Livraria Lello in Porto

This is one of the most famous bookstores in the world, and for good reason. JK Rowling has cited this humble book purveyor as one of her inspirations for her book series, Harry Potter. While many people come here the capture some of that magic for themselves, to inspire their imaginations and realize the magic in our own world, it is still a fully-functioning bookstore. Let’s take a look inside and see what treasures await!

Ticketing Info

Lavraria Lello - Two Second Street -

In order to set foot in the bookstore, you need a ticket. The ticket office is just around the corner from the shop. Just continue up the road to the left of the shop and around the corner to find it. You’ll purchase an entrance ticket and you will have to deposit all large bags (backpacks, purses) into a locker. It can get really tight in the shop so they don’t want people accidentally hitting other people with their bags.

Once you have your ticket, return to the shop and queue up until you are scanned in. Once inside, you can begin exploring to your heart’s content!

The Staircase

Grand Staircase Lello - Two Second Street -

The most famous part of the bookstore is probably the staircase in the center of the shop. It splits in two, intersects, and splits again, all while winding up to the second floor (which contains an awesome open view of the floor below. You’ll see people lined up and, one by one, approaching the middle landing to snap their fun pictures to commemorate their visit to the shop.

Upstairs and Downstairs: The Books

Stained Glass Roof - Two Second Street -

Upstairs contains many, many books for you to look at and select. There’s also a small display case with some rare and classic editions of books for you to look at, like a miniature museum. There is also a closed-off area past some glass-paned doors that gives off a nice medieval feel.

There are also many English-language books to be had on the ground level, as well as French, Spanish, and Portuguese. The shop also produces its own editions of Western classical literature, such as The Little Prince, Moby Dick, and The Great Gatsby.

The Harry Potter Room

There’s a room behind the stairs dedicated to the eponymous wizard and his enduring series of books. You can go inside, see a bit of film clips on a TV, and check out a variety of Harry Potter themed goods, including, of course, the entire book series.

This has to have been one of the most unique book stores I’ve ever been to. It’s got such charm, owed in no small part to its unique, well-preserved European architecture. I loved all the details in the rising columns, the banisters, and even the window peering outward. It really does feel like a building out of time, where magic does exists, and what makes it even more magical is that its dedicated to books. Wondrous, imaginative, magical books.


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