WNC Gargoyles: Be your own tour guide

National Cathedral

Every year April – October, the National Cathedral offers Gargoyle Tours on the last Sunday of the month. A couple of years ago my wife and I went to one and left disappointed by the tour, but impressed by the Cathedral.

The tour we were on was unorganized from the start. After paying our entry fee ($5 each) we were given poor directions and wound up being late for the slide show. Following that were we led outside by our volunteer guide and basically told to look up as she pointed at a few specific gargoyles and then told us to look around at our own pace. So, for a slideshow that we missed most of and a “tour” that was about four minutes long we paid $10 and freed up a Sunday to head up there. My advice — download and print this guide (PDF) and head up to the Cathedral whenever you find it convenient. Visiting the Cathedral, the sixth largest in the world, is worth the trip, just not the $5 for the tour.

2 Comments so far

  1. Andrew (unregistered) on April 26th, 2006 @ 5:27 pm

    The whole beauty of the Cathedral Open House is the ability to go up into the Bell Tower. Other than that, it is a regular day at Mt. St. Alban.

    It is a glorious view from up there, as there is nothing close in height….you can see the expanses into Maryalnd, VA and the corners of DC.

  2. ak (unregistered) on April 28th, 2006 @ 1:09 pm

    There are additional PDFs available at the cathedral’s website describing the various Gargoyles available. Did you know there is a Darth Vader on the cathedral?!


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