South and Central Asia Library

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The South- and Central Asia collection of Leiden University is the only one of its kind in the Netherlands and among the largest in Europe. Also known as Kern Collection, it holds a wide range of material on the regions of India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Tibet.

The collection is located at the central building of the in the open stacks. All titles kept here can be checked out on display of a valid library card unless indicated differently.  In the UB reading room on the first floor you find a freely accessible collection of reference books and dictionaries. Those books are for use in the reading room only.  Manuscripts, photographs, letters, maps as well as rare and precious books and prints, can be consulted in the Special Collection Reading Room. Please use the Catalogue to find the exact location of any particular title. If you have difficulties locating a title please ask for help at the information desk or contact the subject librarian.


Witte Singel 27
2311 BG Leiden
Phone: +31 (0)71 527 28 14

Postal address
PO Box 9501
2300 RA Leiden

Delivery address for parcel post
Maliebaan 30
2311 CC Leiden 


Regular opening hours
Monday to Friday 8h30 - 24h00
Saturday 09h30 - 17h00 uur
Sunday 13h00 - 22h00 uur
Please note:
Desk: Monday to Friday 08h30 - 19h00
Special Collections Reading Room 09h00 - 17h30
Modified opening hours:
Sunday 1 January, New Year's Day Closed
Sunday 8 April, Easter Sunday Closed
Monday 9 April, Easter Monday Closed
Monday 30 April, Queen's Day Closed
Thursday 17 May, Ascension Day Closed
Sunday 27 May, Whitsun Closed
Monday 28 May, Whitsun Closed
Monday 9 July to (inc) Sunday 19 August, summer recess:
- Monday to Friday Open: 08h30 - 18h00
- Saturday Open: 13h00 - 17h00
- Sunday Closed
- Special Collections Reading Room: Monday to Friday 09h00 - 17h00
Tuesday 2 October, day before Leiden's Relief Open: 08h30 - 18h00
Wednesday 3 October, Leiden's Relief Closed
Monday 24 December, Christmas Eve Open: 08h30 - 18h00
Tuesday 25 December, Christmas Closed
Wednesday 26 December, Boxing Day Closed
Monday 31 December, New Year's Eve Open: 08h30 - 18h00
Tuesday 1 January 2013, New Year's Day Closed

Last Modified: 22-06-2012