National Library of Latvia
National Library of Latvia
4
Monday
11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Tuesday
11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Wednesday
11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Thursday
11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Friday
11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
The National Library of Latvia (NLL) is a cultural, scientific and educational centre of national significance. The NNL's mission is to build and maintain a repository of national and world literature, the core of the 4 million items in the massive NLL collection comprises latvian and foreign publications about Latvia and Latvians. The NLL building - Gaismas pils - named after the Castle of Light in a legendary Latvian tale - was opened to the public in 2014. It was designed by world-renowned Latvian-born architect Gunnar Birkerts (USA). Learn more about the NLL in our digital tourguide gids.lnb.lv.
Duration: 1-2 hours
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  • 150rajibs
    Jacksonville, Florida323 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A Striking Temple of Knowledge and History
    Special collections in addition to the architectural design of the building. The library is located right across the river from Old Riga, walked over the stone bridge in less than 10 minutes. The information desk provided a sheet listing what was on that could be viewed. From the top two floors beautiful views available on all sides. There was an exhibition of Latvian folk attire, on the role of urban parks in Riga, and on a religious community associated with the Moravians. There was also an exhibition of art by Ukrainian groups and the library grounds hold large sculptures. The cafe is closed. There is a meditation room with a large bust of Gandhi. A small gift shop sells retro themed posters. Beautiful views of old Riga as you walk back over the bridge. Free.
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written 20 June 2023
  • Hugh
    South Ozone Park, New York1,270 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Glorious modern architectural monument
    From Riga’s old town this place looks like a giant Aztec pyramid across the Daugava. Hop on the tram and visit. It ja as impressive from inside as out.they very kindly charged my phone. There are interesting exhibits or you can just relax from roaming all over Riga.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 15 July 2023
  • Ben White
    Northampton, United Kingdom2,884 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    ‘The sheer volume of books that they have on display are extraordinary.’
    The library itself is in the opposite side of the river to the old town. But it’s a short 10 minute walk across the bridge or a similar time in a taxi. The library itself is huge, you can obtain a free visitor pass from the reception area, which give you access to the viewing platform, cafe area and all exhibitions. The sheer volume of books that they have on display are extraordinary and there’s plenty of seating and reading rooms for you to relax or read in peace. The viewing platform is quite spectacular and gives you a 360 view of the city. They have small black dots on the windows so any pictures you take will be obstructed. Overall, I would highly recommend as the architectural structure of the building is very impressive and the fact that it’s free is a massive bonus.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 3 August 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles533 reviews
Excellent
262
Very good
182
Average
62
Poor
12
Terrible
15

what666
511 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2023 • Family
Amazing huge building with some interesting exhibits inside. But, at the end of the day, it's just a library. Good views of Riga from the top floor.
Written 6 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ben White
Northampton, UK2,884 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2023 • Couples
The library itself is in the opposite side of the river to the old town. But it’s a short 10 minute walk across the bridge or a similar time in a taxi.
The library itself is huge, you can obtain a free visitor pass from the reception area, which give you access to the viewing platform, cafe area and all exhibitions.
The sheer volume of books that they have on display are extraordinary and there’s plenty of seating and reading rooms for you to relax or read in peace.
The viewing platform is quite spectacular and gives you a 360 view of the city. They have small black dots on the windows so any pictures you take will be obstructed.
Overall, I would highly recommend as the architectural structure of the building is very impressive and the fact that it’s free is a massive bonus.
Written 3 August 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Hugh
South Ozone Park, NY1,270 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2023 • Solo
From Riga’s old town this place looks like a giant Aztec pyramid across the Daugava. Hop on the tram and visit. It ja as impressive from inside as out.they very kindly charged my phone. There are interesting exhibits or you can just relax from roaming all over Riga.
Written 15 July 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

150rajibs
Jacksonville, FL323 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2023 • Friends
Special collections in addition to the architectural design of the building. The library is located right across the river from Old Riga, walked over the stone bridge in less than 10 minutes. The information desk provided a sheet listing what was on that could be viewed. From the top two floors beautiful views available on all sides. There was an exhibition of Latvian folk attire, on the role of urban parks in Riga, and on a religious community associated with the Moravians. There was also an exhibition of art by Ukrainian groups and the library grounds hold large sculptures. The cafe is closed. There is a meditation room with a large bust of Gandhi. A small gift shop sells retro themed posters. Beautiful views of old Riga as you walk back over the bridge. Free.
Written 20 June 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mikael F
Helsinki, Finland31,247 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2023
This modern library building is located next to Radisson Daugava Hotel. We saw it from our room window. So we decided to make a visit there.

On arrival in the big lobby, we noticed quite soon that you have to get a visitor pass to go to the upper floors. We didn't have time for that because we wanted to visit also the Railway Museum next door.

The lobby was quite stunning but we have seen many other libraries that dazzle even more with their beauty. This library left a little bit cold impression.
Written 3 April 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

AlexSwallow
Sheffield, UK1,668 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2023 • Couples
We've never seen a library like this before. We popped in to go to the viewing platform at the top- great views and totally free.

Some of the book displays in the main atrium are just incredible.

The only thing we didn't like was the incredibly rude staff member at the cloakroom- we saw her being rude to a whole group of people after speaking to us- so at least it was nothing personal!
Written 27 March 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

The Professional Traveller
Inverness, UK100 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2023
Really liked the history of books in Latvia exhibition including the interactive book. What a gorgeous building that just makes you want to snuggle up somewhere and read
Written 17 March 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Julia @Scrumptious Solent
Southampton, UK4,128 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2023 • Couples
Worth popping in to look at the building if you’re passing. It opens at 11am. We just went up to see the internal structure (as others have said you need a visitor pass to do more and to see the observation deck which only opens on Saturday).
Written 15 February 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Katy K
Buford, GA101 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2022
This library beckoned me from across the water. It offered warmth on a chilly September day. There are floors on floors of books and reading rooms and views of the Old Town. I had a wonderful time checking out this library!
Written 10 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kirsty F
4 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2022 • Friends
I’m sure it’s lovely but we didn’t get to see it. Got to the library for when it opened wanting to go to the observation deck, we were told by a tour guide we just had to go in get a visitor pass and then go up. Got in pressed a button for a ticket thinking that would be what we needed then got in a queue to speak to someone so we knew what we were doing as we didn’t want to go wrong. One person in front and when we then went to the desk speaking English the lady started shouting telling us we had to wait our turn, my friend tried to explain that we didn’t know what we were doing and that we didn’t want the tour but the lady just kept shouting and telling us to wait our turn. I then said we just need to know where the observation desk is, she shouted again to wait for our ticket number.
We then went to the other desk further down and the guy on it was very friendly and told us unfortunately the deck was closed that day.
Why couldn’t the first women have just said that
Really bad customer service
Written 26 October 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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