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National Portrait Gallery

Certificate of Excellence
Neighbourhood: Downtown / Chinatown
As featured in DC Art Lovers Guide and 4 other guides
Sponsored by:
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Address: F Street NW, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, DC 20560
Phone Number:
+1 202-357-2700
11:30 - 19:00
Closed now
See all hours
Sun - Sat 11:30 - 19:00
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour

Visitors can view the portraits of all the U.S. presidents.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 2,383 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 1623
  • 515
    Very good
  • 71
  • 8
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Almost skipped it

Do not skip it! It's the coolest building and has wonderful exhibits! Portraits sounded like such a snooze fest but there's so much more there. And some of the portraits were... read more

Reviewed 8 September 2015
Jen G
via mobile
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2,383 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 2,217: English reviews
Level Contributor
72 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 September 2015 via mobile

Do not skip it! It's the coolest building and has wonderful exhibits! Portraits sounded like such a snooze fest but there's so much more there. And some of the portraits were really neat also! One of my favorite museums here.

1 Thank Jen G
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
125 reviews
60 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 September 2015

Disclaimer: I am not nearly as much into art museums as I am science/history/super-nerdy type museums. That being said, there were some very nice works here and some even held my attention for more than a passing glance. Therefore, this is in the upper echelon of art museums (seriously, I tend to just whiz through these things!). So if you... More 

1 Thank Tee610
Laramie, Wyoming
Level Contributor
124 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 September 2015

This gallery is a bit off the beaten track, but has a very nice collection of American art as well as the portraits. The gallery space is engaging and well-done, with many fine sculptures and paintings from every era of American art. The indoor atrium space is a hidden bonus, with an enormous wavy paneled-glass skylight, plantings of trees, shrubs,... More 

Thank AdventurousTraveler6
Level Contributor
253 reviews
76 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 219 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 September 2015

This gallery is across from the Spy Museum and is a must see for the President portraits alone. (Clinton's was interesting and makes sense). Although Presidents are the main attraction, the next wing that joins with the Presidents focuses on the civil rights movement and should be seen as well. A quick walk through of some of the other areas... More 

1 Thank synToronto
Newtown, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
103 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 September 2015

I like portraits and found a brief description next to each person. I was impressed with those that are included in this gallery, like Indian Chiefs. I also found people who had lived near me. Always something NEW to LEARN.

1 Thank KC R
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 September 2015 via mobile

The tour was very helpful in pointing out significant details of the artwork. Very informative in a relax environment. And its free! I like it! :)

1 Thank Brenda C
Chevy Chase, Maryland
Level Contributor
189 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 August 2015

Special exhibits always outstanding. Covered courtyard for snacks, drinks and contemplation very special and super quiet. Permanent collection of President's portraits a great exhibit for out of town visitors.

1 Thank hakccmd
Hickory, North Carolina
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviewed 31 August 2015

I really enjoyed seeing all the portraits of the presidents! Just neat to see things in person that you've seen in books and movies and the like.

Thank Daryl M
Level Contributor
51 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 August 2015

This was a great walk through history. We really enjoyed the President's wing. This is a must see if you are in DC. One thing I learned is that you will not see the current US President's portrait until they have left office.

1 Thank Netstraveling
Merrick, New York
Level Contributor
50 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 August 2015

The National Portrait gallery, is a worth while stop when visiting DC attractions. There are a great many portraits of personalities that you will remember. The special presentation when we visited were Matthew Brady photographs of well known Civil War Generals. For those who are Civil War buffs, the pictures were of great interest. The display rooms are spacious, so... More 

Thank roberte35

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  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?