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"Beatnik Bookstore" Chinatown Tip by Rixie

Chinatown, San Francisco: 182 reviews and 336 photos

  The outside of City Lights Bookstore
by Rixie

The historic City Lights Bookstore in North Beach, San Francisco's Italian district, is over 50 years old and still operating. The first all-paperback bookstore in the United States, it was once the hangout for Beat-era poets and writers like Lawrence Ferlinghetti (a co-founder of the store), Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and Neal Cassady. It now takes up three floors and sells hardcover and paperback books on a variety of subjects.

Stop and buy a copy of Ginsberg's Howl, which was confiscated in the 1950s as obscene material, or browse through the latest cutting-edge literature.

Address: 261 Columbus Avenue
Directions: Look for the triangular building on Columbus between Broadway and Jack Kerouac Alley
Phone: 415-362-8193

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Dec 31, 2006
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