What to Do and See in Washington DC

One of the most important and historically significant cities in the world is Washington, D.C., which serves as the capital of the United States. It is the location of well-known sites like the White House, the Lincoln Memorial, the National Mall, and the Smithsonian museums.

Washington, D.C. offers plenty of chances for tourists to explore the city’s museums, memorials, and other historical sites while getting a full understanding of American history and culture. The Washington Monument, the World War II Memorial, and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial are just a few of the many interesting places to visit on the National Mall.

A lively and diverse city with a flourishing food, arts, and entertainment scene, Washington, D.C. is home to many historic sites in addition to being a modern metropolis. In addition to attending concerts, festivals, and cultural events all year long, visitors can savour a variety of cuisines, from traditional American fare to foreign specialties.

Washington, D.C. is a must-visit location for anyone interested in American history, politics, or society, and it has something to offer every kind of traveller. The following article will list what we feel you should do and see when visiting Washington DC.

  1. The National Mall and Memorial Parks

Several monuments, memorials, and institutions honoring American history and culture can be found in the National Mall and Memorial Parks, a sizable public park in Washington, D.C. The National Mall, which spans more than 1,000 acres of land and is a famous tourist destination and a center of civic activity, hosts events and protests all year long.

The Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument, and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial are just a few of the famous American monuments that can be found in the park. A variety of museums that display artifacts and displays that trace the history of the nation are also open to visitors, including the National Museum of American History and the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

The National Mall and Memorial Parks provide visitors with a tranquil escape from the city’s bustle in addition to their historical importance. Picnics, walks, and other outdoor activities can be enjoyed in its lush lawns, tree-lined paths, and picturesque vistas of the Potomac River. The National Mall and Memorial Parks are a must-see location, whether you are a history enthusiast or just want to take in the natural grandeur of the nation’s capital.

  1. The White House

Located in Washington, DC, the White House is the formal residence of the President of the United States. It is one of the most famous and recognizable structures in the world and a must-see attraction for anyone traveling to the city.

Since the United States’ founding, the White House has had a long and illustrious past. Visitors to the building can take guided walks that include stops in the East Room, Blue Room, and State Dining Room. Visitors to the walk also gain an intriguing understanding of the President’s daily routine and the operations of the White House.

Visitors can wander the South Lawn, Rose Garden, and Jacqueline Kennedy Garden in the White House gardens in addition to the guided tours. A trip to Washington, DC would not be complete without seeing the White House, which represents American history, authority, and democracy.

  1. Visit the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum

Located in Washington, DC, the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum is a famous institution devoted to the study of aviation and space travel. The museum houses a sizable collection of relics and displays that trace the development of air and space travel, such as the original airplane built by the Wright Brothers and the Apollo 11 command module.

In addition, visitors can experience the exhilaration of flight in flight simulators and explore interactive displays that mimic space missions. A planetarium with breath-taking views of the night sky and educational programming on astronomy and space is another highlight of the museum.

Visitors of all ages enjoy the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum because it offers a distinctive and comprehensive learning experience that piques their interest in the cosmos. The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum is a must-visit destination in Washington, D.C., regardless of whether you are an aviation enthusiast, a space nerd, or just looking for a fun and instructive experience.

  1. The United States Capitol

The United States Congress is housed in the United States Capitol, a structure in Washington, DC. Anyone interested in American politics and history must visit this attraction because it is one of the city’s most recognized landmarks.

The Capitol Building has a lengthy past that dates back to the American nation’s founding. Visitors to the building can take guided walks that lead them through the Rotunda, the Crypt, and the Old Supreme Court Chamber. The tour also offers fascinating glimpse into how the US government functions to visitors.

Visitors can see the various architectural styles that have been integrated into the Capitol Building through its numerous renovations and expansions over the years. In addition, the Capitol Building is home to a sizable collection of artwork and historical relics, including sculptures, paintings, and murals that depict significant events in American history and culture.

  1. The Smithsonian National Museum of American History

A museum in Washington, DC, called the Smithsonian National Museum of American History is devoted to preserving and displaying American history. For anyone interested in American history and culture, it is one of the most popular museums in the entire globe.

The museum’s exhibits cover a broad range of subjects, including popular culture, the arts, and military and political history. Some of the most famous items in American history, such as the Star-Spangled Banner, the original Kermit the Frog puppet, and the first business computer, are on display for visitors.

A deeper knowledge of American history and culture is offered to visitors by the museum’s interactive exhibits and events. Anyone intrigued in the varied and intricate history of the United States should visit the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.

  1. The National Gallery of Art

A museum in Washington, DC, called the National Gallery of Art is devoted to gathering, preserving, and displaying works of art from all over the globe. Anyone interested in the visual arts should definitely explore one of the most popular art museums in the country.

Artworks from the Middle Ages to the present day are represented in the museum’s collection, with an emphasis on American and European works. Some of the most well-known pieces of art in history, such as works by Pablo Picasso, Vincent van Gogh, and Leonardo da Vinci, are available for viewing by visitors.

The National Gallery of Art also presents transient exhibitions and occasions that highlight the most recent developments in modern art, in addition to the permanent collection. For visitors of all levels, the museum also provides a variety of educational programs and materials. Anyone interested in the arts and society should not miss the National Gallery of Art.

  1. The Library of Congress

The Library of Congress, the largest library in the world and the study library for the United States, is situated in Washington, D.C. Congress is a storehouse for information and culture. Over 170 million items in the library’s collection, including books, papers, images, maps, and other artifacts, are used to record both American and global history.

The Main Reading Room, which boasts a grand domed ceiling and impressive views of the city, is one of the library’s stunning architectural features that visitors can investigate. On a variety of subjects related to literature, culture, and history, the library also hosts public events, concerts, and talks.

The Library of Congress is an invaluable resource for researchers, students, and anyone interested in learning more about the world’s knowledge and cultural legacy because, in addition to its physical holdings, it provides online access to its enormous collection. The Library of Congress is a national asset and a symbol of the value of learning as well as the need to preserve our shared past.

  1. The National Museum of African American History and Culture

A museum in Washington, DC, called the National Museum of African American History and Culture is devoted to studying the African American experience in the country. The museum houses a sizable collection of artefacts and displays that highlight the accomplishments, contributions, and challenges of African Americans throughout history.

The museum’s exhibits cover a broad variety of subjects, including music, art, sports, and topics like slavery and the Civil Rights Movement. Emmett Till’s actual coffin, Rosa Parks’s outfit from the Montgomery bus, and items from the Underground Railroad are all on display for visitors.

Additionally, the museum offers interactive displays, movies, and events that help guests learn more about African American history and culture. For anyone curious about the rich and complicated past of the United States, a visit to the National Museum of African American past and Culture is a must.

  1. Visit the Civil War Site at Manassas, Virginia

The Battle of Bull Run, which took place on July 21, 1861, close to Manassas, Virginia, was the first significant conflict of the American Civil War. Confederate forces won the fight, which showed how bloody and drawn-out the war would be.

General Irvin McDowell’s Union force was on its way to Richmond, the Confederate capital, when it came up against General P.G.T. Beauregard’s Confederate army at Bull Run. Despite initial success, the Union forces were ultimately forced back in the “Great Skedaddle,” a chaotic retreat that earned its name.

The Battle of Bull Run significantly impacted the Civil War. It exposed the need for a better-trained and organized force and dispelled the myth that the Union would win quickly and easily. Additionally, it signalled the start of the protracted and bloody conflict that would eventually influence American history. Visitors can now tour the battleground and gain knowledge of the tactics and strategies used by both sides in this crucial conflict. By clicking here or one of the banners below, you can arrange a visit of this location, which is only 30 minutes from Washington, DC.

  1. Visit Arlington National Cemetery

Over 400,000 service members, veterans, and their families are buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, which is just across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C. The cemetery also serves as the ultimate resting place for many well-known figures from American history.

The Arlington National Cemetery was built during the American Civil War on the property of Arlington House, where Confederate General Robert E. Lee once lived. It has since come to represent sacrifice, respect, and patriotism. At the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, where a perpetual flame burns in honor of those who have offered the ultimate sacrifice for their nation, visitors can pay their respects to the deceased troops.

Additionally, a number of ceremonies and activities are held at Arlington National Cemetery throughout the year, such as wreath-laying ceremonies on Memorial Day and Veterans Day. A must-visit destination for anyone interested in American history and culture, the cemetery serves as a potent reflection of the sacrifices made by those who have served their country.

  1. Hop on Hop off Open Bus Tours in Washington DC

Open-top bus excursions in Washington, D.C. give tourists a fun and educational way to discover the city’s most famous structures. These excursions typically take place on double-decker buses with open-air upper decks, offering a distinctive vantage point for taking in the city’s sights and noises.

Through live commentary from knowledgeable tour guides or pre-recorded audio guides accessible in several languages, visitors can learn about the importance and history of each landmark on these tours. Stops include well-known locations like the White House, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Smithsonian institutions.

With the ability to board and exit at any stop along the route, open bus trips offer flexibility and let passengers explore at their own speed. First-time visitors to Washington, D.C. should take advantage of these excursions. who seek an engaging and convenient method to experience the city’s top attractions.

If you would like to do a hop on bus tour in Washington DC, click here or one the Big Bus Tours or CitySightseeing banners below. 

12. Check out the Cherry Blossoms

The stunning cherry blossom show in Washington, D.C., which draws tourists from all over the world, is well known. Every spring, typically in late March or early April, the famous cherry blossom trees in the city burst into exquisite pink and white blooms, converting the surroundings into an enthralling fantasy. These cherry blossoms were a gift from Japan and represent the strong bond between the two countries.

The best place to view the cherry blossoms is in the Tidal Basin, which is close to the National Mall. Visitors meander along the water’s edge as the petals flutter in the breeze, entranced by the magical environment. Every year, the Cherry Blossom Festival honours this natural wonder with a number of activities such as parades, cultural performances, and fireworks.

The transient nature of the cherry blossoms inspires us to cherish the present moment by serving as a reminder of the passing beauty of life. A trip to Washington, D.C., during cherry blossom season is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take in the enchantment of nature’s exquisite handiwork.