United States Capitol

Vacation Travel Guide
United States Capitol showing an administrative buidling, heritage architecture and autumn leaves

Sitting on top of Capitol Hill is a Washington landmark that’s been the home of American democracy for more than 200 years.

The United States Capitol is one of the most powerful places in the country. Within its chambers, laws are written, debated and passed. The magnificent 18th-century neoclassical-style building sits atop Capitol Hill and is home to the United States Senate and House of Representatives.

Take a free daily guided tour of this important Washington landmark. Tours start in the Visitor Center, a vast exhibition space on three levels. Watch the 13-minute film about the Capitol’s history and the role Congress plays in the life of Americans. The original plaster model for the bronze statue of Freedom that sits on top of the Capitol’s dome is on display. Also note the gavel used by President George Washington during the ceremony to lay the building’s cornerstone.

The Rotunda connects the House of Representatives to the Senate. The large, domed circular room is 96 feet (29 meters) in diameter and rises to a height of about 180 feet (55 meters). Marvel at its size and the sculptures and paintings within.

Study the sculptures in the National Statuary Hall, which is shaped like an ancient amphitheater. This chamber contains statues of prominent Americans, including author and activist Helen Keller and civil rights activist Rosa Parks.

Watch congressional proceedings from the Senate and House galleries when either legislative body is in session. Obtain a gallery pass as this is not part of the tour. U.S. residents should contact the office of their senator or congressional representative. International visitors should inquire at the House and Senate Appointment Desks in the Visitor Center.

Book a tour in advance. For more details, visit the official website of the United States Capitol. A limited number of same-day tour passes may be available at the public walk-up line. The Visitor Center is open daily except Sundays, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, New Year's Day and Inauguration Day. You do not need a ticket to explore its exhibits.

The United States Capitol is at the eastern end of the National Mall. Find three metro stations nearby or paid street parking along the mall or at parking facilities at Union Street station.

Top things to do in United States Capitol

Top Hotels Close to United States Capitol

Hotel Harrington
Hotel Harrington
3 out of 5
436 11th Street NW, Washington, DC
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is $98 per night from Jan 1 to Jan 1
Located in Downtown Washington D.C., this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Ford's Theater and Capital One Arena. White House and Smithsonian Institution are ...
3.5/5 Good! (1,640 reviews)
"Great hotel for anyone that's not looking for a hotel 4-5 star stay. Great location in walking distance of almost every main attraction, monument, or eatery. Also close to bus stops and sub rail stations for people who like to car pool with locals."

Reviewed on Dec 6, 2021

Hotel Harrington
Hyatt Place Washington DC/National Mall
Hyatt Place Washington DC/National Mall
3 out of 5
400 E Street SW, Washington, DC
The price is $131 per night from Dec 16 to Dec 16
Located in Capitol Hill, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of National Mall and Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. United States Capitol and National ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (1,250 reviews)
"Well maintained with very friendly and accommodating staff."

Reviewed on Dec 4, 2021

Hyatt Place Washington DC/National Mall
Holiday Inn Washington Capitol - Natl Mall, an IHG Hotel
Holiday Inn Washington Capitol - Natl Mall, an IHG Hotel
3 out of 5
550 C St SW, Washington, DC
The price is $99 per night from Dec 20 to Dec 20
Located in Capitol Hill, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum and National Mall. Capital One Arena and Washington ...
4.2/5 Very Good! (2,108 reviews)
"The hotel is okay. The staff was friendly. It’s a no frills place thanks very well located."

Reviewed on Dec 6, 2021

Holiday Inn Washington Capitol - Natl Mall, an IHG Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Best Lodging Options Near United States Capitol

Cambria Hotel Washington D.C. Capitol Riverfront
Cambria Hotel Washington D.C. Capitol Riverfront
3 out of 5
69 Q STREET SW, Washington, DC
The price is $95 per night from Dec 16 to Dec 16
Cambria Hotel Washington D.C. Capitol Riverfront
Hyatt Place Washington DC/National Mall
Hyatt Place Washington DC/National Mall
3 out of 5
400 E Street SW, Washington, DC
The price is $131 per night from Dec 16 to Dec 16
Hyatt Place Washington DC/National Mall
Holiday Inn Washington Capitol - Natl Mall, an IHG Hotel
Holiday Inn Washington Capitol - Natl Mall, an IHG Hotel
3 out of 5
550 C St SW, Washington, DC
The price is $99 per night from Dec 20 to Dec 20
Holiday Inn Washington Capitol - Natl Mall, an IHG Hotel
Hotel Harrington
Hotel Harrington
3 out of 5
436 11th Street NW, Washington, DC
The price is $98 per night from Jan 1 to Jan 1
Hotel Harrington
Hyatt House Washington DC/The Wharf
Hyatt House Washington DC/The Wharf
3.5 out of 5
725 Wharf Street SW, Washington, DC
The price is $143 per night from Dec 19 to Dec 19
Hyatt House Washington DC/The Wharf
YOTEL Washington DC
YOTEL Washington DC
4 out of 5
415 New Jersey Ave Nw, Washington, DC
The price is $116 per night from Dec 19 to Dec 19
YOTEL Washington DC
Courtyard by Marriott Washington Downtown/Convention Center
Courtyard by Marriott Washington Downtown/Convention Center
3 out of 5
901 L Street NW, Washington, DC
The price is $98 per night from Dec 19 to Dec 19
Courtyard by Marriott Washington Downtown/Convention Center
Hampton Inn Washington-Downtown-Convention Center, DC
Hampton Inn Washington-Downtown-Convention Center, DC
2.5 out of 5
901 6th St Nw, Washington, DC
The price is $101 per night from Dec 19 to Dec 19
Hampton Inn Washington-Downtown-Convention Center, DC
citizenM Washington DC Capitol
citizenM Washington DC Capitol
4 out of 5
550 School St SW, Washington, DC
The price is $104 per night from Dec 16 to Dec 16
citizenM Washington DC Capitol
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.