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At first glance, one might think Washington DC is solely politics but there is also much history, culture, and fun to be had. What visitors like most is the affordability and accessibility of the nation’s capital. Walking tours, easy-to-use trains, taxis, and car services make getting around fairly simple even if you don’t have your own car. As with many metropolitan areas, there are tour passes available which allow users to pay a flat fee to visit a number of locations, some with the option of choosing sites while others have a set plan, so you can see a number of locations while staying within budget.
Getting to Know Washington DC – Must-See Destinations
First things first. If you’ve never seen the cherry blossoms bloom in Washington DC, you need to add it to your bucket list! The National Cherry Blossom Festival runs March 20 – April 13, 2019 and includes events that honor American and Japanese cultures. The bond of the two nations originates with the 1912 gift of cherry trees from the Tokyo Mayor Yukio Ozaki and continues to this day. The 3,800 pink and white blooms drape the National Mall in color and are the centerpiece of activity.
If you miss the festival, the National Mall is still a must-visit location…and it’s FREE to walk around. Visit historic sites like the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Veterans Memorial, World War II Memorial, Thomas Jefferson Memorial, and Korean War Veterans Memorial, to name a few. If you’re looking for a place for quiet reflection, head to the 50-acre Constitution Gardens.
Weather in the area can get chilly in the winter so head inside to the Smithsonian Museums. Not only are they warm, they’re FREE! The 19 Museums, Galleries, and National Zoo, will keep you busy for days on end. Destinations include the African American Museum, Air and Space Museum, American History Museum, Natural History Museum, Smithsonian Castle, and Smithsonian Gardens. Check the official Smithsonian website for hours and additional information.
Getting Around Washington DC & Surrounding Areas
If all of this sounds overwhelming, DC by Foot offers free walking tours that include Georgetown and Arlington National Cemetery.
If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, try the Metro, the relatively easy to navigate subway system that reaches Washington DC and the surrounding areas and airports. It’s a bit easier than attempting the infamous Capital Beltway freeway system which can literally have you driving in a circle a la the Griswolds in National Lampoon’s European Vacation.
There are also hop on and hop off tours like Old Town Trolley Tours which give visitors the freedom to see what they’d like with entertainment and facts from the guides whether that’s a day tour or a Moonlight Monument tour.
Getting to Eat in Washington DC
While the area isn’t known to be a foodie paradise like Portland, Oregon, or some of the other cities we’ve featured, Washington DC is home to folks from around the country and the globe so you can bet you can find whatever your inner foodie is craving. From cocktails and craft beers to trending Filipino cuisine, you’ve got your picks. Highly recommended as a place for people watching, conversation, and food is The Line which is located in the lobby of the Adams Morgan Hotel and if you’re into music, try the 18th Street Lounge on 18th Street and M. Many restaurants and bars are located in historic buildings which in and of itself is an adventure.
Whether you love American history, the culture of city life, or food from around the world, Washington DC and it’s surrounding areas are great options for your next travel assignment! Explore our available jobs here or give us a call at 888.515.3900. Make taking your next travel assignment easy by letting us look after you while you look after your patients.