Washington D.C. is a city that holds a lot of memories in my heart. I remember coming into D.C. on many weekends with my family to visit the monuments and museums. Unlike other cities, there are many historic sights and state of the art museums that are completely free of charge. People who live in the DMV area are very lucky to have access to all of these places.
Christmas will be here in no time at all. This holiday season brings breaks off from school and work. Visiting friends and family to reconnect also takes place during the holiday season. If you want to take a day to relax with some of your friends and family into the beautiful nation's capital, here are a few places in Washington D.C. that will fascinate you and your companions.
1. Washington Monument
If you are driving in D.C., the Washington Monument is almost always in sight. Standing at 555 feet tall, it is the tallest structures in the nation's capital. Next to the monument is the National Mall, a great open grass field that is right in the middle of the city. As a kid, I flew kites, played soccer games, and simply ran around having the time of my life. Going up to the top of the monument and seeing the sprawling city underneath is truly a sight to see.
2. The Korean War Memorial
I remember visiting this memorial when I was young. Snow had covered the city the night before, and to me it made D.C. look different. My family and I passed the frozen stone soldiers as a solemn reminder of the Korean War. I remember looking at the snow covered statues, thinking that the statues looked real. This sight could possibly happen again given the weather this winter. Check out this memorial, even if there isn't any snow around.
3. National Museum of African American History and Culture
Opening in September 2016, the Smithsonian's newest edition has been a popular museum to visit ever since. From the unique exterior design to all of the valuable information within the walls, this museum is a definite must visit! Last but certainly not least, the cafe in the museum contains some of the best soul food that a person can get!
4. Lincoln Memorial
Built in honor of President Lincoln, this monument is definitely my favorite monument to visit. With a giant reflection pool leading up to great stone steps. Walking up these steps really makes the visitor feel as though they are coming to sacred ground. The pillars leading in, a massive statue of Lincoln sitting powerfully in a giant fancy chair, and his Gettysburg address inscribed on the wall all come together to create a sense of power and respect that set it apart from the other monuments. An added plus to this monument is looking at the reflection pool when you are on the big stone steps. The large reflection of the Washington Monument makes it look as though there are two massive structures instead of just one.
5. Ben's Chilli Bowl
Open since 1958, this D.C. restaurant has become a celebrity in its own right. Several things make Ben's stand apart: A massive mural of famous African Americans on the outside wall and different pictures of celebrities and presidents enjoying their hot dogs, burgers, and chili fries lining the inside walls gives a unique atmosphere. Definitely worth a visit for anyone who wants to try true D.C. history.
6. Smithsonian Museum of Natural History
This museum is a must for people who love nature. Diamonds and minerals of all shapes and sizes, animal models, and dinosaur bones are all stored and preserved here for anyone to see. Bring your family here for the day and get lost into the many wonders planet earth has to offer.
7. Cherry Blossoms
Next year from March 20-April 14, 3000 Japanese Cherry trees will blossom simultaneously, creating a beautiful landscape all around D.C's monuments. Given as a gift from Japan in 1912, these blossoms represent the friendship between Japan and the United States. Be sure to bring a camera with you to lock in the gorgeous images that you are sure to find here.
8. Air and Space Museum
"Star Wars," "Star Trek," "Halo," and "Guardians of the Galaxy." All of these space franchises have massive followings and are loved by millions of people. The love of space exploration to other planets is nothing new. Even before the Wright brothers first flew in 1903, humans have always had a want to get off the ground and fly with the birds, reach other worlds. Centuries worth of hot air balloons, satellites, planes, and flying equipment, are all present in abundance here. The space museum is also home to a massive IMAX theater, where you can watch both Hollywood feature films and educational documentaries.
9. Vietnam Memorial
The design of this memorial is straightforward: all of the lives lost during the duration of the Vietnam War inscribed on a wall. While the design is simple, the impact of the names always brings a respectful silence to anyone who visits. Be sure to take a look at this famous memorial if you are ever in the area.