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The State Hall of the Austrian National Library (Österreichische Nationalbibliothek) was built in 1723 and is considered by many to be the most beautiful library hall in the world. Holding approximately 200,000 books, this library in the heart of Vienna is open for guests to explore. Admission is 7 Euros per person or 12,50 per family.
It was definitely a challenge bringing a curious and loud kiddo into the library hall, but he was as good as could be expected :) He knows to be quiet in libraries, so that was in our favor, but he also wanted to TOUCH everything. Luckily my husband knew how special this place was to me and basically held him the whole time so I could swing from the ladders like Belle from Beauty and the Beast. (Just kidding, that will get you kicked out.)
The gorgeous artwork on the ceiling (frescos) were painted by the court painter Daniel Gran and completed in 1730.
Most of the patrons exploring the library were a few decades older than us, but I think this incredible library is something that can be enjoyed by any age. Well, maybe if you have a wiggly or loud baby I would suggest taking turns with your partner so you both can enjoy it without glares from the security guards.
There are many illustrated tomes on display and it reminded me of the Book of Kells and other ancient texts on display at the Trinity College in Dublin. (The oldest books in this museum date back to the 4th century.) I wish I could have held them!
I also really loved these enormous globes. There are terrestrial and celestial globes from the 16th-18th centuries. Amazing.
Such an incredible experience and I hope that you can visit the Austrian National Library if you are ever in Vienna!
You can find my other posts on Vienna here:
What is your favorite part of visiting old libraries? Do you love it as much as I do?!
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