The Library of Congress is the mother of all libraries (literally). It contains an almost unfathomable 145 million items in 470 languages and it adds approximately seven items per second to its shelves (that's 11,000 per day). It's not strictly a print-on-paper affair either, the shelves are stocked with books, recordings, photographs, maps, manuscripts and, most recently, Twitter logs. The building is a testament to American ingenuity and, back when it was completed in 1897 was meant to prove to the world that the U.S. was capable of the same grandeur that was de rigueur in Europe. The Beaux-Arts structure is breathtaking, inside and out. The Library of Congress is one of the best things to do in Washington D.C. to appreciate the history and importance of this city to our country. Take the free tour to get a grasp on all of the symbolism built into the decorative murals and sculptures. The Main Reading Room and the Great Hall are the two areas worth seeing and both are located in the library’s Jefferson building. Free tour Mon-Sat 10:30, 11:30, 1:30, 2:30, 3:30 (no 3:30 tour on Sat).
- Open Hours: Monday to Saturday from 08:30 AM to 04:30 PM
Attractions & Landmarks
- Nearest Train: Capitol South