Best Attractions in Washington DC

There’s More Than Government Buildings in Washington!

Most people don’t realize that Washington DC is one of the most popular destinations for tourists in the U.S. Most people find that surprising especially considering that the most recognizable destinations, like the White House, are off-limits to tourists in the post-9/11 world.

But there is much more to the city than walking around staring at monuments. We’ve put together the best attractions for you to visit in Washington:

1. The Capitol

Okay, the first one is exactly what you would expect. The Capitol building is the one government building still open to the public. There are official tours you can purchase a ticket to in the lobby, or you can contact your local state senator/congressman and they may get someone (i.e. an intern) to give you an unofficial tour. We recommend the latter, if you can swing it.

2. International Spy Museum

What can we say? Spies are awesome. This museum is a fun and informative tribute to spies throughout history…even going back to Moses. You can see lots of cool cold-war era spy gadgets (ex. lipstick guns). Museums are usually not all that fun (the city has a Holocaust museum), but this one breaks the mould.

3. The National Zoo

Zoo’s are a divisive attraction these days. What made us recommend it is the fun habitats they have created for the animals…including a cable-system that enables the orangutans to travel freely around the zoo. Giant pandas are also an adorable feature of the zoo.

Visit the Zoo’s official website.

4. The U Street Corridor

This is another example of a neighborhood reclamation. This area was a hotspot for African-American culture in the 30’s and 40’s: Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald and Miles Davis were regulars here. It fell into disrepair up until recently, where it is now home to a bustling night life. This includes a spectacular live venue in 9:30 and several boutique restaurants. This is a great area to have dinner and go for a pleasant walk with your partner.

5. Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum

If you’re into aviation or space travel then this is an amazing experience. You can walk up close to a space shuttle, and see a Saturn V rocket that propelled the Apollo restaurants to the Moon. There’s also lots of aviation history, like the Spirit of St. Louis, and more.

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