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el2995 Washington - A travel report by USC
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Washington,  United States - flag United States -  District of Columbia
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el2995's travel reports

Washington DC

  13 votes
Page: 1 2 3

Washington DC was an occasional day trip while living in the suburbs of Baltimore, being a mere 30 minutes drive from the 695 Baltimore Beltway to the 495 Capital Beltway via I-95, though the tricky part comes once you venture within the 495 Beltway, as the traffic in DC can be horrendous and the parking around the Capitol even worse. A good alternative is to drive to Silver Spring, Wheaton or College Park outside the Beltway and take the rather efficient DC Metro (subway) into Metro Center and then transfer to Union Station for a short walk to the Capitol building and The Capitol Mall or directly to Smithsonian Station, which is over by the old Smithsonian building and the Asian Art Museum. Washington is famous for its Mall (and the Oval Office is famous for its cigars and stained Presidential Seal carpet).

Favourite spots:
The Smithsonian Institute museums are perhaps the biggest draw to The Mall. I’ve seen the museums of Natural History, American History, Asian Art, Industry, Air and Space, and Modern Art and thoroughly enjoyed them all. I went to the Holocaust Museum but didn’t have time to wait for tickets to the main exhibit with the shoes of the victims (very haunting, I’ve been told), but saw the exhibit that tell the story of the rounding up of the Jews through the diary of a young Jewish child that is presented in series of dioramas that recreate the environment recounted in the diary. I haven’t toured the White House or the Capitol building, but those are major sites. Walking the Mall past the Washington, Vietnam and Lincoln memorials takes a bit of time but is worth it. The National Zoo was undergoing reconstruction and was not worth the trip when I went, but is probably worth the trip now.

What's really great:
Working in the aerospace industry, of course the Air and Space Museum is my favorite, with all of the historical aircraft and spacecraft displayed along with Tomahawk, Harpoon, Phoenix, Sparrow and Sidewinder missiles, an M-61 Vulcan 20 mm electric cannon, a mock-up of an aircraft carrier flight deck and one of the Moon rocks brought back during the Apollo Program. The gem exhibit in the Museum of Natural History is also good.

Sights:
Washington DC is especially nice to see when the cherry blossoms are in bloom in the spring. Take a drive along Seven Locks Road or walk the adjacent trails for some scenic beauty along the C&O Canal. DC has a somewhat small Chinatown if you want to 'yum cha' (go for dim sum and tea).

Restaurants:
The Metro's Union Station has a good selection of eateries at its food court downstairs (I usually opted for sushi), with some other restaurants mixed in with the shops on the ground floor and a cinema.

Other recommendations:
Great Falls on the Potomac River is quite nice (also near the C&O canal locks); it's outside the Beltway west of the I-70 split.

Published on Wednesday July 31th, 2002


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Wed, Jan 05 2005 - 03:48 PM rating by nedkelly

hey dude!!
Im just about to set off for 2 weeks to W.D.C. got a mates wedding...your report has tonnes of usefull info..cheers buddy

Matt

Mon, Nov 29 2004 - 09:56 PM rating by whereisliz

Thanks for giving us a report about Washington D.C.! It would be great to see some photos as well.

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