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Albany and Central New York Sights

New York State Capitol

  • Washington Ave. and State St. Map It
  • Albany
  • Government Building
  • Fodor's Choice

Fodor's Review

It took more than 30 years to complete this grand building (1867–99), which incorporates elaborate carvings, interesting architectural elements, and eclectic styles. The 45-minute guided tour highlights the ornate Great Western Staircase (aka the Million Dollar Staircase)—which took 13 years and 600 stone carvers to complete—and, right over it, a 3,000-square-foot skylight that had been covered from World War II until 2002. Amid the carved faces adorning the staircase

pillars are several famous visages. You can visit the legislative chambers and, when open, the governor's ceremonial offices. Tours begin at the visitor center on the concourse level of Empire State Plaza.

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Sight Information


Washington Ave. and State St., Albany, New York, 12248, United States

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Sight Details:

  • Free
  • Tours weekdays 10, noon, 2, and 3; weekends 11, 1, and 3


Map View

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Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating
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Oct 13, 2008

A stunner

Arguably the most impressive US state capitol building. Looks like a French chateau from the outside. Inside, there's plenty of stunning detail. Be sure to take the tour to see the staircases (especially the "million dollar staircase"), the assembly chambers (especially the senate), and the War Room (excellent ceiling frescoes). An absolute must-see.

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