Trip Planner:   Europe  /  UK  /  England  /  London  /  British Library

British Library, London

4.5
#15 of 252 in Museums in London
History Museum · Hidden Gem · Library
More than a massive repository for books, 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. Use our London trip planner to add British Library and other attractions to your London vacation plans.
Create an itinerary including British Library
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors

British Library reviews

Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
3,919 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Especially the gothic exhibition of 2014 really good about horror but was too hot to enjoy in temperature  more »
  • In my opinion, easily the best museum in London. The exhibits hold a wealth of treasures and really capture the imagination. It's also pleasant to not have the the overwhelming stench of colonialism.....  more »
Google
  • I love this place, so many rare and ancient books and the sheer sense of history combined with the modern feel that it now has since the refurbishment. Having said that I think it wasn't fully thought out, there aren't enough seats or tables and most are spread out so not the best use of space. Also would have been nice to see more facilities available for modern gadgets so, power supply points etc. All in all, it's a good place to visit of not do serious work.
  • I really needed a quiet place to sit down and get some work done. The British library is the perfect place to do that. There's also a cafe and restaurant here which makes everything more convenient. I love coming here.

Plan your trip to London

  • Get a personalized trip
    A complete day by day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it
    Refine your trip. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it
    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it
    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Popular things to do in London

See all ›
©
Art Museum
National Gallery
4.7
Duration: 2h 30 min
©
Observation Deck
Coca-Cola London Eye
3.9
Duration: 1h 30 min
©
Observation Deck
Tower Bridge
4.7
Duration: 1h 30 min
©
Distillery
The Ginstitute
4.8
Duration: 4 hours

Museums in London

See all ›
©
Natural History Museum
Natural History Museum
4.5
Duration: 3 hours
©
Art Museum
The British Museum
4.7
Duration: 2h 30 min
©
Art Museum
Victoria and Albert Museum
4.7
Duration: 3 hours
©
Art Museum
Saatchi Gallery
4.2
Duration: 1h 30 min

Kid-friendly things to do in London

See all ›
©
Church
St. Paul's Cathedral
4.5
Duration: 1 hour
©
Art Museum
Tate Modern
4.0
Duration: 2 hours
©
Park
St. James's Park
4.8
Duration: 1 hour
©
History Museum
London Transport Museum
4.0
Duration: 1h 30 min

Hidden gems in London

©
Beer Tasting / Tour
Beer Tastings & Tours
4.9
Duration: 3 hours
©
Food Tour
Food Tours
4.9
Duration: 3 hours
©
Military Museum
Imperial War Museums
4.4
Duration: 3 hours
©
Flea Market
Old Spitalfields Market
4.2
Duration: 2 hours

Side trips from London

©
World heritage site
Stonehenge Amesbury
4.0
Duration: 2 hours
©
Garden
The Royal Gardens at Highgrove Tetbury
4.7
Duration: 4 hours
©
Garden
Batsford Arboretum Moreton-in-Marsh
4.5
Duration: 4 hours

Nearby attractions in London

©
Government Building
Houses of Parliament
4.7
Duration: 1 hour
©
Park
Hyde Park
4.7
Duration: 2 hours
©
Landmark
Big Ben
4.2
Duration: 30 minutes
©
Military Museum
Churchill War Rooms
4.7
Duration: 2h 30 min
©
Cultural Tour
Old Bailey Insight & Legal London
4.8
Duration: 1h 30 min
©
City Tour
Fun London Tours
5.0
Duration: 1h 30 min
©
Scavenger Hunt
The Great Game
5.0
Duration: 3h 30 min