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DC Design Tours

Historical and Architectural Guided Tours of Washington DC

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On tour with DC Design Tours

Get an insider’s look at the design of the District!

Explore Washington’s architectural marvels and best kept secrets, while hearing about the conflicts, controversies, and personalities involved in the development of our Capital City. From Neo-Classical to Brutalist, learn the history behind the brick and mortar on our design-focused Washington tours!

We offer small group, private walking, driving, or virtual tours!

We also have gift cards, the perfect present for your adventurous urban explorer! Gift cards can be purchased to join a small group tour or book a private tour. Get your gift card here, or contact us to learn more.

On tour with DC Design Tours

Explore the history behind the brick and mortar on a tour of Washington DC

From $35

Duration: 2 Hours, 1.5 Miles

Gilded Age opulent mansions and grand embassies line the streets of one of Washington’s most fashionable neighborhoods. Hear the stories and scandals that helped shape the Nation behind the doors of the District’s most extravagant homes.

From $35

Duration: 2.5 Hours, 2 Miles

Home to palatial mansions, elegant cemeteries, stately churches, and a world class University, explore the highlights and secrets of Washington’s most exclusive neighborhood! Learn about the dramatic rags to riches transformation of  this now idyllic enclave of Washington DC.

From $35

Duration: 2 Hours, 1 Mile

Explore the political core of Washington DC—from the first plans for a new Federal City, to the tumultuous construction of the U.S. Capitol, the rise of the resplendent Beaux Arts Library of Congress and imposing Supreme Court, and into the present day. Controversy, chaos, and red tape abound!

From $35

Duration: 3 Hours, 4 Miles

Established in 1890, Rock Creek Park was the third National Park in the country, and the first in a major city. More than 2,000 acres was set aside as a refuge for wildlife and an escape for locals, winding its way through Northwest Washington DC. Beyond natural beauty, Rock Creek contains historic structures, memorials, ruins, and other remnants of the past.

From $35

Duration: 2.5 Hours, 2.5 miles

Visit the Kennedy Graves, go inside Arlington Mansion, witness a Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and learn stories and secrets within this hallowed ground. This tour is offered publicly on Memorial and Veterans Day. Please reserve a private tour outside of those times.

From $250

Duration: Customizable

Book your private design tour to explore DC in depth. Choose any of our Washington walking tours to be conducted as a private tour, with just you, your family or group, and your guide!

See What Our Guests Have to Say!

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The tour of Dupont Circle/Embassy Row was amazing! Christine has such a wealth of knowledge of architecture and the history. She's super sweet and had us laughing while teaching the group. It was my second of the Design Tours and can't wait for the next one!

– Kimberly Gordon | Google Reviews

Had a wonderful time and learned a lot. My family took the walking tour (led by Christine) from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial. She made the tour enjoyable for everyone, including my 6-year-old daughter. I highly recommend this for families that want to visit the “must sees” and want a better understanding of how Washington D.C. was initially developed and how it has evolved over time.

– Bryan Vernetti | Google Reviews

Great tour! It's was a great day to get introduced to Union Station and Capitol Hill building architecture and history. Tour started in time and ended on time. Sam is a great guide with passion, energy, and information.

– Vicki James | Google Reviews

Terrific tours from our guide Carolyn - we did both a tour of the main monuments and a tour of Arlington Cemetery. Carolyn tweaked the tours to suit our interests and stamina, held the kids (and adults) in rapt attention, answered all our questions and shared lots of details and history we would not otherwise have known. Strongly recommended.

– Sophie Birshan | Google Reviews

We booked Monuments and Memorials, Georgetown and Capitol Hill tour during independence day weekend. All 3 of them were so amazing! Our guide, Sam, was knowledgeable and full of energy. If you want to know history, understand architectural details and hear stories, then I highly recommend DC Design Tours. Our experience exploring Washington DC via these guided public walking tours was very enriching.

– Mrunal Vaze | Google Reviews

Incredible tour of Georgetown with both insightful information about the design and architecture, but also a rich history of the community. Sam, our guide, was informative and made the tour fun. His passion for history and architecture came shining through.

– David Wallis | Google Reviews

This tour was everything I was hoping for and more (found on IG)! I lived in Georgetown decades ago, but didn’t have a chance to experience it like this. Passing by and admiring architecture is one thing, but learning about it is another. And you don’t know what you don’t know! Every trip to DC, I look forward to enjoying a different one…

– Peter Zolpher | Google Reviews

We had a wonderful experience with DC Design Tours. Our team of real estate agents went on this tour to learn a little history and architecture about DC. We truly learned so much and had so much fun. The bus was gorgeous and our guide was so knowledgeable and personable. Highly recommend!!

– Mel Korobkin | Google Reviews

My family did the DC Museum tour with Sam this Sunday. He was great. Meeting us in front to Smithsonian castle and walking and talking us thru the architecture and history of all the museums on the mall. Very knowledgeable and willing to answer any questions. Thanks Sam.

– Peter Zolper | Google Reviews

Fantastic tour! Sam made the cherry blossom tour of the DC tidal basin so much more then a walk amongst the cherry blossoms. He really made the monuments and whole area come to life too! I will be recommending all of the DC Design tours to visitors and neighbors here! And Sam gave me plenty of time to snap pictures to my hearts content, a real bonus on a guided tour! Thanks for the wonderful experiencence!

– Laurie Leach | Google Reviews

Beautiful walking tour of the cherry blossoms. Unfortunately we weren’t able to the splendor due to the bad weather a few days prior to the the tour. Our guide was very informative!

– Aphrodite F. | Google Reviews

I've been on two DC design tours in the last month and I am so impressed! I am a local and I love architecture and I have learned so much history about my community. These tours are fantastic! You should absolutely go! Don't question it.

– Julia Farber | Google Reviews

The Georgetown and National Mall tours were so good. Sam was our guide on both tours and he was great. I learned so much and highly recommend.

– A. Mendoza | Google Reviews

Our tour guide Sam was incredible. I told him he should do Podcast. Was able to navigate between tour questions and general questions beautifully and seamlessly. Love the restaurant recommendations. Would highly recommend this tour to anyone.

– Aaron Hass | Google Reviews

We live nearby in Maryland and have been to Georgetown numerous times. Sam made it’s history and beauty to come alive with his very informative and entertaining presentation. 2.5 hours flew by. Highly recommend.

– Svetlana Andreyev | Google Reviews

We did the private tour of DuPont Circle and Embassy Row with Carolyn. It was amazing. She’s very knowledgeable and did an excellent mix of history and architecture. I wish I could do a tour with her everyday of my trip. I will be using DC Design Tours anytime I’m back in DC.

– Carmen Echols | Google Reviews

Carolyn was a wonderful guide for our family group of seven. We would definitely use her on our next trip to DC. And I’ve already recommended her to several friends. Thanks for perfect experience.

– Anne G. | Google Reviews

Our tour of Georgetown's architecture was absolutely amazing! Carolyn's knowledge of the history of Georgetown is deep and her added stories about little known snippets of American history added a wonderful touch of humor. I would highly recommend taking one of the custom tours for a few hours that you will never forget!

– Susan F. | Google Reviews

The tour was amazing. Carolyn was nice and knowledgeable. She was sincere about the good and bad of DC, very descriptive and had great suggestions. Took time to hear our story and made personalized suggestions on other tours we should take with them. We definitely will be back to take more tours with Carolyn.

– Josh T. | Google Reviews

We had a wonderful experience with DC Design Tours. Our team of real estate agents went on this tour to learn a little history and architecture about DC. We truly learned so much and had so much fun. The bus was gorgeous and our guide was so knowledgeable and personable. Highly recommend!!

– Mel K. | Google Reviews

Four of us went on a National Cathedral-Cleveland Park Cherry Blossom tour with Carolyn. It was very informative and fun. Carolyn is so prepared and knowledgeable, you can tell she has a background in architecture and has studied the neighborhood history. We are looking forward to booking another tour soon.

– Ben & Patti S. | Google Reviews