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Harold Washington Library Center

Certificate of Excellence
Downtown / The Loop
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Address: 400 South State Street, Chicago, IL 60605
Phone Number: +1 312-747-4300
09:00 - 21:00
Open now
See all hours
Sun 13:00 - 17:00
Mon - Thu 09:00 - 21:00
Fri - Sat 09:00 - 17:00

The library houses approximately two million books and is a wonderful...

The library houses approximately two million books and is a wonderful example of Chicago's architecture.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 142 reviews
Visitor rating
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  • 42
    Very good
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Visit to the Harold Washington Library

Short visit to the Harold Washington Library Center. After visiting many libraries this year, I thought this library was more modern, but had similar features, such as murals... read more

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 3 weeks ago
Valparaiso, Indiana
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142 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 118: English reviews
Valparaiso, Indiana
Level Contributor
37 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Short visit to the Harold Washington Library Center. After visiting many libraries this year, I thought this library was more modern, but had similar features, such as murals, statues, plagues, and sayings written on the marble walls. Interestingly, there was displays like museums and archival buildings, such as displays about Harold Washington, and more. Like most massive libraries, I've noticed... More 

Thank evan78davis
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
202 reviews
66 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

I first entered this library (the central library for Chicago) some 20 years ago and have wanted to return for a long time. The years have been more than kind to it. It is as beautiful as it was decades ago and still filled with generous holdings. If you have questions, there are multiple staff to answer them and direct... More 

Thank Terry H
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
15 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 weeks ago

This is a gorgeous library with over $1 million in artwork throughout the building. I was especially moved by a memorial to men and women lost in Vietnam which will be on site through early 2017. If you have a tween/teen, they have a computer lab with 3D printing available on a first come basis for FREE. Be sure to... More 

Thank Phyllis92104
Level Contributor
12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 October 2016

I am a huge lover of libraries and this one didn't disappoint. Cruised around all the floors - it is a quiet, peaceful space to get things done surrounded by books. One of the floors has jigsaw puzzles and games to play. There are displays about Chicago, book clubs and staff picks. The Harry Potter architecture with huge green owls... More 

Thank Vicky K
Raleigh, North Carolina
Level Contributor
269 reviews
119 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 132 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 October 2016

The most beautiful library I've ever been to. Seriously. The architecture from a distance doesn't look like it would be a library and when you see the scale up close, it's amazing to think about the contents. My best friend and I visited in April, during a week day and had to scope out every darn inch of this place.... More 

Thank Kristen H
Winnipeg, Canada
Level Contributor
54 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 October 2016

I go to see the Harold Washington Library every time I visit Chicago. It is so well kept and the beautiful detail on the building awe me every time. I even look at it in pictures when not in Chicago because I find it so beautiful. The inside of the library is historic and well kept. A must see when... More 

Thank claudettepelland
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 October 2016

Whether you are local or visiting, please check out the building, it is amazing. From the outside to the inside it is a jewel.

Thank Lebleuchat
Level Contributor
73 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 October 2016 via mobile

Here on vaca we stopped in to tour what appeared to be a beautiful old building. Though it was beautiful it was not old. We skipped most of the building and headed up to the 9th floor . This was a great place to spend a half our touring about.

Thank Canada321
Franklin Ohio
Level Contributor
391 reviews
179 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 190 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 October 2016

stopped in to take a peak .. the floor was pretty and they had some interesting art. alot of it was very dark and a bit disturbing. my fav was the pieces that are from the vetran museum .. my fav was the piece with the thosands of dog tags.

Thank chattygirl7491
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
323 reviews
146 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 September 2016

World class library befitting of a city as great as Chicago. Spread over 9 or 10 floors, you can find everything here. I like visiting simply to read some of the newspapers on offer or to enjoy the special exhibitions right at the top. There is also a Winter Garden high up, which is a nice place to relax.

Thank Bonzostar

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Staying in Downtown / The Loop

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Downtown / The Loop
Often visitors' first stop in Chicago, The Loop is a good starting point to sample the city's energy and flavor. This central business district boasts Michelin-rated restaurants, upscale hotels, premier shopping, and enough arresting architecture to keep your camera busy for hours. You won’t find too many photo galleries of downtown Chicago without a shot of Millennium Park and Cloud Gate (“The Bean”), one of the most iconic landmarks in the city. A stunning skyline coupled with cultural attractions like the Art Institute of Chicago present a Downtown where work and play peacefully coexist.
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