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Enjoy Dumbarton Oaks Safely

Learn more about how to make your visit to Dumbarton Oaks safe and enjoyable.


Visiting Virtually Gardens Information Museum Information

We are happy to welcome visitors back to Dumbarton Oaks. See Hours and Admission for more information.  All public events will be virtual.

We are closely monitoring developments regarding the COVID-19 outbreak and will update our website to reflect any changes to our operations and programming.

  

Visiting Virtually

Our virtual offerings bring Dumbarton Oaks’ gardens, museum collections, and events to your home.

Virtual Garden Tour

Learn more about the history of the Dumbarton Oaks Gardens on this virtual video tour.

 

Museum Collections Online

Explore the museum’s rich collections, including Byzantine and Pre-Columbian art, European decorative arts and paintings, and Asian art.

 

Online Exhibits

Explore curated selections from across our collections in a series of online exhibits.

 

Family Activities

Bring creative learning experiences inspired by the museum’s collections into your home.

 

Recorded Events

View recordings of selected recent events.

 

Virtual Backgrounds

Use these images from our museum and garden as your own custom background for virtual teaching, learning, or meeting.

 

 

Information for Gardens Visitors

We are pleased to welcome visitors back to Dumbarton Oaks Gardens. Please note the guidelines below to make your visit safe and enjoyable.

  • The Dumbarton Oaks Gardens will be open 3–6 pm, Tuesday–Sunday, except for federal holidays.
  • The gardens may close in hazardous conditions, such as thunderstorms.
  • Timed tickets are REQUIRED for entry to the Gardens. For safety reasons, to minimize physical contact and practice social distancing, reservations must be made in advance online. Reservations are by timed-entry and are limited to maintain a safe capacity. All tickets must be scanned to allow entry. 
  • Visitors who have been fully vaccinated may enjoy the gardens without wearing a mask. Those over the age of 2 who have not been vaccinated, or are still in the process of being vaccinated, MUST continue wearing a mask.
  • Visitors are required to practice physical distancing by staying six feet apart from other groups of visitors.
  • Restrooms and water fountains are not available in the Gardens.
  • Docent tours are not available.
  • There will be no school group visits or field trips.
  • Exhibition programming will be virtual. Please follow us on social media or visit Upcoming Events for more information.
  • Hand sanitizer stations are available throughout the Gardens.

Purchase Timed Tickets Purchase Season Pass

Frequently Asked Questions

Why haven’t you opened before now?

Our priority is the safety of visitors, Dumbarton Oaks staff, and the community. We have been closely following the COVID-19 statistics, including infection rates and vaccine progress, in order to assess when we could reopen the Gardens without undue risk. We are pleased to reopen at a reduced capacity and will continue to monitor the public health situation, modifying our capacity as needed. 

Do I have to wear a mask?

Per CDC guidelines, those visitors who have been fully vaccinated may enjoy the Gardens without wearing a mask. Those who have not been vaccinated, or are still in the process of being vaccinated, must continue wearing a mask.

Our garden security officers will continue to wear masks as an added safety measure.

Why are the bathrooms closed?

As small, enclosed spaces shared by individuals from multiple households, bathrooms are a potentially high-risk environment for the spread of COVID-19. This risk is exacerbated by limited ventilation, aerosolized particulates resulting from flushing, and high-touch surfaces. We are closing the bathrooms out of an abundance of caution for the safety of visitors and Dumbarton Oaks staff.

Why do we have to use timed tickets?

Timed tickets, made available in limited quantities, allow us to reopen the Gardens to the public, by safely managing capacity and allowing visitors enough space to practice social distancing.

If I have a season pass, do I need a timed ticket to enter the Gardens?

No. Please show your season pass or purchase confirmation email at the Garden Gate to enter the Gardens.

If I have a Harvard ID, do I need a timed ticket to enter the Gardens?

Yes, you will need a timed ticket to enter the Gardens. Please email GardenVisitor@doaks.org to inquire about specific instructions for Harvard ID holders.

   

Information for Museum Visitors

We are pleased to welcome visitors back to Dumbarton Oaks Museum and Museum Shop on September 21. Please note the guidelines below to make your visit safe and enjoyable.

  • The Dumbarton Oaks Museum will be open 2–5 p.m., Tuesday–Sunday, except for federal holidays.
  • The Museum Shop will be open 2–5 p.m., Tuesday–Saturday, except for federal holidays. No more than 2 visitors may be in the Shop at one time. You can also visit our Museum Shop online. Please note that the Shop will be closed on Sundays.
  • Admission to the Museum is free.

Reserve Timed Tickets

Beginning September 21, all visitors age 12 or older must provide proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test administered within the previous 72 hours. Please see below for details.

This policy is designed to protect the health and safety of everyone spending time within the Museum.

Policy Information

  • All visitors age 12 and older are required to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. Visitors age 17 and older must also present a valid driver’s license or government-issued form of ID, such as a passport.
  • Vaccination documentation must be authentic and reflect that visitors are fully vaccinated, having received their final dose at least two weeks prior to the day of their visit. Acceptable proof of vaccination includes a CDC COVID-19 vaccination card, photo of the card, or a digital vaccine record (displayed through an app such as Bindle).
  • Anyone not vaccinated or who is unable to verify their vaccination status for any reason will be required to provide documentation of a negative COVID-19 PCR test (not a rapid test) taken within the last 72 hours. Proof of a negative test must be in the form of written medical documentation (either paper or electronic) and must include the test date, test result, type of test, and entity issuing the result.
  • Staff will verify documentation upon your arrival, but Dumbarton Oaks will not collect or store this information. Please do not email your documentation in advance of your visit.
  • Visitors younger than 12 years old do not need to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to enter, but must adhere to all other visitor policies and must be accompanied by an adult who has satisfied the above requirements.
  • Any person who does not meet these requirements may be denied entry to the museums, notwithstanding their reservations.

Other COVID-19 Policies

  • 15 people are allowed to enter the Museum each hour, to allow visitors enough space to practice social distancing. Each group of visitors may have no more than 4 people.
  • Timed tickets are REQUIRED for entry to the Museum. For safety reasons, to minimize physical contact and practice social distancing, reservations must be made in advance online. Reservations are by timed-entry and are limited to maintain a safe capacity. All tickets must be scanned to allow entry. 
  • Masks MUST be worn at all times by all visitors over the age of 2.
  • Face coverings must cover both the nose and mouth of the wearer and must provide a tight fit against the face.
  • Unacceptable face coverings include single-layer cloth face coverings, bandanas hanging loosely and not secured under the chin, masks with exhalation valves/vents, and coverings made from loosely woven material or highly elastic fabric, which can become ineffective.
  • Visitors are required to practice physical distancing by staying six feet apart from other groups of visitors.
  • Docent tours will not be available.
  • There will be no school group visits or field trips.
  • Restrooms are available to visitors and cleaned at regular intervals throughout the day.
  • Exhibition programming will be virtual. Please follow us on social media or visit Upcoming Events for more information.
  • Hand sanitizer stations are available throughout the Museum.
  • To help protect visitors and staff, we ask that you stay home if you are unwell, are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, have been diagnosed with COVID-19 within 14 days prior to your visit, or have been in close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with or experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 within 14 days prior to your visit.
  • Visitors agree to abide by the guidelines on the Museum’s website and by all instructions posted in the Museum or provided by staff during the visit. If a visitor or member of their party fails to follow the Museum guidelines and instructions, they may be denied entry or required to leave the premises.
  • These policies are subject to change or reevaluation based on the evolving health crisis. We encourage you to check back here before your visit.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why haven’t you opened before now?

Our priority is the safety of visitors, Dumbarton Oaks staff, and the community. We have been closely following the COVID-19 statistics, including infection rates and vaccine progress, in order to assess when we could reopen the Museum without undue risk. We are pleased to reopen at a reduced capacity and will continue to monitor the public health situation, modifying our capacity as needed. 

Why do we have to use timed tickets?

Timed tickets, made available in limited quantities, allow us to reopen the Museum to the public, by safely managing capacity and allowing visitors enough space to practice social distancing.

Will my Museum ticket grant me entry to the Gardens as well?

No, tickets for the Museum and Gardens are separate.

I reserved a ticket but cannot make it. How do I cancel?

Please visit Eventbrite to cancel your reserved ticket(s).

Tickets are listed as sold out OR I can only reserve 3 tickets, but I need one more. Is there anything you can do?

Due to capacity limits, hourly tickets may be listed as sold out. We are unable to override this in the system, so you will have to choose a different date and time to visit the Museum. If the system is only allowing you to purchase a certain number of tickets, that is because there are only that many left. You may have to select a different date and time to accommodate your entire party.

Why do I have to wear a mask?

From CDC.gov: COVID-19 spreads mainly from person to person through respiratory droplets. Respiratory droplets travel into the air when you cough, sneeze, talk, shout, or sing. These droplets can then land in the mouths or noses of people who are near you or they may breathe these droplets in.

Masks are a simple barrier to help prevent your respiratory droplets from reaching others. Studies show that masks reduce the spray of droplets when worn over the nose and mouth.

You should wear a mask, even if you do not feel sick. This is because several studies have found that people with COVID-19 who never develop symptoms (asymptomatic) and those who are not yet showing symptoms (pre-symptomatic) can still spread the virus to other people. Wearing a mask helps protect those around you, in case you are infected but not showing symptoms.

If I have a Harvard ID, do I need a timed ticket to enter the Museum?

Yes, you will need a timed ticket to enter the Museum.