Top Tours & Activities in Washington, DC
When describing the US capital, suffice it to say that big things come in small packages. Within the 61-square-mile district, you can brush up on your American history, then walk among the locals and discover the spirit of the city's oldest neighborhoods.
Each state donated two statues to fill the Capitol's National Statuary Hall. At 19 feet 10 inches tall, Hawaii's King Kamehameha I is the largest and weighs a hefty 15,000 pounds.
Not only is it where US government business unfolds, but Capitol Hill is also one of the city's oldest neighborhoods. Shops and restaurants abound on Barracks Row along 8th Street SE.
It's the famous mansion with an equally famous address. The White House is also one of America's most haunted houses, where Lincoln and others have made their ghostly presence known.
The Washington Monument first opened to the public in 1888 and has remained the world's tallest stone object and obelisk, soaring 555 feet over the National Mall. The view from the top is breathtaking.
The most visited site in DC and houses the 19-foot high statue of the "Great Emancipator." The Lincoln memorial was also the backdrop for MLK Jr.'s "I Have A Dream" speech in 1963.
Known as "the Wall," it commemorates the 2.7 million men and women who served during the conflict and bears the 58,286 names of those who died or are considered missing in action.
The 19 statues of the Korean War Veterans Memorial represent the four branches of military on a patrol day in Korea, and their faces reflect the ethic backgrounds of Americans who served in the 38-month long war.
John F. Kennedy and William H. Taft are the only two presidents who rest in peace in the Arlington National cemetery. Memorials also honor those who died on the Space Shuttle Challenger and Columbia.
Coined "the Castle" for its Romanesque and Gothic design, the building is the Smithsonian Institution's headquarters and offers four exhibits to visit, plus two stunning gardens to admire.
The US National Archives is the place to see history in print. The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Emancipation Proclamation among others are on display.
Make a reservation through your congressional office up to six months in advance and no less than 21 days. The self-guided tour takes place Tuesdays - Thursdays from 7:30AM to 11:00AM; Fridays from 7:30AM to 12:00PM; Saturdays from 7:30AM to 1:00PM. You must bring your government-issued identification on the day of the tour. Non-US citizens must contact their embassy in Washington DC for assistance. Admission is free.
It's recommended to book the free, 90-minute tour well in advance either through your senator's or representative's office. You can also make a reservation online yourself. The Visitors' Center is open Monday through Saturday from 8:30AM to 4:30PM. Admission is free.
Due to the limited number of visitors allowed each day, tickets are issued on a first-come, first-served basis. You can either pick up your tickets at the Washington Monument Lodge on 15th Street or reserve your ticket in advance online for a fee of $1.50 per ticket. Every ticket indicates a specific entry time. Opening hours are daily from 9:00AM to 10:00PM (Memorial Day through Labor Day), otherwise from 9:00AM to 5:00PM. Admission is free.
It's free to visit the memorials, the Smithsonian Museums, and the National Zoo. Admission is also free to enter the US National Archives, but it's advised that you make a reservation in advance at a fee of $1.50 per ticket.
- CurrencyUSD ($)
- Time ZoneUTC (-05:00)
- Country Code+1
- Best time to visitSpring - it's just getting warmer and it may not be as crowded as the summer!
Things to Do in Washington, DC
Top Attractions in Washington, DC
- 1United States Capitol
- 2White House
- 3Lincoln Memorial
- 4Arlington National Cemetery
- 5Vietnam Veterans Memorial
- 6Korean War Veterans Memorial
- 7Jefferson Memorial
- 8National Mall
- 9Washington Monument
- 10J. Edgar Hoover Building
- 11Capitol Hill
- 12The U.S. National Archives
- 13National WWII Memorial
- 14Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial
- 15National Gallery of Art
- 17Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial
- 18Madame Tussauds
- 19Smithsonian Institution Building
- 20Smithsonian Air & Space Museum
Other Sightseeing Options in Washington, DC
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What People Are Saying About Washington, DC
if the weather had been better the tour guide would have been more engaged; hard to communicate in windy cold weather and would have liked more info on sites and general info
Thanks for picking us up and dropping us off at our hotel it was much appreciated. It was a cold night and that made it more fun.
I am still laughing & smiling from this tour. I actually learned a ton of information about DC & the monuments. The twightlight tour was just awesome. I was able to capture some remarkable pictures. But what truly made this thee BEST tour ever were the knowledgeable, friendly, hilarious, exceptional guys in charge of the tour. Charles, Henry, & Terrell were truly phenomenal gentlemen that provided a tour I never will forget. I loved seeing the city & found it to be a pleasure to have had them as my guide. I was really impressed by their knowledge, passion, & personable nature. Thank you!!
The Segway tour was a great way to get introduced to Washington DC. I thought the tour was a good half hour to an hour too long. Maybe make it two hours and charge $55 bucks. Thanks!
It was only our tour guide Andrew's 3rd assignment, but he did a fine job. At times, we could tell that he couldn't quite remember what he wanted to say about a certain location, but he was able to quick recover. The tour was nicely planned and a very good way to visit the Capitol building, monuments and memorials. The evening view was spectacular at many of these locations. We are very glad to have signed up for this tour. We recommended it to a friend who was in DC for the first time for a conference and didn't have enough time for sightseeing. She signed up and said she enjoyed it as well.