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Washington, DC

by Ken Eddy

So, you’re going to take a holiday. I’ll bet Washington, DC is not on the top of your list of places you want to go this year.

Could be you want a nice warm beach and an ocean view and if that’s the case, then DC isn’t the place for you. But, if you want a week of great historical sites, amazing insights and tons of fun things to do with the family, then Washington has everything you can think of and more.

First, I have to mention the huge history of the place. From inception to modern monuments, if you’re a history buff you will not have enough time in each day to see and read everything.

Second, everything is free. That’s right, you don’t have to pay a thing to see all of the historical sites, the monuments and the Smithsonians. That in itself is worth the price of admission.

You can take a day to stroll from the Capital buildings to the Lincoln memorial. Summer in DC is warm and humid so take water and flat walking shoes. It’s a beautiful 1.9 miles (3.0 km) walk scattered with memorials and the Washington monuments reflection rising up in the middle of the pool that leads to the Lincoln memorial.

The Mall was designed in the 1850’s by architect Andrew Jackson Downing and is lined with huge American Elms that are a welcome bit of shade in the heat of the D.C. summer afternoon.

A list of landmarks and museums is helpful in deciding where to start you exploration of the great Mall.

National Museum of American History
National Museum of Natural History
National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden
West Building of the National Gallery of Art
East Building of the National Gallery of Art
Ulysses S. Grant Memorial
National Museum of the American Indian
National Air and Space Museum
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
Arts and Industries Building
Smithsonian Institution Building (“The Castle”)
Freer Gallery of Art
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
National Museum of African Art
Peace Monument
James A. Garfield Monument

If you’re up for some night life, Old Georgetown is a neighborhood of Washington, DC. Situated on the Potomac River it boasts a healthy nightlife that rivals any hot spot in America. Today, the primary commercial corridors of Georgetown are M Street and Wisconsin Ave, which contain high-end shops, bars and restaurants. The Georgetown neighborhood always has a number of events from music to markets every day of the week and is a great day out for a change of pace.

If you’re looking for a vacation with some history and some fun packed into one, Washington, DC is the perfect mix of new and old, historical and history in the making. With virtually no admission fees to all the great museums, Smithsonians and monuments it’s the perfect place to vacation on a budget.


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