May 17, 2017

LIST: Libraries in Manila That You Can Visit

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  • In this generation where people prefer something easy, convenient and accessible, whether it’d be searching for newly opened restaurants, must-visit beaches in the Philippines and even finding answers to your homework online, the internet and various research apps are mostly the best solutions. But how sure are we that the information and references are accurate enough? As for some bookworms and bibliophiles here in the Philippines, nothing beats the feeling of reading and smelling a hard bound book  and appreciate the history embracing each library.

    If you’re in quest for a quiet place where you need things to be done, check out these libraries on our list you can visit located in the heart of Manila and nearby cities:

    The National Library of the Philippines

    The National Library of the Philippines/IMAGE Franz Verzon via Wikimedia Commons

    The National Library of the Philippines  or better known as the “Pambansang Aklatan ng Pilipinas” is the home of some notable works of country’s national hero Dr. Jose Rizal’s Noli Me Tangere, El Filibusterismo and Mi Ultimo Adios. It is by far is the most accessible and go-to public library for students studying near in Intramuros in Manila but mostly used by students working on their thesis and dissertations.

    Location: T.M. Kalaw St., Ermita, Manila


    Note: Free of charge, just present valid ID

    Asian Development Bank Library

    ADB Library/IMAGE

       The Asian Development Bank library located along ADB Avenue in Mandaluyong focuses on the organization’s priority thematic sectors which include education, energy, environment, finance and trade, gender and social development, governance, health, regional and integration, transport, urban, and water. Plus, this museum are partners with well-established libraries across the region to promote its use among diverse group of users.

    Location: 6 ADB Avenue, Mandaluyong City, Manila


    Note: The library is open to external researchers but you need to secure a written request or contact them through this link.

    The Filipinas Heritage Library

    The Filipinas Heritage Library is located at the 6th floor of Ayala Museum/IMAGE Ayala Foundation

    The Filipinas Heritage Library, which celebrated its 20th year last August 2016, continues to be the one-stop research center in the country that houses over 13,000 contemporary volumes on Philippine history, art, language, religion and the social sciences, and over 2,000 rare titles, rare books on microfiche, maps, and an extensive library of slides and photographs.

    Location: 6/F Ayala Museum, Makati Ave. cor. Dela Rosa St., Makati City


    Note: To go here, you need to book an appointment through this link

    Operating Hours: 9:00 am to 6:00 pm (Tuesday to Saturday)

    Jorge B. Vargas Museum and Filipiniana Research Center

    VARGAS Museum is located in UP Diliman/IMAGE

    Situated in the University of the Philippines Diliman campus, Jorge B. Vargas Museum and Filipina Research Center is the center for Philippines art and culture. Its main thrusts are research, exhibition and education. Known for its unique distinction of being the only art repository in the country embracing the entire range of Philippine artistic creativity from the 1880s to the 1960s.  This museum is also the home of some art collections of Juan Luna, Felix Resurrection Hidalgo, Victorio Edades, and Fernando Amorsolo.

    Location: Roxas Avenue, University of the Philippines Diliman, Quezon City


    Note: They charge P20 for UP students, faculty, alumni and employees; P30 for general public

    Operating Hours: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm (Tuesday to Saturday); Closed on Sunday and Monday

    Presidential Museum and Library

    Presidential Museum and Library/IMAGE

    If you want a more historic feel, see rare gallery and photos, and further knowledge on people who shaped the nation throughout the history, visit the Presidential Museum and Library located inside Malacanang Palace, the official residence of the President of the Republic of the Philippines. Some of the books in the library are owned by the late President Ferdinand Marcos, Sr. It’s highly recommended to plan months ahead before visiting. 

    Location: 2/F Kalayaan Hall, Malacañang, J.P. Laurel Street, San Miguel, Manila


    Note: For museum and library tour, click this link

    Operating Hours: 9:00 am to 12:00 nn; 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm (Monday to Friday)

    Lopez Museum and Library

    Lopez Museum is located inside Benpres Building/IMAGE

    From the name itself, this library was established by Eugenio Lopez Sr., who was dubbed as the Father of Philippine Television, to provide scholars and students access to his personal collection of rare Filipiniana books, manuscripts, maps, archaeological artifacts and fine art. Some of the works that can be found on these museum are the works of the first internationally acclaimed duo of Filipino painters, Juan N. Luna (1857-1899) and Felix P. Resurreccion Hidalgo (1855-1913), plus priceless personal effects of Dr. José Rizal (1861-1896)

    Location: G/F Benpres Bldg., Exchange Road, Pasig City, Manila


    Note: They charge P100 for adults, and P80 for students and senior citizens

    Operating Hours: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm (Monday to Saturday); Closed on Sunday

    Ortigas Foundation Inc. Library

    Ortigas Foundation Library/IMAGE OFL Facebook page

    If you live nearby urban areas like in Ortigas and want visit a library then look no further. This museum is located at 2nd floor of the Ortigas Building in Pasig City, and is also a Philippine study center with a collection of nearly 21,000 books, serials, images, and documents relating to Philippine history with some dating back to the 17th century. Entrance is free of charge and library hours are from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm Mondays to Saturdays.

    Location: 2/F Ortigas Building, Ortigas cor. Meralco Avenues, Ortigas Center, Pasig City


    Note: For inquiries, click this link

    Sources: Filipinas Heritage Library, Asian Development Bank Library, Asian Development Bank Library, Lopez Museum and Library, The Urban Roamer Wikipedia, Philippine Online Chronicles

    Image Source:

    The National Library of the Philippines photo from Franz Verzon

    Asian Development Bank Library from

    Filipinas Heritage Library from

    Jorge Vargas Museum and Filipiniana Research Center from

    Presidential Museum and Library photo from

    Lopez Museum and Library from

    Ortigas Foundation Inc. library photo from Ortigas Foundation Library’s Facebook page

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