All Information about Washington
There are hundreds of incredible attractions around the Washington D.C area that you'll want to explore while you're in town. If you're visiting for the first time, you might find it a bit overwhelming.
With so much to do and to see, it might be difficult to fit it all in, especially if your time in the nation's capital is constrained. The ideal way to spend your time in D.C is to plan out your trip so that you tap into all the best attractions that make the city unique.
It would be a shame to spend your vacation just visiting museums and monuments when there is so much more to do beyond that. Read on for the top 10 attractions Washington D.C has to offer:
If you're in Washington D.C in the spring, nobody has to tell you to visit the Cherry Blossom Festival which is a truly spectacular experience. The sight of the cherry blossoms in full bloom near the Tidal Basin is something everyone must see at least once in their lifetime. For an added bonus, take a boat tour to get a glimpse of the gorgeous trees against the backdrop of the monuments. From the water, it's a whole other experience and the view is sure to be etched in your memory for a long time.
If you're in Washington D.C; you have to spend some time on the National Mall. This 2-mile area encompassing a lot of the major monuments and museums has a lot to offer. While strolling on the Mall's beautiful sprawling grounds, be sure to check out the Lincoln Memorial, the Vietnam War's Veterans Wall, the White House and the U.S Capitol, and be sure to pop into a museum if you find one that piques your interest. They're all around the mall area. Enjoy a picnic lunch near the Washington Monument or near the fountains of the spectacular World War II Memorial.
If you need a break from all the museums, visit the U.S Botanical Gardens near the Capitol. They are spectacular and offer a jungle-like retreat from all the traffic and concrete. There is a huge variety of flora and vegetation and many gardens and ecological exhibits.
If you have kids, they will thoroughly enjoy going to the Smithsonian National Zoo up in Woodley Park. Go there by metro, and spend the day admiring thousands of exotic animals, including Washington D.C's own Pandas in the Asia Trail.
Washington D.C is lucky to be surrounded by so many great parks. Rock Creek Park is one of them and offers 1,754 acres of fun and exploration with a lot of fresh air, wild animals and magnificent trees. It's a must-see for anyone visiting the city. There are miles and miles of well-defined trails, perfect for jogging walking and cycling, and many picnic areas. There's also a Planetarium, and a Nature Center.
If you're downtown, be sure to visit the International Spy Museum. It's the only museum in the country solely focused on the role of espionage and spying throughout American history. Kids in particular will love this museum and won't want to leave as they discover tons of fun spying artifacts about the spy capital of the world.
There are exhibits showing camouflage and spy tools such as hidden cameras in clothing. Children ages 12 and above are invited to participate on an interactive hour-long Operation Spy where they have to find a missing nuclear weapon before it falls into the wrong hands by using espionage tools such as polygraphs and decrypting audio files. It's a museum that is both educational and fun for kids and adults alike.
While in D.C you may want to visit some government buildings and many of them offer free tours. One of the more interesting ones is the Bureau of Engraving and Printing which shows how money is made and printed. You'll actually get to witness millions of dollars being printed during the tour itself! Another government building worth visiting is the Department of State, where you will see the actual diplomatic reception rooms where foreign dignitaries are welcomed, and where the U.S secretaries of State conduct their briefings.
If you're tired of the city, hop into the metro and take a ride to historic Old Town Alexandria. There, you will find a charming colonial town that will delight you as you discover the sites that portray its role during the American Revolution and Civil War, and shop for antiques and souvenirs in the downtown. Sail on a romantic dinner cruise or take a water taxi to the nearby National Harbor on the Potomac River. Also don't forget to visit Christ Church where George Washington used to worship.
I Another worthwhile attraction to visit while in Washington D.C is the Wolftrap Farm Park for the Performing Arts, located about 20 minutes away in Vienna. This national park features over a 100 spectacular, world-class outdoor performances during the warmer months and has fantastic indoor shows in the winter.
Head down to Georgetown if you want to savor local culture while strolling through some of D.C's greatest shops and restaurants. Take in the architecture and narrow streets, and if you have time head down to the Waterfront area and enjoy the view of the Potomac River and the Kennedy Center. It's a perfect place to spend a leisurely afternoon when you're tired of all the sightseeing.