The Wall is a shrine but it's a shrine worth seeing.
Giant Yes to the American Indian Museum. Plan to be there around midday -- the on site restaurant is worth lunch.
Arlington Cemetery is a must do as well.
If you like art then the National Gallery of Art is well worth a visit.
I enjoyed the Roosevelt Memorial. It's over by the tidal basin and a nice walk from the Mall.
I was in D.C. two years ago this month. Were you following me? Those are my favorite spots, too.
Especially the FDR memorial and the restaurant at the Smithsonian's new American Indian museum.
I think the FDR memorial was by Halperin, haven't seen it.. nor the American Indian museum. Would like to.
I keep considering whether or not to open a Mall thread, as there are many many many pros and cons on its continuing evolution, er, development. Mostly I decide not to, but am interested in people's takes on it.
DC over the 4th of July is chaotic. Much to see and do. But consider a side trip 100 miles south to bucolic Charlottesville: UVA, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and Monroe, Edgar Allan Poe and Realjohnboy, who will buy yall lunch.
Ok, so this is the plan so far...
Get there on the 3rd, get settled in and have a nice dinner.
4th - doing the mall. most likely hit air and space, American history, American Indian museums. Wash, Lincoln monuments, perhaps engraving and printing, eating and drinking there, and waiting for fireworks.
5th - zoo and aquarium.
6th - Mt. Vernon and stuff outside the city
7th - need stuff here. I hope my capital and WH tours are on this day.
8th - head to Philly and Independence hall and stuff around there. spend the night between there and NYC. maybe Delaware. Never been there and I want to drive across the bay.
9th - NYC. I think I want to take the ferry out to the statue of liberty. never been there. Then back home. Too expensive to get a hotel in NYC.
Just to note, we saw Arlington, The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Natural Science museum last time we went.
Ocean City, MD is pretty cool, across the bay, just outta Delaware...
You're gonna need a week off to recoup...that's a mighty busy schedule....good luck
I was thinking the same thing, panzade.
Allow yourself some flexibility in that schedule, McG. Some of those museums are full day events if you get hooked on where you are.
Wish we knew you back on our last visit, RJB.
If I was going to be here, I'd show you around town, but since I'm not, I'll just make some suggestions from a local... well kind of local. I've lived here a year now.
I did the whole 4th of july thing on the national mall last year. Very cool, indeed. Some basic suggestions:
- Don't drive.
- They will close the closest METRO stops to the national mall. Do not plan to exit via Federal Triangle, or Smithsonian. I don't believe they closed L'Enfant Plaza last year, but I imagine it will be swamped. Have a plan when going on where you will go and where you'll exit. I believe the display is always between the Washington monument and the Lincoln memorial.
- Don't drive.
- Mobile phone service providers may be overloaded with this many people. don't count on using your cell phone to stay together. There will be an incredible amount of people. Last year the estimate was ~500,000. It could be easy to get separated.
- Don't drive.
- On days when it's not July 4th, and you can drive, there are some great places in both Virginia and Maryland. I don't know MA as well as VA though.
- Certainly the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum is cool, but did you know there is a second one out near Dulles Airport in Reston, VA? Most people agree that it's cooler than the one on the mall cause it has more planes. A big hit with kids.
- Honestly, I think that Arlington Cemetary is an absolute must. Powerful imagery. METRO accessible too (BLUE line).
- The National Portrait Museum is really great and is near the spy museum, which kids really love.
- Don't bother with Chinatown, it's totally boring and not really a Chinatown.
- If you want to make a nice walk of the monuments, here is the tour I give to my friend when they come out. Get off the METRO at the Smithsonian exit then walk to the Washington monument. Continue west towards Lincoln and hit the WWII memorial and either the Koream war or Vietnam war memorial (depends on what side of the reflecting pool you choose). Walk up to Lincoln, see the MLK marble tile. Walk south and along the Potomac to the Jeffereson memorial, but definately hit the FDR memorial (I only recently checked this out and I was impressed). After Jefferson, finish your walk around the tidal basin northeastwards and then back to the Smithsonian METRO. the whole lap take about 4-5 hours but is a great walk.
I'll post more later.
Don't forget the Spy Museum.
Wrong place since one of the Federal IA location is where else but....Surprise, AZ
While waiting in line at the Lincoln Memorial, for example, just asking a nearby family where they are from gets all sorts of interesting conversation. The fact that people from so many regions come to DC, as part of their American identity, is like social studies finally having a meaning. I also believe one gets a positive feeling, as a parent, having taken one's children to DC for the sights of U.S. museums, memorials, etc.
The Spy Museum is too in DC, its on 8th. Heres a map
There was also some Children's Science Museum? Is it still there? Many hands on exhibits at the time.
I walked too much.
Saw the White House. (photo's are clickable)
Walked past the GAO.
Saw some people protesting at the White House/
Walked past the AFL-CIO
Went to the zoo
Spent a long time trying to find the Iwo Jima memorial
Went to the Lincoln Memorial
Saw the Magna Carta, Bill of Rights, Declaration of Independence and Constitution
Saw the Thinker
More to come later... Went to Philly and NYC.
Followed my schedule pretty well, did not go out to Mt. Vernon or Valley Forge though. Fireworks were VERY cool. Best I have seen. Lots of people there to share with.
I hear the fireworks were particularly nice this year. Last year it was rainy. How was the weather during your trip?
The weather was fantastic. No rain, not too hot.
Seems like a great visit..
and I enjoyed the photos.
How did you like the zoo? (I haven't been there.)
Sounds like a great trip, McG. Thanks for sharing the pics.
With the exception of the zoo, DC is a walking around city. The zoo has always been a problem for me because you walk slowly and its all on these topographic rises and little valleys. That makes one exceedingly tired if youre not walking at a decent clip.
I could never figure out how they leave several bands of monkeys just have free reign of the trees of the entire park and that they dont just disappear.