Washington DC - Travel Diary09:00:00
I hope all is going well with you. Today I’ll be sharing another travel diary from the States! Only two more to go after this one and then I can look back at them whenever I want.
Following Thanksgiving, the semester began to die down as we were starting to prepare for exams. This gave me the desire to travel again quite shortly after arriving back in Indiana. My travel buddy Adrian and I met up and started drafting ideas when I came back from Chicago. I was craving a bit of sunshine and thought about going to Miami which is definitely on my list for when I return to the States, but we ended up deciding to head to the Capital, Washington DC. The flights to Baltimore, Maryland were pretty inexpensive for a quick impromptu trip and Baltimore was also on a very handy transport route. I booked the flights, while Adrian found cheap accommodation in DC. Coincidentally, my friend Gillian was in Washington DC at the same time as me but unfortunately, we didn’t bump into one another.
Washington was a lot different to what I was expecting and initially, I thought it looked fairly European. It lacked the tall skyscraper buildings that Chicago, New York and the likes had. I actually think they have a law about how tall buildings can be there. We spent four days in the city which was more than enough to see and do everything in DC. We even went to Virginia to go to the Pentagon memorial which was another area affected by 9/11 during this trip.
There was a great selection of food in Washington DC. Out of any of the trips I’d been on, I definitely had the largest variety of food here – chilli, pancakes, Mexican food and Indian food. The main areas to see in DC are around the park area in the city’s centre. When we arrived and settled into our place, we then headed to the centre to explore. On our first day we saw the Washington Monument which is surrounded by vibrant American flags, the White House where we took some mandatory selfies and touristy pictures at Obama’s gaff, the constitutional gardens, and the Lincoln memorial. I absolutely love the building where the statue of Lincoln was. It’s a beautiful pearlescent white colour with gorgeous large pillars. It got dark quite early, so following this we went to a Christmas market and got some Indian food.
On our second day, we decided to explore some of DC’s museums. Our first stop was The Smithsonian National Air and Space museum. Adrian is studying aerospace engineering so this was completely his idea. There were parts of the museum I particularly enjoyed. Some man who worked there showed me what the stars would look like on the day of my birthday and I also went to my first planetarium which was an Einstein Planetarium. That was pretty cool! Best of all, entry to the museum was completely free of charge. Following this museum visit, we had a walk around the city, I saw an albino squirrel, fed some squirrels chocolate and walked around the National Mall Park a little more. We ended up stumbling across the United States Capitol and took a few pictures. We then did a little more exploring around the park and went to the Botanical Gardens in DC. When it got dark again we went to one of the Art Museums in Washington. This featured a lot of Van Gogh paintings and was again free of charge. That night we went to a Mexican place for dinner. I miss the abundant free nachos you’d get in places like this. This isn’t the case in Ireland.
Our last day exploring was pretty interesting also and the day we refer to as the Memorial Day of our trip. We decided to head out of the area for awhile and got the subway to Virginia. I just had to add another state to my list. In Virginia, we visited the Pentagon Memorial which was in memory of those affected by 9/11. We also managed to visit the air force memorial and then bought a cheeky Nandos. Nandos in the states was nowhere near as busy as what I’m used to when I go in Dublin. After we filled our stomachs, we got a taxi to Jefferson Memorial and decided to walk a long path back to the city centre. Jefferson Memorial was another beautiful building like the Lincoln Memorial. We also saw the George Mason Memorial, the Franklin Roosevelt Memorial and the Martin Luther Jr Memorial. We ended our day with a night-time Christmas lights festival at the Zoo in Washington DC. The fourth day consisted entirely of travel back to Indiana.
Washington DC is a must-see and very different to a lot of the places I visited. It reminds me lots of Europe and has a unique quality and lots of character to it.
Have you ever been to Washington DC?
What was the highlight of your trip?