Otters, Coles, Book Smyth and Pack Rat Annie’s…
…and these are just the main bookstores in Nelson. Through the Looking Glass is known for its great selection of children’s books, Gaia Rising for metaphysical books, and, of course, Nelson has a thriving public library.
If curling up with a good book by the fire in the winter, or sprawling out on a beach blanket with a good read in the summer is more your style than hiking mountains, traversing through backcountry, etc, well… Nelson and the Kootenay Lake area welcomes you with open arms.
Festivals and Used Book Stores Set the Scene
We harbour a love of literature and storytelling in the Kootenay Lake region. We offer two annual events celebrating story: The Elephant Mountain Literary Festival and The Kootenay Storytelling Festival. Writers love living here, and where there’s writers, you know there’s readers. One local writer, Anne DeGrace, started a used bookstore years ago. It’s still going strong, with her namesake: Pack Rat Annie’s offers books of all kinds, and is packed in that way that makes you feel like curling up in the corner of the store with a book or two. It’s attached to the Vienna Café, so feel free to bring your book to the café and read all afternoon if you want. It’s definitely got that kind of vibe.
Bookstores in Nelson: Enough for Every Taste
If you’d rather your used books in a more heritage setting, Book Smythe offers that vibe on Baker Street. With comfy chairs scattered throughout and a space downstairs for poetry readings, Book Smyth is a place to curl up with a good book, talk politics with the owner, or attend a poetry reading…or all three. Right next door to the Dominion Café, you can grab a book, add a cuppa, and curl up for the afternoon. If you prefer your books new, Otters and Coles are both available. Otters has been a local independent book store on Baker Street for over ten years, taking over from its previous owners in 2004. Otters is right across the street from the Kootenay Coop Bakery, which offers a bright sunny space to enjoy your latest book. Coles, located in the Chako Mika Mall, has a staff that is known for their love of books. And, of course, there’s a café in the mall: the Java Hut, right down the way from Coles.
Kaslo Bookstore and Cafe Culture
When you’re in Kaslo, the quaint 1896 Books and Silver is waiting for you to explore. Right across the street from the SS Moyie, this lovely shop will enthral you. You’re sure to find something to read. And, of course, a sweet café is never far away from any bookstore in the Kootenay Lake area. The Nelson and District Public Library offers a very comfortable place to settle in with a good book, as well as being a great place to go for wifi. You’ll find the staff friendly, welcoming, and very knowledgable.
Take a Breather and Curl Up With Us
So if you’ve had enough of the adventure and running around outdoors, we understand. Slow down, grab a good book, settle in at one of our lovely cafés, and read to your heart’s content.
Come enjoy a few days in the area touring book shops and reading on the beach, in the mountains or your room with a view.