Going to Washington DC
Mar 8, 2006 at 4:45 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 10

Firam

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In early April I'm going on a school trip for a seven days to Washington DC to be learn the United States government. I will have one day free to go where ever I want in the area. I was wondering if there was any good place to go and see in the area.

Link to my program. http://www.closeup.org/

On my list that they gave me of suggested places that aren’t on the normal tour

Smithsonian Museums (Could spend a week there)
Library of Congress (Might be cool to see all the books)
Supreme Court (What is there to see? Only interesting if they are in session?)
Arlington National Cemetery (Wasn't too excited about but I guess I'll end up there because it is impressive seeing all the lined up white tombstones.)
Mt. Vernon (I’m sure it is pretty and all but is it worth my time?)
The Holocaust Museum (We have an appointment so I guess it is popular, is it worth it?)
The International Spy Museum (Interesting, but there seems to be other more important things to see)
National Postal Museum (Sounds boring)
National Museum of the American Indian (Sounds boring)
Bureau of Engraving and Printing (Probably, might be cool)
National Archives (Without a doubt, have to see the Constitution and other documents)
The National Zoo (I have a zoo in Nebraska)
The National Cathedral (Is it worth seeing if I’m not religious)
Washington Monument (It is kind of hard to miss, but I guess I could go to the top)

Plus any other places you know about.
 
Mar 8, 2006 at 5:42 AM Post #2 of 10

Senn20

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When I went to DC I got a half hour landmark tour and then went to work for the next three days.

Go see all of the war memorials, especially Vietnam.
 
Mar 8, 2006 at 5:50 AM Post #3 of 10

damayor521

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Firam
Smithsonian Museums (Could spend a week there)
Library of Congress (Might be cool to see all the books)
Supreme Court (What is there to see? Only interesting if they are in session?)
Arlington National Cemetery (Wasn't too excited about but I guess I'll end up there because it is impressive seeing all the lined up white tombstones.)
Mt. Vernon (I’m sure it is pretty and all but is it worth my time?)
The Holocaust Museum (We have an appointment so I guess it is popular, is it worth it?)
The International Spy Museum (Interesting, but there seems to be other more important things to see)
National Postal Museum (Sounds boring)
National Museum of the American Indian (Sounds boring)
Bureau of Engraving and Printing (Probably, might be cool)
National Archives (Without a doubt, have to see the Constitution and other documents)
The National Zoo (I have a zoo in Nebraska)
The National Cathedral (Is it worth seeing if I’m not religious)
Washington Monument (It is kind of hard to miss, but I guess I could go to the top)

Plus any other places you know about.



* This is regarding the places I've been to:
- Smithsonian Museums ... last time I went there was when I was a kid. You might want to check out the Smithsonian website and see if there are any special exhibits going on.
- Arlington Cemetery ... really nice place. I think the best part is the tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The statue is huge in person. Really hits you of the sacrifices our men/women go through when they go out to war.
- Spy Museum ... I think it's best to go with a group on this one. Me and my friends dressed up in all black and took "spy-esque" pictures around the place. In the beginning of the museum, you pick out a "profile" and memorize it. All throughout there will be some stations that will quiz you about your profile. But some interesting items in there.
- National Archives ... really cool to check out. You might want to even re-enact some scenes from the movie "National Treasure" ... even though all the stuff you saw in the movie is horribly false.
- The Money Building ... went there when I was a kid. Boring tour, but really interesting to see all that money though. I bet it's even more interesting with all those new anti-counterfieting measures in the new bills now.
- National Cathedral ... never been there but I've been told from my friends that this is the largest church in the US. Kinda don't believe that.
- Monument ... nice place to have lunch and chill. But that monument always brings back memories of when they had some AIDS day there and a helicopter dropped a huge condom over it.

A place I recommend is a section of DC called Adams Morgan (I think) ... I don't know if you're of age, but there's a bunch of bars there and they are known for selling huge-ass slices of pizza for cheap. And it's very good too!
 
Mar 8, 2006 at 9:41 AM Post #4 of 10

spaceconvoy

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Honestly, if you only have one day I would skip all the museums - the whole Smithsonian thing takes a day in itself, and aside from a few special collections, it's pretty standard museum stuff. Skip the zoo, you can see animals back home, and don't bother with anything outside of the city (cemetary, cathedral, mt. Vernon) because it will take a full day in traffic just to get there and back
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Here's my short list:

- Air and Space Museum - yeah, I just said no museums, but where else can you walk through a full sized space shuttle? Very impressive in a nerdy sort of way.

- Natural History Museum - since it's so close to the Air and Space, why not see the hope diamond. Their whole gem/mineral collection is beautiful, but I would skip the musty stuffed mammals.

- Adams Morgan - I have to disagree with damayor. You can get pizza anywhere, but for some unknown reason this area is the best place in America to get Ethiopian food. If you don't mind spicy food and eating with your hands, you should give it a shot.

- Cherry Blossoms - if you're going in early April you have a good chance to see them in bloom. Even if they aren't, the Potomac in spring is still very nice and you can walk around and hit all the major war memorials.

- Georgetown - great atmosphere at night. Between here and Dupont circle is pretty much the extent of the student social scene in DC and is a great place to grab dinner. Walk all the way down M street to the river and you can see the infamous steps where they filmed the Exorcist.
 
Mar 8, 2006 at 1:42 PM Post #5 of 10

Firam

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I scaned through the Smithsonian exibits and luckily/unluckily there was no much that intrested me. But the Hope Diamond (Natural History Museum) and the Space Shuttle (Air and Space Museum)are on my list. I also realized that some of my musuems on my list are actually part of the Smithsonian. Between March 15 - April 9 is the Cherry Blossom festival so looks like I'll see them.

About the "National Treasure" reference. I was thinking the same thing, just didn't post it.

I'm only 18 so no drinking but I'll try Ethiopian food.
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I will be using public transportation (Bus, Subway, ect. which I hear is very good.)
 
Mar 9, 2006 at 7:01 AM Post #9 of 10

fante7

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I've taken a large number of vacations in DC (used to go every Memorial Day weekend) and I've hit almost all of the important tourist locations (and plenty of less important ones). I've never been to the Pentagon though. I'll add one coherent point - the National Cathedral was pretty cool IIRC - and I'm not even Christian. Maybe I'll try to add more insight when I'm sober.
 
Mar 9, 2006 at 9:23 AM Post #10 of 10

blip

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If you're not going there otherwise the National Art Gallery is absolutely mind-blowing. The Library of Congress is also pretty impressive... I think I stood in front of the Guttenberg Bible there for about a half-hour just blown away that I was actually seeing the artifact that ushered in modernity.
 

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