If the interior of a second-hand and antiquarian bookshop should feel like a wander through a novel by Borges or Eco, then Armchair is a winner, shelves groaning under the weight of pre-owned literature. Small, cramped, untidy, appealing – and with a droll Twitter feed – it offers everything you want from such an establishment. Its stock covers everything from architecture to travel and there’s fiction too.
When UNESCO launched its City of Literature scheme in 2004, Edinburgh was first to receive the accolade. Its main railway station, Waverley, is named for a series of 19th century novels by Sir Walter Scott while working authors resident here include Kate Atkinson, Ian Rankin and Alexander McCall Smith (not to mention its part in the genesis of a certain boy wizard). Edinburgh has literature nailed – but does it have any decent bookshops?
After you've made your purchase, why not settle down to read in one of Edinburgh's best coffee shops or, weather permitting, one of the city's plethora of parks?