Word on the Water
Updated: Sep 7
Not just a play on words, London’s Word on the Water is an actual bookstore housed on a boat- a Dutch barge to be exact. Step on board and you will discover that Word on the Water is not just any bookshop and their boat is not just any barge. No large stuffy bookcases here. Titles that span the literary gambit from European classics to Malcolm X are scattered throughout almost as someone would have at home. There is even a cute children’s section.
The interior ambiance has a definite comfy, literary and very bohemian feel. I especially loved the 1950’s Olivetti typewriter on the shelf as well as the old school stove that keeps both owners and customers warm. I purchased two books of poetry that I still hold dear - one by Emerson and one by Rumi.
Buy a book, stay for an impromptu jazz session or poetry reading. And when I say impromptu, I really mean impromptu. On the evening of my visit, while a jazz player was performing a colleague unexpectedly arrived and joined in. Later on another. I asked one of the bookstore owners who the third guy was and he said, “Don’t know. He just kinda showed up.” The music was fantastic!
Put Word on the Water on your “must visit”list the next time you are in London. And make sure to throw a couple balls to Star the company’s four legged mascot - he really loves playing catch with just about anyone.
Location - Regent’s Canal Towpath, Kings Cross Station, London