Library of Congress, Washington DC

With nearly 7,000 books added to its collection every day, Library of Congress is the largest library in the world, established in 1800 to prove to the world that the United States was a cultured country. The library's nearly 850 km (530 mi) of shelves hold 32 million books and 61 million manuscripts. Boasting the largest rare book collection in North America, the library also houses one of only three remaining vellum copies of the famous Gutenberg Bible. Dedicated to organizing information from the past three centuries, this institution preserves approximately 1 million newspaper issues, 500,000 microfilm reels, 5 million maps, 3 million sound recordings, and nearly 15 million prints and photographic images. Start your quest for knowledge at the visitor center, where you can arrange for a guided tour of the reading rooms. Arrange to visit Library of Congress and other attractions in Washington DC using our Washington DC holiday planner .
Create an itinerary including Library of Congress
map
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors
Library of Congress Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
8,732 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • The capital is full of amazing and incredible buildings but the Library of Congress was one of the most beautiful buildings both from the inside and the outside. The colorful arches, and the beautiful...  more »
  • We visited the Library of Congress after the Capitol Tour. We did not plan on going there but it was an easy walk via the underground tunnel. It was a pleasant surprise with a lot of history and cultu...  more »
Google
  • It is a very interesting place. I would recommend that you arrive at the entrance right as it opens. The lines usually “backs up” about 30 minutes after it opens, so arriving there early may save time. It is right across from the United Sates Capitol, too. Just down the street is the United States Botanical Gardens as well. Overall, a very nice place with very informative exhibits.
  • This is such a beautiful building! The architecture is very ornate and awe-inspiring. From the fountain out front to the marbling inside, this building is amazing! It's free to visit and the museum is very informative. They have numerous artifacts from our nation's history and beyond. You will not be disappointed when you visit. Unfortunately, in order to enter the actual library you need to make an appointment. I completely understand that as it allows the library to be an actual library and not become a tourist trap. Please visit this beautiful place.
  • Build a plan

    Tell us where and when you
    want to go, we will build
    the best sightseeing itinerary
  • Refine it

    You have complete flexibility on your destinations and itinerary
  • Book as a package

    Use our travel agents to get
    package savings and hassle free booking
  • Enjoy your trip!

    Enjoy our 24x7
    on-trip assistance

Hidden gems in Washington DC

4.7
Duration: 1​h 30​min
4.7
Duration: 1​h 30​min
4.5
Duration: 1​h 30​min
4.9
Duration: 3​h

Museums in Washington DC

View all >
4.6
Duration: 2​h 30​min
4.8
Duration: 1​h
3.7
Duration: 2​h

Side trips from Washington DC

4.8
Duration: 2​h 30​min
2.9
Duration: 2​h
4.9
Duration: 1​h 30​min

Historic Sites in Washington DC

View all >
4.6
Duration: 2​h 30​min
4.4
Duration: 30​min
4.3
Duration: 2​h

Nearby attractions in Washington DC

4.8
Duration: 30​min
4.5
Duration: 1​h
3.8
Duration: 1​h
4.4
Duration: 1​h