Mount Vernon Travel Guide

  • Hog Island Lamb
    Hog Island Lamb
    by jmpncsu
  • Mount Vernon Mansion
    Mount Vernon Mansion
    by jmpncsu
  • Lower Garden
    Lower Garden
    by jmpncsu

Mount Vernon Things to Do

  • Outbuildings

    At the plantation, there are demonstrations of 18th-century life, including blacksmithing, wheat treading, sheep shearing, plowing, cooking, textile processing. Also some of the outbuildings are very interesting.The Gardener's House was built in 1776 as a "hospital for the sick". By 1793, this was designated as a residence for the gardener. In 1799...

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  • Estate Grounds

    George Washington was very interested in the gardens around the house. One visitor remarked, they were "wonderful in appearance, exquisite in their perfume and delightful to the eye..."Now, there is a Garden and Landscape Tour (free with general admission) which is a 45-minute guided tour that examines Washington's design for the grounds at Mount...

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  • George Washington's Estate

    Mount Vernon was George Washington's estate and home with his wife Martha for more than forty years, and it is here that he died and is buried. And its location just 16 miles south of Washington DC, it is quite easy to visit. When purchasing your ticket ($15), you will receive a timed entry for when you can tour the mansion. On a busy day, this...

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  • Tour the Mansion

    You have to get a ticket to see the mansion. Your able to walk through it, but only the same pace as everyone depending how many are standing in line. They have folks stationed in each room that explains all the details and the furnishings. What is nice you are able to see the first floor and the second foor too. The folks stationed in the...

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  • Slave Burial Area

    The plaque reads:"Near George Washington's tomb you see the burying place of his slaves containing 150 slaves."Visitor to Mount Vernon, 1833 Many African Americans free and enslaved who worked at Mount Vernon from the 1750's into the 19th century are believed to be buried near here, according to early visitor accounts, oral tradition, and a...

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  • Meet Lady Washington

    This was really cute and everyone was so fascinating by her. She sat and shared such delightful stories about her and the Washington family. Make to see her.Performances held at the Greenhouse daily, 2:30 p.m., 3:00 p.m., & 3:30 p.m.

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Mount Vernon Restaurants

  • Don't eat here unless...

    The Food Court at Mount Vernon is located in glass-enclosed Pavilion with tables put on the terrace as well (open when the weather is OK). It includes a few fast food chains like Pizza Hut, Mrs. Fields (cookies), Federal City Deli, Cafe Lafayette, Red Devon (burgers) and Frozen Smiles. They offered limited choice of pizzas, burgers, deli, coffee...

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  • Italian-American food

    Il Paradiso Traporia Italiano is a quite typical Italian Restaurant. The ambience is like Italian trattoria with many photos of Italian towns and famous Italian people. The service was good and the food is Italian American: typical Italian dishes with the touch of fantasy of the Cheff Hector Guerra. The waiters are very friendly but they don't...

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  • Tim's Rivershore Restaurant & Crabhouse...

    Tim's Rivershore Restaurant ... half the fun is getting there! For game seven of the Stanley Cup finals, we decided to meet at a friend's house in the Dumfries/Woodbridge area to watch the game. I had heard of a great crabshack in the area called Tim's Rivershore, so I offered to find this restaurant and bring dinner. We plugged the address into...

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  • Mount Vernon Inn

    The only restaurant near Mount Vernon, other than the tourist food courts, is the Mount Vernon Inn. This restaurant is part of the visitors center established in the 1930s when the Mount Vernon Parkway was constructed. The interior is huge, resembling an old farmhouse, and the workers all dress in colonial garb. It's easy to rip on this restaurant,...

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  • Not the Best Choice

    Just outside the entrance to the grounds, along the main circle is the Mount Vernon Inn. Besides the fast food court inside the grounds, this is your only food option. The ambience and views are very nice; however, the food leaves something to be desired. Meals are fairly expensive (around $15 for lunch, entree only). Dishes are representative of...

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  • When you don't have time or money for...

    I hated to take Matt and Urszula here when the Mount Vernon Inn was more suitable for the occasion. We would have done that too if we didn't have to go to Dulles to reclaim their lost luggage. I tell all my foreign friends to steer clear of American fast food and we end up eating here. Sorry, Matt and Urszula. Matt had an inferiour pizza from...

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Mount Vernon Transportation

  • Getting to Mount Vernon

    Driving is probably the easiest way to get to Mount Vernon. If you're coming from the city, make your way south on the George Washington Memorial Parkway, which is a pleasant drive along the Potomac River. Mount Vernon sits at the very southern point of the parkway and can't be missed. When you arrive, there are several free parking lots across the...

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  • Sightseeing Tours

    On he Potomac Spirit or Miss Christin you will learn how Washington relied on this historic body of water for his livelihood and transportation. Unfortunately, Matt, Urszula, and I were on a tight schedule and would have popped for the extra $7 for this part of the tour. We saw the Potomac Spirit docking at the Mount Vernon landing. Sightseeing...

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  • If you don't have a car

    If you don't have a car and you are in Washington, DC, you have a few options, from the least expensive:1. Take metro + busTake Metro's Yellow Line Train to Huntington Station in Virginia. Exit at the lower level (to Huntington Avenue) of the station and catch a Fairfax Connector bus to Mount Vernon/George Washington's Home (ca 40 min.) - total...

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Mount Vernon Shopping

  • Buy Moravian Ginger Cookies

    The Food Court at Mount Vernon, located in glass-enclosed Pavilion is a restaurant (details in my Restaurants tip - do NOT eat there!), not a shop. But they offered some food, mainly cookies from Mrs. Fields just like in a grocery. I bought a little tin of Moravian cookies at the cashier's desk. I can say that it was good choice, I liked...

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  • The Gift Shop

    The folks at Mount Vernon have cleverly made sure that your exit from the grounds leads you straight into their gift shop. The shop is huge and includes anything and everything you could want to remind you of your trip to Mount Vernon. You'll be able to purchase ornaments, calendars, jams, candy, jewelry, colonial hats, pens, mugs, guidebooks, and...

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  • Charming little museum shop

    This little, charming store focuses on the First Lady or Lady Washington, as Mrs. (Martha) Washington was known in her lifetime. It offers various gifts, reproductions, needlework, chinaware, food and garden items, books (incl. for kids) and postcards. I bought postcards (30 ¢ small, 50 ¢ large called jumbo, add 5% sales tax) of the interior of...

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Mount Vernon Local Customs

  • First residents of Mount Vernon

    On the hilltop close to the Mount Vernon Mountain Train and this ravine, on my picture, archeologists excavated a variety of Indian artifacts, including stone tools, flakes produced from tool making and fire-cracked rocks from campfire cooking.At the time of first European contact, three seperate groups or tribes: the Dogue, Patawomeke and...

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  • Unique fences

    Fields of different crops at George Washington Pioneer Farm site were seperated by a kind of fence, on my picture. The fence was low and made of wooden trunks put in zig-zag pattern. I have never seen something like this before.Mount Vernon is located close to the Atlantic Ocean which brings a lot of rains and makes the climate milder with no large...

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  • Slavery and random thoughts

    I got to know that not counting women and children Washington had 300 Negroes of whom a large number belonged to Mrs. Washington. There were only a hundred who work in the fields including this reconstructed farm on my picture. RANDOM THOUGHTSI was taught at school and college in Poland, behind the iron wall, that time, wrong history and especially...

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Mount Vernon Warnings and Dangers

  • Steep Steps

    I do not know how many steps there are down to the wharf, but there is a lot. We did the steps twice, and the Forest Trail. Just to let visitors know if you want to see the wharf and the farm you will either have to walk back up the steps or take the Forest Trail to get you back to the main area of Mount Vernon.Mount Vernon is eight miles south of...

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  • Steep Hills

    The hills in the forest trail can be steep, uneven and bumpy. I almost tripped on several occasions myself. Roots and stones are also obstacles. It is probably not meant for those who have medical conditions that prohibit strenuous activity and, preserving the way it was in 1799, it is not wheelchair accessible. (Historical integrity or no, I think...

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  • No credit card accepted

    No credit cards were accepted in the food court of Mount Vernor Estate. It was very rare and unique in the USA generally. I have never seen it in such busy and often visited place. No wonder, they put this information in front of the court. Just in case... there is an ATM in the hallway. Like usual in the USA it accepts cards of Visa and American...

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Mount Vernon Tourist Traps

  • matcrazy1's Profile Photo

    by matcrazy1 Updated Jan 7, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I understand ban on photography put because of serious security reasons (like in some military objects, although... in times of spy satellites...) or because of someones' privacy. But I can't understand the ban put inside the Mansion of George Washington which is open to the public and displays fully furnished old residential and office rooms. The ban on photography in no way has to do with security or privacy, but with intellectual property (i.e. Mount Vernon's exclusive ownership of photography in the form of postcard sales).

    Unique Suggestions: I took a few pictures in outbuildings. There was no ban on photography there :-). Where there is no posted sign prohibiting photography I assume it is okay to take photos. Unfortunately there was the ban, on my picture, put at the entrance to the Mansion.

    If you must... you always can not to notice the ban and take pictures discretly :-), hmm... it's impossible in the over-crowded mansion. Just in case... better do not use the forbidden pictures for any commercial purposes. With that reasoning abundantly clear, I almost wish I had a spy-type pencil-cam where I could have taken photos in there undetected and defiantly put them on my VT page.

    Fun Alternatives: What about founding Association for Free Photography or something those lines? What do you think?

    BANS

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Mount Vernon What to Pack

  • matcrazy1's Profile Photo

    by matcrazy1 Updated Jan 6, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Luggage and bags: For walking around Mount Vernon estate small, city backpack and surely bag for your camera - both better water-proof.

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Comfortable walking shoes preferrably water-resistant: like good trainers or better special walking shoes (one example: Danish Ecco are very comfortable and... expensive but worth the cost).
    Sun-glasses esp. in summer and always a rain coat/jacket, eventually less comfortable umbrella.

    Read info on average temperatures and rainfall in Washington, DC (16 miles north of Mount Vernon) and around:
    Climate data Washington, DC

    Check weather (10-day forecast) for Washington, DC:
    Weather forecast for Washington, DC

    Photo Equipment: Take as much film as you can or as large a memory card as you can. The Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens offer a lot for photography lovers :-).

    For pictures at bad light (weather) and especially pictures of interiors take a tripod. I needed it.

    Miscellaneous: Before you go find and read basic historical information on George Washington and Mount Vernon in your travel book or in the net. Well, before my next trip to the USA I am going to buy the book "Historia USA. Narody i cywilizacje.", Polish translation of The Limits of Liberty: American History, 1607-1992 (Short Oxford History of the Modern World) by Maldwyn Allen Jones.

    Do not forget to take BIG SMILE :-) Enjoy!

    URSZULA, BAGS, SMILE AND WASHINGTON'S MANSION
    Related to:
    • Museum Visits
    • Road Trip
    • Historical Travel

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Mount Vernon Off The Beaten Path

  • Washington's Tomb

    We did not know before we went, but there is a ceremony at Washington's Tomb every day. We went there after the tour - they were going to lay a wreath and they asked if there were any Veterans in the group. Two guys stepped forward - one was active duty and one was retired. My daughter 'outted' me and told them I was a veteran too. But I don't...

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  • The Mount Vernon Memorial Highway

    Driving to Mount Vernon from the South, we drove scenic route SR-235 called Mount Vernon Memorial Highway which connects route US-1 and the Washington's estate. The 3.2 mi long road goes up through the forests passing by Washington's Mill Historical State Park on the left, Fort Belvoir military reservation on the right.There is the commemorative...

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  • Turkey - a native to North America

    There is fenced small area by the upper part of the Mount Vernon Mountain Trail. There are turkeys bred inside. Today, there is a variety of colonial breeds at Mount Vernon including the rare breed Dominique Chickens and Bronze Gobbler Turkeys in addition to guinea hens and wild turkeys.The turkey is native to North America and was domesticated by...

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Mount Vernon Favorites

  • Outbuildings

    We could only take photos in the outbuildings and not on the tour of the main house. But some of the outbuildings were really very interesting. There was a Stove Room which provided heat so that the palms, orange trees and other tropical plants needed to survive in the winter in Virginia. Hot air from the stove went through a series of flues into...

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  • I prefer my turkeys stuffed

    Mount Vernon is home to hogs, sheep, turkeys, chickens, horses, oxen, cattle, mules, and livestock as they were in Washington's day. Wild turkeys, deer and other wildlife are also seen on the plantation and along the Forest Trail. As I attempted to get a picture of this raucous bird, he startled me by clucking in my face. A kid on holiday said,...

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  • Potomac River view

    One of my favourite things about Mount Vernon is the view of the Potomac River and the distant Maryland shore. Actually, the state line is at water's edge and that has been the source of centuries' long dispute between Virginia and Maryland. Near Mount Vernon on the other side of the river, helicopters (called Marine 1) which transport the...

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Explore Deeper into Mount Vernon
Washington's Tomb
Things to Do
The Wharf
Things to Do
Gardens~
Things to Do
Greenhouse
Things to Do
Pioneer Farmer Site
Things to Do
Forest Trail
Things to Do
Slave Memorial
Things to Do
Women's Bunk Room
Things to Do
Kitchen
Things to Do
The Old Vault
Things to Do
The Shoemaker's Shop
Things to Do
Storehouse
Things to Do
Clerk's Quarters
Things to Do
Riding Chair
Things to Do
Smokehouse
Things to Do
Washington's Vehicles
Things to Do
Garner's House
Things to Do
Spinning Room
Things to Do
Blacksmiths
Things to Do
Donald W. Reynolds Museum and Education Center
Things to Do
Ford Orientation Center
Things to Do
Little Hunting Creek Historic Site
Off The Beaten Path
Belvior Mansion & Gravesite, Fort Belvoir
Off The Beaten Path
Washington's Grist Mill
Things to Do
George Washington Mural - Alexandria
Off The Beaten Path
Potomac River & Mount Vernon Pier
Things to Do
Fort Hunt Park
Off The Beaten Path
Dyke Marsh Wildlife Habitat
Off The Beaten Path
Pioneer Farm Site
Things to Do
Washington Family Tomb
Things to Do
The Slave Memorial
Things to Do
The grounds at Mount Vernon
Things to Do
George Washington Parkway & Mount Vernon Highway
Things to Do
Mount Vernon Trail
Things to Do
The Greenhouse Complex at Mount Vernon
Things to Do
Washington's Main House at Mount Vernon
Things to Do
Other Residences on the Grounds
Things to Do
Functional Buildings on the Grounds
Things to Do
Slave Memorial
Things to Do
See the Animals
Things to Do
Map of Mount Vernon

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