Visit the Historic Capitol Museum
- Hours and Admission
- Arrival Information
- Group Visits
- Self-Guided Tours and Programs
- Event and Temporary Exhibit Calendar
- Directions and Parking
- Area Dining
- Other Area Attractions
Museum Hours and Admission
Monday - Friday 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
Saturday 10:00 am - 4:30 pm
Sundays and Holidays Noon - 4:30 pm
Closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day
Admission is free, however donations to support our educational programs are appreciated.
When you arrive at the Historic Capitol, please check in at the Reception Desk located on the first floor Rotunda. The first floor is one level above ground and is reached by climbing the stairs on either the east or west sides, or by using an accessible entrance on the northwest side and using the elevator. A staff member or docent will greet you, welcome you to the building, provide background information about the museum, and be available for general assistance. There are exhibits on all three floors, and visitors may download an audio tour prior to arrival. If you are with a group, please confirm with the staff member the size of your group, the amount of time you have for the visit, and the educational program options you desire.
The Historic Capitol can be quite busy, especially during the legislative session and around elections. We often have more than one group as well as many individual drop-in visitors. Your cooperation in maintaining a quiet atmosphere for other visitors is appreciated. Please have at least one adult per ten students, and typical "library manners" apply. Food and drinks are not permitted in the Museum. Water fountains are available next to the restrooms. Special access is available from the northwest entrance on the courtyard side and with elevators to each floor.
Small Exhibit Rooms
Many of the Museum's exhibit rooms have limited space; therefore, groups of not more than 10 students and a chaperone may be in a small exhibit room at any given time.
Groups may schedule programs in advanced by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (850) 487-1902.Teachers and Group Tour Guides can review program descriptions by clicking on the title of each program. Each description includes a listing of Sunshine State Standards (grades K-12) that are covered by each educational program. Daily Programs are always available, but groups of ten or more should schedule in advance to avoid overlap with other groups. Special Programs must be scheduled in advance and are subject to staff availability.
- Welcome Introduction: "The Historic Capitol" - This orientation covers the history of the building, the restored areas and exhibits.
- Introductory Video: "Florida in the Balance" - This award-winning documentary presents a short overview of Florida's political history.
- Scavenger Hunt - This handout, designed for younger children, allows them to find a few of our unusual artifacts.
- Architectural Tour: "Doorknobs and Domes" - This tour relates to the architectural highlights of the building from 1845 to the present.
- Balance of Power - A school program about the limited powers of the three branches of State government.
- Governor Jennings - Visitors meet and interact with "Governor Jennings," Florida's 18th Governor (1901-1905).
- Highlights Tour - A guided tour of the Historic Capitol's restored areas and exhibits.
- Issues in the House of Representatives - In this interactive experience, participants debate and cast their votes on legislation.
- Making My Vote Count - A co-operative school program with the Florida Supreme Court and Museum of Florida History.
The staircase in the main Rotunda provides a wonderful opportunity for a group photograph. This can be taken just before the Welcome introduction.
Self-Guided Tours and Programs
- The Daily Programs listed above are available in a self-guided format. Check in at the Reception Desk for details.
- Audio Tours may be downloaded to your MP3 player prior to arrival.
Event and Temporary Exhibit Calendar
Check the web calendar to learn about special events or programs occurring during your visit.
To help us improve our programs and services, please complete a Visitor Comment Card before you leave.
Directions and Parking
The Historic Capitol is located in the Capitol Complex, at the intersection of Apalachee Parkway and South Monroe Street. Although the museum does not have dedicated parking, there are several parking lots in the area. There is a large public parking garage in Kleman Plaza, close to the Capitol Complex. When the legislature is in session (regular session occurs March through early May), parking can be especially challenging.
Spaces for visitors with disabilities are located on west side of the House Office Building in the north side loading zone.
The bus access lane on Duval Street west of the Capitol Building, is strictly for unloading of passengers and is not designed for permanent parking. After unloading passengers, drivers may park at the Tallahassee Leon County Civic Center, located at 505 West Pensacola Street. The cost to park at the Civic Center is $10 per day for each bus. Buses enter from Pensacola Street at the ticket booth. Individual car parking is also available for a cost of $5.00 per day for each vehicle.
Some of the state office buildings in the Capitol Complex area have cafeterias that can accommodate small or large parties. Call ahead to make arrangements for large groups. Refer to the Capitol Area Map for building locations.
- Sharkey's Capitol Café - (850) 224-1660
- The Silver Bistro in the Claude Pepper Building - (850) 488-3306
- Eatz Café in the Turlington Department of Education Building - (850) 245-5063
- Fat Sandwich Café in the R. A. Gray Building – (850) 425-8303
- Capitol Cafeteria, Lower Level of The New Capitol
- Capitol Snack Bar, 10th Floor of The New Capitol
There are several restaurants along Apalachee Parkway, North Monroe Street, Tennessee Street, and in downtown Tallahassee.
Other Area Attractions
Tallahassee Area Event Calendars
- Visit Tallahassee
- Tallahassee.com Local Events
- Council on Culture & Arts for Tallahassee/Leon County
The following Tallahassee sites have programs or tours that would enrich your study of the three branches of state government. All except the Governor's Mansion are within walking distance of the Historic Capitol.
The Governor’s Mansion
700 North Monroe Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32303
Public tours of the Governor’s Mansion are available during the Holiday Season, Legislative Session and by special appointment. Tours are 30 minutes long and visitors are invited to view the five state rooms of the Mansion, plus the outdoor Manatee Sculpture Courtyard. Admission is free of charge. Parking is available directly across the street. Contact the Mansion for upcoming tour calendar.
Contact: Carol Beck at (850) 922-4991 or email@example.com
The New Capitol
402 South Monroe
Tallahassee, FL 32399
Guided and self-guided tours of the Capitol are available through the Welcome Center, located at the west plaza entrance of the Capitol. For tours during the legislative session (March and April), reservations are recommended months in advance. Special tours of the House and Senate Chamber can be arranged by your state legislator.
Contact: (850) 488-6167 or visit http://myfloridacapitol.com/index.html
The Supreme Court
400 South Duval Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399
School groups can be scheduled to participate in The Mock Oral Argument Experience, a mock oral argument in which the students play the roles of the Justices and attorneys. For the Overview of Florida’s Judicial System, school groups tour the Court building and learn its interesting history. Tour times are limited and are usually booked weeks in advance.
Contact: The Public Information Office at (850) 414-7643 or go to www.floridasupremecourt.org/education/index.shtml