No visit to the capital would be complete without a fascinating tour of some of the buildings that make the administration of our great country work. Fortunately, many of them offer public access to some or all areas depending on the time of day and year.
The Capitol Visitor Center is a great place to explore and learn about the Capitol building and how it came to be. There is a gallery, two theaters, cafeteria, gift shop and plenty of things to see and do. From here you can join a tour of the Capitol but will have to book these in advance or get there early to get them on a first come first served basis.
The White House Visitor Center is another reception center that offers a lot for tourists. It has a lot to see and explore, a 30-minute video to watch and exhibits to see. There are also tours available if you book in advance, which are well worth doing.
The White House offers tours if you ask your member of Congress. You will need a group of 10 to be able to tour, but it’s well worth the effort if you want to see places that most people never get to see. You will need to book at least a month in advance and will need to contact your Representative or Senator’s office to arrange.
The Pentagon is one of the most famous landmarks in the country. It’s also one of the largest office buildings in the world, housing over 23,000 government employees of the Department of Defense. The office will provide guided tours run by serving officers if you book well in advance.
The U.S. Supreme Court is somewhere everyone should visit to see justice in action. It’s open to the public October through April and is free to enter with a ticket. There is a visitors area with exhibits and history, but some of the public galleries allow you to watch the court in action if in session. If not in session, lectures are given in the courtrooms which are well worth a visit.
The Library of Congress isn’t just for rich students. Anyone can visit the world’s largest library and see what is in here. There are a range of exhibits, talks, concerts, displays, films, lectures and events that are held regularly throughout the year.