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The White House Tours

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Every year, people from all over the world flock to Washington DC just to get a peek at the 132-room United States White House, which has been the official residence of each US president since 1800.


The Basics

The White House is most often admired from afar, as wandering tourists are unable to step inside and the grounds are only open for special events, such as the White House Easter Egg Roll. In lieu of touring the interior (which can be arranged by making a request through Congress), travelers can catch sight of the structure from behind the front gates or head to the National Park Service’s White House Visitors Center to browse exhibits, watch historic reenactments, or stop by the gift shop.


How to Prepare for the White House Tour

Requests for free, self-guided tours of the East Wing must be submitted through your member of Congress. Tour requests can be made up to three months in advance; this is advised given that they are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis and space is limited. The names, birthdates, and social security numbers of everyone in your party must be submitted. Once approved, you’ll be assigned a tour time (they are available Tuesday through Thursday from 8:30am to 11:30am and Friday and Saturday until 1:30pm). Call the White House Visitors Office information line at (202) 456-7041 for additional tour information.


If you do secure one of these public tours, highlights include the Red Room, used primarily for afternoon tea; the Green Room; and the Blue Room, the setting of the White House Christmas tree. West Wing tours (including the Oval Office) are by invitation only.


What to Know Before Visiting the White House

Here are a few tips to help you plan your visit.

  • Be sure to have your government-issued photo ID with you at all times during your visit.
  • There are no general public storage facilities on site; most visitors bring only their wallet, keys, and cell phone. Compact cameras are also allowed.
  • Prohibited items include no-brainers such as electric stun guns and martial arts weapons/devices. You’ll also want to leave purses, backpacks, video cameras, and book bags at home. The U.S. Secret Service reserves the right to prohibit any other personal items.
  • The nearest restrooms are in the Ellipse Visitor Pavilion.
  • Note that visitor access records to the White House complex are made publicly available 90 to 120 days after each visit.

How to Get There

Located at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, the White House can be reached by taking the Washington Metro—disembark at Metro Center, McPherson Square, or Federal Triangle, the closest metrorail station to the visitors entrance. Street parking can be difficult to find.
Address: 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington D.C., USA
Hours: White House Visitor Center: 7:30am-4pm every day
Admission: Varies
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215 Tours and Activities to Experience The White House

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Best of DC Tour -With Access to US Capitol & National Archives BuildingsFull-day Tours

Best of DC Tour -With Access to US Capitol & National Archives Buildings

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Beat the long entrance lines and experience some of the most popular attractions in Washington, DC like an insider on this full-day sightseeing tour. Enjoy priority entry into the United States Capitol, the home of Congress. Then visit the National Archives Building, where the original Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution are on display. In between, see the city’s most famous landmarks and monuments, like the White House, the Lincoln Memorial and more.
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  • 8 hours
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  • 8 hours
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African-American History Tour with Reserved Museum EntryHalf-day Tours

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African-American History Tour with Reserved Museum Entry

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Immerse yourself in the history of African-American culture in the United States during this half-day history excursion in the Nation’s Capital. Follow the path of the first African-Americans at Jamestown through the Civil Rights movement, checking out key sites like the Frederick Douglass National Historic Site, the vibrant U Street corridor, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the MLK Memorial, plus much more.
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Washington DC and Philadelphia in One Day from NYCDay Trips

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Washington DC and Philadelphia in One Day from NYC

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Experience two of the US's capital cities—the current one in Washington DC and the former in Philidelphia—on a full-day trip from New York City. Perfect for busy travelers with just one day to spare, this tour covers all the logistics and transportation so all you have to do is show up and enjoy the sights.
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  • 17 hours
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Two Day Combo: Niagara Falls and Washington with Philadelphia from New YorkNature & Wildlife

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Two Day Combo: Niagara Falls and Washington with Philadelphia from New York

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Make the most of your time in New York with a combo tour to three major east coast destinations: Washington DC, Niagara Falls, and Philadelphia. With bilingual guides and round-trip transport from downtown Manhattan, the tour package eliminates the stress of navigating and planning on your own. Your guide takes you to each city’s highlights, ensuring you see and learn as much as possible along the way.
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Welcome Tour of Washington, D.C. Half-day Tours

Welcome Tour of Washington, D.C.

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With this you will have the tour all to yourself including the guide and a driver. No waiting time since the driver and a tour guide coordinate everything. This is your tour not ours, so you decide the pick-up and drop-off time and the location.
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  • 4 hours
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D.C National Mall Walking Day TourHalf-day Tours

D.C National Mall Walking Day Tour

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Explore the National Mall in Washington DC at night on a 2-hour walking tour that takes in the floodlit monuments and other landmarks. See the White House, and the Abraham Lincoln Memorial, and learn about the importance of the memorials to military veterans and important people such as Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Dr Martin Luther King Jr. You’ll get insights into United States history as you pass by the key sights on the Mall.
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  • 4 hours
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Comedy Walks© Washington D.C.Cultural Tours

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Comedy Walks© Washington D.C.

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Laugh your way past the top monuments of Washington D.C. on a 1.5-hour comedy walking tour. The tour is perfect for comedy fans and history buffs alike. Lead by a professional stand-up comedian, your charismatic guide shares quirky history and funny observations about the nation’s capital. Try to keep your camera steady as you crack up outside the White House and other iconic landmarks.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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White House Ghosts Walking TourCultural Tours

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White House Ghosts Walking Tour

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The White House is the most prominent location in the United States for several reasons: political, historical, cultural, and beyond. Every day, current and past events from the White House are relayed worldwide. Despite all the news that comes from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue daily, one key aspect consistently goes overlooked: The White House is haunted. A ghost tour in Washington DC cannot be at a better location, other than White House, Lafayette Square. There have been a few violent deaths in the vicinity of this ‘Tragedy Square.’ Our historian guides tell you stories and walk you through: Murder of Philip Barton Key Admiral Decatur’s Duel Dolley Madison’s Haunted House The Ghosts of the White House Haunted Hay Adams Hotel and so much more…
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  • 2 hours
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Discover the highlights of the nation’s capital on a hassle-free guided tour from New York City. While visiting Washington DC from NYC can be a long day trip to make on your own, by booking this tour you can relax on a comfortable coach and learn historical details from your guide throughout the journey. This enables you to maximize your time and arrive well rested rather than tired from driving.
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  • 14 hours
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DC At Dusk Night TourHalf-day Tours

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Ride a luxury coach past major landmarks on this night bus tour of Washington DC. Gaze at floodlit memorials and monuments, such as the magnificent Lincoln Memorial and the glow of the Jefferson Memorial reflected in the Tidal Basin. After this sightseeing tour, you’ll understand why the nation’s capital is considered one of the world’s most beautiful cities at night.
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  • 3 hours
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  • 3 hours
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Washington DC Day Trip from New York CityDay Trips

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On this New York to Washington DC tour, check out the nation’s capital in a day with all logistics, transport, and entrance fees included so you’re totally free to focus on the sights. Traveling by comfortable minivan or bus with a guide for commentary—another advantage over an independent trip—view landmarks including the White House and Washington Monument. Plus, visit Arlington Cemetery and the National Air and Space Museum.
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  • 11 to 13 hours
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Washington DC in One Day: Guided Sightseeing TourHalf-day Tours

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Experience the sights and sounds of Washington, DC in one day on this guided walking and riding sightseeing tour around the nation’s capital. Visit the city’s historic, iconic landmarks and monuments, like the White House, the United States Capitol, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, and the Lincoln Memorial. See and learn about the memorials of famous American leaders who helped shape the United States, like Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, and Martin Luther King, Jr., to name a few. Includes a seasonal Potomac River cruise.
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  • 6 hours
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Big Bus Washington DC Hop-On Hop-Off TourBus Tours

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Discover the most popular sights in Washington, DC on this relaxing hop-on hop-off bus tour. Drive past many of the top attractions in the nation’s capital — including the White House, the Washington Monument, the National Mall, historic Georgetown, and Arlington National Cemetery, and choose where you want to get off and explore in more detail. Select a 1- or 2-day pass, then hop on at any of the stops on two different routes and get to know the city with a combination of both live and audio commentary. The 2-day option includes admission to Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum.
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  • 1 hour
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Washington DC Monuments by Moonlight Electric Cart TourHistorical & Heritage Tours

Washington DC Monuments by Moonlight Electric Cart Tour

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Explore the famous monuments and war memorials of Washington, DC by the light of night on this small-group sightseeing tour. Hop aboard an open-air, electric vehicle and enjoy an educational and entertaining narrated history of our nation’s capital. Travel around and through the plethora of famous memorials and monuments, with stunning views of an illuminated Washington Monument, the White House and many other landmark locations. This is a truly unique look at the iconic monuments of Washington, DC by night.
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  • 2 hours
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  • 2 hours
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Deluxe Half Day Tour of DC with Reserved US Capitol EntryHalf-day Tours

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Deluxe Half Day Tour of DC with Reserved US Capitol Entry

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See the U.S. Capitol Building and Washington DC landmarks on a half-day guided tour in a climate-controlled shuttle bus. Save time with reserved entrance to the Capitol building, take in the sites along the National Mall, see the White House, and pass a series of iconic presidential and war memorials. This DC tour begins and ends at central locations by the National Mall, and offers a great introduction to the city’s highlights.
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  • 5 hours
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  • 5 hours
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Small Group Twilight Tour w/Professional GuideHalf-day Tours

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Small Group Twilight Tour w/Professional Guide

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Washington, DC’s monuments and landmarks light up after dark, perfect for dramatic views and memorable photos of the capital city. Explore the sights from the National Mall to the White House and key memorials as your guide provides informative narration about each site. Hop off at select sights to get an up-close look with your small-group and guide. This tour includes transport between locations.
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  • 3 hours
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  • 3 hours
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Washington DC Twilight TourHalf-day Tours

Washington DC Twilight Tour

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There's a certain magic to Washington DC when the sun gets low in the sky, and the pale orange glow of evening twilight begins to change into night. On this twilight Washington DC open top double-decker bus tour, grab your camera and hop on board to tour America's capital, as we cruise by bus around the memorials, monuments, and US Capitol. You'll also have time to snap a photo while standing outside the White House, and pay your respects at war memorials from Korea and World War II.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
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Washington DC Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley + Arlington Nat'l Cemetery, Water Taxi UpgradeAudio Guided Tours

Washington DC Hop-On Hop-Off Trolley + Arlington Nat'l Cemetery, Water Taxi Upgrade

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Take a hop-on hop-off Washington DC trolley tour to explore the nation’s capital at your own pace. The route encompasses the city’s top attractions, including the White House, Lincoln Memorial, and Arlington National Cemetery (if option is selected). This is the only tour to take you into the Arlington National Cemetery (if option is selected). Just hop off at any stop when you want to explore, and then hop back on the trolley to continue around the city. When booking, select a silver, gold, or platinum pass, depending upon your interests.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
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Epic Washington DC Evening Tour: Small-Group Van TourNight Tours

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Explore the famous monuments and war memorials of Washington, DC by the light of night on this guided, 4-hour, small-group sightseeing tour. Hop aboard a Dodge Sprinter van and enjoy an educational and entertaining narrated history of the nation’s capital. Travel around and through the plethora of famous memorials and monuments, with stunning views of an illuminated Washington Monument, the White House, and many other landmark locations. This is a truly unique look at the iconic monuments of Washington DC by night.
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  • 4 hours
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  • 4 hours
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Washington Monument Reserved Admission with DC Landmarks and Memorials TourHalf-day Tours

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Washington Monument Reserved Admission with DC Landmarks and Memorials Tour

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Get to know some of the most popular landmarks in Washington, DC on this guided sightseeing tour on board an air-conditioned coach. See iconic landmarks the White House, the United States Capitol, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, Thomas Jefferson Memorial, and more. Then, take a self-guided tour inside the Washington Monument where you can enjoy panoramic views from the 500-foot-high (152-meter) observation deck. **The Washington Monument is closed due to elevator maintenance.  In lieu of this stop, additional stops have been added to this tour as well as a (seasonal) Potomac River cruise.
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  • 4 hours
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  • 4 hours
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Guided Tour of Washington DC with Washington Monument Admission includedHalf-day Tours

Guided Tour of Washington DC with Washington Monument Admission included

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Explore the famous landmarks and monuments of Washington DC on this guided, half- or full-day, walking and riding sightseeing tour. Hop aboard a deluxe motor coach and enjoy an educational and entertaining narrated history of the nation’s capital. Stop at the White House and the United States Capitol, plus the Lincoln Memorial, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial and much more. The full-day tour features more than 30 sites with visits to at least 12. It’s a great way to see many of DC’s popular attractions.
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  • 6 hours
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  • 6 hours

Small Group Day Tour w/Professional Guide Half-day Tours

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Small Group Day Tour w/Professional Guide

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Experience the history and culture of the nation’s capital on this comprehensive, half-day, small-group tour. Travel in a comfortable vehicle complete with phone chargers, umbrellas, and a flat-screen TV, and see Washington DC’s monuments, museums, and memorials with a guide. See the US Capitol building, the White House, the Mall and more. Avoid the hassles of driving, or navigating public transportation and leave the logistics to your guide.
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  • 4 hours
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Washington DC Monuments by Moonlight Tour by TrolleyCultural Tours

Washington DC Monuments by Moonlight Tour by Trolley

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Explore the famous monuments and memorials of Washington DC by moonlight on this narrated sightseeing tour. Hop aboard an open-air trolley and enjoy an educational and entertaining history of the nation’s capital while traveling past each point of interest. Take in the stunning views of an illuminated Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument, the White House, and many other landmarks. This is a truly unique look at the iconic monuments of Washington DC by night.
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  • 2 hours to 2 days
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  • 2 hours to 2 days
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Capitol Hill and DC Monuments Tour by Electric CartHistorical & Heritage Tours

Capitol Hill and DC Monuments Tour by Electric Cart

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Explore the famous monuments and war memorials of Washington, DC on this small-group sightseeing tour. Hop aboard a special eCruiser vehicle and enjoy an educational and entertaining narrated history of our nation’s capital. Get a glimpse of the White House and travel around and through Capitol Hill, the Smithsonian museum complex, plus a plethora of famous memorials and monuments — like the Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument — and many other hotspots. This is a great way to see many of DC’s most famous landmarks.
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  • 2 hours
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  • 2 hours
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