36 Hours in D.C.

36 Hours in D.C. is definitely not enough time. My mom and I had never been so we decided to go hit up some Smithsonians.

Below is a quick iterniary for anyone to use looking to be there for a short period of time:

Day 1

For us, our first day was a Friday, we arrived around 2:30pm, checked in to our hotel and then walked down to the mall to see the sites. I would definitely recommend getting a hotel close by, our hotel, the Hampton Inn was about 3/4 of a mile which was perfect because we didn’t need transportation for anything.

After walking around for a bit, grab some food at District Chop House. We were recommended to go here by a coworker and it was fantastic. It’s a little pricey but totally worth it.

After this we did a DC at Dusk tour. The driver and guide weren’t fantastic but the actual drive and seeing the sites under the lights was awesome. It’s a must do because it provides you with all the sites so you can take the following day to be all about museums. For more information you can go here. We actually bought through Groupon and got it a little cheaper. Definitely check out Groupon before you go, they have a ton of discounts.

Day 2

Our second day, and full day was all about visiting museums and it was awesome. They are also all free, what could be better? Most museums open at 10am and stay open until 530pm. But the Smithsonian Castle opens around 8:30am and is definitely a must see. It was actually one of my favorite places and I can’t believe someone who had never been to the United States left all their money to us for education and to preserve history.

After that, go to whatever museums really interest you. We were able to sneak in three listed below:

  • Air and Space Museum
  • American Indian Museum
  • American History Museum

Definitely go to the Air and Space Museum, it wasn’t originally on our list but I’m so happy we added it, it was my favorite museum of the day.

Once you get done with all that walking, head to Capital Burger for dinner and Eric Kayser for dessert. If you get there late enough they might get you some of their baked good for free!

Final Day

We headed out pretty early on our third day. Before we left, we headed to Arlington National Cemetery. This is a can’t miss, it’s a somber place to be but also eye opening to truly understand how many people have fought for our country. We didn’t have a lot of time there so we only saw President Kennedy’s resting place and the Tomb of The Unknown Soldier where we saw the wreath laying ceremony that will give you chills.

Overall Experience:

Overall experience of D.C. was that it was pretty awesome. We are already looking to go back in a year or two to hit up The National Archives, Library of Congress, Spy museum and Natural History Museum.

Some notes to keep in mind:

If you’re looking to visit Congress or the White House there are a few post 9/11 rules you should be aware of:

  • Must be a US Citizen
  • Must reach out to your senator first and get approval through them

Total Cost (per person)

  • Hotel: $197 (per person)
  • Parking: $22
  • Gas: $25
  • Food: $120 (1 lunch, 2 dinners, bakery)
  • Dusk Tour: $30

Total: $397

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