In the heart of the Melbourne CBD is the State Library of Victoria where you could spend hours becoming lost in academic texts or just simply find a quiet place to read or study.
Within this historical building, you'll also find a range of free exhibitions as well as talks and events that appeal to a whole range of visitors. The usual library facilities are also available, such as internet (plus free wifi), a chess room, and information desk. As well as this, the library also hosts an extensive catalogue of books and electronic databases that are free to use as well as a family historian.
Although the library has a wealth of information to delve into, if you don't have a particular topic to read or study, then spending time just walking through the building can be just as exciting. You can pass through a number of permanent displays, as well as working your way around the exhibitions that are on the balcony areas overlooking the picturesque dome room. These are well worthy of pulling the phone out to take a pic... phone on silent though.
The State Library is on Swanston Street, opposite Melbourne Central and a number of trams all stop outside. Disability access is also of a good standard and if it's a sunny day, you'll find people relaxing on the grass outside. There's also a giant chess board and pieces that are set-up in front of the main entrance.
As well as the main features of the building, lockers are also available and there's a bookstore on the ground floor near the neighboring cafe called Mr Tulk, which could be a great place to finish off your visit with a bite to eat and relaxing cup of tea.
The library website also has extra resources to plan your visit such as a map of the library and catalogue access. Plus, when arriving they'll also be staff available to assist if wishing to join the library.