Markets for books and collectables in Paris

Pick up used tomes, fancy stamps and more from these touristic hotspots

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Come to these markets on a weekend and you'll find tourists and Parisians alike sizing up exotic stamps, unrolling an original poster for some obscure 1960s German arthouse film, or leaving through pages yellowed by time and stained with tea. Some come to emulate famous former patrons - Hemingway, Fitzgerald; others, to find an item that even the internet can't provide, or simply to browse. A quietly captivating way to spend an afternoon.

Bouquinistes

Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Man Ray and the rest of the ‘lost generation’ of the 1920s browsed here, and the atmospheric lines of used booksellers with their painted wooden stalls along the banks of the Seine are an unmissable stop-off – even if only for a photo opportunity – for every visitor to Paris.There are 217 licensed bouquinistes, totalling around 300,000 volumes and 3km of quayside browsing. Some of them sell more postcards and Eiffel Tower keyrings these days, but with time and patience you can still find affordable first editions, intriguing second hand finds and other curios...

  1. Le long des quais de Seine, Quai de Montebello et quai Saint-Michel, 5e
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Marché aux timbres

Every Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, free your inner geek at the Marché aux Timbres (stamp market) on the Champs Elysées (corner of avenues Gabriel and Marigny). Aside from millions of stamps from across the world, you’ll find old postcards, some with hand written messages, others simply yellowed by the passing of time.  Stamp collecting is serious business in France, so expect lots of professionals scouring the stalls, as well as parents with children looking for something special to treasure. The market also opens on most bank holidays...

  1. Rond-point des Champs-Elysées, 8e
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