Dreamers like you make their homes in places where ideas can flourish; and not just where they flourish, but where new ideas can be born. This is the ideology that calls you to Washington DC—America’s capital. Since 1790, the East Coast city has harbored intricate visions of American democracy. And whether or not those plans have been put into action, the constant remains that the city allows people to dream and collaborate in a way unlike anywhere else. You too will join the likes of those who have left their footprint in the capital city. As you stroll past the White House and gaze upon its well-manicured lawn, you silently thank yourself for having the foresight to reserve Washington DC lodging. Now, you’ll have a convenient home base to retire to after long days spent navigating your way from Foggy Bottom to the Lincoln Memorial, and a place to take all you’ve seen and turn it into a creative idea.
Out and About in Washington DC
There’s no disputing that life in Washington DC is fast-paced. As you order a cup of coffee inside a local café, you watch as numerous men and women in business suits grab their java and head back out into the world. There’s a sense of purpose in each person’s footsteps, and you have just as many intentions for your day as you begin your itinerary of things to do in Washington DC. Near the National Mall, you tote your camera and sketchbook along to visit a wide array of museums. Will you spend your time at the National Gallery of Art, reveling in sincere brushstrokes; at the National Museum of Natural History gazing upon extinct creatures; or opt for the National Museum of American History to look at what shaped the U.S.? American history beckons you inside, so you stroll through the institution’s corridors and marvel at exhibitions that capture events that shaped the nation—from political photographs to memorials of famed jazz legends.
Just two miles north of the impressive array of museums near the Mall, you’ll enjoy the bustling boutiques and restaurants that dominate U Street Corridor. Home to stunning Victorian homes as well as many local businesses, the street has become a haven for music in the capital city. In fact, Duke Ellington was born in the neighborhood, which just confirms your suspicion that DC is a perfect breeding ground for creativity. Pop into one of the neighborhood’s jazz venues and enjoy a nice bourbon on the rocks—sometimes the best way to be innovative is by gathering inspiration from creators around you.
Eating and Drinking
What’s interesting about the Washington DC food scene is that there isn’t a stand-out signature dish. As New York lays claim to the hotdog and Atlanta has nearly trademarked peaches, DC finds itself without a go-to meal—for good reason. Mirroring the nation itself, Washington DC’s food scene is representative of many international cuisines.
While you can certainly find yourself some old fashioned American home cooking, you’re better off turning on your explorer taste buds and searching for cuisine inspired by distant lands; with offerings like Greek, Chinese, Italian, and Mexican cuisine readily available throughout the city. For those gourmands truly looking to experience the best of the best in DC, venture to Logan Circle and 14th Street. This historic neighborhood features upscale wine bars where you can sip a sumptuous merlot and gaze out on the twinkling lights of the city teeming with energy. Additionally, several French restaurants are housed in this part of town. Rumor has it, French diplomats only dine in this area because the food is just that good. Settle into the dimly lit restaurant and order coq au vin and escargot as an appetizer—although you’re not there to talk politics with a diplomat, all this exploration has allowed you to work up an appetite.
Green Spaces Galore
Although DC may be renowned for its abundance of museums, memorials, and office buildings, the true star of the city is the National Mall. The great stretch of green lawn that unfurls before the Capitol has become an epic symbol of the nation. The patch of greenery is surrounded by massive buildings, and the diverse juxtaposition of large-scale monuments to a park-like setting is symbolic of the nation’s melting pot mentality. Whether you hail from America or somewhere far from the Land of the Free, you’re bound to enjoy waltzing through the park and peering out over the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool. Indeed, the National Mall has become a source of inspiration and a driving force behind key decisions made by many locals—and whether those decisions were about the fate of the country or whether or not to order takeout for dinner, they all have a place in the site’s history. You too can write the story of your life at the National Mall, just don’t forget to lay your eyes on the Washington Monument to remember the man who first made key decisions for America.
Day Trips from NYC
You can’t fathom pulling yourself away from one of the best places to stay in Washington DC just yet, but you have a sense of wonder about what else lies on the East Coast. Across the Chesapeake Bay, just 79 miles southeast of the city, you’ll delight in spending the day in St. Michaels, Maryland. This waterfront city is known for its friendly locals, abundance of boating activities, and tons of fare centered around the delicious blue crab. With the smell of saltwater still fresh in your mind, you return to DC with a full stomach and a content spirit, and vow to continue discovering what great ideas are there for the taking.
The State of the Union
When it comes to where to stay in Washington DC, look no further than the hotel deals offered here on Travelocity. Whether you prefer to be in close proximity to the abundance of museums near the National Mall or stationed near U Street Corridor to appreciate some of the best live music in the country, you’ll find the accommodation that leaves you with a sense of wonder right here. And when an idea strikes you while touring DC, don’t hesitate to write it down—flashes of inspiration need to be documented and remembered—much like your memories of Washington DC.