While it’s certainly no secret that Bavaria is home to some of the most magical fairytale castles in the world, it appears this wonderful state of ours has been hiding another enchanting secret: jawdropping libraries!
… and yes, some of them are in Munich!
Here are a few stunning libraries in Munich and Bavaria that you need to visit ASAP:
1. Die Juristische Bibliothek, Munich
Hidden away in the Neues Rathaus is one of the most stunning libraries in the world, and one of Munich’s best kept secrets. The Juristische Bibliothek is a beautiful art nouveau library decked out with wrought-iron spiral staircases and multiple stories of colourful books popping from the shelves. The wildest part? It’s totally open to the public, but not really for sightseeing. If you want to come read or explore the collections, standard Munich library rules apply (leaving your stuff in lockers outside), but if you want to come for photos and sightseeing, you must do so through a guided tour of the Rathaus.
2. Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Munich
Another beautiful Munich gem that’s open to the public is the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, one of the most important research libraries in the state and Europe in general. This library on Leopolodstrasse is one you’ve probably passed by (it’s the one guarded by the statues of Thucydides, Homer, Aristotle and Hippocrates) but yes, visitors are free to step in and take a look. The refurbished grand staircase is definitely worth a quick peek!
3. Museum der Stadt Füssen, Füssen
Nearby the fairytale castes of Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau, you’ll find the Museum der Stadt Füssen, housed in the Benedictine Monastery of St. Mang. This museum has a lot of collections on offer to visitors, including the archives of the German Lute Society (which is delightfully a thing that exists). We’re most interested however in the monastery’s gorgeous Baroque Library, which can be accessed through museum admission and looks like this:
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Want to see more of this library? Here’s a full-on music video that was filmed there. There’s a lot of book caressing. Enjoy:
4. Benediktinerabtei Metten Bibliothek
Ornate is the best way to describe the stunning Baroque library at the Metten Monastery (about 1.5 hours Northeast from Munich by car). With impressive frescoes on the ceiling, bright natural light and intricate carvings/details all throughout, this gem is definitely one of the most beautiful libraries in Bavaria, maybe even the world 😉 NOTE: You can access the library only through a guided tour.
For more info, you can check out the monastery’s official website here.
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At Waldsassen Abbey (in Northeast Bavaria, near the Czech border), you’ll find the stunning Stiftsbibliothek Waldsassen, a beautiful library with extravagant wooden carvings, colourful ceiling paintings and elegant, ahh-worthy stucco work.
Visits here are again only permitted with a guided tour. Click here for more details.
6. Fürstliche Abtei Amorbach
After a fresh new renovation in 2015, the intricate roccoco church at the Amorbach Abbey (1hr west of Würzburg) is looking better than ever, but its special library, built in 1792, might still steal the show. Elegant white shelves stacked with beautiful collections of old books… I mean, how can you not want to visit this?
For more info on guided tours here, visit their official website.
Okay, so it’s not in Munich or Bavaria, but we couldn’t make a list of gorgeous libraries without including Stuttgart’s Stadtbibliothek… I mean look at it! And it’s only a short train ride away so why not?