Welcome to the U.S. Capitol

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The United States Capitol

The Capitol is among the most architecturally impressive and symbolically important buildings in the world. The Senate and the House of Representatives have met here for more than two centuries. Begun in 1793, the Capitol has been built, burnt, rebuilt, extended, and restored; today, it stands as a monument not only to its builders but also to the American people and their government.

Whether you are here to get information about an upcoming visit, to involve yourself in the workings of the Senate and House of Representatives, or to be inspired by two centuries of art and architecture, this site will be a gateway to your Capitol experience.

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Plan a Visit

Clock  iconHours: The Capitol Visitor Center is open to visitors from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday except for Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, New Year's Day and Inauguration Day. Tours of the U.S. Capitol are conducted from 8:50 a.m. to 3:20 p.m., Monday through Saturday. Visitors with official business appointments may enter the Visitor Center as early as 7:15 a.m.

No backpacks symbolBackpack Warning: Do not bring large daypacks, backpacks or luggage into the Capitol. Any bag larger than 14" wide x 13" high x 4" deep is prohibited. All bags will be subject to a lengthy search and security screening.

ticket iconBook a Tour: Tours of the U.S. Capitol are free. Advance reservations are required.

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What's Happening at the Capitol

On Tuesday, December 2, the Capitol Visitor Center officially opened to the public. As of Tuesday, all tours of the Capitol will begin and end at the Visitor Center. Advance reservations are recommended to tour the Capitol. A limited number of same-day passes will be available. Click here to make a reservation to tour the Capitol.