So much to see in Washington DC
My fiancée and I were looking to take a short break and having explored a lot of Europe decided to go further afield this time and travel to Washington DC. The flight time is less than 8 hours so very manageable.
Once we arrived in Washington Dulles airport rather than queuing for a taxi we had pre booked a shared service with a company called `Super Shuttle` which was well worthwhile. It took a bit longer as we were the last hotel drop off but much better value than getting a cab. When you arrive in Washington with the time difference it tends to be late afternoon and getting into the centre of DC is really busy at it tends to be rush hour so be prepared to queue.
Our hotel was near to Central Station so a good location to set off to see the sights. We started at The Capitol Building which is stunning with great views from Capitol Hill. Make sure you go inside and do the tour even if there is a queue as it`s well worthwhile
From there just walk and head towards the Lincoln Memorial where you will pass so many fantastic sights and monuments on the way. Look out particularly for the wonderful tribute to the Vietnam War and the stunning memorial to commemorate ww2. Try and find the memorial to the Korean War as it is simply stunning with soldiers in a field that are so lifelike and so moving.
The Lincoln Memorial itself is outstanding and set in a position that gives you the opportunity to look back at many of the wonderful sights of Washington DC.
After leaving `The Linc` as it`s called there, we headed off to see the White House which you can get reasonably close to. There are two vantage points so make sure once you`ve seen it you walk around the corner to see it from a different vantage point.
Leaving there we found a great bar called the `Elephant & Castle` which is well worth a visit, loads of different beers and wines to try and the pretzels are great.
Because you tend to do so much on your first day it`s worth travelling out to Arlington Cemetery for day two of your trip. We found it really easy to get to on the metro. It`s incredibly moving and so beautifully kept and respected. Make sure you see the` Tomb of the Unknown Soldier` and the changing of the guard ceremony there. You canl also see the tribute to President John F Kennedy and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. The most stunning monument there and worth going just to see this is` Iwo Jima` it is incredibly moving and simply stunning.
Day three we took a bus which was really cheap out to Georgetown which is so worth a visit. It is such a classy place with great restaurants and bars you almost forget that you are in a huge city like Washington. Sit by the river for a while it`s like being in London and being in Putney or Richmond.
The only negative we found on our trip was being out in the evenings. We found after about 10pm the atmosphere changed and you don`t want to take a wrong turn on your way back to your hotel as it can get a bit daunting. There are a lot of homeless people sleeping rough in Washington DC so I would recommend taking a cab back to your hotel.
Overall Washington really is worth a visit with so much to see and do. I would recommend a short break for 4 nights.
written by Steve Martin