Washington Madams of DC Tour

(95 Reviews)

About this activity

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Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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$34 $31
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Experience Highlights

On this guided walking tour of downtown Washington, you'll learn the story of how hundreds of brothels came to flood the centre of the US capital. For about 2.5 hours, you'll walk the streets of what were once some of DC's most dangerous neighbourhoods.

You'll pass iconic buildings that were once homes of pleasure in the capital, such as the National Archives Museum and the National Gallery of Art . With an expert guide, you'll hear some of the most scandalous tales of the US capital.

  • Tour downtown Washington and see the sites of some of the most popular brothels of the time.
  • Be accompanied by an expert guide and learn about the history of 19th century Washington.

Hear tales of the US capital's most dangerous neighbourhoods and locales.

What’s included

  • Madams Tour of Washington DC
  • Expert guide

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Step by Step

Tour downtown Washington DC and discover all the changes that some of the capital's most stately neighbourhoods have undergone over the last century. You'll be accompanied by an expert guide, from whom you'll hear all sorts of stories and scandalous tales of 19th century Washington.

You will learn about the lives of prostitutes of the time and why prostitution was so widespread in Washington DC. During the Civil War, Union troops were stationed in the US capital, and soldiers liked to flock downtown for entertainment. As a result, all sorts of indecent businesses flourished in the capital.

You will discover that places where today's government buildings stand were once home to pleasure houses. You will learn about the history of Murder Bay, the dangerous neighbourhood where Freedom Plaza now stands. It was a place full of crime and danger, crowded with brothels, taverns and gambling houses, which is now an open area where concerts and music festivals are held.

You will pass by the Trump International Hotel, a luxurious hotel that was also once the site of brothels and illicit businesses. In front of the National Archives Museum, you'll learn about the role prostitutes played in society and their enormous influence. At the IOOF Temple Building, you will see one of the places where upper-class working girls met with army officers .

You'll stop in front of the National Gallery of Art, where some of Washington DC's most expensive brothels were located. Both houses of pleasure were known for their luxury, but also for their bitter rivalry .

Opposite the National Museum of the American Indian you'll see an archaeological dig where the remains of some of Washington's most glamorous brothels have been found.

A comprehensive, off-the-beaten-path tour full of fascinating stories about the criminality and prostitution of 19th century Washington. Ideal for history buffs and lovers of scandalous tales.


· 95 Reviews
  • E
    (0 Reviews)
    We loved every minute of this tour. From the moment we met the guide, she was very friendly and engaging with everyone in the group. Everything explained was amazing!
  • R
    (0 Reviews)
    We took the tour at night and it was great because we felt like we were going back in time. Everyone who is in DC should do this experience. 10/10
  • E
    (0 Reviews)
    The guide was very knowledgeable about everything that had happened in this area. This type of tour usually generates a lot of discussion and doubts, and she was always willing to resolve them.
  • J
    (0 Reviews)
    Spectacular. We were given the background of each story, from the 19th century. Very thorough, it felt like an interactive history class.
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