Guide To Candlelight Tours Of The White House 2012

December 10, 2012 8:00 AM

(credit: Thinkstock)

(credit: Thinkstock)

(credit: Thinkstock)

Candlelight Tours of the White House
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20500
(202) 456-7041

Price: free

The Tour

“Joy to All” is the 2012 theme of the White House Holiday decorations. Visitors to the White House will see 54 decorated trees throughout the White House. There are four trees in the Grand Foyer trimmed with ornaments that honor former first ladies as far back as Jacqueline Kennedy. Inside of the Blue Room stands the official White House Christmas tree, which stands at 18 feet, 6 inches tall. For children, there is also a life-size replica of Bo, the first family’s dog in the East Garden Room.

Related: Best Places to Cut Down Your Own Christmas Tree in the D.C. Area


Anyone 18 years or older will be required to present a valid, government-issued photo identification such as a driver’s license, military ID, U.S. or other government-issued passport or ID. All information (name, date of birth, city, etc.) must match the photo ID presented upon arrival at The White House. Foreign nationals must show their passport as their form of identification. Photocopies, expired IDs, or other transmissions of these documents are not considered valid forms of ID.

Prohibited Items

Some items are prohibited when visiting The White House. They include cameras or video recorders, tobacco products, book bags, backpacks or purses, handbags, food or beverages, personal grooming items (i.e. makeup, lotion, etc.), ammunition, guns, aerosol containers, electric stun guns, strollers, martial arts weapons/devices, fireworks, mace, any type of pointed objects or knives of any size. Other items may be determined to be prohibited at the discretion of The Secret Service. Visitors may take umbrellas, car keys, wallets and cell phones, including those with cameras. Cell phones are not allowed to be used while inside the White House. Violators may have their cell phones confiscated. If you arrive with prohibited items, there will not be a place to store those items, so you will not be allowed to enter the White House.


Using public parking is strongly recommended because there is no on-street parking near the White House. Use Federal Triangle (blue and orange lines), McPherson Square (blue and orange lines) and Metro Center (blue, orange, and red lines) Metro subway stations to the White House. These stations are the closest to the White House.


The closest public restrooms to the White House are in the Ellipse Visitor Pavilion south of the White House. Public restrooms and telephones will not be available.


Notify the officer at the Visitors Entrance upon arrival to secure a wheelchair loan. Visitors in wheelchairs or with other mobility concerns will come in through the ramp at the ground floor entrance. An elevator will be used for transport from the ground floor to the state floor.

Hearing-Impaired & Visually-Impaired

Guide animals are allowed access and may enter the White House for those who are visually impaired. For assistance for those who may have a hearing or visual impairment, contact your congressional member to inform them of any assistance needed during your visit to the White House tour.

Current Information

The White House reserves the right to cancel tours. Call the Visitors Office information line for any last-minute changes to the Candlelight Tour schedule.

Related: A Guide to Visiting The White House

Sarah Hearn is a freelance writer covering all things DC. Her work can be found on

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