Sunday, February 07, 2010

Transport Bookshop in Tokyo

Just come back from a trip to Nishiyama bookstore in Ikebukuro.

View Larger Map

If you are looking for a transport bookshop in Tokyo this is the place to go. It covers trains, planes, boats, trucks, buses and cars; plus some movies and war related books. Most of the books are secondhand and in English but there is a good collection of German and French language books and magazines on trains.

If Ian Allan is one of your favourite publishers, or the initials BNSF mean something to you, I don't think you will be disappointed.

The shop is well organised with almost all the books well ordered, though I was surprised to see a street atlas of a small town in England amongst all the railways books.

The one thing that is missing though, is books on Japanese railways. I found one slim booklet on the Light Rail systems of West Japan, and a couple of books of photos of Japanese trains with Japanese text, but that was it.

Only five minutes walk from Ikebukuro station this small shop is worth a visit if transport is your thing. But If you are looking for fiction or more general second handbooks then go just a couple of stops south on the Yamanote line to Blue Parrot books in Takadanobaba , or carry on further south to Ebisu to Good Day Books.

I'm sure there are more second hand English language bookshops in Tokyo, A search yields this list from American Airlines which includes a few I've not heard of. And if you'd rather shop online I discovered Infinity Books Japan , but it's not the same as browsing a dusty bookshelf looking for something unusual.

Anyone got any more bookshops to share?


Speak Japanese said...


I went to this book store all the time when I lived in Japan. I got all my Japanese study books there.

Lex said...

At the Yasukuni Dori in Jimbocho, Kanda, there are numerous (used) bookstores specialized in many different things. One has only Italian artbooks, another one American and Japanese music magazines from several decades, and there's much more.

Also Sanseido in the same area has a huge floor with foreign language books