Two weeks ago I went to Cambridge (UK) for a short weekend trip. Even though it wasn’t my first time there, the summery vibe of the city made me fall in love with it. Cambridge not only has beautiful architecture and picturesque scenery, but also interesting bookstores. In this post I want to share with you three lovely off-the-beaten-track bookstores I discovered there:
  • Oxfam – The charitable bookstore
  • David’s Bookshop – Trading books since 1896
  • Sarah Key & Phil Salin – The Haunted Bookshop
OMW+Cambridge readers high tea
Cambridge in a nutshell. Image from

§ Oxfam – The charitable bookstore

The first bookstore I want to tell you about is called Oxfam (which stands for Oxford Committee for Famine Relief), and it is part of a global organization that fights poverty. Oxfam sells donated books (both contemporary and vintage ones), and many other items (such as vinyls, collectables, and others). The bookstore itself is not big, and you can find many books for £2 – £5.

Readers High Tea Oxfam 2
Oxfam bookstore in Cambridge

What I liked most about this bookshop was the social cause they’re supporting (fighting poverty worldwide), and the wide range of actions they’re taking (e.g.: helping schools in India, building irrigation schemes, or empowering women in developing countries).

Readers High Tea Oxfam
Posters in the Oxfam bookstore in Cambridge
Address: 28 Sidney Street, Cambridge, UK

§ David’s Bookshop – Trading books since 1896

To begin with, this bookshop is huge! They sell a wide variety of books (antiquarian, second-hand & remaindered – reduced price books), as well as maps, prints & engravings in many subjects. It is a hidden gem of Cambridge, situated in a quiet and peaceful area very close to the city centre.

Readers High Tea David
There are many titles displayed outside David’s Bookshop

I could not resist the temptation and I bought myself a book from there: War and Peace by Tolstoy (from Wordsworth Editions). I plan to start reading it this summer … and hopefully, I will finish it before we start singing Christmas carols 🙂

Readers High Tea David 2
Yes, this bookshop is immense!
Address: 16 St.Edward’s Passage, Cambridge, UK; website

§ Sarah Key & Phil Salin – The Haunted Bookshop

This bookshop is also situated in a quiet passage in the city centre of Cambridge. However, this is a really tiny bookshop, mostly with vintage and rare books. They opened the Haunted Bookshop back in 1993, and even though they have two floors, only the ground floor was open when I went there.

Readers High Tea Haunted

In case you are also wondering why the bookstore is called “haunted”, there is an explanation. According to Emilie Ferris, who visited this bookshop in 2011, the name was inspired by a local legend of the White Lady, “a ghostly woman swathed all in white and smelling faintly of violets who is said to prowl the stairs“. It is said that the White Lady has been sighted at least twice … I’m glad I did not know that when visiting the bookshop!

Readers High Tea Haunted 2

Address: 9 St.Edward’s Passage, Cambridge, UK; website

Apart from the bookstores mentioned above, you can also find other mainstream ones (for example Waterstone’s and The Cambridge University Press). As Cambridge is a university city, there are plenty of places to gear up for a lazy afternoon spent reading on the bank of the River Cam.

Till next time … happy reading!


PS: Except for the cover and map of Cambridge,  all pictures were taken by me during the trip to Cambridge

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