Airport rides to hotels and attractions in Washington, D.C.
Some of the most historic buildings and museums in the world are located in the Washington, D.C. area. As the capital of the United States, it’s not only an iconic tourist hotspot, but an honorable representation of what the citizens of the country stand for. So whether it’s one of the many historic museums, world-class entertainment venues, or iconic monuments, the city is filled with as many things to see as there are to experience.
Rides to and from Dulles and Reagan airports
While you are visiting the Lincoln Memorial you will find on the walls inscribed from Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural speech and one of his most famous known as the Gettysburg address. Similar to the temples you will find in Greece there are large columns that surround the building. In front of the structure is the reflecting pool that overlooks the Washington Monument.
|United States Capitol|
Right beside The White House, the U.S. Capitol is one of the most iconic images when the idea of America comes to mind. Home to the United States Congress, which is the legislative branch of the federal government, the building is home to both immense power and immense decisions. Tours can be scheduled inside by making arrangements through The U.S. Capitol Visitor Center or online, and from the testimonials left by past visitors, the tour is definitely worth seeing. Whether it be the building’s long history of appreciation for Italian/Greek art that highly influenced the gorgeous Capitol Crypt or the jaw-dropping architecture of the Capitol Rotunda, there’s almost a guarantee of astonishment. By far, the most interesting aspect of the Capitol is the fact that eleven presidents have been lain to rest in the Rotunda for public viewing, the most recent corpse being Gerald Ford.
|Thomas Jefferson Memorial|
The Jefferson Memorial is a presidential remembrance area that is dedicated to the third president and one of the most important founding fathers who originally drafted The Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson. The outdoor building is designed through neoclassical architecture and is also known for being one of the city’s most visited locations. With over 2 million visitors per year, The Jefferson Memorial is likely to be busy during the day, but if you go during dusk, you’ll not only get the benefit of a smaller crowd, but a better ambiance.
|Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool|
There are many reflecting pools in Washington, D.C., but the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool is the largest of all for this iconic landmark. The body of water is an extremely long rectangular pool that’s made its way into the hearts and minds of every American, especially through pop culture. Whether it be the famous scene from the classic film, Forrest Gump or the iconic shots thousands of photographers have taken over the years, you’ll still be surprised at how astounding the memorial is in person. The attraction is also host to a variety of events and festivities, including historic performances by iconic musicians like Marian Anderson as well as iconic speeches from civil rights leaders such as Martin Luther King, Jr.
The Pentagon which is the Department of Defense for the U.S. is headquartered in Arlington. If you stretched the building’s corridors out it would be over 17 miles across. With hundreds of thousands of travelers visiting the building each year they can take tours through the Pentagon’s hallways and view its long history.
|National Museum of Natural History|
The Smithsonian is known for amazing people all around the world, and D.C.’s National Museum of Natural History is no different. Whether it be the incredible rocks and gems in the Hall of Geology or the beautiful replicas of early homo sapiens in the Hall of Human Origins, you’ll be sure to be amazed not only at how interesting the exhibits are, but how many are held in the massive facility. With over 126 million specimens on display as well as 185 professional natural history scientists available for any of your questions, this museum particularly stands out as a diamond in the rough.
|Bureau of Engraving and Printing|
You can take a tour through the building and watch money being made before your eyes. You can get a free tour of the production room as well as a brief movie of the center. When you finish the tour you can buy sheets of currency that is not cut and money that is shredded up. There are also other items for you purchase such as prints that are engraved for you to remember your visit.
|The Carnegie Library|
Located in Mt. Vernon Square this well known library is just a quick walk to the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. So if you are attending an event you can drop by and tour The Carnegie Library before you leave. The library hosts many events throughout the year from weddings to holiday gatherings. One of the most popular sections to visit while inside you can view a map on the floor that lights up showcasing the entire city called the L’Enfant Map Room.
|National Archives Building|
Formerly known as Archives I, The National Archives Building is the original headquarters of the National Archives and Records Administration, which is basically a fancy way of saying that it’s a large building intended to collect all of the important information of the world. The building also holds a variety of exhibits, which make for a perfect tourist attraction. Whether it the original copy of The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, or the Bill of Rights, the National Archives Museum is a place that not only holds vital pieces of our nation’s history, but is also a bank of crucial documents that have shaped the very rules of the country’s democracy. Once you’re inside the Rotunda for the Charters of Freedom, you’ll get a glimpse at the documents firsthand, and best part of the entire experience is that there are no lines to wait in – you simply walk in and look.
The Washington Monument is located on the far end of the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool, which reflects beautifully across the long and narrow water. The main attraction that brings so many to the monument is the sheer size of it. Standing at over 500 feet tall, the structure is a not only a modern marvel, but a symbolic testament to the country’s fortitude. Surprisingly, visitors are in fact allowed to enter The Washington Monument, which a lot of people don’t know initially. An extraordinary elevator takes you all the way up to the top so you can get the best view of the nation’s capital, but keep in mind that only a certain number of people are allowed per day. Be sure to arrive early and plan your visit before you come.
|Madame Tussauds Washington D.C.|
This wax museum brings well known people to life such as Muhammad Ali, Brad Pitt, and Babe Ruth. The displays include political figures, presidents, entertainers and those who have influenced our culture. You and your family can join in and learn from the experts on how to build a wax figure.
|Chinatown in Washington, D.C.|
Filled with restaurants from Asia and China travelers can find a wide selection of food to choose from. Along with dining there are clubs during the evening to visit, as well as shows and stores to buy souvenirs. Having gone through recent renovations Chinatown has grown into a favorite spot for tourists to visit while in Washington DC.
|Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture|
With the trusted brand of ‘Smithsonian’ tied to the museum, which is opening in September of 2016, this is sure to be one of the most top-of-the-line facilities that’s yet to open, meaning future visitors should get very, very excited. President Barack Obama helped break ground for the building in 2012, and since then the building has been under construction – what the museum intends to bring to D.C. is a representation of a class of people that have not only been succumbed to some of the worst human rights violations, but the strides that African-Americans have made since their beginnings, offering guests a chronological look at the history as well as a collection of rare artifacts like items that belonged to Harriet Tubman as well as the trumpet of jazz legend, Louis Armstrong.
|National Zoological Park|
Many think that D.C. is filled with nothing but fanciful restaurants and presidential memorials, but the city is also incredibly welcoming to nature. Proof of this is the existence of the beautiful National Zoological Park, which is a 163-acre park that is not only one of the oldest of it’s kind in the area, but in the country. The area is essentially two parks intertwined, offering guests a zoo experience like no other. Whether it be the great apes, big cats, or the relaxing Asia Trails that guide you through some of the most exotic flowers in the world, you’ll be sure to see practically all of the wildlife the world has to offer in one small setting. Some of the most popular animals that people seem to come for are the giant pandas, which are featured within the Giant Panda Habitat, as well as the Smokey Bears, which are living symbols of the cartoon icon created to prevent forest fires.
|The White House|
Needless to say, The White House is one of the most popular attractions in the District of Columbia, mainly because it’s where some of the country’s incredibly important decisions are made. In addition to the enormous influence The White House holds, the building is also popular because most of the US Presidents have resided within the historic walls, from Lincoln to Obama. Most tourists who visit the famed home stay outside the gate’s parameters, taking photos between the lines of steel, but what many don’t know is that you can actually go inside. The White House is currently offering free tours, but there is a strict first-come, first-serve rule, so be sure to arrive early!
|National Gallery of Art|
Located north of The National Mall, The National Gallery of Art is a national art museum that also features a stunning sculpture garden outside. Most of the gallery’s collection includes famous works donated by Paul Mellon, Samuel Henry Kress, Chester Dale, among countless other great American artists. The architecture of the building itself is a piece of art – the museum comprises of two buildings, west and east, both of which are as beautifully designed as the last. Every Thursday, the museum offers free admittance, so be sure to schedule accordingly.
|Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum|
This exhibit is great for those who love the science of space travel and even the young at heart who are simply excited by the idea of flying. With a jungle gym ready for children to play in and countless exhibits, including real-life displays of some of the original Wright Brothers failed airplane designs, not to mention some of the most successful ones, the museum is sure to amaze children and adults alike. The museum is open 10-7:30 and is free of charge, offering families a great way to relax in great indoor attractions like the Lockheed Martin IMAX Theater, the Albert Einstein Planetarium, or even the Public Observatory along the east terrace.
|Smithsonian American Art Museum|
For those interested in high-end art, Washington D.C. is filled with a variety of interesting exhibits, one of the best being the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Located in the heart of the city’s tourist area, SAAM is known for being one of the largest and most selective collections of art, whether it be from the colonial period or something more contemporary. There are several permanent pieces as well as ever-changing exhibits, representing over 7,000 American artists across the many movements and regions of the country’s history of art. The exhibit also has two public spaces, which are The Luce Foundation Center for American Art and the Lunder Conservation Center, both of which offer great educational programs at no cost.
The National Mall has been the setting for some of the most historic protests and gatherings in American history, from the inspiring Million Man March led by civil rights leader, Martin Luther King Jr. to the parades of protests for the Vietnam War draft. History aside, the park is a beautiful place to visit any time of the year. Because The National Mall is essentially a massive park of attractions, the widespread zone is home to several iconic landmarks, all of which are conveniently located at walking distance to one another, including the National Museum of American History, the Smithsonian Institution Building, as well as the stunning National Sculpture Garden. Other nearby attractions include the Library of Congress and the United States Supreme Court Building. So whether you’re in town to check out some amazing art or simply want to see a bit of history, The National Mall is a great place to begin.
|Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial|
‘Out of the Mountain of Despair, a Stone of Hope’. These are words that are not only inscribed onto the side of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, but a sentence worthy of the heroic figure’s legacy. Like the great Doctor’s ideals of freedom, this particular attraction is free of charge, requiring no fees or reservations to step foot onto the memorial’s grounds. All you have to do is simply show up and admire the great testament of all the hard work that was done through the civil rights movement. As one explores the grounds of the memorial, they will see a series of interesting quotes that King stated throughout his inspiring lifetime, not to mention a perfect view of D.C.’s famous cherry trees. If you’re with a large group or are simply interested in more specific information, there are several ranger programs and site tours available daily. To schedule your appointment, be sure to go to the website.
Ford’s Theatre is a historic theatre, which no longer hosts theatrical plays, that is notably remembered as the site of President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination. Since the President’s fatal shot to the head, the infamous balcony has become one of the most visited tourist attractions in the country, preserved gracefully as The Ford’s Theatre National Historic Site. Although utilized as a warehouse and then an office building, the theatre was eventually transformed into a historic site in the 1930s, containing a newly renovated museum that focuses on Lincoln’s arrival to the theatre that fateful day as well as all of the accomplishments his cabinet made, including the abolishment of slavery. Across the street is another bit of history; the Peterson House, which was where President Lincoln was carried after he was shot and later died. Experience the harrowing narrative yourself by going on of the tours, which are available daily on a first-come, first-served basis, so be sure to arrive early if you want to take a gander inside.
|National Museum of American History|
For those that are interested in the history of America, The National Museum of American History is probably going to be your favorite D.C. location. The facility collects and preserves the heritage of the United States through several scopes; social, political, cultural, scientific, and of course, military. Located on the National Mall, the museum is conveniently located by a variety of other things, but the facility itself holds at least an afternoon’s worth of entertainment. With four floors of iconic artifacts, from a real-life Southern Railway locomotive to a statue of George Washington, which was sculpted by the famous American artist, Horatio Greenough. Although there are many things to see, the most visited piece of American history is the original Star Spangled Banner Flag, which inspired the famous poem by Francis Scott Key.
|Library of Congress|
To see an epic storage of almost every important American novel, history book, or even data records, The Library of Congress is sure to impress any word lover. The library is the second-largest in the world in terms of collection, but it definitely stands out as the most beautiful. Separated by four different buildings, The Library of Congress holds different kinds of books in each one, whether it be history in the Thomas Jefferson Building or the quainter atmosphere surrounding the John Adams Building. For local residents or college students who want to partake in research of the library’s archives, one needs a Reader Identification Card, which can easily be obtained at the front desk, but for those who are only visiting for a day or two, there’s just as much to see in other areas, whether it be the rare collections of first editions or the incredible architecture. The Library of Congress is also host to a variety of annual events, including the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song as well as the National Book Festival, making it a great place to visit year-round.