COVID-19 (coronavirus) Update

The Capitol Visitor Center remains closed. We are not taking tour reservations at this time. Please check out our video tours and other online resources.


Online Gift Shop Now Open

Check out our new Online Gift Shop, All products are Made-in-the-USA, and many are created exclusively for our store. We look forward to welcoming you to the CVC Online Gift Shop.

Tips for Visiting the Capitol

Plan ahead

The Capitol Visitor Center is usually less crowded on weekday mornings, right after opening at 9:00 a.m. If you are interested in a tour of the Capitol, be sure to book one in advance through our Advance Reservation System or through the offices of your Senators or Representative.

Come by Public Transportation

Avoid the frustration of looking for a parking spot by taking public transportation to the Capitol. Two Metrorail stops, Union Station and Capitol South, are close by. Additional information on riding Metro is available at the Washington Metropolitan Transit Authority homepage here.

Allow Enough Time

Factor in time to get to the Capitol. No matter your method of transportation, you may find yourself with several blocks of walking to do before you arrive at the Visitor Center. Once at the Capitol, remember that there is an enormous amount to see and do. Your guided tour of the Capitol begins with a 13-minute orientation film and takes about an hour in all. The Capitol Visitor Center also includes a large Exhibition Hall, two Gift Shops and a spacious Cafe.

Visiting with Young Children

Younger children may appreciate some of the excitement of visiting the Capitol such as viewing the Capitol Dome through the large skylights atop the Capitol Visitor Center's Emancipation Hall. They may also enjoy the Exhibition Hall and the grounds, especially if you let them and their interests be your guide.

Visiting with Older Children

Get your children interested by talking, reading, and learning about the U.S. Capitol before your visit. Along with this Web site, the House and Senate also have sites with a rich array of resources.