Visit the Montana Capitol

Montana Capitol

On This Page:
Tours
Presentations
When to Visit
Schedule Your Visit
Safety & Decorum
Delays & Cancellations
Parking

The State of Montana welcomes visitors to the Capitol in Helena and recognizes the educational value of such visits. Visitors may tour the "People's House" on their own or may take advantage of official tours and presentations.

Visit the Montana Capitol (brochure, PDF)

Tours

The Montana Historical Society offers 1-hour guided tours of the Capitol for student and tourist groups.

These tours focus primarily on the art, architecture, and history of the building. They also touch lightly on the legislative process and other aspects of state government.

The Governor's Office welcomes visitors to tour the Hall of Governors and, when not in use, the elegant Governor's Reception Room. These are located in the east wing of the second floor.  (Back to top)

Presentations

The Montana Legislative Branch offers age-appropriate, 30- to 60-minute presentations on representative democracy and the legislative process.

The Montana Secretary of State's Office offers age-appropriate, 15- to 45-minute presentations on voting, elections, and the role of the Secretary of State as keeper of the State Seal and official state records and as registrar of businesses operating in Montana.

All agencies would appreciate at least 2 weeks notice to plan for tours and presentations.  (Back to top)

When to Visit

Capitol: Open Monday-Friday 7:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. and Saturdays, Sundays, and most holidays from 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. The Capitol is closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year's Day. Presentations are not available on weekends.

Montana Legislature: Convenes in regular session in early January of odd-numbered years. Sessions usually adjourn near the end of April in odd-numbered years. Between sessions, interim legislative committees meet periodically at the Capitol during regular business hours.

Capitol Events Calendar: To ensure that you get the most out of your visit, we recommend that you check the calendar and choose a date when few or no other visits are already planned.  (Back to top)

Schedule Your Visit

To arrange a tour, presentation, or both, contact:

Montana Historical Society
Deb Mitchell, Program Specialist
406-444-4789, dmitchell@mt.gov

We recommend that teachers prepare student groups for their visit by discussing state history and/or government in class. You also may wish to provide questions from your students in advance.  (Back to top)

Safety & Decorum

Remember, the Capitol is a work place in which important business is conducted. During legislative sessions, it can be very crowded. To ensure that visits are safe, productive, and enjoyable for all involved, we strongly recommend the following:

  • Provide at least 1 adult chaperone for every 10 students.
  • Arrange to leave coats, backpacks, lunches, and other belongings on the bus. There is no space to store belongings in the Capitol, nor is there any capacity to deal with lost belongings.
  • Silence or turn off cell phones while in the building.
  • Speak and move quietly while in the building.
  • Dress comfortably but appropriately for a place of business.

No weapons, alcohol, or smoking are permitted in the Capitol or any other state buildings.  (Back to top)

Delays & Cancellations

If you have changes in plans or are delayed en route for any reason, please notify us as soon as possible at the telephone number provided above. This will allow us to try to reschedule tours and presentations. Please keep in mind that rescheduling may not be possible.  (Back to top)

Parking

Parking is extremely limited in the Capitol Complex, especially during legislative sessions. Buses may drop off students at the south entrance to the Capitol, but drivers should park in designated bus parking space on Sanders Street between Eighth and Ninth Streets.

Visitors may park personal vehicles in any nonrestricted lot on the Capitol Complex. All Helena Parking Commission rules are in effect.  (Back to top)