Information / Sources, Washington D.C.
Favorite thing: While walking around the mall area you will find Information kiosks strategically located. They can answer a variety of questions for you, but they also have detailed maps of the mall area to help you plan out your touring. And they're free!
D.C. is the most vibrant and alive place you will ever visit. I found it to be exciting and far more cultured than my home town of Milwaukee. The people think, move and live fast. I did feel like a hick and was stared at often by the locals.....but everyone I came in contact with was pretty nice. It was my first time riding on a subway and that in and of itself was an adventure and worth the price to ride! I recommend you wear comfortable shoes because you will undoubtedly do a lot of walking. But the architecture and history is awe inspiring.
Fondest memory: We visited an area known as George town that was really cool. Cobbled streets and quaint eateries....it is the perfect place to hang out on a lazy Saturday afternoon and evening.
Favorite thing: The best map of the National Mall area, by far, is the free one provided by the US Parks Service. I picked one up at the Lincoln Memorial bookshop (inside the hall to the right). It has a lot of information and shows all the main points and the statues.
If you only have 1 hour in D.C. then you have to walk the mall, and I don't mean for shopping. The mall is the location of all the monuments that you have and have not heard of. If you have the time see it at night.
Fondest memory: Visit D.C. at night and bring a tripod. There is simply nothing like it.
Favorite thing: The Cherry Blossom Festival get a lot of news coverage, there are cameras and vans all over. This is a very big event for this town and people have been coming here to see the Cherry Blossoms bloom for decades. There are many diferent activities surrounding this event, you must go to experence it for your self, it is so worht the trip!
Favorite thing: This is a great place to check out when your in Union Staion. You can book a tours and get all the visitor information you need here including maps and coupons. It located on the bottom floor near the front toward the street. The staff is really nice and very helpful.
If U'll ever need to send an email in D.C. U may find yourself in troubles....
There are almost no Internet Cafý in the whole city.....
After a three days' search finally I've found at least two places wher eU can connect to Internet....
1) Cyberstop Cafý, 1513 17th St. ( NW ):
Being the only cyber cafý in Downtown means he can make the price... so 1 hour of connection will cost 9$ ! Too high , but if U really need to connect that's the only choice inside D.C.
2) Cyberzone Center , Springfield mall, Franconia-Springfield ( for the location look at my tip about shopping malls).
Very nice place inside the mall, the cost is 5$ for one hour of connection.
If you've never flown into Washington, DC and have plans to fly into Reagan National Airport, here's a great tip to kickstart your trip.
A little more than 1/2 the time, planes follow the Potomac River into the Airport from the North. If you of seated at a widow seat on the left side of the plane, you are treated to a spectacular view of the Mall, Washington Monument and U.S. Capital. The view is even more stunning at night.
We got it good in the US of A. Yes we have traffic and pollution and crime, yadda, yadda, yadda, but what we often forget is that when we started out in 1776 we were a bold experiment that few thought would work.
For example, the complaint that nothing ever gets done in Washington is nearly universal. But that's how it was designed to work!
Before you arrive, think about expanding your experience by doing a little reading or downloading sound clips or articles to read while your here.
A great way to get some insights into the 'mess' we call a legislative process is to read the essays in the Federalist Papers. These documents debated and explored different ways to set up the government. So much of it is useful even today to understand such concepts as "special interests."
For Example: The Lincoln Memorial is awe inspiring. My first trip here in High School we sat on the steps and listened to Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I have a dream" speech. An amazing time in our history and a great way to give yourself goosbumps.
Don't forget to look up your Congressman so you can stop by his office and ask him what he has done for you lately!
See and do as much as you can! There are so many 'must sees' that I am not even going to try to list them all. But here are some useful links.
For trip planning/general info:
For the museums (and the zoo):
To search for restaurant reviews and other entertainment options:
To search for entertainment or employment:
If you are thinking of moving here:
In the wake of the tragic events of September 11, 2001 - there were several massive benefit concerts held to help raise money for the victims of those events. The UNITED WE STAND concert was held in Washington DC, at RFK Statdium. This all day rock concert was a truely amazing even to work.
Artists included: Backstreet Boys, *Nsync, James Brown, PINK, Bette Midler, Maria Carey, Sean Puffy (P. Diddy) Combs, Michael Jackson and Aerosmith, just to name a few.
Fondest memory: more photos from backstage at the concert are available here:
Pick up a Washington City Paper. There is so much to see and do in DC. Great restaurants, free museums, wonderful used bookstores, quirky shops, fun bars and clubs...I could go on and on. The Washington City Paper is free and the best source to find cool things to do (like the natives do).
Fondest memory: One of the best things to do is walk the city. Bring a good comfortable pair of walking shoes. When I lived there, my favourite DC activity was to take the Metro to Union Station, grab a bite to eat there, walk over to the Capitol, down the Mall, visit one of the many Smithsonion Museums, walk up to Metro Center & hop on the Metro again, ride up to Dupont Circle then walk to Adam's Morgan, hit some used book stores, walk back to Dupont, grab dinner, see a film in the off beat theatre there, then take the Metro back home. What a way to spend the day.
Favorite thing: These maps are located all over, if you not quite sure where you are and see one just stop and it's real easy to figure out where you are and where to go next or to easily find the next museum.
Favorite thing: You should stop and check out one of thse tour information booths for great tours, times & things to do, maps. These people are very helpful and can point you in the right direction.