Boston Public Library, Boston

4.8
A book haven with more than 8.9 million books, Boston Public Library is the second-largest library in the United States after the Library of Congress. The library has 1.7 million rare manuscript holdings, including a handful of Shakespeare's quartos and a copy of the First Folio. Consider spending some time with a book in the McKim Building, soaking up the silence under a domed ceiling. Arrange your visit to Boston Public Library and discover more family-friendly attractions in Boston using our Boston road trip tool .
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Boston Public Library Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
3,194 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • Spent a couple of hours enjoying this luxury gem right in the middle of Boston proper. The architecture was fantastic and even the little cafe wonderful. The perfect afternoon break from a day of sigh...  more »
  • The library is divided into 2 parts-the old and the modern. Directly located in the old part of the reading room. You can wander around it and in General on other halls, see remarkable painting 19 century and modern equipped with computers and the Internet. Password administrator gives absolutely everyone (no passport was not a problem at all)-you can use 90 minutes. You can buy anything from the literature.
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  • So it's split up into 1) your typical library with the modern books on the walls, a kids section, a cafe, lots of seating area (though it does fill up quickly) 2) this sweet old-timey feel library wit...  more »
Google
  • Great place to spend some time with a book or just do your work. It is huge, have 2 good cafes inside to give you a continuous dose of caffeine (if required). Great collection of books, i traversed through the history and religion section and was amazed. Along with it there are some very nice paintings and murals. If you want to take a stroll you can cover the place easily in less than an hour.
  • BEAUTIFUL SPACE. I come here all of the time to study and read. There are numerous different areas to work in depending on what noise level/vibe you like. One of the most gorgeous public libraries I have been to. Highly recommend as a study spot or just to walk through if you are visiting town.
  • What a gift this library is! Modern meets traditional in this blend of quiet study area to entrepreneurial business busy-fest. The main entrance along Copley Square into the older section of the Library is chock full of history and meaning in every corner, every little edge. Even the stairs carry meaning in them, as you feel the indent of the marble steps meant to aid in your footsteps up and down them. The reference section is a long row of tables with old-school lamps along with a delicate sense of silence aiding study. (Be mindful of your personal belongings here because there are some "tourists" who can easily walk away with them.) The more modern area has an internet cafe with Boston Public Radio done live on certain days, making the media you see and hear almost have a social component. Really cool to see people speaking on the radio about the local issues impacting the city and the state. In that more modern renovated version of the library is a business center in the basement, perfect for resources for college-seeking people and entrepreneurs. The librarians at the business center there are extremely knowledgeable and provide information seeking resources as public service and public resource. I will say, again, that when you speak to the librarian at the business center, and do so with respect, you will begin to understand just how amazing people can be, and how we can work together to share knowledge for the common good!
  • This library is so beautiful and a must see on your visit to Boston. I’m pretty sure a lot of movies were probably filmed here. There is a lot of history just in this one library and the architecture is beautiful!
  • The Kirsten is a great business reference resource. Excellent staff. The security is at best a group of rude individuals with poor people skills. Most, if not all of the elevator inspection decals have expired. Still, despite the confluence of disturbed people; many of whom are homeless, the BPL remains 5-STAR...

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Where to stay in Boston

To stay close to where most of Boston's tourist action is, book a room at one of the many hotels located downtown, near the center of the city and state governments, businesses, and shopping. For a more affordable option, consider a budget-friendly boutique hotel or small bed and breakfast in one of the city's diverse residential neighborhoods. If you plan to stay longer and need a real home away from home, explore Boston's short-term rental options, which include private villas, waterfront lofts, and luxury apartments scattered across the city's historical districts.
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