Thursday, December 10, 2015

I've Got the Travel Bug : Washington, D.C. Travel Guide

Travel Guide Washington D.C.

Oh my D.C.! Needless to say, there was not a moment of boredom, an empty stomach, or mile we did not cover. I knew that Washington D.C. had a lot to offer but we squeezed in everything. Where do I start?

Day 1: We arrived into the city via Dulles Airport. Uber is the best way to get around and into the city via car, because it's extremely convenient and cheaper than taxis. The traffic is heavy on most days so walking is really the best way to get around. T and I checked in to our hotel and quickly realized we were in the middle of everything and across the street from Starbucks (hallelujah!). After a little R & R, we got ready for the yummiest Thanksgiving dinner. If you are in the D.C. area, I would highly recommend making reservations at Founding Farms because holy moly yummy and apple pie cheesecake! After dinner we made a stop by to see the Obama's at The White House. We were supposedly too late for dessert.

Washington DC Travel Guide

Day 2: After waking up and grabbing breakfast at the hotel, we walked to the National Mall to visit the Smithsonian Natural History Museum. This is by far my favorite Smithsonian museum... maybe because of the Gems & Diamonds exhibit? I found a few gift ideas that I hope to find under the Christmas tree! We also got to see some cool bones, dinosaurs, and a rather large Elephant. It was like a non-smelly zoo but with dead, stuffed animals. Next we stopped at the Smithsonian American History Museum. The best part of this museum is seeing the original American Flag that inspired the Star Spangled Banner. Seeing this exhibit will literally give you goosebumps and make you proud to be an American. We went on to see the Wizard of Oz Ruby Slippers and Julia Child's Kitchen. We took a late lunch break at District Taco and that was some burrito goodness! After fueling up, we took a little break at the hotel before visiting the memorials. I LOVE seeing the memorials at dusk and evening. They are so beautiful lit up. To top off the busy day, it was off for a late dinner and drinks at Old Ebitt Grill. It has quite the history and is the oldest saloon in D.C., but most importantly the dirty martinis were delicious!

Smithsonian Natural History Museum Gems Exhibit

Smithsonian Natural History Museum Bones Exhibit

Washington DC Monuments

Day 3: It was a beautiful morning so we made the hike to the Holocaust Museum, which is one of the must sees of the city. It is extremely sobering and being able to hear and see the history is truly touching. I highly suggest going in the morning before it gets crowded and you will want to make time for all the museum's exhibits. We arranged for the whole morning to go and I am glad we did. We then went to lunch because when on vacation you eat like 7,000 calories a day. We ate lunch at Elephant & Castle and the fries hit the spot! It may have been the dirty martinis the night before but I cleared my plate. That afternoon we hung around the hotel to cheer on the Auburn Tigers. Unfortunately, they lost so we found our way to a local bar, Lost & Found. A few beers later and we were like what Iron Bowl?

Washington DC Flags

Holocaust Museum Washington DC

Day 4: The cold officially came with our 4th day in D.C., but that was okay! We bundled up and headed to Capitol Hill. It was there that I sat and realized, "Yes, I'm only a Bill. And I'm sitting here on Capitol Hill." We walked over to the Smithsonian American Indian Museum and Smithsonian Air and Space Museum from there. I was excited for the raved about restaurant, Mitsitam Cafe, at the American Indian Museum until I quickly learned it was a cafeteria. So while Taylor read every information plaque at the Air and Space museum, I made my way to McDonald's. Don't worry, I snapped a picture or two of the airplanes. The best part of the day was definitely shopping that evening which I made sure to squeeze into the agenda. We then finished the night with an amazing Cuban dinner at Cuba Libre!

Washington DC Travel Guide

Smithsonian Air and Space

Kate Spade Washington D.C.

Day 5: Our last day was spent at Arlington. We took the tour bus which allowed us to hop on and off at all corners of the cemetery. Despite the cold and rain, it was a place that I will never forget. We were able to witness The Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Despite the cold and rain, it amazes me that these guards are there 365 days a year, 24 hours a day. After Arlington, we came back to the city to explore a little more for our last day. To shake off the cold, we tried out true Ramen at Noodles on 11.  After our toes were defrosted and stomachs were full, we visited the National Archives Building . We were able to see the Declaration of Independence, The Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. Seeing these documents reminded me of what this amazing country is built upon. We stayed low key for dinner and enjoyed City Tap House and surprised each other with custom flights of beer.

Arlington Cemetery Washington DC

Arlington Cemetery Washington DC Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Needless to say this was a top trip for the both of us! We enjoyed everything the city had to offer and did not have a dull moment. Every meal was delicious and we came back with round middles, despite the amount of walking we did. Honestly, Washington D.C. is a beautiful city and has something to offer everyone. It's safe to say this will not be our last trip to The Capitol!

I would also like to thank my personal tour guide for his map keeping,
tour guiding, and not getting lost skills. I'd be lost without him, literally!

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