The National Library (founded in 1905) contains about 2.4 million books and over 300,000 manuscripts. Other important libraries in Bangkok include the Asian Institute of Technology (200,000 volumes), Chulalongkorn University (264,700), the University of Thammasat (231,000), Kasetsart University (313,000), and Sri Nakharinwirot University (299,500). The Library of the Department of Science Services maintains a special collection of 450,000 volumes. Outside Bangkok, sizable collections are maintained at the University of Chiang Mai (655,000) and Khon Kaen University (340,000). The Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific holds 150,000 volumes.
The National Museum in Bangkok (founded in 1926) has an extensive collection of Thai artifacts, including sculptures, textiles, ceramics, jewels, coins, weapons, and masks. Many of Bangkok's temples and palaces contain excellent examples of Thai frescoes and sculptures. The Temple of the Emerald Buddha has a famous mural of the Ramayana, the Sanskrit epic, and the Marble Temple contains a fine collection of bronze and stone Buddhas.
Bangkok also houses the Bhirasi Institute of Modern Art, the Hill Tribes Museum, the Science Museum, and the Sood Sanquichien Prehistoric Museum and Laboratory. There are dozens of other provincial museums throughout the country. The Hall of Opium Museum is set to open in 2003 near Chiang Rai.