• A Nomad's Guide to the Planet

Capitol Building

Updated: Jul 29


Location: Washington D.C.

Facade of the Capitol Building

Overview: House of the Legislature


Built in 1800, the Capitol Building is the national symbol of the legislative branch of the United States government. Before the return of a portion of DC to Virigina, the building was the geographic center of the district. Before the construction of a separate Supreme Court Building, the Capitol was also used as the location of the highest court in the US. It is located at the far east end of the National Mall in Ward 6 of the District. It can be reached by the DC Metro at Union Station and is walkable from many other federal monuments and government buildings.


The Destination: Capitol Hill


The Capitol Building is home to both chambers of the United States Congress, the Senate and the House of Representatives. A great deal of American legislative history has taken place inside this spectacular building. It is often represenative of the legislative branch of the United States government as a whole. The historic entrances on the east and west sides are under strict security and are not used as current visitors' entrance.


Many days you can find a group of protesters or advocators of any given issue at the base of the building. Major political and national events are held on the steps of the Capitol Building, namely the Presidential Inauguration every four years.


Travel Recommendations


Although one cannot go inside the chambers of Congress unless you are invited by your representative, there is a visitor center which if booked ahead of your visit will take visitors on a tour inside the building. The visitor center is located on the eastern side of the building and consists of three below-ground floors containing a food court, exhibition hall, and waiting areas.

First St SE, Washington, DC 20004

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