State Library Victoria
State Library Victoria
4.5
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
About
State Library Victoria is a must-visit Melbourne icon. Dating back to 1856, the State Library boasts incredible heritage architecture, free exhibitions, programs and events. Experience the majestic domed La Trobe Reading Room – one of the city’s most magnificent and photographed spaces. Enjoy free exhibitions showcasing some of the Library’s most precious treasures from its collection of more than five million items. And visit the recently opened redeveloped spaces including two new reading rooms and the Russell Street Welcome Zone – a vibrant lounge and meeting space. Free entry and wi-fi available. Relax before or after your visit at one of the two onsite cafes.
Duration: 1-2 hours
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The area
Address
Neighbourhood: Central Business District
Full of discovery and delight, Melbourne’s laneways tease the imagination long after you’ve put your weary feet up to rest. They weave through the heart of the city: cafes, bars, restaurants and boutiques, throbbing with conversation and espresso coffee. You never quite know what you’ll find around the next corner: cobblestone alleys, old beer barrel hoists and even vats of simmering organic soup. There is the air of Berlin in the street art, a touch of Paris in the umbrella-shaded cafes and, reminiscent of Rome, eateries tucked away in the most unlikely of places. Perhaps you might want a break and cross the Yarra River to Southbank - walk along the promenade, bask in the sun at a waterside bar and decide whether to go to the nearby casino or book a ticket at the Melbourne theatre company.
Reach out directly
See what travellers are saying
  • Jeffry b
    Essendon, Australia14,036 contributions
    Library is a prime cultural institution
    The State Library of Victoria is one of Melbourne's prime cultural institutions. Besides its extensive monograph (book) collection, it has many relics from Victoria's past, including Ned Kelly's armor. As a reference resource, the SLV has few equals. The gallery has a marvelous variety of paintings, many from the colonial era. The collection of rare books hosts many bibliographic treasures.
    Visited March 2023
    Written 5 March 2023
  • wombatdavid
    Hobart, Australia2,549 contributions
    Easy printing
    I needed to do some printing and the set up was great. I could email the documents directly to them, got a job number, then came in and entered the ID on a terminal. Paid 20 cents per sheet on credit card and the copies came out of the printer right there. All hassle free and contactless.
    Visited March 2023
    Written 19 March 2023
  • CoolBro
    21 contributions
    The Best Library
    This is one of the best tourist attractions in Melbourne, the State Library is so beautiful and is great to walk around, with plenty of space to complete work and chill out. This is a place I would definitely recommend going to. It’s also right next to Melbourne Central Station and heaps of trams, so it’s very easy to get to.
    Visited October 2022
    Travelled with friends
    Written 23 March 2023
  • Deanosaur89
    Edmonton, Canada2,145 contributions
    Highlight for my Wife
    My wife loves books and libraries and this one is worth checking out. There is a lot of history here and some very interesting design choices. The library has a great big central domed area that is well let and can be enjoyed from quite a few levels. One of the parts that I enjoyed was their "World of Books" exhibit around the domed area where they had many rare and historical books on display. The library is also home to a nice cafe and shop that are both fairly priced. The library is very close to Melbourne Central for metro or tram access. The whole area is very walkable and there are lots of attractions and good restaurants nearby that are worth checking out.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 11 July 2023
  • Johnstanno
    Singapore, Singapore375 contributions
    Most 'photogenic' library I have seen (so far)
    Usually the library will not be in our travel itinerary but we included the State Library as we heard from friends it is beautiful. We spent almost an hour here taking photos and visiting exhibitions. My suggestion: 1. Visit the library as soon as it opens. 2. Head up to the top floor for a top-down view, then slowly stroll your way down. It is absolutely worth it to visit!
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 1 August 2023
  • obizerokenobi
    Los Angeles, California171 contributions
    Official tour of the State Library of Victoria
    The official tour of the State Library of Victoria is worth doing if you have some free time. The tour is completely free, as it is offered as a public service. For context, the library itself is located in the heart of downtown Melbourne, and is accessible by about 1,000 light rail routes that stop directly in front of it. The tour provides an interesting mix of history, architecture & design, features, books, and art contained in the building. The architecture & design element covers different facets of the library including murals, staircases, windows, and desks – all of which have interesting stories behind them. The tour also covers the small-ish art museum located in one of the newer wings of the library complex. Interestingly, the library contains the homemade armor of the legendary outlaw Ned Kelly, which forms the centerpiece of a small exhibition about him. The tour also covers the archives & records wing of the library, which is the official repository of state records such as newspapers, magazines, and other official documents, and which is experiencing a surge of genealogical and family history interest. We definitely enjoyed this tour!
    Visited May 2023
    Written 12 August 2023
  • Daniel M
    1 contribution
    Experience at State Library
    I love this library. Its architecture and collection are amazing. However my visit to the library was ruined by the woman (with a face mask in the picture). I took a photo of the microfilm scanner and coincidentally she was at the back when I took it. She then stormed towards me and shouted at me that I purposely took her photo and urged me to delete the photo. I explained to her that I didn't take the photo of herself but the microfilm scanner instead. She wanted to see the photo I took and I showed it to her. She was so mad when saw the photo and told me to delete it immediately. She also kept threatening to report me to the library. I calmly explained that I didn't take the photo of herself but my intention was to take the photo of the microfilm scanner. After all, I could actually take a photo of anything or anyone as it's a public space, not a private space that I trespass. But she was so mad at me and rudely told me to delete the photo. I had no intention to share this photo but what the woman did to me at the library was humiliating. Even if I really did take the photo of the woman, she had no right to be mad at me as there is no general right to privacy in Australia. There is no law in Australia which prevents an image of a person being used without their permission. Photographers can legally photograph people in any public place or property they own or rent so long as they are not breaking any other laws like trespassing. She could have asked me politely to delete the photo I took but she chose to be rude and uncivilised. So I chose to share her photo here.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 4 October 2023
  • flo220
    New York City, New York331 contributions
    Beautiful building with interesting exhibits
    Beautiful building with interesting exhibits. Worth walking through it to see the reading room. (Feel free to sit down and read newspapers, books or magazines.) Centrally located in the CBD near many trams and trains.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 7 December 2023
  • Jeffry b
    Essendon, Australia14,036 contributions
    Hebrew manuscripts show marvelous diversity
    The SLV has a fascinating history of Jewish learning and culture "Luminous -- A Thousand Years of Hebrew Manuscripts." The scripts have marvelous diversity, from Middle East to Maimonides, a Jewish great intellectual and thinker from the Middle Ages. The display is sure to enthrall visitors. Entry is free.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 12 December 2023
  • Leannie
    Hanoi, Vietnam1,421 contributions
    Beautiful building
    It is a beautiful building inside and out and cool to wander around. The ground floor had a Jewish culture free exhibition, first floor museum had artwork to explore. The library itself was spacious and clearly well utilised which was great to see.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 19 December 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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4.5
2,988 reviews
Excellent
1,978
Very good
886
Average
103
Poor
14
Terrible
7

MacFarnsworth
Bend, OR429 contributions
Feb 2024 • Solo
Great place to go on a hot day in Melbourne and wonder through the galleries. Much more than what I expected. Highly recommended if you’re in the area. Like someone said, not a tourist venue for the average tourist, but great for intelligent explorers.
Written 21 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Andrew C
32 contributions
Feb 2024 • Couples
We went on a free tour of the library which gave an overview of the building and what you can do there. Lots of things to do so we plan to return to see specific things. The La Trobe reading room is spectacular.
Written 13 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

PUMBRIDGE
London, UK2,055 contributions
Feb 2024 • Couples
Such a surprising place; art gallery, exhibition space, reading room, cafe, bookshop. Quiet, noisy, bustling, reflective… it’s a glorious mix. Ned Kelly’s bullet-ridden armour is on show, but it’s the story of books using a wide selection of historic examples that proved the highlight on our visit on Feb 9 2024.
Written 8 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Trip Review
Australia17 contributions
Jan 2024 • Solo
0/1000 0 Stars. The Ned Kelly exhibit has been moved and has no Jerilderie Letter. This letter of around 56 pages and 8000 words. This explained Ned Kelly's actions, his thoughts and why he did certain things. Now that exhibit has been replaced by an Aboriginal exhibit. The Kelly exhibit is now only a fraction of what it was with no Jerilderie Letter. Really poor form by the state library the exhibit is not in a prominent place clearly the library has is not recommended!
Written 15 January 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Gael H
Sydney, Australia7 contributions
Jan 2024 • Family
Whatever millions were spent revamping this old stone Duchess of a building, it’s been recouped in spades. In every room, at all levels, crowds are involved with reading, looking, learning, playing. The main hall dome, filling the huge space with natural light, has everyone taking its photo. The children’s space is enchanting. 2 chess games at the entrance had parents teaching youngsters how to play. The current “Illuminated” exhibition until 4 April, shows written Hebrew books from over 1000 years ago, on loan from the British Library as well as local artifacts. It’s an amazing collection, with interesting sound track backing.
And everything is free.
Written 4 January 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Leannie
Hanoi, Vietnam1,421 contributions
Dec 2023 • Couples
It is a beautiful building inside and out and cool to wander around. The ground floor had a Jewish culture free exhibition, first floor museum had artwork to explore. The library itself was spacious and clearly well utilised which was great to see.
Written 19 December 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jeffry b
Essendon, Australia14,036 contributions
Dec 2023 • Friends
The SLV has a fascinating history of Jewish learning and culture "Luminous -- A Thousand Years of Hebrew Manuscripts." The scripts have marvelous diversity, from Middle East to Maimonides, a Jewish great intellectual and thinker from the Middle Ages. The display is sure to enthrall visitors. Entry is free.
Written 12 December 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

flo220
New York City, NY331 contributions
Oct 2023 • Couples
Beautiful building with interesting exhibits. Worth walking through it to see the reading room. (Feel free to sit down and read newspapers, books or magazines.) Centrally located in the CBD near many trams and trains.
Written 7 December 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Filipa F
United States66 contributions
Oct 2023 • Couples
Wonderful tour at the World Book Tour exhibition! I recommend it to all book enthusiasts. The guided tours are free and truly worth it.
Written 26 November 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Pajamas
47 contributions
Nov 2023 • Friends
Cant believe this is available for free. Breathtaking building from the inside and out with free exhibitions of different subjects. Worth a visit to all.
Written 22 November 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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