Library of Birmingham
Library of Birmingham
4.5
11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Monday
11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Tuesday
11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Wednesday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Suggested duration
More than 3 hours
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What is Travelers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travelers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travelers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.

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The area
Address
Neighborhood: Ladywood
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See what travelers are saying
  • Alopex
    Birmingham, United Kingdom46 contributions
    A great place with disappointing opening hours
    Lots of desk space, some great views, wifi, printing facilities, and of course reference and other works to read and use. However, the opening hours continue to disappoint, and the removal of the cafe is strange, meaning I have to go elsewhere to spend money. On these two points, the Library could take a few lessons from the excellent Hive library in Worcester.
    Visited November 2022
    Written December 27, 2022
  • Penelope
    41 contributions
    Great free exhibits and views of the city
    Definitely recommend visiting here! The library interior is very stylish and riding up the escalators seeing all the books is breathtaking. Be sure to stop at both of the terrace gardens for a good view or just a nice place to sit and relax. The higher level in particular has a nice view over a neighbouring park. On the 9th floor is the Shakespeare memorial room and an indoor viewing platform, which are both worth a visit. Be aware that the library can get very busy, and you might have to wait a while to take the lift up (or else climb a lot of stairs). The library also has some displays showing the history of Birmingham and a more artistic style exhibit on the ground floor. I'd recommend budgeting about 30-45min for the library. If you're coming here on a weekend trip, note that it's shut on Sundays.
    Visited February 2023
    Written February 6, 2023
  • Edele J
    Ireland9 contributions
    Well worth a visit
    Really well worth a visit, it is a lovely short walk over from the bullring. We took our 2 teenage daughters, they really enjoyed it too. Extra shout out and apprication to the staff - really helpful and friendly,
    Visited February 2023
    Written February 23, 2023
  • Rebecca Bolton
    Birmingham, United Kingdom32 contributions
    Love it here
    Come monthly to stock up on books, very easily get lost in the many levels for hours. The centrum of books is like something out of Beauty and The Beast, definitely worth a walk around. Looking forward to seeing the gardens in summer
    Visited February 2023
    Written March 1, 2023
  • Louise T
    1 contribution
    Signing up for library card
    Great place. The women at desk in reception was not helpful today, very matter of fact when I asked how to register card etc. Not impressed with her customer service, made me feel stupid! Should have taken her name.
    Visited March 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written March 4, 2023
  • Ken M
    6 contributions
    Brilliant venue, wonderful staff
    On entering we were met by a member of staff who was so enthusiastic. He enquired our purpose and helpfully suggested how we might get the best from our visit. Such a pleasant and helpful man who made our visit so good and worthwhile. When we spoke with him and some colleagues when leaving we were met with the same friendly enthusiasm. Would definitely recommend a visit to this gem if you are nearby.
    Visited March 2023
    Written March 20, 2023
  • Emma
    20 contributions
    Really impressive
    We were visiting Birmingham for the day and popped in to have a look around. Nice little gift shop inside for Birmingham stuff. The building itself is gorgeous and a credit to the city. The balcony has great views. I envy the city's residents having this on their doorstep!
    Visited March 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written March 30, 2023
  • Nic
    Birmingham, United Kingdom38 contributions
    Lovely place
    A brilliant library with many floors, the bottom floor is for children and teenagers and has a wide range of books, many competitions and events throughout the year and also has classes and meeting rooms. The library has a Shakespeare collection, a secret garden, and a viewing area. Security on site and many lifts, stairs and escalators. Old maps available to view of Birmingham and other areas and first edition books.
    Visited April 2023
    Written April 12, 2023
  • muggobuggo
    17 contributions
    unique library
    Never seen a library quite like this before! A very aesthetically pleasing interior. The secret garden is a perfect study spot for students in the summer, and for tourists wanting a nice view of the city.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written May 17, 2023
  • permia
    40,654 contributions
    Extraordinary
    Most gratifying that in this era of constant online connectivity such a marvellous facility was commissioned and then opened in 2013. It is an extraordinary build, from its dramatic and unique façade to an interior that extends over multi-floors. Taking the escalators to the top led to the relaxing roof garden. From here a further bonus was fine vistas across the cityscape.
    Visited June 2023
    Written July 27, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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4.5
3,820 reviews
Excellent
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Terrible
63

Cidrman2306
40 contributions
Jul 2021
Very impressive building, used to visit regularly before I had my own computer. Would have scored 5 but for an annoying experience this week. I needed to photocopy a couple of maps, the lifts would not stop at the upper floors, the escalators roped off, with just one staff member on each floor, apparently you now have to make an appointment. Presumably the absent staff are sitting at home on full pay.
They did allow me to go up, but they now don't accept cash for the copying, and I didn't have my debit card. The man on duty claimed the reason was (you guessed it) "because of Covid".I replied rubbish, there is ZERO evidence of Covid being transmitted by coins, the real reason is it's more convenient for the staff. Fortunately they were able to debit my library card. How come private sector concerns like shops, supermarkets, pubs and restaurants who have to compete for customers have no problem with cash? That's the public sector for you.
Written July 29, 2021
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.

natter
Birmingham, UK3 contributions
Feb 2019 • Family
I love this place ..full.of interesting books and history information it has an amazing viewing platform and secret roof top garden..which i love
Only down side is that at busy times the lifts are slow..sometimes easier to walk up the 9 flights or more of stairs .. sometimes the viewing platform and garden are closed for private functions or other reasons so good to check before going
Written January 5, 2020
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.

Ade
3 contributions
Dec 2019
Easily the biggest library I've ever seen. There's a section for anything you can possibly think of. Honestly, I'm not that big on reading. In fact, I prefer watching a film. However, if I lived or worked nearer to this, that'd change pretty fast. There's also some really nice seating areas dotted all over the building, a roof top garden and viewing platform, and an absolute maze of stairwells if you fancy ditching the lift.

I was pleasantly surprised.
Written February 26, 2020
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.

Ann C
Nashville, TN3,238 contributions
Dec 2021
Currently Covid numbers are higher than they have ever been. There are signs in the library saying you have to wear a mask. We appreciated this, we wore masks...but none of the staff wore masks, nor did the 2 security men. A man approached the security men and asked them if he had to wear a mask and the security men told him 'only if you want to'. How about lead by example? I understand that it is difficult to enforce, but no staff wore masks and their own signs were ignored completely. I find this difficult to accept.

The library itself is a lovely example of a modern library. The top floor houses a Shakespeare collection. It presented rather cluttered with children's notes all over the place, surely there is a more suitable place to present the children's items.

There are two outdoor garden areas that have lovely views of the city. One is a herb garden. The herb garden is in drastic need of being winterized, it was left in a mess.
Written December 19, 2021
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.

Willowbell
Stafford, UK280 contributions
Apr 2019
We went last year to have a nose of the interior, and it was fabulous from what we saw. We managed to find ourselves to the top of the building with an amazing view across of Birmingham. It was quite busy on the day we went, so didnt stop to browse the books etc, otherwise we would have. The new architecture is fab - inside and out, and once the rest of the building work done in Centenary Square is complete the building will no doubt stand out even more!
Written March 6, 2020
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.

clairelouise2014
Derby, UK102 contributions
Feb 2020
We visited on a chilly February day. Thoroughly enjoyed the space age style escalator rides Up the central part of the building. From the top escalator you can either take the lift of stairs up to the indoor and outdoor viewing areas. We had to take the stairs as the lifts seemed to be out of action but it was good exercise. Brilliant views from the indoor and outdoor viewing areas. Be sure to visit the Shakespeare room which is full of interesting information related to Shakespeare and his life/writings. The library have some of his first folios.
Written March 1, 2020
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.

Neil K
Liverpool, UK618,746 contributions
Sep 2020 • Friends
Library Of Birmingham is a superb looking modern building that dominates Centenary Square.
My twin brother Stephen and I were heading to The Post Office Vaults Pub and passed this extraordinary building, a relatively modern structure set over several floors , I never ventured inside but saw they had a cafe which I would have visited but my tram was about to leave ,I just loved the look of the library building, very photogenic made for some great photographic opportunities, its easy to locate on Centenary Square and hard to miss such is its size.
Well worth checking out if you're in the area.
Written September 13, 2020
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.

Penelope
41 contributions
Feb 2023
Definitely recommend visiting here! The library interior is very stylish and riding up the escalators seeing all the books is breathtaking. Be sure to stop at both of the terrace gardens for a good view or just a nice place to sit and relax. The higher level in particular has a nice view over a neighbouring park. On the 9th floor is the Shakespeare memorial room and an indoor viewing platform, which are both worth a visit. Be aware that the library can get very busy, and you might have to wait a while to take the lift up (or else climb a lot of stairs). The library also has some displays showing the history of Birmingham and a more artistic style exhibit on the ground floor. I'd recommend budgeting about 30-45min for the library. If you're coming here on a weekend trip, note that it's shut on Sundays.
Written February 6, 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.

Anita B
Bristol, UK32 contributions
Oct 2021
We ascended in the lift to a viewing platform called 'The Terrace' which allowed views over the city. We then went up further to almost the top of the library to visit 'The Shakespeare room' which was a panelled room containing original artefacts. We then walked around the corner to discover 'The Secret Garden' which offered spectacular views over the Birmingham skyline. Well worth a visit.
Written October 17, 2021
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.

Dan W
Tamworth, UK11 contributions
Jul 2022 • Family
The Library is a fantastic building. The views from its rooftop gardens and its observation point at the very top are something else. As you'd expect, there's a fantastic selection of books, too!

However, it's let down by the feature lift in the main atrium still being broken after aroud 5 years. It's quite grubby in places, especially the windows and minor things, such as Microsoft Word produced A4 notices sellotaped to walls etc. Do take the sheen off.

At present, there's nowhere to get anything g to eat or drink as the former cafe has been taken over by the Commonwealth Games. It looks like there is a facility for an outdoor coffee shop on the roof, but I've never seen this used.

Worse still, is the restricted opening hours. Only open from 11 on a Saturday and not open at all on a Sunday, which seems a waste of such a fantastic and iconic building.
Written August 14, 2022
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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