The National Gallery has an east building and a west building which are adjacent to each other so you can easily visit both in one trip. The east building houses modern and contemporary art, the west building houses European masters from the medieval period through the late 19th century plus pre-20th century works by American artists. Many paintings and sculptures were donated by wealthy philanthropic collectors so there are galleries that display the works of just one artist or several artists with similar styles. It’s pretty cool to see a large series of paintings by wonderful artists like Rembrandt or Renoir grouped together in a small setting.
Both museum buildings are accessible. The east building has a ramp at the entrance on 4th Street. The west building has ramps at the entrances on 6th Street and Constitutional Ave. A below ground tunnel connects the buildings at the Concourse level.
A special exhibit in the west building, Vermeer and the Masters of Genre Painting, was very crowded which made it difficult to navigate and see the paintings. The crowds thinned near closing time.
We parked on Madison Drive in front of the west building. DC has recently implemented fee parking along all of the streets where parking was previously free. On most streets the fee is $2.00 an hour payable by credit card or phone app. The spaces are not marked with lines so RVs fees are the same as car fees. The maximum time is 3 hours, the same as it was previously. In the past this was not enforced but now it’s necessary to pay attention to the time which puts a crimp in long walks or museum visits. A benefit of the parking fees is that spaces are easy to find. Spaces that would have filled by 9:30 in the morning are still available at 12:00. Museum East Building 38.89065, -77.01853