Washington DC Museums and Monuments
As the nation’s capital, Washington D.C. is certainly not lacking of museums,
monuments, exhibits, historic landmarks and a fantastic potpourri of cuisine and nightlife. The District of
Columbia is vibrant and alive with thousands of college students, passionate non-profits and swarms of local and
international government employees. Get a taste of this unique social climate when you book your airfare to
Washington DC through one of the region’s major airports: Dulles International Airport (Virginia), Ronald Reagan
International (Virginia), and Baltimore/Washington International (Maryland).
The National Mall. Aerial view (looking west)
of Capitol Hill and the National Mall in Washington, D.C., United States. Photo by Carol M.
The city itself coexists as both the District of Columbia and the city of Washington. When the city was established, it was planned
specifically to serve the United States as seat of government. A dispute arose between Virginia and Maryland as
to which state would be home to the nation’s capital. Thus, the decision was made to establish Washington DC as
an independent, non-state entity. What is most interesting about the city is its inhabitants are rule by the
United States Congress, which has ultimate authority over DC and resulting in less government representation for
residents than they would enjoy in a state.
building as seen from the west side of 1st St NE. SCotUS is the acronym for
the Supreme Court of the United States. Photo by 350z33.
Although you will never find yourself short of things to do or see in Washington
DC, there are several must visits in the District. A tour of the Capitol Building is a fascinating way to see the several stages of democracy as
they emerged over the course of the nation’s history. The building itself was partially burned, along with the
rest of the city, in 1814 by British forces and inside you can still see the remains of the old dome and the
surrounding new, taller dome. You can also view the first Supreme Court, then housed inside the Capitol. This
tour is most exciting because the building is an active part of today’s government, full of congressional
interns, staffers and Congressmen.
Take a walk on the wilder side of Washington DC’s Rock Creek Park and visit
Smithsonian's National Zoo, which is home to America’s famous pandas. Washington DC also
offers the very popular Spy Museum, which covers the history of intelligence, espionage and code breaking in the
United States and worldwide.
Smithsonian Institution Building or The Castle, built in 1855, in Washington
D.C. Photo by Túrelio.
The world renowned Smithsonian Institution is the most famous collection of
museums and galleries, including the National Air and Space Museum, the National Portrait Gallery and the recently
added National Museum of the American Indian.
From the Smithsonian collection you will have the best view of the Capitol and the
Washington Monument at either ends of the grassy Mall.
Washington, D.C. (Sept. 26, 2003) - Aerial view of the Washington Monument with
the White House in the background. Photo by U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Andy Dunaway.