We will be going to Washington D.C. this fall (husband has a conference there), and I am realizing I need to start thinking about the things we want to do on our trip, so I am looking for advice. Anyone want to tell me the "must see" sites, keeping in mind I will be toting 4 kids around by myself most of the time? I have not been to D.C. since 6th grade, and the things I remember are the Smithsonian (Dorothy's ruby red slippers!), the botanical gardens (what amazing orchids!), and the fact that the rotunda was being restored and we could not tour the capitol building. Oh, and my dad refused to wait in line to take me to the top of the Washington Monument, which was the one thing I really wanted to do. So, those of you who have been more recently, what advice can you give? And is it worth it to try to get a tour of the White House (realizing I may have waited too late to get that one to happen)?
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I'd go to the Mall and monument area, where you can see several monuments- Lincoln, Vietnam, etc.
I'm not sure your kids are old enough for the holocaust museum, probably not. It is wrenching, but I'd recommend it once they're older.
The changing of the guard at the tomb of the unknown soldier is kinda cool.
What a great opportunity you have!
there is a monumment tour that was our favorite. meets at a street corner near wash monument and the tour guides wear orange hats. walking tour and we all loved it!
one of michaels was nat'l archives-especially if you've watched the movie national treasure.
museum of natural history is great
arlington cemetary is awesome
we set up an appt with marsha blackburns people and got a tour of the capital bldg that was pretty neat-you can watch if they are in session
fun fun place with lots to do-we went to the zoo -it was fine but not if you're limited on time.
monticello was great-we went there on our last day before driving out-really neat and there is a boat ride there that was only like $5 and lasted about 45 min all through the bay
Little known treasure in DC is the National Geographic museum. Also you absolutely MUST visit the OCA Cathedral on Embassy Row. Any Smithsonian museum, but for art museums the National Gallery is so worth the trip, as well as the Phillips Collection. And then one of my favorite places: Dumbarton Oaks near Georgetown. It has the best Byzantine treasures (icons, chalices, etc.) in the U.S. But I have lots of other ideas (we'll probably be there this summer, too), so remind me to tell you more. Can you tell I love to visit DC?
There I go again, posting as that strange man above!
You've probably been searching the Internet already, but this looks good: http://godc.about.com/od/dctoursitineraries/a/familytours.htm
especially Historic Strolls
Also we took Natalie to the National Zoo when she was 2 and that was a success. Otherwise I remember taking turns with my husband watching the 2 year old outside while we went in different museums separately. So not much help for you there, sorry!
sent an email to a friend from Vandy days who is in the area for a few years (not many months left)and copied your blog address to her. maybe she'll have some good suggestions...
here is a link to a post a wrote with some of our favorites.
You will love it! Fall is the best time to come.
also we have put some of our d.c adventures on here. http://www.anniegoestowashington.blogspot.com/
If you need anything when you come keep my email handy. Any friend of Tara b is a friend of me.
Thanks for all the great advice - I am really looking forward to planning this trip!
We visited DC last summer, and you're lucky to be going in the fall. The WH tour is worth it, but it is VERY short. The Capitol tour is longer and was a bit much for our youngest (5). But, you can skip the end, which takes the longest. We were disappointed by the Natl Geographic, maybe b/c ds is a huge history buff and I was expecting more. We loved the Postal Museum--not crowded, plus lots of hands on activities. Another was the Building Museum. Not crowded. Archives, Wash. Mon. were too crowded. The Mall was a huge hit, but we stayed down by the Lincoln Memorial--too much walking otherwise. Probably the best part was taking the Duck Tour. You ride on a WWII amphibious landing vehicle thru DC and then it goes into the water--and our driver let all the kids drive it when it was a boat. Plus, they got quackers (duck noise makers). It was a pricey, but hugely fun way to cover a lot of ground. I think the drivers must have to pass a stand up comedy test. You pick it up at Union Station, which is also nice.
So, the last time I was in D.C. was in college on a maymester class with my professor/former nsa agent...it was awesome! We went to the Spy Museum which is just plain cool...lipstick tubes that double as single shot guns. Also, a more sobering experience was the Holocaust Museum where they have two rooms that truly make you stop in your tracks, a room full of hair shaved from the victims and a room full of shoes confiscated from the victims. Finally, just for giggles, the Lincoln Memorial has an awesome feature not often mention in guide books - the siding along the steps doubles as a slide when one is seated on a proper jacket, at least so I have heard...
We've been there last summer for a short few days. Here are some of the posts:
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