The San Diego Central Library is the main branch of the San Diego Public Library System that serves the entire community with millions of books, computers, and multimedia offerings. This expansive library system is dedicated to the teaching and preservation of knowledge and even houses its own charter high school, one of the only libraries in the nation to do so.

This library is award-winning in its architecture, services, and collection. If you are a fan of literature or information sciences, it's a must-visit site on any holiday or visit to San Diego.

San Diego Central Library - one of the highlights of 10 Best Free Things to Do in San Diego (Read all about San Diego here)

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History and Highlights of the San Diego Central Library

The San Diego Central Library was born in 1954, replacing the original Carnegie Library. That location closed in 2013 to transfer its collection of 2.6-million items to a new building that encompasses 366,673 square feet of space and has become an iconic site in the city.

The Library has won awards for its architecture, including the National Award for Excellence in Structural Engineering and the Orchid Award from the San Diego Architectural Foundation. Its charter school opened in 2013 with an initial student body of 260 students and approximately doubled in size over the next two years.

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What to Know About the San Diego Central Library

The library hosts a full innovation lab, IDEA lab, and maker space where kids can get hands-on with their creativity. It's open to the public and offers underground parking in its on-site garage, with the first two hours free with validation. Public transit will also get you here via trolley or bus.

The library is accessible to people with disabilities. It offers free Wi-Fi to guests and offers a wide range of adult and continuing education classes. While some quiet study areas are on-site, visitors should be aware that modern libraries are not quiet places in general anymore but are community cultural hubs and can get quite vibrant at times.

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San Diego Central Library

Location: 330 Park Blvd., San Diego, CA 92101, USA

Open: Monday–Saturday from 9.30 am to 1 pm and 2 pm to 5.30 pm (closed on Sundays)

Phone: +1 619-236-5800