State Library of Victoria

328 Swanston St, Melbourne

Melbourne can claim many of Australia’s oldest attractions; the oldest public art gallery, oldest building, and the oldest arcade.

We also have the oldest public library in Australia, and indeed one of the first libraries in the world.

The State Library of Victoria is opposite Melbourne Central – and is filled with historical artifacts.

It’s mammoth in size; home to over 2,000,000 books and 350,000 photographs spread across several floors.

The main attraction is the Latrobe Reading Room. Opened in 1913, this octagonal study room is six stories high and topped with a glass dome.

It can fit 320 readers at its desk, and at the time of completion was the tallest structure of its kind.

You’re welcome to wander around (keeping quiet of course) and even ascend the surrounding stairs for a beautiful view overlooking the study desks.