In my humble opinion, the Library of Congress is the most beautiful building in Washington D.C. I love books and literature, so this was a must see for me. Even if you do not care for books, stop in just to see the inside of the building. It is visually stunning and heavily ornate in an Italian Renaissance-style. This building was opened in 1897.
Library of Congress Main Floor
The Library of Congress is home to millions of books, maps, music and other printed materials. It has two floors. Some of the highlights is the handwritten manuscript of the Giant Bible of Mainz and the printed Gutenberg Bible. They were both written in the 1450’s in Germany. The main Great Hall displays the Bibles as well as hundreds of maps.
A visit to the second floor, which often has a line, allows you to see inside the Main Reading Room, the mezzanine and offers incredible views of Washington DC and the U.S. Capitol. The wall at the landing of the stairs leading up to the second floor has a large mosaic of Minerva.
When I visited we had to wait in a line to view the Reading Room where researchers were busy at work.