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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The World’s Most Beautiful Libraries

As a child I whiled away many hours at the library. I loved being transported to other wondrous worlds through the pages of the books I read. Lately, I have been adding several titles to my own home library either by gift or purchase. At this moment I am excitedly waiting for the UPS man to deliver “Summers in France”.

Due to a hectic schedule this week I have decided that for the last Wayfaring Wednesday I would rerun a post from June 25th, 2008. It was originally read by a whopping 10 people and I think it deserves a second glance. So I bring you a few of the world's most beautiful libraries to place upon your bucket list.

Let’s begin with the Strahov Monastery Theological Library, in Prague, Czech Republic. I have not been to this library but it is not surprising to me that one of the loveliest libraries in the world is located here. Prague is hands down my favorite European city. 

The Melk Monastery Library in Melk, Austria.

Abbey Library in St. Gallen, Switzerland

Portugal is still on my list as a place I would dearly love to visit. It will include a trip to Biblioteca do Palacio e Convento de Mafra I on the Lisbon Coast.


I think that if I ever walked through the doors of the Library of the Benedictine Monastery in Admont, Austria I might never leave.


This is the Charles Rennie Mackintosh Library, located at Glasgow School of Art, Scotland. Mackintosh was a member of "The Four", a group of artists, designers and architects during the Arts and Crafts Movement. My cousin was an exchange student at the school for one semester and said that the photo does not do this library justice.


A ceiling that almost rivals Michaelangelo’s is located in the Wiblingen Monastary Library, Ulm, Germany.

For my Canadian friends, here’s the Library of Parliament, in Ottawa, Canada.

Of course in the United States we have our own lovely library of Congress in Washington D.C.

I hope you have enjoyed the “Wayfaring Wednesday” summer series.  Tomorrow I will begin full steam ahead to Fall in Love With a House I Hate. Several projects are already in the works. You will soon know what happened to the evil chair and if I have changed my mind about the mustard drapes. I invite you to share your home improvement projects and crafts next Wednesday.

Beginning September 1st
I can’t wait to see where you’ve been!


Gina said...

Great Post. I'm glad you brought it from the archives. By the way, liked the book by Ireland.

Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

Ohhhhhhhhhhhh I loveeeeeeeeeeee these libraries!! I don't know if I'd get any reading done though...I would be looking at all the details inside instead! LOL! :):):):):):):):):):):)

KaseyQ said...

Don't you find it interesting that the world's most beautiful architecture centers around churches and libraries? Makes me happy to know the two things that humankind believe deserve sacred space. :-)

jeanette from everton terrace said...

Oh I absolutely loved it and am going to forward onto my daughter who loves books more than almost anything. These are amazing spaces, just amazing. I haven't seen any of them!

Stitchfork said...

Those photos define library!
xo Cathy

Karena said...

Laura gorgeous libraries!! These are architectural works of art indeed!

I am looking forward to reading Kathryn's book!

Come and join my new fashion Giveaway from Fresh Produce!

Art by Karena

Cassy said...

I am truly amazed how huge and beautiful those libraries are.

Cassy from Best Way To Learn Guitar

Marianne said...

Wow!.I want them all! Squeezing them into my tiny home may be a problem though. Until now, my favorite library has been the one George Lucas has at his Skywalker Ranch (, but these are even more gooder.

Nancy said...

Wow Laura, These are beautiful beyond words!


Mom in High Heels said...

What beautiful places! I love libraries.

laxsupermom said...

Wonderful post! It wasn't until I was away at college that I realized that libraries could be more than just utilitarian buildings. These libraries are stunning! Love the craftsmanship. Thanks for sharing and for hosting this fun party each week.

Lorrie said...

Libraries are wonderful things - and these specimens are gorgeous besides. Thanks for sharing them with us.

Linda said...

and here if I even had 10 comments on any of my posts, that would be a MAJOR day for me, LOL> :D

At any rate, I'm glad you brought this front and center - it's lovely and I've never seen libraries like any of these. The only libraries I've frequented are small-town ones, but none-the-less wonderful as I share your love for books. For me - it's always REAL books. The kind you can touch and nothing electronic for me, thank you. I'm just not that kind of girl. ;)

The newest book you've ordered looks fascinating. You're reminding me that I need to finish my latest.

Love, Linda said...


Perhaps that where we met prior to blogging -- both us lost in some wonderful story as children. These are all beautiful libraries, but the Library of the Benedictine Monastery in Admont, Austria is elegant beyond compare. Who could read or study when such details distract you? It's a shame that many local libraries have taken on the trend of becoming coffee houses, community centers and making learning "fun" -- all too noisy to read or research.

Your Friend,

Mary Ellen said...


Wow! Would one really be able to concentrate on the book in hand when in such beautiful atmosphere! Amazingly beautiful beyond description! Thank you for sharing friend! Your posts are always so interesting!

bee blessed

Teresa said...

The Mafra Palace Library is a bit different right now... I'm wondering if that's a picture or a fabrication. Still - Convent, Basilic and Palace are indeed worth of a trip to my Country!

Sweet boy would love the information that the library hosts real bats so they can eat the moths that destroy the books. ;)

I'm with KaseyQ, these are trully magical and sacred spaces.

Wonderful post Laura! Once again.


cityfarmer said...

guess i'd better take reading more seriously ...

stunning places

Hollace said...

I'm glad you reposted since I wasn't around for the first time. I love books and I love collections of books and I really really love books collected in beautiful places.
Where do you find these things?

Bonnie said...

Amazing libraries! You do great research. Don't know how I missed this Wayfaring Wednesday! Life gets hectic. By the way, I LOVED Wayfaring Wednesday!!!

Gracious, I wish I could be a speed reader. I am still working on The Greater Journey by David McCullough. Summers in France sounds interesting.

Veronica said...

Well, I am so very happy you revived that post! Goodness but that wa beautiful. I want to be locked up in each one overnight so I can just wonder and stare.. and there won't even be enough time to look at books....maybe a week is a better idea!

Kathi said...

I love these photos. Thank you for sharing them. I agree with KaseyQ. My favorite is the one in Scotland.
Beautiful. Kathi

Deanna said...

Laura, these libraries are spectacular. I can only imagine visiting and spending some time in the actual place. Would be awesome to spend hours in one of these places and read.

Great post!

God bless,

Privet and Holly said...

Scrumptious post,
Laura!! Well worth
a second go, for
sure : ) I am also
a big library afficiado,
so this was a major
treat ~ thank you!
You had me at the one
in Prague, but they
were all fabulous.
xx Suzanne

Maple Lane said...

Beautiful pictures Laura. John has just recently become interested in books on tape and we enjoy our local library.

I have a new blog. Visit when you have the time. Mildred

The Polka Dot Closet said...

Oh Goodness! The Glasgow one is my favorite! This deserves a lot more than 10 visitors!


Carmie of the Single Nester said...

Oh my word! How absolutely stunning.