The top 20 most famous libraries around the globe in 2024

On the occasion of World Book Day on March 7, the online English learning platform Preply conducted a study to uncover the world's most popular libraries

For those who live and breathe novels, mysteries, essays, and anything in written form, finding a library while traveling around the world is almost a pilgrimage. These temples of culture and worship not only embody the beauty of a community but also reflect the habits and layered history of a society.

Who hasn’t marveled at the Reading Room of the British Museum in London or the Library of the Trinity College in Dublin? From historical archives to contemporary book spaces, the world is dotted with stunning libraries that have inspired us for centuries. But among them, which are the most famous and iconic?

On the occasion of World Book Day on March 7, the online English learning platform Preply conducted a study to uncover the world’s most popular libraries.

The study compared 50 well-known libraries based on various metrics, including Google review scores, Wikipedia page views, and social media post counts.

The 20 most famous libraries in the world in 2024

Here’s the list of the 20 most famous libraries:

  1. Library of Congress, Washington D.C., USA
  2. New York Public Library, USA
  3. Boston Public Library, Massachusetts, USA
  4. Bodleian Library, Oxford, UK
  5. Wiblingen Monastery Library, Ulm, Germany
  6. Beinecke Library at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA
  7. The Escorial Library, Madrid, Spain
  8. Vatican Library
  9. Austrian National Library, Vienna, Austria
  10. Seattle Central Library, Washington, USA
  11. Trinity College Library, Dublin, Ireland
  12. Tianjin Binhai Library, Tianjin, China
  13. George Peabody Library, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
  14. The Morgan Library & Museum, New York, USA
  15. State Library of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia
  16. Reading Room of the British Museum, London, UK
  17. Salt Lake City Public Library, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
  18. Vancouver Central Public Library, Canada
  19. Royal Portuguese Reading Room, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  20. UNAM Central Library, Coyoacán, Mexico

The Library of Congress in Washington D.C., the largest library in the world, tops the list with 3.9 million Wikipedia page views and the highest Google search volume (201,000), making it the most popular library globally.

Following closely are the New York Public Library and the Boston Public Library in the United States, with 1.2 million and 4.9 thousand Wikipedia views, respectively.

The most popular library in Europe is Oxford’s Bodleian Library, boasting one million Wikipedia views and the fourth highest overall search volume (40.5k); while the Vatican Library in Italy ranks second in Europe, with its collection of over 1.6 million books, 75,000 manuscripts, and 8,600 ancient books (incunabula).

The Austrian National Library in Vienna, Austria, takes the third spot in Europe, with 196,560 Wikipedia views and 8,433 total social posts. The most iconic library in Asia is the Tianjin Binhai Library in China.

So, are you ready? Backpack on, and let’s search for the most fascinating library!

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