If you’re walking along the river near South Bank’s cultural precinct, be sure to pop into the Queensland State Library (between the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art). If you thought libraries were just buildings full of books, you’ll be surprised at what the State Library has to offer.
The first thing you’ll notice is an almost complete lack of books. Don’t worry, there are plenty upstairs, but the Infozone on the ground floor is filled with computers which are free for public use. It’s also a free wifi (wireless internet access) zone popular with travellers and students.
Also on the ground floor is The Corner, a great area for children eight under to play and be creative. The Parlour on level one is filled with games that older children and adults will enjoy. These games are the old fashioned type that don’t involve a screen – chess, checkers, Scrabble, backgammon, a giant snakes and ladders board and many more.
Upstairs you’ll find exhibitions of artworks, photos, historical documents and objects. In the Philip Bacon Heritage Gallery we had a look at Panoramic Queensland. It was fascinating to see photographic panoramas of Brisbane taken in the 1800s and compare them to the city today. That exhibition is finished, but there are others to view.
On level 3 is the Tim Fairfax newspaper reading room where you can have a browse through Queensland, Australian and international newspapers. I love this spot, not only for its cosy design and handy reading lamps, but also for the views of the river and CBD. In fact, from every floor of the State Library, you’ll be rewarded with great views and peaceful spots to rest.
Downstairs is an interesting book shop and cafe if you need to re-fuel before continuing your walk.
Open: 10am – 5pm daily (until 8pm Mon – Thu)
The Corner open: 10am – 1pm weekdays
(until 4pm weekends, school and public holidays)