Please note that ACT COVID-19 restrictions are still in effect. These restrictions limit the number of visitors allowed at any one time in each space within the Library. Some of the Library’s public spaces remain closed.

Opening hours

The National Library will return to regular opening hours from Monday 4 January 2021. The front doors to the Library will be open from 8.30am to 8pm Monday to Thursday and 9am to 5pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Reading rooms

From Monday 4 January 2021, the National Library's reading rooms will return to regular opening hours. The Main Reading Room capacity will increase to 270 people and additional seating will be provided for visitors.

Book displays for new and children’s books will be available to browse, however, high-use newspapers and display journals will not be returned at this stage. Displays will be rotated daily, with a quarantine period of 24 hours.

Collection material used in the reading rooms will continue to be quarantined for 24 hours prior to being reshelved.

Order collection items before your visit 

Most collection requests will be delivered according to our collection delivery times schedule. 

Standard access conditions and restrictions apply. Log-in to the National Library Catalogue to see the status of your requests and to check which reading room it will be available in prior to your visit.


Bookplate, located on the ground floor of the National Library, is currently open from 9am to 3pm daily. From Monday 11 January, hours will increase to 8.30am to 3.30pm.

Paperplate, located on Lower Ground 1, remains closed until further notice.

Library tours

Guided tours of the Treasures Gallery will recommence from Monday 4 January 2021. Tours will be limited to a maximum of 10 participants per tour. Bookings are required. Book now

Your CovidSafe visit 

During your visit, please follow all the precautions we have put in place to protect you, other visitors, and our staff, including physical distancing and personal hygiene.  Please check in using the Check in CBR app or at our Visitor Information desk.

Please stay home if you’re unwell - visitors exhibiting symptoms of illness may be asked to leave. 

Seating is available for up to 270 readers in the Main Reading Room, 40 readers in the Special Collections Reading Room (including the Petherick Reading Room). We will be welcoming 75 visitors in the Treasures Gallery and 75 visitors in the Exhibitions Gallery (no bookings are required).

  • If the visitor numbers in each area have reached maximum capacity you may be asked to delay your entry to a particular area. 

  • Visitors are asked to comply with health and hygiene measures including physical distancing and using the hand sanitiser provided. 

  • Visitors are encouraged to bring their own device and lockers will be available on Lower Ground Level 1. 

  • Printing, photocopying or scanning facilities are available. Printing credit can be added to your library card through cashless payments only.