This Charming Bookstore and Cafe in Gangtok also has Stay Options

This Charming Bookstore and Cafe in Gangtok also has Stay Options
A pastel setting at the cafe, Photo Credit: Piyali Sen

We would travel all the way to Gangtok just to spend time at Rachna Books!

Piyali Sen
November 17 , 2021
06 Min Read

Located in the Development Area in Gangtok, this is one of the best independent bookstores in India. They have won Publishing Next’s Bookstore of the Year award in 2015 -16 in the South East Asia category. Owner Raman Shresta carefully curates the collection – the shelf section on the Northeast books has excellent books on Sikkimese, Nepal and Tibetan history, culture, folklore and arts.

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Others that stand out are the sections on Southeast Asia, the collection of women writers, graphic novels and literary magazines (from the Himalayan region), the classics collection. A speaker at the Jaipur Literature Festival, Shresta is known for hosting interesting events with writers, illustrators, publishers from India and abroad. You may be able to catch a film screening or a poetry slam, music gigs or a shadow puppetry session.They also publish their own books - like Opening the Hidden Land: State Formation and Construction of Sikkimese History by Dr. Saul Mullard.


You will love browsing around the store. Apart from the treasure trove of books, Shresta has collected many interesting ephemera that are displayed across the store - old black-and-white photos of the hills, figurines, posters, and postcards. Of special interest are the retro cameras.    

An overview of a part of the cafe

The best part? They have a cosy cafe, Cafe Fiction, attached to the store which is located on the ground floor. You can make your purchase, and go down to Café Fiction to fuel up. The coffee here is locally sourced from small farm holdings, and roasted in-house. We loved the decor which included a retro pop-colour television set.

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The menu is not fixed but changes – so you  get anything from momos and steaming bowls of noodles, to pasta and pies, or sandwiches, freshly-baked cakes, brownies, waffles, and cheesecakes.

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They also sell some interesting local products. If you have a tea or coffee addict in your fam or friends circle, be sure to pick some packets up here. Rachna also makes handmade diaries, notepads, coasters, and stickers, perfect gifts for stationery addicts. Also look out for the quirky tees, mugs and diaries by local design brand, Sikkimis.   

Quirky items at the cafe

We absolutely did not want to come away from this place. So imagine our delight when we were told that Rachna Books also has a lovely BnB attached to it. And MG Road is just a 10-minute walk away. There is your perfect stay in Sikkim!

The Information

Where: Jeewan Theeng Marg, Development Area, Gangtok, Sikkim
Contact: Email - Phone: +91 3592 204 336
Timings: 9am to 7pm.

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