Bengalis are often known as bookworms and even in this era of ebooks, the love for a hard copy has not gone away from this generation’s heart. And for that, there are ample libraries in the city where Kolkatans can bask into the world of books. If you are a fan of the smell of old books and complete silence environment then these places are a must visit for you. Let us take a look at the Best libraries in Kolkata
• The National Library
This is the famous and the largest library in India with a massive collection of more than two million books. Located in Alipore’s Beldevre estate which used to be the residence of Lieutenant Governor of Bengal before our country attained Independence from British rule. The national library is basically an amalgamation of Calcutta Public library and Imperial Library.
Ranging from books, magazines, maps and rare manuscripts in more than 15 different languages of the country and several foreign languages, the national library is the go-to destination for every scholar, student,, tourist. Whether you want to browse through books or just soak in the fantastic palatial library house it should be missed.
One needs to avail a reader’s pass to enter the reading hall. Their website gives details regarding ways of availing it.
It is open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and 9.30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays and Saturdays.
• The Asiatic Society
Located in Park Street, the Asiatic society is a sought after destination for mainly rare manuscripts written in Sanskrit. Sir William Jones founded the society on 15th January of 1784. At present, it has a collection of more than 1 lakh books, journals, valuable paintings, maps, magazines. microfilms in major languages of the world and over 2000 rare photographs.
• The British Council
Although it is popular for its courses in English, The British Council has an impressive collection of books which draws quite a number of readers to it. It is located at 16 Camac Street. Many seminars and book reading sessions, discussions and competitions are held here too.
• Bengal Library Association
This library although founded in 1925 by Desh Bandhu Chittaranjan Das. Kaviguru Rabindra Nath Tagore used to preside in this prestigious library. Mostly books on the culture and heritage of Bengal is kept in the library.
A couple of courses on Library management and Library science are also run in this place.
It is located in C.I.T road, scheme -52
• Sri Aurobindo Bhavan Children’s library
This library is one of the largest library dedicated solely to Children. More than 35000 books in English, Hindi, and Bengali. it is located on the Shakespear Sarani and there are beautiful provisions for reading inside the library. A children’s park right in the premise makes this place more attractive for children and promises visiting the library to be fun for the child.