Mansion & Grounds


James and Dolley regularly welcomed guests to Montpelier, and the centerpiece of the Montpelier experience is the Mansion. The guided tour takes visitors through the drawing room, filled with art and conversation pieces, and the dining room, where they hosted dinner parties for distinguished guests, friends, and family. Also included is the presidential era library, which is filled with books and maps that reveal the brilliant mind of James Madison.

You may continue on a self-guided tour of the mansion's second floor exhibits, which include explanations of the War of 1812 and the restoration of the mansion, before moving on to the cellars to see Dolley’s kitchen and the working spaces of Montpelier's enslaved community.

Next, take a moment to reflect at Mr. Madison’s Temple, a neo-classical design that stands above what was once the estate's ice house. Finally, refresh in the Annie duPont Formal Garden. Originally established in Madison’s time as a vegetable garden, it was redesigned in the early 1900s by Annie duPont with flower beds, walkways, marble statures, and urns.


Discover James Madison's Landmark Forest

Join other nature lovers on Montpelier’s Demonstration Forest Walk or Big Woods Walk through 200 acres of old growth forest and native Virginia flora.