Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Weekend | Washington D.C.

This past weekend Preston & I headed down to Washington D.C. My cousin's wedding was on Saturday, so we decided to add a couple days to explore the city. It was a jam-packed weekend of attractions, museums, and walking. We literally walked over 20 miles that weekend. Though there is still so much I wish I was able to experience, it was a perfect weekend.

Day 1: We started our morning in our apartment in NYC at 3:30am. Grabbed some Starbucks at Penn Station and boarded our 6am train to take us down the East Coast. We arrived at Union Station at just before 10 to start our first city day. With all our belongings on our backs, we walked past senate offices, the Supreme Court, and toured the Library of Congress.

The city layout is so different from New York- everything is all right there, neatly arranged. All the Smithsonian museums are lined up along the lawn, with the Capital Building at one end and the Washington Monument and memorials at the other. This made it super easy for a weekend trip without personal transportation.

There are so many amazing museums, and all the Smithsonian ones are free! Score. We went to the Botanical Garden, the Sculpture garden, and the Natural History Museum. The Natural History Museum was amazing. I had been as a kid, but it was great to go back. I love the mineral section, the mammals, and the human evolution area. The dinosaur section was closed, but that just means we have to go back... The other museum I really wanted to see was the Air & Space museum, but we just didn't have time. For lunch, we went to We The Pizza which was so good. I'm pretty much Top Chef obsessed, so I had to seize that opportunity. We walked around the residential section a bit and loved the town. It reminded us of our Park Slope neighborhood but with a colonial twist. We then took the Metro all the way to suburbia to meet with my family.

Day 2: Day 2 was all about relaxing. We stayed at a hotel in the suburbs that was close to the wedding. We watched some Orange is the New Black, went swimming in the pool, took a leisurely stroll through Target, and had lunch at Panera. Targets and Paneras are much, much better in the suburbs. Then, we got ready for the wedding. It was Preston & my first wedding together, and it was his first time meeting my extended family. We had so much fun. Congrats Sarah & Chad!

Day 3: One of my top requests was to go to the National Zoo. It was awesome. I have more pictures of all the animals than anything else.. My mom and aunt were kind enough to pick us up early the next morning from the hotel and bring us to the Metro for our second (& last) day in the city. We were able to say goodbye to everyone over the hotel breakfast and wish the bride & groom well over their honeymoon (Scotland! So jealous!) We started off in DC sneakily putting our backpacks in the Natural History museums lockers (best kept secret tip!) and then took the metro again up to the Zoo. I was roughin' it today with a messy braid, white tee, and tennis shoes which we had to stop and buy! A 10 mile day of d'orsays and a night in heels was the death of me.

Anyway, back to the zoo. We had to see the pandas. I could have watched them all day. Too freaking adorable. The little baby was so cute. There was also a really cool exhibit where you just walked under monkeys. I was hoping my animal whispering would convince it to jump on my shoulder. Didn't happen.

Though we hoped we would have more time, we left the zoo pretty late and ended the day by walking to the White House and finally the memorials. The war memorials were very emotional. They are stunning and haunting at the same time. Walking around at this sunset time was cool. I liked seeing the locals walking their dogs or heading out for a night with friends. I assumed this area would be dead at this time as many downtown/business areas are, so it was nice to see some life.

After another 10 miles of walking we were exhausted, but it was worth it. We 'ubered' it back to the train station where I picked up a Washington D.C. Starbucks mug to add to my little collection. By 3:30 am, we were back in our apartment in New York. 

Everything seemed to work out surprisingly well for such a quick trip- beautiful weather, no delays. The only main thing we didn't cover was more of the 'non-touristy' things. Usually when traveling we try to find a nice local place for brunch or coffee and walk around more of the scenic neighborhoods and shops. But you really do have to do the tourist things your first time around, and with only a 3.5 hour train ride, we can easily come back.

What are some of your favourite spots in D.C.?

No comments:

Post a Comment