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Castle to Capitol: National Museums Architecture Tour

Quick Details

Child 5-16 years old
Private Tour

Hear the stories behind our best loved and little-known museums on the Mall!

Washington’s famous plethora of museums are all laid out along the east side of the National Mall between the Capitol Building and the Washington Monument. Called “America’s Attic,” the Smithsonian Institution is one of the largest museum organizations in the world, with 30 million annual visitors, 19 museums and over 140 million items in the collection. On this tour, explore how the Smithsonian Institution has helped shape the fabric of the National Mall since 1847, with grand buildings, secret gardens, and both beloved and reviled designs.

Please note we’ll be discussing the museums from the exterior, with the exception of the National Gallery of Art, which we will briefly go inside!

What to Bring

Sturdy walking shoes, bottled water and comfortable clothes are recommended!

Where to Meet

  • Meet your guide outside the Smithsonian Castle
  • GPS Address: 1000 Jefferson Dr SW, Washington, DC 20560
  • Your tour will end at the Ulysses S. Grant Memorial

Sights and stops include:

  • Smithsonian Castle & Garden
  • James V. Forrestal Building (Dept of Energy)
  • Arts and Industries Building
  • Hirshhorn Museum
  • National Air and Space Museum
  • National Gallery of Art (inside and out!)
  • National Museum of the American Indian
  • United States Botanic Garden
  • United States Capitol Building

Additional booking times are available as a private tour. Please visit the private bookings calendar to take a look!

For large groups, driving tours, or custom itineraries, please contact us to book.

Map of the Tour Route