The Pentagon — located across the river from Washington, D.C. in Arlington, Virginia — is more than a power center assigned to the defense of the nation. It’s a small city in itself. About 23,000 military and civilian employees work here, walking 17.5 miles of corridors, drinking 4,500 cups of coffee, and making more than 200,000 telephone calls. The World War II-era building is one of the world’s largest, with three times the floor space of the Empire State Building.
So, other than smartly dressed officers, what’s there to see at the Pentagon? Once you make a reservation through the office of your Congressional representative, our nation’s finest will escort you on a 60-minute tour that highlights significant moments in military history. Visitors can view the September 11 crash site and memorial; the Hall of Heroes, which lists all recipients of the Medal of Honor; and a display on the role of Native Americans in the U.S. military. Three sections of the dismantled Berlin Wall are also on view.
Make sure you’ve got your walking shoes on; the tour covers 1.5 miles at a brisk pace.
If you’re not part of a formal group of at least five people, you’ll need to call or write your Congressional representative to request a Pentagon tour. Visit www.house.gov or www.senate.gov to find contact information for your local Representative or Senator. Non-U.S. citizens must contact their embassy in Washington, D.C.
Group tours are available for groups of five or more people affiliated with an educational institution, government agency, church, scout troop, or military unit. Reservations for group tours must be made at least two weeks in advance. See web site for details.
For more, visit: https://pentagontours.osd.mil/overview.jsp
Hours: All guided tours of the Pentagon are free and available by reservation only. Tours are conducted Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tours are not conducted on weekends or federal holidays.
Parking: Public parking is not available at the Pentagon. Visitors may opt to park at the Pentagon City Mall. The Pentagon is less than a five-minute walk from the mall and can be reached through a pedestrian tunnel.
Metrorail: Yellow or Blue Line stops for the Pentagon.
STEVEN NUTTING says
Can we carry backpacks on the tour or is there a place to secure them during the tour? Our family will be traveling the East Coast in June and will really have no place for our backpacks.
Danny M. Calfee says
My wife, stepson and I were not able to get a tour scheduled. Is it possible to visit the Pentagon outside and if so what points of interest are available for sightseeing and/or pictures?
The District says
All visits to the Pentagon require a reservation for a tour. Also, there is no public parking at the Pentagon. See https://pentagontours.osd.mil/ for more information.
Brian Miller says
Any information regarding the Army/Navy Spirit Rally on Friday, 12/9/2011 would be appreciated. May civilian parents of cadets attend, if the rally is outside the Pentagon building? I understand that we will not be able to enter the Pentagon for this event. Thank you and God Bless.
The District says
I cannot find any details on who is allowed at the event. However, I am aware that it is scheduled for Friday morning at 11:15 a.m. Other game details can be found here.
Michelle Nielsen says
I am a little confused. Some things written above seem to indicate the Pentagon offers public tours M-F btn 9 and 3. Other comments indicate I can’t tour without having gone through Canada’s Embassy in Washington DC. It will just be my husband and I wanting a tour, so we are not part of a group. Please let me know exactly what I need to do in order to get a tour of the Pentagon.
The District says
According to the Pentagon web site, all tours require a reservation. If you are not a part of a group, you can make a reservation on the Pentagon web site tours page. U.S. Residents can also reserve a tour by contacting their Congressional or Senate Representative.