Libraries around the world have long been revered as temples of human knowledge. They’ve been a part of monasteries, royal palaces, museums, universities and even hospitals. Some boast an incredibly romantic past while others, like the Library of Alexandria, were destroyed in war or purposely purged when rulers were replaced and governments fell. Many of these libraries have survived the trials of history and are home to some of the rarest collections that document cultures through the ages.
You don’t need to be a history buff or bibliophile to appreciate these incredible tributes to human knowledge. In fact, libraries around the world are also known for their incredible architecture and stunning beauty.
That might be hard to imagine in an age where the internet has stolen the library’s monopoly on knowledge, but it cannot replicate these cultural gathering places that have served as universities for all. Libraries are still alive and well across the world, and while you may not be able to check out books at each of these locations, you can still visit their incredible learning halls and discover their stories.