Have You Been To Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia?

Our National Library, the Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia, has been in my to-do list for a very long time. As a Malaysian, I have not stepped into the building, ever since its opening at Jalan Tun Razak more than 20 years ago. Since I am so free .. If not now, then when?

But, their location at Jalan Tun Razak really puts me off going there. Not only that, who will want to accompany me? “Hey, about we check out the National Library this weekend?” Friends must have thought that I have gone off my head.

An iconic landmark
An iconic landmark
Our National Library
Our National Library

So, I do what I have gotta do. I set out to go by myself, and live to tell the tale.

If I were to craft a 30 sec elevator pitch, this is what I have gotta say:

“Why can’t they make things simple? Our National Library bears a resemblance to KLIA2: confusing like hell. On a positive note, they have multi-lingual books, and some of the books do appeal to me. So, that’s a plus.”

Getting here

You need a car, unfortunately. Or, take LRT to Ampang Park (KJ9) station or Titiwangsa (SP3) station, and 5-15minutes taxi ride from there.

Parking

There are more parking bays for staff, than for visitors. Due to sheer confusion, I managed to enjoy free parking, by parking at Menara PNM. Level 3-5 at Menara PNM are for visitors, but parking is limited. If you park at Wisma Sejarah (where the lending services for adults are housed), then parking is chargeable.

RM 5 flat rate parking
RM 5 flat rate parking at Wisma Sejarah
Free parking bay in front of Anjung Bestari
Free parking bay in front of Anjung Bestari

Update 10 Aug 2016: RM 5 flat rate parking at Wisma Sejarah and some free parking bays in front and at the side of Anjung Bestari.

Building

image
3 buildings

This KLIA2-feel maze has 3 buildings altogether:

  • Anjung Bestari
  • Wisma Sejarah
  • Menara PNM

For normal public, you just need to know the whereabout of Children Library and Cafeteria, at Anjung Bestari’s Ground Floor, Member’s Registration Counter at Anjung Bestari Level 1, Lending Services For Adult at Wisma Sejarah Level 3 & 4, but access through Level 3 and free parking at Menara PNM, Level 3-5.

Wisma Sejarah
Wisma Sejarah

As a first-timer, I ended up walking all over the place. Walking out from Menara PNM, I found my way to the Adult Lending Section at Wisma Sejarah. After browsing some books, I was told that I had to get my registration done at Member’s Registration Counter, at Anjung Bestari. From there, again, I walked back to Wisma Sejarah. Good exercise, indeed.

Membership

Anjung Bestari Level 1
Anjung Bestari Level 1
Registration counter
Registration counter

Free for Malaysians (not sure about foreigners), just need to register online at computer terminals provided at Member’s Registration Counter at Anjung Bestari Level 1. No membership card issued.

Date due slip
Date due slip, just like back at school

Each membership is allowed to borrow six books, up to a period of 4 weeks. You will need to show your MyKad or MyKid to borrow and return books. Overdue books will incur fines of 10 cents per day.

Books

A little reminder that it is a Malaysia library
A little reminder that it is a Malaysia library
Marketing books
Marketing books
Plenty of non-fiction books too
Plenty of non-fiction books too
Some shelves at Level 4 a bit messy
Some shelves at Level 4 a bit messy
My kind of novels
My kind of novels

They do not have my favorite authors’ books, but there are plenty options to choose, both fiction and non-fiction. They even have language, marketing, management, cooking, etc books.

Chinese novels
Chinese novels
Tamil novels
Tamil novels

Mainly English and BM books, but there are also Chinese and Tamil books.

Children library
Children’s library
Kinda bare to me
Kinda bare to me
Kids playing games
Kids playing games

Children library seems a bit bare to me, and most kids were playing games on computers.

Tips

  • Free parking at Menara PRM, level 3-5, and in front and at the side of Anjung Bestari
  • There are some staff parking bays in front of the cafeteria’s outdoor seating. Public is allowed to park on weekends
  • If you are lost, the security guards are more friendly than the staff. More security guards greeted me with a smile, than staff
  • Wifi is available, no password is required
  • People commented that it’s cold, but no, it wasn’t cold at all for me
  • The cafeteria’s food looks unappetizing, eat before you come to the library
  • Children below 12 years old is not allowed at Adults Lending floor
  • Bags are allowed inside the library
  • Deserted during weekdays; perfect for some quiet time
Isn't this a library?
Isn’t this a library?

By the way, why are there private companies, such as EMSR Steel Sdn Bhd, Zeffree Azmi Advocates and Solicitors, etc located inside the National Library?

Update 10 Aug 2016

Today I went back to return two novels, and also to investigate a bit on the baffling location of the Adult Lending Library. It was a shock to discover that Wisma Sejarah is a building by itself; the Adult Lending Library is NOT part and parcel of the National Library! That explains why the parking is chargeable! How can that be possible … the National Library is such a huge space!

Lifted this from Persatuan Sejarah Malaysia (PSM)’s website:

Wisma Sejarah ialah milik Persatuan Sejarah Malaysia [PSM], iaitu satu badan bukan kerajaan [NGO]. Wisma Sejarah dibangunkan sebagai dua (2) blok individu. ANJUNG [Blok A] setinggi 5 tingkat dan MENARA [Blok B] setinggi 10 tingkat. Anjung [Blok A] menempatkan Ibupejabat PSM yang terletak di aras 3, dewan dan bilik seminar di aras 2 serta perpustakaan di aras mezanin (M). Manakala di MENARA [Blok B] yang setinggi 10 tingkat ditawarkan untuk penyewaan.

It says that Wisma Sejarah belongs to Persatuan Sejarah Malaysia, and it’s a non-governmental organization (NGO). So, does this means that two floors were rented out to our National Library, to house the Adult Lending Library?

Update 15 Nov 2016

Driving all the way to the Library, only to be told that “system down – no lending, only returning service today” … #$%^

Update March 2017

If you child’s membership is with the Children section, but now is already “qualified” for adult lending section – no new membership is required. All you need to do is to show your child’s My Kad for borrowing and lending at adult lending station.

PNM machine – still not functioning as of August 2017
U-Pustaka Book Drop machine

As of now, all books have to be returned at counter. There are 2 types of machine in the vicinity of Anjung Bestari and Wisma Sejarah: U-Pustaka and PNM (Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia) machines. U-Pustaka machine is NOT applicable for PNM’s books. Do not repeat my mistake – the PNM books I dropped into the U-Pustaka machine is still “lost” somewhere, and I might need to pay a fine for no reason. The PNM machine is still not functioning, since my first visit.

 

 

Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia
232, Jalan Tun Razak, 50572 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: +603 2687 1700

Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia – Adult Lending Section
Level 3-4, Menara Wisma Sejarah,
230, Jalan Tun Razak

Opening hours: 10:00am to 7:00pm, Tue-Sat, 10:00am to 6:00pm Sun (Closed every Mondays and Public Holidays)

 

 

Website: http://www.pnm.gov.my
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PerpustakaanNegaraMalaysia

 

Notyourtypicaltourist

Travel opens up a whole new world, which is cliche but true. I am a strong advocate for independent and solo travel. I was born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia but now live in Bangkok, Thailand, resulted from a chance encounter in 2009 with my why-are-you-Thai bf. I am now split between two countries. One country for my bf, another for the family, for the occasional weekend together.

6 thoughts on “Have You Been To Perpustakaan Negara Malaysia?

  • April 6, 2017 at 12:35 am
    Permalink

    Thanks! Haven’t been there for a few years myself, so this is very useful 🙂

    Reply
    • April 6, 2017 at 9:16 am
      Permalink

      Hi AR, Glad that you find this article useful 🙂

      Reply
  • August 31, 2017 at 7:10 pm
    Permalink

    May i asked the question if our as visitors not malaysian can we allow to visit the library just only for site visit?

    Reply
    • August 31, 2017 at 11:24 pm
      Permalink

      Hi Nurahimah,

      I am sure that all visitors are welcomed to the National Library.

      Reply
  • September 1, 2017 at 7:27 pm
    Permalink

    Helpful! Thanks for this. Do they have power outlets for plugging in laptops and stuff?

    Reply
    • September 2, 2017 at 4:23 pm
      Permalink

      Hi JK,

      No, no power outlets that I saw at the Adult Lending section. But at the Children Lending section, I used once illegally .. but these power outlets are meant for staff usage

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *