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Central Library @ Joan Λ Irwin Jacobs Common

Central Library Tours

Want to See the New Central Library?

As interest in the new Central Library has grown, so has the interest in seeing the new facility. There are now multiple ways to experience all that this space has to offer.


Docent Guided Tours

General Tours

  • Take an hour tour and see the iconic architecture and diversity of programs and services available in this amazing new community treasure. Highlights include three art installations, the Dr. Seuss-themed Sanford Children's Library, the beach-themed Pauline Foster Family Teen Center, the Helen Price Reading Room, the Society for American Baseball Research Center, the 3-D printing lab, the Art Gallery, Special Collections, and the Qualcomm Dome Terrace.

Art Tours

  • Explore the 150 individual pieces installed by the Commission for Arts and Culture, the largest display ever in the history of the Commission. Learn about the four permanent art installations commissioned for the Library by the Commission. Enjoy a special look into the Hervey Family Rare Books Room, and a tour of the Art Gallery's On View collection.

Architecture Tours

  • Learn about Rob Wellington Quigley's vision for the San Diego Central Library. Highlights include the Garden Courtyard, Lobby, Helen Price Reading Room, Sculpture Garden, Dome, and Special Event Spaces. Learn about the materials used and interior design used to make the San Diego Central Library an iconic civic building.

All available dates can be viewed from the library events calendar. Tours are not scheduled during Padres home games. Each tour can accommodate up to 50 people, and groups will be divided between three different tour docents. For tours in Spanish or at times other than those listed above, please email librarytours@sandiego.gov with at least two week's notice.


Tours for Educators and Group Visits

Register students for either the Children's Tour or Teen Tour, please read all group visit details before registering.

Children's Tours

  • The Children's Tour is appropriate for kids ages 5-11, visiting the library as a group. Groups may include: school classes, day cares, youth groups, clubs, scouting organizations, and more. This one-hour tour, led by specially trained Docents, highlights spaces and resources in the library that specifically interest children. The tour is followed by a 15-minute orientation to library programs and services, led by a Youth Services Librarian.

Teen Tours

  • The Teen Tour is designed for ages 12 to 18 visiting the library in a group. Groups could include classes, recreation groups, clubs, summer programs and more. The suggested ratio of teens to chaperones is 25 to 1. The Teen Tour highlights spaces and programs in the library that specifically interest teen students, and docents are trained to highlight information in the respective areas that meet the interest of youth. The tour concludes in the Teen Center where students can enjoy the space and technology available for teens.


Self-Guided and Virtual Tours

Self-Guided Tours Virtual Tours

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