The White House is known throughout the world as the residence of the President of the United States and one of the most identifiable symbols of democracy. Built as the official residence of America's presidents between 1792 and 1800, the stately mansion boasts 132 rooms and has been the home of every American leader since President John Adams. Divided into east and west wings, The West Wing is known as being the place of business for the president and is the location of the Oval Office.
- Visitors Center 7:30am-4pm (NOTE: The White House Visitor's Center is closed for renovations, until approximately October, 2013. A temporary Center is open at the Ellipse Visitor Pavilion near the corner of 15th and E Streets NW; southeast of the White House.)
- Thanksgiving Day, December 25th and January 1st.
Visitors Center Open to Public (Temporary Center located at the Ellipse Visitor Pavilion; Exhibits are limited.)
Parking, Directions, and Public Transit
There is no on-street parking near the White House and you are encouraged to use public transportation. The closest Metrorail stations are: Federal Triangle (Blue and Orange lines), Metro Center (Blue, Orange, and Red lines) and McPherson Square (Blue and Orange lines).
There are 132 rooms in the White House. There is a bowling alley on site. There are five chefs to cook meals; the kitchen can serve dinner for 140 guests. The President's personal work space is called the Oval Office. Many presidents have had their animals at The White House and they are called First Pets.
What are the hours of operation?
Visitors Center 7:30am-4pm (NOTE: The White House Visitor's Center is closed for renovations, until approximately October, 2013. A temporary Center is open at the Ellipse Visitor Pavilion near the corner of 15th and E Streets NW; southeast of the White House.)
Can I tour the White House?
Public tours of the White House are available. Requests must be submitted through one's Member of Congress. These self-guided tours are available from 7:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Fridays, and 7:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Saturdays (excluding federal holidays or unless otherwise noted). Tour hours will be extended when possible based on the official White House schedule. Tours are scheduled on a first come, first served basis. Requests can be submitted up to six months in advance and no less than 21 days in advance. If you wish to visit the White House and are a citizen of a foreign country, please contact your embassy in Washington, DC for assistance in submitting a tour request.