Our nation’s capital is beautiful throughout the year and is a popular vacation spot for people around the world. With the museums, parks, and monuments, almost all of which are free, a trip to Washington, D.C. is an enriching historical and cultural experience. If you and your family are planning a trip to Washington, D.C please review the sections below for more information about visiting the Capitol, White House, and other popular attractions. You can contact my Washington, D.C. office at (202) 225-7772 or email Meredith Smiley for more information and to set up tours of the White House and Capitol.
Please Note: I am very sorry to inform you that all White House tours have been canceled effective Saturday, March 9, 2013 until further notice. Since the resuming date of all White House tours is unclear, my office will still be able to submit requests. I sincerely apologize for this inconvenience and am disappointed that the White House has made this decision. Regardless of the White House’s decision, we want to continue to do our best to accommodate you while you are here in Washington, D.C. My office will continue our public tour of the United States Capitol and would love to offer it to anyone who is now unable to visit the White House due to the president’s verdict. Please check back on my website for any updates regarding this issue.
Tours My Office Can Request on Your Behalf
White House Tour
Public tours of the White House are available by appointment Tuesday through Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 12 noon. Due to the high demand, however, tours must be booked one month to six months in advance, and it is recommended that all tour groups make their request three to six months in advance as White House tours are allotted on a first come basis.
All persons are subject to a background check conducted by the U.S. Secret Service. Before my office can submit a tour request to the White House on your behalf, you must provide my office with the following information for each person who will taking the tour: first name, last name, middle name (if no middle names please put NMN), date of birth, social security number (16 and above only), gender (M or F), present city and state (city and state must match ID), and citizenship (Y or N) if not US citizen their country of citizenship.
Please note: To request a White House Tour the security information must be submitted by entering the information into this document and then e-mailed as an attachment to Meredith Smiley in my Washington, D.C. office. All tours are subject to approval by the White House and may be denied or canceled due to special events. You can contact my Washington, D.C. office at (202) 225-7772 for more information.
If you are not able to secure a tour of the White House, there is the White House Visitors Center that is open from 7:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., 7 days a week. It is located at the intersection of 15th and E Streets NW.
United States Capitol
The United States Capitol in Washington, D.C., is among the most architecturally impressive and symbolically important buildings in the world. It has housed the meeting chambers of the Senate and the House of Representatives for almost two centuries. Begun in 1793, the Capitol has been built, burnt, rebuilt, extended, and restored. Today, it stands as a monument not only to its builders, but also to the American people and their government.
U.S. Capitol Tours also require advanced notice. To request a tour of the Capitol, please send an e-mail to Meredith Smiley in my D.C. office, and include the information below.
The Congressional Special Services Office provides information about tours for the disabled by telephone at (202) 224-4048 (voice) or (202) 224-4049 (TDD). Additional accessibility information is available.
- Number of people in the group
- Requested Date for the tour (Monday-Saturday)
- Requested Time (8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.)
- Home Address
- Contact Number
Public tours of the Pentagon are available by appointment with a minimum of thirty days advanced notice. Group tours of five or more individuals from an educational institution (K-12, college, or home school) may book tours through the Pentagon directly by calling (703) 697-1776 or by e-mail. For those who do not meet these requirements, please contact my office at (202) 225-7772 so that I may assist you in scheduling a tour.
U.S. Department of the Interior Tour
The U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI), with eight bureaus, is the nation's principal conservation agency, charged with the mission "to protect and provide access to our Nation's natural and cultural heritage and honor our trust responsibilities to Indian tribes and our commitments to island communities." The Department of Interior tour is an all day tour and has limited availability. Specifically, the tour takes you to the destinations below. Please note that at various times some destinations may be closed for renovation:
To request a Department of Interior tour please send an e-mail to Meredith Smiley in my D.C. office, and include the information below.
- Number of people in the group
- Requested Date for the tour (Monday-Friday)
- Home address
Other Places of Interest
The Library of Congress
Public tours of the Library of Congress are conducted Monday through Friday at 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m., and 3:30 p.m. and on Saturdays at 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1:30 a.m., and 2:30 p.m. For more information call (202) 707-4684.
The Supreme Court
Public lectures are conducted at the Supreme Court Monday through Friday at 9:30 a.m., 11:00 a.m, 12:30 p.m., 2:00 p.m., and 3:30 p.m. For more information call (202) 479-3499.
Bureau of Printing and Engraving
For more information on visiting the Bureau of Printing and Engraving, please call (866) 874-2330.
The Washington Monument
Open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Reservations can be made by calling (202) 967-2283 or visiting their website.
The Kennedy Center
Free tours are from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Weekend tours are given from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Reservations can be made but are not required. For more information, call (202) 416-8340.
Arlington National Cemetery
Open daily October through March from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and April through September from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier occurs every hour on the hour and every half hour during summer months. For more information, call (703) 607-8000.
The National Cathedral
Guided tours of the Cathedral are open most weeks Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. and 12:45 p.m. to 3:15 p.m., Saturdays as above except for special events, and Sunday from 12:45 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. The church asks for a donation of $3.00 per adult, $2 per senior, and $1 per child. Group tours must be reserved at least one month in advance and, for large groups, the church asks $10 per person. For more information visit their website.
The Smithsonian Institution
Open from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. with free admission to the Smithsonian Institute, Anacostia Museum and Center for African American History, Arthur Sackler Gallery, Arts and Industries Building, Freer Gallery of Art, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, National Air and Space Museum, National Museum of African Art, National Museum of American History, National Portrait Gallery, National Postal Museum, National Zoological Park, Renwick Gallery, Smithsonian American Art Museum, and Udvar Hazy Center. For more information call (202) 357-2700 or visit their website.
International Spy Museum
The museum is open daily except for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's day. Admission rates vary depending on the exhibit. For more information call (202) 393-7798 or (866) 779-6873.
National Geographic Museum
Open Monday through Saturday and holidays from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and on Sundays from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Closed on Christmas Day. For more information call (202) 857-7588.
U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum
Open every day from 10:00 a.m. to 5:20 p.m. except Yom Kippur and Christmas Day. For more information call (202) 488-0400.
The Kreeger Museum
Guided tours are conducted Tuesday through Friday at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., and on Saturday optional guided tours are available. For more information call (202) 338-3552.
The Arboretum grounds are open 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. every day of the year except Christmas. Admission is free. For more information call (202) 245-2726.
The National Zoo is open every day of the year except for Christmas. Admission is free. The National Zoo’s website offers schedules for special interactive attractions such as fish feeding, sea lion or seal training, meet a mammal keeper, and pelican feeding. For more information call (202) 673-4800.
Theodore Roosevelt Island
Theodore Roosevelt Island is open every day. Park hours are from dawn until dusk. For more information call (703) 289-2500.
United States Botanic Garden
Open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Group tours are available by appointment. For more information call (202) 255-8333.