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National Gallery of Art

  • Guided tours
  • Hop-on hop-off tours
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  • Workshops and classes

National Gallery of Art: Our most recommended tours and activities

Washington DC: See the City Segway Tour

1. Washington DC: See the City Segway Tour

Arrive 30 minutes before the tour time for instruction on how to ride a Segway, then head off on a thrilling guided Segway tour of Washington DC and its main landmarks. Listen as your guide recounts fascinating stories about these iconic locations, narrated via a state-of-the-art radio system. Before departure, receive training and get fitted for your equipment. Watch a brief video and presentation, then receive one-on-one instruction from the experienced staff. Don't be nervous! Many of the visitors are first-time riders and most people get the hang of it within a few minutes.  Once everyone is comfortable, you will do a quick soundcheck and off you go!  The first stop is the White House, just across the street from your starting point! From there, continue to explore as many of the following sites as possible: Lafayette Square US Treasury Constitution Gardens Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool Vietnam Veterans Memorial Korean War Memorial DC War Memorial Tidal Basin WWII Memorial Washington Monument Smithsonian Museums National Gallery of Art US Capitol National Archives US Navy Memorial FBI Building Freedom Plaza and more!

Washington, DC: Old Town Trolley City Tour

2. Washington, DC: Old Town Trolley City Tour

Climb aboard the Old Town Trolley and enjoy a comprehensive tour of Washington. Listen to the colorful anecdotes, humorous stories, and well-researched historical information your guide has to share. Upgrade to include a tram tour of Arlington Cemetery. Sit back while expert tour guides help you discover the beauty and majesty of Washington, D.C. This popular tour covers Washington's major attractions such as the Lincoln Memorial, the White House, the museums of the Smithsonian Institution, and the Vietnam Veteran's Memorial.  The trolley will make one stop along the tour route at the Abraham Lincoln Memorial. While off the trolley, you can visit the Lincoln Memorial, Korean War Veterans Memorial, and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. You will have 30 minutes to explore the area while your guide and the trolley wait for you. Please see below the list of attractions and memorials that you will see on the tour: • Washington Welcome Center • The White House • National Archives • National Law Enforcement Museum • Union Station • U.S. Capitol • Smithsonian Air & Space Museum • The Wharf • International Spy Museum • Holocaust Memorial Museum • Jefferson Memorial • FDR Memorial • Lincoln Memorial • National Museum of American History • Smithsonian Museum of Natural History • National Gallery of Art • National Portrait Gallery

Washington DC: Monuments Self-Guided Walking Tour

3. Washington DC: Monuments Self-Guided Walking Tour

Visit the most iconic landmarks of America’s capital city on this flexible self-guided walking tour. See the White House, Lincoln Memorial, the Capitol Building, and much more, and learn the revolutionary history behind the creation of Washington, D.C. Start by downloading the Action Tour Guide app that will function as your personal guide, audio tour, and map all in one. Along with being developed by local guides, creative writers, and professional voice artists, most stops along the tour have animated videos allowing you to visualize what you cannot see, such as snapshots from different centuries or interior rooms. You'll begin your adventure next to Pershing Park, right across from the White House south lawn. From there, make your way to the White House itself, where you can admire the seat of American power and learn some fascinating tidbits about its construction. From here, head south toward Constitution Gardens and pick up some insight into D.C.’s complicated history along the way. Through the gardens, you’ll find what was once the city’s most controversial monument: The Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Next, head to the Lincoln Memorial, one of the most iconic memorials in D.C. The Korean War Veterans Memorial is next, where you’ll hear about the fraught political struggle which wracked the White House during this bloody conflict. As you continue east, you’ll be filled in on the aftermath of the War of 1812 and how D.C. grew into what it is today. The next monument you’ll arrive at will be the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, honoring the nation’s most revered civil rights leader. Then, cross the Kutz Bridge and learn why the Potomac River is so significant to this city’s history. From this bridge, you’ll also be able to see the impressive Thomas Jefferson Memorial. Later, reach the National Mall, which you’ve definitely seen on TV plenty of times. Get an up-close look at the Washington Monument and learn the history of George Washington’s connection to this important city. If you like museums, the next stretch of the tour is absolutely for you. You’ll pass the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, and the National Gallery of Art. On the final leg of the tour, visit three of the most crucial buildings in the city: The Library of Congress, the Capitol Building, and the Supreme Court of the United States. The tour concludes amid these three awe-inspiring structures.

Washington DC: National Gallery of Art - Guided Museum Tour

4. Washington DC: National Gallery of Art - Guided Museum Tour

Your local English speaking guide will not only be an expert on the museum, but they will also share the stories and scandals behind these paintings, discuss the techniques used to create these important works and explain how the museum itself transformed from a nearly empty building to a world-class museum in less than 100 years.   Tour highlights include (if artwork is not on loan or being restored etc.): • "Ginevra de’ Benci" by Leonardo da Vinci – the only painting by this artist in the USA • "Little Dancer" by Edgar Degas • The famous portrait of "George Washington" by Gilbert Stuart • "Self Portrait" by Vincent Van Gogh • "Venus with a Mirror" by Titian • "Woman with a Parasol" by Claude Monet • "The Alba Madonna" by Raphael With the collection featuring roughly 141,000 paintings, drawings, photographs, sculptures and forms of new media that stretch all the way back to the Middle Ages, you’ll be thankful to your passionate and engaging guide for navigating you, bringing a personal touch to each tour, adding own favorite anecdotes and tips along the way. 

Washington D.C: Self-Guided Walking Tour with GPS & Audio

5. Washington D.C: Self-Guided Walking Tour with GPS & Audio

Spend the day exploring Washington D.C., listening to the history narrated by professional voice artists, and reading the information curated by creative writers. See the iconic monuments and buildings of this historic city on this self-guided tour. Begin next to Pershing Park, right across from the White House south lawn. From here, make your way to the White House itself, admire the seat of American power, and learn some facts about its construction.  From here, head south toward Constitution Gardens and pick up some insight into D.C.’s complicated history along the way. Through the gardens, find what was once the city’s most controversial monument: The Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Next, head to the Lincoln Memorial, and then the Korean War Veterans Memorial. Hear about the fraught political struggle which wracked the White House during this bloody conflict. Discover the aftermath of the War of 1812, and how D.C. grew into what it is today. The next monument will be the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, honoring the nation’s most revered civil rights leader. Then cross the Kutz Bridge and learn why the Potomac River is so significant to this city’s history. From this bridge, see the Thomas Jefferson Memorial. Then, reach the National Mall. Here’s you’ll get an up-close look at the Washington Monument and learn the history of George Washington’s connection to this important city. Along this route, pass many museums. This includes the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, and the National Gallery of Art.  On the final leg of the tour, arrive at three of the most crucial buildings in the city: The Library of Congress, the Capitol Building, and the Supreme Court of the United States. The tour will conclude here, amid these three awe-inspiring structures.

Natural History Museum & National Gallery of Art Guided Tour

6. Natural History Museum & National Gallery of Art Guided Tour

With more than 126 million artifacts housed in the National Museum of Natural History, and approximately 141,000 works of art to see in the collection of the National Gallery of Art, this guided 5-hour tour will make sure you get to see the absolute highlights. More than just storytellers, your passionate and engaging guide will approach touring in a different way bringing a personal touch to each tour, and being sure to answer all your questions.  The 5-hour combination tour starts at the National Museum of Natural History. The collection is housed in a purpose-built structure that covers the area of 18 football fields, but your guide will be there to make sure you don’t waste a second exploring the best parts. See an amazing array of wonders from the 46-karat Hope Diamond, to real mummies, to an arctic narwhal and everything else in-between. After a break for lunch, visit the National Gallery of Art for a guided highlights tour of an eclectic mix of art of Renaissance artists, the French Impressionists and great American painters, all under one roof. Your guide will make sure you get to see such famous works of art as "Ginevra de’ Benci" by Leonardo da Vinci, "Little Dancer" by Edgar Degas, the famous portrait of "George Washington" by Gilbert Stuart and much more.

Washington DC: National Mall & National Gallery Guided Tour

7. Washington DC: National Mall & National Gallery Guided Tour

This tour is one of the best ways to visit DC’s iconic sites including the White House. Explore the history of the nation’s capital, as well as the monuments and memorials of the National Mall that feature figures like George Washington (the Washington Monument) and Abraham Lincoln (the Lincoln Memorial). Your engaging private guide will share the stories about the major players and events in American history that have earned memorials on the Mall, including the Korean War, World War II and Vietnam.  After a break, visit the National Gallery of Art and follow your guide through one of America’s best collections of artwork produced by Renaissance artists, French Impressionists and great American painters. See works from Claude Monet, Raphael, Gilbert Stuart, Vincent Van Gogh and Edgar Degas, as well as more modern artists like Picasso, Pollock, Warhol and O’Keefe, as you learn what’s really behind the creation of some of these pieces. Some pieces you’ll see on this tour include Ginevra de’ Benci by Leonardo da Vinci, Self Portrait by Vincent Van Gogh and Woman with a Parasol by Claude Monet. Listen as your guide fills you in on the techniques behind some of the paintings, as well as some of the history and scandals that happened because of them.

DC: City Highlights Tour and Photography Class with Wine

8. DC: City Highlights Tour and Photography Class with Wine

Enjoy a wholesome adventure by taking a guided sightseeing tour to some of the major cultural and historic sites in DC. Then, learn all about film photography in an interesting class, where you'll get a wonderful insight into this traditional craft while sipping on a glass of wine. Start out by exploring the city, with visits to the US Botanic Garden, the Union Market historic district, the National Cathedral, the trendy Adams Morgan neighborhood, and the National Gallery of Art. Complement your experience by joining a 90-minute photography course, where you'll learn how to develop traditional film photography in a dark room and even take your developed image home. While you work on your photo skills, you can enjoy some snacks, wine, and other drinks.

Other Sightseeing Options in National Gallery of Art

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What people are saying about National Gallery of Art

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 466 reviews

Well worth it, plenty of picture opportunities and great information given on sights along with sight seeing tips outside of tour.

Given the heat, it would have been impossible to see in two hours what we have now done with the guided Segway Tour!

Fantastic and easy to learn. Had a blast! Far better than walking. Erica is the BEST!

OUR guide was very kindly and prepared to make his work..

Enjoyable, efficient, and not tiring to do the tour.