It is known around the world that Washington, D.C. is the capital of the United States of America. The city’s political history makes it a remarkable hotspot for tourists who are mostly interested in its monuments and memorials. Most of them who come to D.C rush to the National Mall which a long (2 Miles) stretch of parkland that holds many of the city’s monuments. Apart from attractions depicting the city’s political history, there are several other places you can go and things you can do.
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Parks are the hub of activity in Washington. It is a fact that 21.9% of the city is covered in parkland with the National Mall being the most famous. Since it will be your first spot after you land, you can later consider the 2000 acre Rock Creek Park which is full of deer, rabbits, squirrels, birds and coyotes. The later has many biking and hiking trails and not to forget its golf course. Other parks worth visiting are the National Arboretum, Roosevelt Island, Meridian Hill Park and Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens. Festivals worth attending include A Capitol Fourth on Independence Day, Smithsonian Folklife Festival and DC Blues Festival. You can also watch a sports game and especially if you are a fan of teams like Washington Wizards or Washington Redskins.
There are many hotels of virtually every class which can be found in the city’s neighborhoods. Before you travel, be sure to note that most of the hotels located downtown have parking charges unlike those outside the city. Popular lodging options are located in East End, West End and Georgetown primarily because they are close to tourist attraction. Most of those in Georgetown are boutique hotels.
The primary locations for sightseeing are National Mall, Capitol Hill and West End. Attractions in National Mall include the world-famous Washington Monument, Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial, National Gallery of Art and the Vietnam War Memorial. Some attractions worth visiting in East End include National Archives, American Art Museum and the International spy museum.
The best time to visit Washington would be during its spring and fall. In spring the city boasts of cool breezes, lush growth of vegetation, moderate temperatures, budding trees and flowers. Very few visitors come in winter but it is a perfect time if you are a fan of theatre.
There are three major airports which can be used to get into Washington. These are the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, the Washington Dulles International Airport and the Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport. You can find tickets for most carriers which service these airports at faremachine.com. After landing, you can use a rental car, a taxi or a transit bus to get to the city.
If you are interested in souvenirs, explore the stores near National Mall and East End or the gift shops of the Smithsonian museums. There are upscale boutiques and vintage stores in Georgetown, Adams Morgan, Upper Northwest and Shaw.
Several cuisines from around the world are represented in the restaurants of Washington. For upscale dining check out restaurants located at Dupont Circle, East End, West End and Georgetown. For a quick snack, check out the D.C hot dog stands which are all around National Mall; they serve smoked half-beef, and half-pork sausages which are commonly known as half-smokes.
There are many clubs in Shaw which feature play pop and rock or jazz and blues. A few popular ones are 9:30 club, U Street Music Hall and the Fillmore Silver Spring. There are many clubs in East End and do not forget to observe dress code if a club you want to go to requires you to adhere to one.
Only international visitors need a passport or Visa while visiting Washington, D.C. If you are flying domestically and are a US citizen, you won’t need one.