The Deventer Book Market is one of the biggest book markets in the entire Europe, and occurs for only a day in August 4th. This was my first time visiting the city, since it was quite far from where I live – around one and a half hour by train.
Fortunately the weather was wonderful, and the lovely city accepted all the visitors from around the country to specifically visit this Book Market. The stands span over the road next to the Ijssel river of Deventer, and even more.
It was definitely an overwhelming experience. There are over 6 km of stands selling all kinds of books: secondhand, antique, new, cookbooks, paperbacks, bookish accessories, CDs, old maps, all of them unique in their own way and definitely cheaper than regular. You will spend hours and hours scouring through the books if you actually go through all the stands one by one.
I arrived quite late at around noon, and after walking from the station for around 10 minutes you can already see the stands and people crowding around them. The index of all stands and what kind of books they sell is handily located in their mini-book that I’d recommend you buy if you, like me, are looking for something specific and want to know where you are going. A map is also available in the book. For me personally, I was looking for English books and some children’s books in Dutch to practice my Dutch, and there are loads of both these genres in these stands.
I was pleasantly surprised to find so many Dutch people excited and loving reading. Compared to Indonesia, there are much more people here who find reading as a hobby and especially in their vacations. Meanwhile Indonesians rarely ever read even from when they were young, and so do not carry that hobby until they grow up. I also so A LOT of children, excitedly carrying huge books filled with children’s books. Such a pleasure to observe.
In the end I went home with a heavy bag on my shoulders. I did not expect to buy this many books! I am not sure how much money I actually spent on these books because I used cash for them all – but approximately 40 euros were spent on these 12 books, which isn’t bad at all.
The next Deventer Book Market will be next year in the first Sunday of August. See you there!