Visiting Washington, DC

The United States Capitol in Washington, DC is a symbol of the American people and their government, the meeting place of the nation’s legislature. The Capitol also houses an important collection of American art, and it is an architectural achievement in its own right.

The Capitol Visitor Center is open to visitors from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday – Saturday. All guided tours, programs, and activities are free of charge. However, passes are required for tours of the historic Capitol.

Tours of the U.S. Capitol need to be scheduled in advance through the Advance Reservation System. Advance reservations are recommended, but not required. Reservations are available 90 days in advance. Same-day passes are available, but may be limited.

Click here to plan your visit the U.S. Capitol or to book a Capitol tour.

The Library of Congress is the largest library in the world, with millions of books, recordings, photographs, newspapers, maps and manuscripts in its collections. The Library is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office.

The Library’s Thomas Jefferson building is open to Monday – Saturday from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. A one-hour walking tour of the building, highlighting its symbolic art and architecture and the work and history of the Library, is offered daily to pre-reserved groups Monday through Friday. Without prior reservations, public tours are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

For more information on tours, exhibitions, and other events, visit the Library of Congress’s website.

Steeped in history, rich with tradition, the United States Botanic Garden is a living plant museum that informs visitors about the importance, and often irreplaceable value, of plants to the well-being of humans and to earth’s fragile ecosystems. Established by the U.S. Congress in 1820, the U.S. Botanic Garden is one of the oldest botanic gardens in North America.

Admission to the U.S. Botanic Garden is free. The Conservatory and National Garden are open every day of the year from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM.

Free 45-minute, guided, highlight tours of the U.S. Botanic Garden Conservatory may be available on the day of your visit. Please check at the Visitor Information Desk upon your arrival. Group tours are available.

Visit the U.S. Botanic Garden’s website for more information.

The Supreme Court is the highest tribunal in the Nation for all cases and controversies arising under the Constitution or the laws of the United States. As the final arbiter of the law, the Court is charged with ensuring the American people the promise of equal justice under law and, thereby, also functions as guardian and interpreter of the Constitution.

The Court Building is open to the public Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. It is closed on weekends and all federal holidays. In addition to the Courtroom, portions of the first and ground floors of the building are open to the public. Visitors should be aware that the business of the Court may affect public access to the building or alter programming offered.

For more information on visiting the Court, including the Court’s daily calendar, visit its website.

The White House is both the home of the President of the United States and his family, and a museum of American history.

Public tour requests for the White House must be submitted through one’s Member of Congress. These self-guided tours are available from 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays (excluding federal holidays or unless otherwise noted). 

A limited number of spaces are available. Requests may be made no more than 3 months in advance and no less than 21 days in advance. All White House tours are free of charge. (Please note that White House tours may be subject to last minute cancellation.)

For more information on White House tours, please visit its website. If you are interested in visiting the White House, you may request a tour here.