Trip Planner:   Europe  /  UK  /  England  /  London  /  Museums  /  The British Library
The British Library, London
(4.5/5 based on 2,400+ reviews on the web)
More than a massive repository for books, the The British Library also holds significant artifacts and documents, such as the Magna Carta, a Gutenberg Bible, and an original Beatles lyrics sheet. Each year, the world's largest library adds three million new items, requiring some 9.6 km (6.0 mi) of shelf space. You obviously won't see everything on your visit, so take a guided tour to view the most important collections and learn about the building's history and architecture. The Philatelic Exhibition holds some of the world's rarest and most significant stamps; check its schedule for temporary exhibits. If you want to learn more before your visit, download podcasts from the library's website. You can also listen to presentations from past events. See The British Library and all London has to offer by arranging your trip with our London vacation trip planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • One of the worlds greatest libraries. Original documents of the Magna Carter, Shakespeare, the Beatles and more on display. As much a museum as a Library. Probably not high on list of places to see in...  more »
  • I've always liked libraries, but this put it at another level. I stood there at awe of some of the stuff they had - Da Vinci's notebook, scratches from The Beatles, scrawls from famous composers. Love...  more »
  • Unbelievably great library. In the middle is a vast showcase of up to several floors in a whole filled with old books. In the middle of a lot of students. In the library are available free temporary exhibitions to visit.
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Google
  • An excellent place for your study for any type of research work. Membership is free. Easy access by public transport. Nice building well-designed. Very clean and tidy and staff were helpful. They have everything kept in order nicely organized. Journals can be found in their in-house search system. Very cool and calm environment, can spend whole day studying and searching for resources.
  • This library is literally the best repository for documents and books and anything a researcher might need for their work. Very few places compare to it. And plus, it's also the perfect place to study your own stuff. Everything from the Reader Registration to the delivery of delicate archival material, the place runs like a well-oiled machine! Definitely recommend to anyone who wishes to visit the place!
  • A hidden gem among a plethora of culturally significant museums and landmarks in London. It was amazing to get to view so many historically treasured documents featured in the Treasures of the British Library including one of only 4 copies in existence of the Magna Carta and several handwritten lyrics from the Beatles (including ones by John on the back of Julian's birthday card). A quick and easily accessible stop (lots of transit options nearby) for any history buff and it is FREE.
  • Best place to work in London town. Great library, great stuff, great facilities and great food. Just what i needed.
  • Wonderful place to visit, we went to see some of Leonardo Da Vinci works and it was pretty cool. The place is well thought out and a pleasure to visit, a real hustle and bustle of life.