Updated: Oct 12, 2021
On Wednesday, October 6th we had the possibility to have a guided tour in the Nation's Library of the Precidency (Cumhurbaşkanlığı Millet Kütüphanesi also referred to as the Presidential Library).
The building on the presidential complex was inaugurated by President Erdoğan in 2020 and reveals already from the outside a very impressive sight. The visitors were told beforehand to wear comfortable shoes – a wise advise as the library measures an impressive 120’000 square metres.
We were quite a big group of 24 people, therefore we were splitted into two groups, each one with one or two English speaking guides. On the tour we could see among other things the child’s section (5 to 10 years), the youth section and the researcher section with its beautiful sunlit reading room. A highlight was the current temporary exhibition about Ibrahim Müteferrika, the father of book printing in the Ottoman Empire. In the exhibition, open till the end of this year, one can see precious, old scripts and writings from the Ottoman times which were collected from several places within the Turkish and Arab speaking regions. Another highlight was definitely the so called “Library of the Nations”, a huge hall where most of the foreign missions have their own section with their books translated into Turkish.
The library is every day open for visitors, you don’t need an appointment. So in case you have missed the event (or would like to come again and spend more time), don’t miss the chance to take a glimpse of this impressive building and its more than 4 million books!