White House
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White House: Tours & Tickets

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See all 85 tickets & tours

Architectural Facts About The White House

The architecture of the White House is classical while regal, honoring royal British and ancient Greek times. In a neoclassical and Palladian style, the presidential residence has seen many changes throughout its history.

The Men Behind The House

The inspiration for the building came from the only president that didn’t live there, George Washington, who designed it like an English country house with architect James Hoban.

The First Resident

John Adams moved into the White House in 1800 for just 4 short months at the end of his term. With over 100 rooms, Adams frequently commented the residence was "too big."

Fire in 1814

In the War of 1812, British troops marched to Washington and set the White House ablaze, destroying everything but the outer walls. Hoban restored it by 1817.

How The White House Was Named

The building was first painted white after the fire. Although commonly called the “White House,” it wasn’t official until 1902 when Theodore Roosevelt made it so.

Withstanding The Test of Time

Despite a second great fire, the same outer walls and classical style that Hoban designed remain intact today -- a cultural icon that has withstood over 200 years.

White House: Our Tips

Inside the White House

Tours through the White House are in fact available. The tour is free and self-guided, but requires quite a bit of planning in advance. It’s required to apply through your member of Congress or foreign U.S. Embassy 6 months to 21 days in advance. Find your representative here: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/.

When You Can’t Plan Ahead

Alternatively, if timing doesn’t allow, the White House Visitor Center at 1450 Pennsylvania Ave. is open 7 days a week until 4:00PM. Here you’ll find exhibits and more information on this history behind the building and its legendary residents.

Good to Know

  • When to visit
    Tues - Thurs 7:30AM to 11:30AM. Fri - Sat 7:30AM to 1:30PM.
  • What is the price?
  • Will I need a guide?
    Nope! Hard as it is to believe, you can roam the White House alone!
  • How to get there
    Take the Metrorail to Federal Triangle or Metro Center.
  • Additional tips
    There are a number of prohibited items so be sure to take a gander at the rules and regulations before you visit.

What People Are Saying About White House

My husband and I enjoyed our Segway tour very much.

The Segway tour was a great way to get introduced to Washington DC. I thought the tour was a good half hour to an hour too long. Maybe make it two hours and charge $55 bucks. Thanks!
Washington, DC: 3-Hour Segway Tour Reviewed by Bridgit, 10/15/2016

Good access to sites. Good guide. Too short! Add a stop at Supreme CT!

I would have paid a bit more to add an hour to the tour! Supreme Court would have been a nice stop, and the stop at Lincoln Memorial/Vietnam Wall was only 15 minutes to see BOTH places?? Did not like having to choose, because both were important for us to visit! We are somewhat disabled, so trying to go back on our own was NOT an option. Adding an hour would make for a better tour, but still a good tour.
Washington DC 2-Hour Tour by Electric Car Reviewed by Cynthia, 09/18/2016

Informative, Super Fun, On Time and would do it again.

We arrived 10 min to departure of the bus and was greeted by very friendly staff. The tour departed on time. It was 100 degrees but it being a twilight tour the open air upper deck of the bus was fabulous. Our narrator was extremely informed, down to earth, funny and responsive to any questions asked. He also guided us on several walking stops at various points and when it was dark he led us by holding up a flashlight (big one) backwards so we always knew where he was. That was impressive especially in that heat. He was excellent as was the bus driver, Oscar. I never had to hold on once and we were on the mini highways a couple of times. This is a great tour at a super price. Worth every penny and every minute of our time in DC. Highly recommend this tour above all others. Enjoy!
Washington D.C. Twilight Evening Bus Tour Reviewed by Jeffrey, 08/18/2016

Good informations from guides, many stops

Good guides with lots of stories. Many stops so we never got tired (we had kids with us).
Washington, DC 3-Hour Bike Tour Reviewed by Patrik, 08/08/2016

the tour was OK but rushed and was over by 3:30

Although saw all of the monuments and the Capitol, there was little minimal information provided. At the Capitol we did not get to walk in front of it and only about 5 minutes to get pictures. This set the tone for the day - always a rush rush rush.
Washington DC: Full-Day Tour and Boat Cruise Reviewed by Diann, 07/13/2016

Things To Do Near White House

White House
Based on 392 reviews by GetYourGuide customers