. You’ve caught some very beautiful pictures of it, Vlad.

    • Thank you! Are you coming to Romania this year?

      • galanda23

        I will, but not to Bucharest this time.

  • Awesome shots… All the best to you!, Aquileana πŸ˜€

    • Thank you! πŸ™‚

  • Heather Hall

    Books and spectacular architecture, what more could one want? This place looks right up my alley!

    • I’m sure you’ll love it if you come to visit Bucharest! πŸ˜‰

  • Great pictures, Vlad!

    This book store has done what many bookstores in the USA are also doing (well, the ones that are still open!). They are adding music and gifts to buy in addition to books.

    • Thank you! Carturesti has never been just about the books and I’ve always liked that I can go to their stores and easily find gifts for my friends. πŸ™‚

  • That’s awesome!! It looks amazing…. I love bookstores and I would stay hours in this one, especially at the bistro πŸ˜€
    As you said at the end, it seems you can forget that you are in a bookstore as they have so many other things. In Brazil we have bookstores that have so many things that you forget that it is supposed to be about the books hahaha
    But I would love to visit this one for sure!! On the list of to must see in Bucharest πŸ˜€

    • I need to go back and check the bistro, their other one is really lovely in summer (it’s outdoors). I need to eat some of their delicious cakes! πŸ˜€

      • Ohh say no more!! Cakes and outside sitting during summer sounds just perfect!!!! πŸ˜€

  • Nice! I could easily spend a few hours browsing there or just admiring the architecture! I went to a very nice and ancient one in Porto, Portugal. Just love the smell of books, don’t think I’ll ever get a Kindle! πŸ™‚

    • I’ve also been to the one in Porto and I liked it a lot, such a cozy and beautiful place. πŸ™‚

  • That staircase is a thing to be admired! I find bookstores so fascinating- I could definitely spend hours in that one!

    • I loved the staircases! I spent a good amount of time with my camera pointing at one to take a photo without any people on it, haha.

  • What a beautiful bookshop! Of course I would love to explore it! Thanks so much for linking up with #WeekendWanderlust!

    • Thanks for commenting, I hope you can explore it one day! πŸ˜€

  • mooistestedentripsnl

    Ooooh, now that is pretty!! I think I could stay there all day!!
    Found you through #WeekendWanderlust Have a great weekend!

    • Thanks, I hope you had a great weekend! πŸ˜€

  • Thanks for sharing, the bookstore looks beautiful! The kind of spot I’d love to stumble upon when wandering around a new city.

    • It’s really easy to stumble upon it as it’s right in the Old Town, on a historical street. πŸ™‚

  • nonstopdestination

    The book store looks pretty. I’ll have to add it to my list of things to visit in Bucharest.

    • You should really visit it! Are you coming to Bucharest anytime soon? πŸ™‚

  • It looks like a confection! How different from the musty and dark bookstores of old. I’d love to go!

    • I hope you can visit one day, Elaine! πŸ™‚

  • How simply beautiful – something else for my bucket list! Thank you

    • Glad I could add something to your already-too-long bucket list (I assume!) πŸ˜€

  • What a beautiful store. Are many of the books in English? I think I could spend a whole afternoon browsing around in there.

    • There are a lot of books in English, you can find both the newest releases and the classics. πŸ™‚

  • Wow! Now THAT is a bookstore…and a beautiful piece of architecture. Thanks for sharing. I get a kick out of the people in that first picture taking pictures themselves! Of course, I’d be doing the same thing.

    • I usually feel strange taking photos in places like this, but everyone was doing it so I quickly got over it, haha πŸ˜€

  • It looks so pretty! I’ll be heading to Bucharest at the end of the month, so I’m excited to check it out!

    • Awesome! If you need any tips about Bucharest, please let me know! πŸ˜€

  • This is my favorite bookstore too! Cannot wait for my next trip to Bucharest to check out this incredible new store! Great writing and great review!!! Thank you so much!!!

    • Thank you, I hope you’ll like the bookstore when you visit it! πŸ˜€

      • I know I will, iubesc Carturesti on Magheru

        • I love it too! <3

  • I found this through your instagram and come to check some more pictures of this lovely place! Will put it on my to do list for next time in Bucharest, sadly it was not open this summer when we visited. But I just love this type of enormous bookstores where you can find anything you can imagine and more. They are getting more and more popular in Europe I guess.
    -Sianna

    • Hope you’ll come back and see it. There is another bookstore in Bucharest, not as huge, but equally beautiful, near Cismigiu Park. Maybe you’ve seen it. πŸ™‚

  • Rosie @Eco-Gites of Lenault

    Yes yes yes – I would love to go! #MondayEscapes

  • Love this post of yours πŸ˜€

    Thank you for one more great link up to #MondayEscapes πŸ˜€

  • Laura

    Wow this is so incredible! I’d love to visit it someday!

  • Looks a great bookstore and I love the travel section!

  • Untold Morsels

    what a beautiful book shop! I love discovering places like this, thanks for posting

  • DEFINITELY want to see this! I discovered it a while ago, but glad to find a more thorough post! Pinned! πŸ™‚