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City Lights Booksellers

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261 Columbus Ave, North Beach, San Francisco, CA 94133-4586
+1 415-362-8193
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$70.00*
and up
The Magic Bus Experience
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What Makes It Special
Famous bookstore founded and still owned by Beat Generation poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti.
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Open Now
Hours
Hours Today: 10:00 AM - 12:00 AM
LOCATION
261 Columbus Ave, North Beach, San Francisco, CA 94133-4586
Chinatown
CONTACT
Website
+1 415-362-8193
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Write a ReviewReviews (827)
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"book store"
in 72 reviews
"beat generation"
in 54 reviews
"book lovers"
in 42 reviews
"jack kerouac"
in 34 reviews
"love books"
in 28 reviews
"independent bookstore"
in 27 reviews
"great bookstore"
in 23 reviews
"beat poets"
in 23 reviews
"great selection of books"
in 15 reviews
"staff recommendations"
in 9 reviews
"book selection"
in 9 reviews
"non fiction"
in 8 reviews
"literary history"
in 7 reviews
"ferlinghetti"
in 67 reviews
"literature"
in 41 reviews
"browse"
in 65 reviews
"author"
in 44 reviews
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1 - 10 of 704 reviews

Reviewed 2 days ago

I was so excited to go to city lights! It is everything I imagined. A well-curated, 3 floor bookstore with a fascinating history. I highly reccomend buying a new book and heading next door to vesuvio cafe to read it.

Thank Erin V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 3 days ago

If you are into the Beat thing, this is a bucket list place to visit. But leaving that aside, it's an excellent old fashioned bookstore. I was looking for a particular book, and the clerk found its location on the computer and pointed me right...More

Thank Charles89145
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 3 days ago

Despite being a tourist attraction, the store is quiet and offers some seating so you can browse their outstanding inventory and choose a book to explore at greater length. It is still politically engaged, judging from the window display. And Lawrence Ferlinghetti is still around--...More

Thank Janet1937
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed 4 days ago

This bookstore is arguable the most famous in all of SF, first to publish the controversial HOWL by allen ginsberg, one can find a plethora of beatnik books from authors in the 60s among many other titles, magazines and whats popular today! OPEN LATE, you...More

Thank boomcaruso
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 5 days ago

One of the classic book stores, make sure you have at least an hour to spend looking, browsing and visiting w the staff.

Thank Joe G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 1 week ago

It is the place to relive the 60's ... You can tbrowse the Beat poetry for instance.. And the North Beach hood is just wonderful..

Thank clouseau_7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

What some view as a lack of service, I took as an invitation to browse and have a leisurely experience, not something one usually finds in independent bookstores. I felt as though I could ask for assistance if I wanted it but with its layout...More

Thank Stephanie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Started in 1953, by Peter Martin, this bookstore became the first to sell nothing but paperback books. I’m mostly a lover of math and science and our walking tour needed to keep moving, so I didn’t go in. But, I think if you are a...More

Thank Peter H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

This places draws book lovers and fans of Kerouac and Ginsburg and Lawrence Ferlinghetti who created this special place. You can come to by books or to just feel the presence of the founders of the Beat Generation. Truly a must see for all book...More

Thank 4onpark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

The place has a lot of history attached to it. As a bookshop has a good reasonable offer. You're basically on your own if you need help. I asked for a book about the history of San Francisco, the guy at the register gave me...More

Thank Sara G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nearby
Chinatown
As the oldest in North America, San Francisco's
Chinatown is an exotic experience. A unique
neighborhood decorated with colorful shops, historic
streetlights, hanging lanterns, and pagoda roofs
awaits behind the stone-carved dragon gates. Feast on
dim sum at the tea houses, or meet the locals who
gather at historic Portsmouth Square to play chess or
practice Tai Chi. Fish markets, produce stands,
...More
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Questions & Answers
kimbell325
May 9, 2018|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from Victora G | Reviewed this property |
I don’t think so, but just call to confirm.
0
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