Growing up, I read constantly. I spent hours in libraries and bookstores, and read anywhere and everywhere I had the chance. However, once I started college I found it difficult to make time for reading. Between all my classes, homework, and extracurriculars, it’s hard to find time to relax. Despite that, during the past few months of midterm season, I’ve been trying to make more time to do the relaxing things I love. Berkeley is a great city for readers, and I want to share some of my favorite places and events.
- Moe’s Books: This bookstore on Telegraph is one of my favorite bookstores I’ve ever been to. Not only is it right next to campus, but all the shelves in the store are a mixture of used and new books. The four stories of the bookstore cover every subject imaginable, from fiction to cooking to science. It’s a great place to spend a couple hours wandering and exploring.
- Friends of the Berkeley Public Library: This bookstore is located right across the street from campus, and all profits go to help fund programs and resources at the Berkeley Public Library. This is one of my favorite places, because all the books are used and by purchasing them, you’re able to give them a second life. All the books are sold at a really low price, which makes it easy for college students to afford.
- Pegasus Books: The outside of this bookstore is a bright and cheerful blue color, and the inside of the store is just as inviting. The Pegasus Books chain operates only in Berkeley and Oakland, and it’s a great local business to go explore. They have everything from new releases, to books about local places, to used books of all kinds.
- The Bay Area Book Festival: This is an event I haven’t attended before, but am planning on attending at the end of the semester. Every year, the Bay Area Book Festival brings authors, speakers, and thousands of readers to celebrate books of all kinds. The outdoor fair is free, and features exhibits, food, and musical performances. College students can attend the indoor scheduling for only $5 for the entire weekend!
- The UC Berkeley Library System: This list would be incomplete if I didn’t mention the amazing library system we have here at UC Berkeley. As a student, you have access to the millions of books we have in our library system, anytime you want. If you don’t want to meander through the library yourself, you can even request the books you want through the online database Oskicat and just pick them up at the front desk!
School can be tough, and it’s so important to make time every day to relax and rewind. If reading helps you relax, definitely take some time to explore the places on this list. You may just discover a Berkeley gem you never knew about!