Tour a museum for architecture, design, engineering, construction, and urban planning when you visit National Building Museum. View detailed drawings, rare photographs from the early 20th century, and original building fragments. Take your younger kids to the Building Zone to build a fort, or construct a soft-block arch in the museum's Great Hall. Tour the building itself, which is a National Historic Landmark and was completed in 1887. The museum's shop is considered the "best museum shop" by several publications, including The Washington Post and National Geographic Traveler's blog. Work out when and for how long to visit National Building Museum and other Washington DC attractions using our handy Washington DC day trip planning site .
National Building Museum Reviews
We had never heard of the National Building Museum before we started researching sites to see in Washington, D.C.. But once we read about it, the NBM became one of my husband's top priorities to visit... more »
It's the old Pension Bureau building and they have exhibits. We enjoyed the 'lawn' and saw the Secret Cities exhibit built around the Manhattan Project. more »
This is my favorite building in d.c. Not only is it incredible to look at inside but it's also infrequently visited on off days which makes it a great place to hang out and get out of the sun. If you're waiting for a table at Daikaya around the corner its perfect. One of the best gift shops ever filled with books dedicated to urban planning, architecture and related topics. Definitely worth a visit or more
Loved it. We were able to access one gallery for free. It was on eviction. Some cool themed shows that come here. The interior space is very impressive given the high ceilings. There was an interesting event taking place when we were there. This seemed common on weekends. Didn't visit the upper galleries (not free) but sure they would have been good. Highly recommend.
Plan your trip to Washington DC
Get a personalized planA complete day-by-day itinerary
based on your preferences
Customize itRefine your plan. We'll find the
best routes and schedules
Manage itEverything in one place.
Everyone on the same page.
View all >
View all >
Hidden gems in Washington DC
Side trips from Washington DC
View all >©©©©
Duration: 2h 30min
Plans to National Building Museum by other users
40 days in Richmond BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, popular sights PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 60 days in Richmond BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular sights PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 60 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM July, popular sights PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 25 days in Washington DC BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, teens, popular sights PREFERENCES: June, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 31 days in Washington DC BY A USER FROM JORDAN October, popular sights PREFERENCES: October ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular sights PACE: Medium 7 days in Washington DC BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES April, teens, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: April, teens, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium