The State Hall, Vienna’s Beautiful Library

If you are a bit of a book nerd like me, then during your travels you will love to visit bookish places. If books are not your thing, you will still want to visit this library because it is simply beautiful! I am talking about the State Hall in the Austrian National Library.

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The State Hall is located in one of the wings of the Hofburg Palace in Vienna. It was first built in the 1700’s and now houses more than 200000 antique books. A good portion of the books were the private collection of Prince Eugene of Savoy.

The State Hall is 77 metres long, and the magnificent frescoes throughout were painted by Daniel Gran. It is the largest Baroque library in all of Europe.

As well as books, the State Hall is home to some antique globes. They are all quite large, with a diameter over one metre each.

During our visit, there was a large display about the history of the Freemasons. It was actually quite enlightening reading about this secretive group.

The displays change over time, so it is worth more than one visit to see what the latest is.

I absolutely loved my visit to the State Hall. I swear I walked around with my mouth hanging open, it is a booklover’s dream place.

If only I could get my hands on some of the old books and have a look, but unfortunately there was no touching.

Fair enough I suppose, since some of the books date back to the 1500s. (I would have been kind though. I never bend page corners and can’t possibly crack the spine of even the most common bestsellers!)

We received a small discount on the Vienna Library State Hall entry fee as we had the Vienna City Card

The State Hall is only one small part of the Austrian National Library. It is possible to also visit other collections and museums while you are here. For more information, including opening times and admission prices, please visit the website here.

Looking for more things to do in Vienna? Have a look at the other things we did here.

For more posts on Austria, try these
Summer in Saalbach-Hinterglemm
Travel Diaries – Salzburg
Travel Diaries – Bregenz

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28 thoughts on “The State Hall, Vienna’s Beautiful Library”

  1. Wow incredible photographs! I was travelling through Europe recently and my last stop was due to be Vienna but unfortunately I had to cut my trip short. When I go back, I’ll have to visit this place. I love old libraries and quirky bookstores!

  2. That has got to be the prettiest library I have ever seen! The architecture and detail is amazing! Loved the photos!

  3. What? I can’t believe I missed such a beauty! My bucket list of reasons to go back to Vienna is even larger than when I went the first time

  4. I visited the library a few months ago and I absolutely loved it! For me it resembles the one of Belle and the Beast the most of all libraries so far 😉

  5. This is one of my favorite libraries in the world. I used to come here as a child and just gawk at all the books. #personallibrarygoals

    Wish I would’ve been there to see that special display on Freemasons though! That looks fascinating!

    • It actually was Kaitlin! I don’t know much about the Freemasons – which I guess it their whole premise being a “secret” society – so it was really interesting to see how widespread it is!

  6. Thank you for sharing this about the library. I’m not sure I would have put it on my list to visit while in Vienna, but the decor and architecture is wonderful!

  7. WOw the library looks so beautiful! Gave me Beauty and the Beast vibes. Too bad I didn’t found out about this place when I was in Vienna 🙁

  8. Wow! What a fascinating place. Gorgeous sights whichever way you turn. Wish I wasn’t so conscious of the passage of the years. But you sharing such glimpses of beautiful places is really appreciated- thanks!

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