Several tourists have a misconception that the capital of United States, Washington DC is just a stuffy government-driven town. The reality is that Washington is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the world and it has plenty in store for people of all ages. The rich history, fantastic culture, stunning monuments, famous museums, and the incredible food in the city makes it an ideal spot for spending time with your friends and family while you are on a vacation.
Tourists who are going on their first Washington DC tour often wonder how to make the most of their trip to the national capital. If you wish to make the most of your Washington DC tour, then you should visit all the Smithsonian Museums, see the famous memorials within the Capitol Hill, and then go on a US Capitol tour or check out the famous art pieces at the National Gallery of Art.
One of the most exciting things about Washington DC is that entry to most famous tourist destinations is entirely free. However, you will not be able to visit all these places in a day. So, if your tour to Washington DC is limited to a single day or two, then make sure to tour the following famous tourist destinations in the city.
Arlington, which is located in Northern Virginia on the southwestern banks of the Potomac River right across from the city of Washington DC, is one of the places that you must certainly visit when you are touring Washington DC. The city of Virginia is home to some of the finest parks and memorials in the country. If you are planning to visit Arlington during your Washington DC tours, then some of the best things you can do in Arlington are as follows.
Arlington National Cemetery
Arlington National Cemetery is actually a military cemetery of the United States Armed Forces. This famous national cemetery spans across 624 acres of land and contains the graves of soldiers who sacrificed their lives for the country since the American Civil War. Arlington National Cemetery, which was established during the American Civil War, is currently listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
US Marine Corps War Memorial
The iconic US Marine Corps War Memorial is located at Arlington National Cemetery’s back entrance. This war memorial is dedicated to the United States Marine Corps members who have died for the nation since the year 1775. This memorial, which is also known as the Iwo Jima Memorial, is based on a photograph caught by Joe Rosenthal, and Horace W. Peaslee designed this structure.
The National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial
The National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial in Arlington, which sits on the North Rotary Road, is actually a permanent outdoor memorial, which was built to remember the people who lost their lives during the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon. This outdoor memorial was opened to the public on September 11, 2008, and it was designed by Keith Kaseman and Julie Beckman.
American History Museum
The American History Museum was opened to the public in January 1964. During the initial years, the museum was called as the National Museum of History and Technology, but the authorities later renamed it to National Museum of American History in the year 1980. This was done to accurately reflect the responsibilities and scope of interests of the museum. The museum, which is located on the National Mall near the Washington Monument, has a lot in store for you. Some the must-watch things inside the American History Museum are listed below.
The Star-Spangled Banner
The Star-Spangled Banner is one of the most valuable and greatest treasures that are housed in the museum. This flag, which was commissioned by Baltimore flagmaker Mary Young Pickersgill by Fort McHenry, is 34 feet long and 30 feet tall. The Star-Spangled Banner is currently placed in a special climate-controlled display case on the second floor of the museum.
The First Ladies
The First Ladies exhibition explores the unofficial but significant position of the first lady of the nation. It also tells us about the contributions made by different women who held the position of the First lady. This exhibition at the National Museum of American History features over two dozen gowns that were worn by Michelle Obama, Laura Bush, Jacqueline Kennedy, Lou Hoover, and Frances Cleveland.
The American Stories exhibition at the museum displays a number of objects of historic significance. This exhibition takes you on a journey through the history of United States and helps you to know more about the rich history of the country. Some of the highlighting objects put on display at the museum are Plymouth Rock fragments, a signed baseball from the All-Star Game of 1937, and many textile and clothing artifacts.