After watching basically every TV series or film that is set in Washington DC, we couldn’t miss our lil opportunity to finally visit Washington while the fam and I were in New York over the summer.
Side note: I haven’t actually blogged about NY yet, even though we went in August – oops – but I find writing those longer posts a bit more time consuming and just haven’t found the time yet, as we obvs tried to cram soooo much into 10 days that it gives me a brain boggle trying to even write it down. BUT one day eh?
We v last minute decided that we would do a coach day-trip to Washington DC, rather than drive as it turned out to be cheaper than hiring a car, and someone else organises it for you, um bonus. This was super organised for us after last year when we only booked hotels in different states and then figured out how to get there on the day we needed to travel.
The coach was lush and with only like 12 people in around 70 seats it was pretty chilled. The tour guide was also hilarious, she kept telling us how much she hated work (while doing her job) and would often turn her phone off to ignore her boss, banter. It was deffo the right choice for us to do the tour as we would never have managed to visit as many iconic sights if we had planned it ourselves.
Arlington National Cemetery and JFK’s Memorial
Our first stop was technically outside DC in Virginia, but it’s definitely worth a visit. JFK’s memorial with the eternal flame at the Arlington cemetery is really moving, and the Kennedy grave plot was a lovely tribute to the family. The cemetery is unimaginable really, the white grave stones line the grass as far as you can see holding over 400,000 graves of military men and women from centuries of different wars. It’s a remarkable place, and a phenomenal tribute to those servicemen and women and in some cases their families who laid down their lives for their country.
We got about 15 minutes at the Lincoln Memorial, which tbh was plenty of time bar the fact there are deceptively more steps than there appears in photos, but running up those bad boys was worth it to see good ol’ Abe. It’s an incredible statue of Lincoln, it was also just slightly surreal to see it in real life as it’s in sooo many movies.
I got slightly carried away with photos of the Washington Monument as we could see it from miles away on the coach, I probably deleted like 300 random photos with the little monument popping out in the back in the distance somewhere. But LOOK AT IT. Again very surreal to see it in the flesh, I sort of imagined I’d see Captain America jogging around it saying “on your left”, but sadly not, *sigh*. If we had longer we could have spent longer in the park the memorial is in, but we had enough time to see everything and get the classic photo in the reflection pool so can’t complain!
The White House
So this is obvs a must in DC, regardless of the worrying loon that currently sits inside it – pray for humanity. Don’t be fooled by the serenity of the photo either… Protestors and the secret service stood outside and made it pretty difficult to get a photo of the whole building, especially since it’s actually quite small and hidden through the gates, fountains and surrounding gardens. Also it’s just on the street in the middle of a built up area, like pops up out of no where. I’d imagined it would be set back and far away from civilisation but nope, just down the street from the local shop. It was a lil underwhelming really, but probs mainly because I knew Josh Lyman wasn’t inside. Ugh, I cry.
The Capitol building
The Capitol building was 10/10 my fave spot in DC and kinda makes me want to be a senator to just go inside. It was simply stunning, I haven’t edited these photos at all. I would go back to DC just to visit the Capitol Building again. It doesn’t even look real in photos, so I’ve obvs included one with my pale self infront so you will believe I went there. Ta-daaa.
Smithsonian Air and Space Museum
Oh my days. Now if you’re not a geek, you probably won’t care about a few aeroplanes or space shuttles, but YOU SHOULD. The NASA exhibitions were insane, there were artefacts and shuttles from different Apollo missions, like space suits, pens, journals, engines – it was SO cool.
As you can tell by my face though I was mainly super excited about seeing Amelia Earhart’s plane, Lockheed, that she flew across the Atlantic Ocean in. I mean as the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic can you blame me?! I can tick that off the bucket list.
I also LOVED the gift shop because first, who doesn’t love a gift shop?! And second, they had a whole stand full of children’s books about women who changed the world – politicians, doctors, authors, nurses, pilots, engineers, and books of notable female scientists with gorgeous illustrations and brimming with facts to empower young women. GO AMERICA. I mean there were also books that stated the US won the first world war, and several shops full of legit Trump merchandise, so maybe not so much, BUT I’ll give them a lil victory for their feminist lit. Yay.
Side note: if you do get a chance to visit don’t eat inside the museum as the prices are crazyyy. We learnt this too late, sad times. You also can’t take food back into the museum, but that didn’t stop us, I mean what are shirt pockets for if not to hide your half eaten sandwich in? Is it a napkin with a chicken wrap in, or a fancy pocket square eh? No one knows.