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Washington, DC

Capital visit

What other things should we do on the day we are visiting the Capital?

4 Answers

answered by
Claudia from New York City

Hi Dana,

Besides the National Mall, White House, Monuments and Memorials, here is a list of under-the-radar sights:

1. President Lincoln Cottage - a gothic-style summer home that Lincoln used from 1862-64.

2. Theodore Roosevelt Island National Memorial - go for a ranger-led tour, walk on the trail or go bird-watching.

3. Mary McLeod Bethune Council House - a Victorian townhouse that once housed the National Council of Negro Women.

4. National Postal Museum- has the world's largest stamp collection.

5. National Capitol Columns (The United States National Arboretum) - former columns of the US Capitol from 1829. Check it out:

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. President Lincoln Cottage (attraction)
  2. Theodore Roosevelt Island National Memorial (attraction)
  3. National Postal Museum (attraction)
  4. National Capitol Columns (attraction)
1 thanks

answered by

Segway tour, Chinatown

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Chinatown (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered first by
Hazel from Port St. Lucie

1. Lincoln Memorial

2. Vietnam War Veteran's Memorial

3. Hart Senate Office Building (Visit your State Senators) Call offices and schedule appointments with Senators and Congressman in your district. You should know who they are and they should know who you are. Ask for photos to be put on their sites before you visit. They can get you tickets it they are in session.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Lincoln Memorial (attraction)
  2. Vietnam War Veteran's Memorial (attraction)
  3. Hart Senate Office Building (attraction)
1 thanks

answered by
peggy from Washington, DC

Library of Congress is across the street from the Capitol. Do some research and see if there is anything in particular you may want to see there but even if you just walk in to see the magnificent interior it is well worth it. The building is incredible. 

You didn't mention if you have been to DC before. If the weather is good you may want to walk the Capital grounds. Start on one side and walk completely around the building. Look for the often missed grotto or summerhouse on the western side of the building. Built in the late 1800's so visitors had a place to cool off and have a drink of spring water. Enjoy the views and relax in this little known area. 

The Smithsonian Museums are located on the streets in front of the Capital so you should choose whatever interests you. If you enjoy gardens be sure to visit the United States Botanic Garden or the 2 gardens located at the Smithsonian . They are beautiful year round.

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden and the National Gallery of Art both have a sculpture garden. The Cafe at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden has good food at really reasonable prices and weather permitting you can eat in the garden and people watch. The fountain runs in the summer and in the winter you can ice skate or just watch the skaters while you eat! Be sure to check out Marc Chagall's 'Orphee' This beautiful glass and stone mosaic was made by Chagall for the private Georgetown garden of his friend, John Nef and his wife, Evelyn. When Evelyn died she left it to the National Gallery of Art. When facing the Cafe, walk to the back right and you will find it. It is  a bit hidden so many people don't realize it's there.

And if you are in DC for the evening you MUST walk the National Mall at night from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial. You will stop at the WWII Memorial  before continuing your walk along the reflecting pool towards Lincoln. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is on the right and the Korean War Veterans Memorial is on the left, both before going up the Lincoln Memorial steps. Taking this walk at night is the best way to see these memorials. It is beautiful and safe and filled with tourists, runners and locals out for a walk. By the way this is the only part of the Mall that has rest rooms open in the evening. The area of the Mall where the museums are will be totally closed down. Safe to walk but no rest rooms!!!


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Library of Congress (attraction)
  2. United States Botanic Garden (attraction)
  3. Smithsonian (attraction)
  4. Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden (attraction)
  5. National Gallery of Art (restaurant)
  6. Washington Monument (attraction)
  7. Lincoln Memorial (attraction)
  8. WWII Memorial (attraction)
  9. Vietnam Veterans Memorial (attraction)
  10. Korean War Veterans Memorial (attraction)

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