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World’s biggest floating book fair docks in Manila

MANILA, Philippines — Books as cheap as three for P100 are among the reasons not to miss MV Doulos Hope, reportedly the world’s biggest floating library and book fair that docked near Eva Macapagal Cruise Terminal in Pier 15, Port Area, Manila and opened to the public last March 27. 

In time for Holy Week, the international book fair offers hundreds of books, mostly inspirational, spiritual and children’s titles. There are also limited-edition merchandise. The ship has its own café serving drinks and snacks.

The ship, which got its name from the Greek “doulos” (servant) to mean “servant of hope,” was built in Germany in 1991 and was first launched into service in May 2023. It is run by German non-profit organization GBA Ships and is manned by volunteers from all over the world, including Filipinos.

The ship will be in Manila until April 14. Prior reservation is required through a QR code. Besides the QR code reservation, a P50 entrance fee is collected for every adult. Children below 13 are free of charge. 

Apart from these, the Philippine Coast Guard charges P6 per adult and asks to sign a waiver for visitors with children.

Prior to Manila, the ship docked in San Fernando, La Union, where it claimed to have welcomed over 48,000 visitors in 16 days. It also anchored in Subic from February 13 to March 3.

Besides Doulos Hope, GBA Ships also sets to sail Logos Hope since 2009. Logos Hope used to be the world’s biggest floating library until Doulos Hope was built.