Sometimes the best way to understand a town is to visit its best bookstores. These are communal places that offer ideas in a tangible form and a venue for sharing a love of literature. They add substance to shopping districts and reflect the literary passions and history of their communities, making each unique and worth exploring even while on a tight vacation schedule. Whether the books are new or used, rarities or classics, it's hard to beat the rush of discovering a good book at a great price at these best places for bibliophiles across the country.
Note: While some bookstores are closed for indoor shopping or are operating at limited capacity due to the pandemic, most are offering curbside pickup or, in some cases, delivery options. Be sure to call ahead to confirm.