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“Great Rare Book Tour - With Ravens! And Tablets!”

Free Library of Philadelphia
Ranked #88 of 457 things to do in Philadelphia
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: This magnificent building modeled after the Place de Concorde in Paris has an excellent and eclectic collection. If its medieval manuscripts you want or early American hornbooks, youll find it here.
Reviewed 13 September 2013

Daily free tours available at 11 a.m. on the third floor. Learn about the history of books and writing, and the really neat rare book collections they've aquired. Not just (but maybe mostly) for nerds. See Charles Dickens' Raven, neat cuniform tablets, and whatever the current exhibit is - we saw the history of film. Cool!

1  Thank HardCorToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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50 - 54 of 79 reviews

Reviewed 3 September 2013

This is a truly grand building, with very fine collections - as others have noted. That's attraction enough for many. The Free Library also has a broad range of activities and programs, though. We recently wandered in and came upon a country french cooking demo - with delicious tastings. Entrance is easy, and the activities, displays, and exhibits change often and are varied, interactive, and certainly likely to engage those who otherwise might skip this site. I'd say: Don't miss it!

Thank Momowow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 August 2013

For those who are visiting the area of Philadelphia and want to see one of the icons of buildings, this is it. Even if you are not in the mood for reading, take in the interior structure. Beautiful marble stairways; 2 floors of diverse reading rooms, hallways filled with sculptures of Philly's finest authors; exhibits; rare book room; separate newspaper microfilm room.
Elevators are in working order. Security right there as you walk in and information desk to help you find your way. Little eatery on first floor. Restrooms are very clean.
All free-open daily. The one I visited and been there many times is located at 1901 Vine, across from Logan Circle. Within walking distance to the Franklin Institute and Academy of Natural Sciences. Public transportation-from center city, take 33 bus, direction 23rd & Vernango, get off 20th & Parkway. walk 1/2 block.

1  Thank Lulu S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 August 2013

The main library of Philadelphia is located in a great area, across from Logan Circle and near the Franklin Institute and Academery of Natural Sciences. It is a massive building that is free to tour. It is open daily--check the hours for each day. There are regular exhibits open to the public. It has a rare book room, a music room, large stately reading rooms with stacks of books on many topics--art, music, literature, history, etc. The library also has classes, talks, author events.

If in the area, this is a nice place to visit for awhile

Thank Pnemiller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2013

This was a neat place to go in and kill a few minutes. They had a story in on e of the hallways about an author from Philly. It was a pretty cool story. It was a big library and there seemed to be a lot of homeless people in there but they did not bother anyone.

Thank krisencalade
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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