libreria Acqua alta
libreria Acqua alta
4.5
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
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About
Hidden along Venice’s side streets behind an unassuming facade, this unique bookstore is home to a treasure trove of new and used books creatively housed in gondolas and bathtubs. Climb the staircase made out of damaged books to enjoy an idyllic view, and don’t miss out on taking a photo at the fire escape, which opens out to the canal. Also, try to spot one of the many resident cats the bookstore has adopted. Liberia Acqua Alta is a popular attraction drawing large crowds—visit right at opening or closing times and on weekdays for fewer crowds. – Tripadvisor
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The area
Address
Neighborhood: Castello
Castello is the largest of the six sestieri (districts), and the only one not facing onto the Grand Canal. More than half of Castello is situated within Arsenale, the naval base, which occupies over one-fifth the area of Venice. This gentrified maritime neighborhood feels busy but casual. Castello’s side streets are laid back, with small boats lining canals criss-crossed by laundry. Semiannual exhibitions add a strong artsy current to the Arsenale area. Via Garibaldi in Castello, with its shops and bars, has one of Venice's rare straight and wide boulevards. When a large ship turns around the Lido to enter the Giudecca Canal, the startling sight creates an illusion that it will run aground right on Via Garibaldi! Families treasure Giardini near the island's tip, green with rare trees and grass, and Riva degli Schiavoni is a popular spot for Venetians to take a stroll to watch the sunset.
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.5
2,588 reviews
Excellent
1,603
Very good
674
Average
176
Poor
61
Terrible
74

EgyptophileEngland
Burnley, UK205 contributions
Nov 2022
I agree with what everybody has said about this incredible place. They manage it very politely and to be honest, when we went it was a slow queueing snake working a way through, out to the area where sure footed folk climbed to the top of a pile of books, took a 'Selfie' or had a colleague record the moment, climbed down again (after being reminded by a pleasant enough seated chap that it was obviously a 'one way system = and contrary to what one Reviewer said there is no requirement to make a donation'!) Beyond him, you'll discover there are just two alleys which lead to either the tills or the exit. If you expect to find a conventional bookstore, you'll be disappointed. If you were expecting to browse you'll won't be able to. If you were expecting to discover or purchase unusual books, you'll be disappointed. If you are a bibliophile, you may be horrified by the condition of some of the books. If you read that they have resident cats, you may be unlucky. When we visited we never even saw the tail end of one disappearing - though, truthfully, no self respecting cat would sit patiently putting up with the hordes of passing gawkers (and, no doubt 'photographers') disturbing their reveries. If you don't have expectations, you won't be disappointed. I read about it, fancied it, went and was not a bit disappointed. I read many of the Reviews, they all seem fair and accurate to me but they tell you more about folk then about the Liberia Acqua Alta. I've seen some far less fascinating stuff under the guise of art at the Biennale!
Written November 27, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Sellest
Bushey, UK5,223 contributions
Jul 2022
Visited here last week as I’d heard so much about it. It certainly is very different – books piled high, resident cat asleep at the entrance. Rather crowded inside, however, and they do tend to push you through if you are taking photos outside at the back (on the pile of books) or outside at the side. I would not go out of my way to visit, but, if you are passing it is definitely worth a quick delve inside.
Written July 13, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Amy
49 contributions
Apr 2022 • Friends
When we arrived (around 3pm) the shop was rather busy. The walkways are quite narrow, so I didn’t feel like we could stop and look at the books without blocking the way ahead for the people behind us. There can be a long queue for taking photos on the book stairs at the back of the shop. The selection of books is good, on every topic, including lots of books about Venice, there are also lots of posters, postcards, and things you can buy as souvenirs.
Written April 12, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Helena
44 contributions
Mar 2022 • Family
My mum and I were so excited to go to this bookshop, only to be massively disappointed. The interior was lovely, don’t get me wrong, however considering this bookshop is famous for its cats - there was not a cat in sight, which I also don’t mind as I have worked in animal care and fully understand that they won’t want to be in the building all the time.

The problem is how incredibly busy it was inside.

When you go to a bookshop you want to have a relaxing experience and lose yourself in the world of literature, however we were rushed through the shop with barely an inch between each person. Because of this you could hardly see all the attractions in the shop, and frankly I wanted to leave as soon as I entered. They had staff manning the door, which was pointless in my opinion as they had no system in terms of counting how many people were in the shop at a time to make sure there was social distancing and actually time for people to go through. I was going to buy a book but it was so busy inside I couldn’t even get to the tills.

No wonder there were no cats. They would’ve hated to be in there. No personal space whatsoever. Very rude staff too, rushing people through the shop.

Genuinely do not bother.
Written April 21, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

yasmineyvonne
Hitchin, UK107 contributions
Oct 2022 • Couples
I hate to say it but I was disappointed by this. I’m such a book lover and though this was going to be amazing. It’s pretty much just like a museum… books piled up high everywhere in no real order, it’s a bit dirty and crowded. You queue to get in and there’s not much room to browse. You go out to the back where someone is managing the queue for the book steps, we got told to climb and not stop. So I got to look over the wall for about 5 seconds. You then leave a donation and leave… really not sure what the fuss is about this, I wouldn’t go out of your way to go here like we did, you’ll be disappointed.
Written October 5, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

larryjman
Montreal, Canada257 contributions
May 2022
This place felt more like a weird museum than a bookstore. Once you enter the store, you feel as if you're on a train and you can't get off and actually enjoy the thousands upon thousands of books that surround you. Instead, propelled by the staff asking you to move along and the people behind you expecting you to walk faster, you end up walking through the store in a sort of pre-planned path, only to end up at the exit without having looked at a single book.

It was by far the strangest experience I had in Venice. I didn't even feel like they wanted me to buy books. There is only 1 entrance and 1 exit, so once I realized I had been escorted to the exit, I would have had to walk around the block just to get into the store again.

I would avoid this place. There are many great bookstores in Venice that actually feel and act like bookstores. They're also WAY less crowded. Unfortunately this place seems to be a casualty of its own success. They'd rather be a glorified souvenir shop and museum than an actual bookstore.
Written May 3, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Bergbroeder F
not found17 contributions
Aug 2021
This quaint bookstore is in almost every visitors guide and therefore completely crowded. That’s really a pity because they really have nice stuff fir reasonable prices. The staff does their utmost to accommodate as many people as possible but maybe it’s in their interest if they start working with a waiting line and don’t let too many people in at once.
Written August 19, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

NickofSurrey
Surrey, UK669 contributions
Apr 2022 • Couples
We came here yesterday (albeit a bank holiday weekend) with brother in law and wife. Came here ourselves on first Venice vosit in Aug 2020, when took a leisurely walk about, and some good pictures on the stairs made of decaying books out at fhe back of the shop. There are now at least 3 times the numbers of people in Venice. They had a man asking you to walk around the outside area, and tutting if you wanted to take a picture on this staircase made of books. In addition, the bookshop was so full it was difficult to buy a book. I wouldn't bother.
Written April 25, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

HSTANLEY87
5 contributions
Oct 2022 • Couples
Quite busy, probably better to arrive early or later. We went there purely (shamelessly) for the Gram to pose on the staircase!
Queue to reach the back and because you are conscious of people waiting- it's all a bit rushed.
The bookshop itself is good, has a huge range of books.
It was OK but will not seek out again
Written October 17, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Rikitikitumba
San Francisco, CA6 contributions
Sep 2022
Please don't visit this bookstore. Twenty years ago I stumbled upon it by accident - a true hidden gem. I told people. They told people. And what a disaster that has become for the poor overwhelmed proprietors of this once lovely secluded treasure. It is so overrun with tourists now that you can't move once inside, and it feels like a death-by-stampede risk. I love this bookstore and wish them less customers for their sake and for the sake of the cats!
Written December 18, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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  • Sun - Sat 9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
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