Home to not only the President of the United States but also to the American House and Senate, the day to day decisions made in Washington DC are arguably the most wide reaching in the world. Simply put, this is a town where news and history is made every single day.
Having such a dramatic influence of the lives of ordinary Americans and world citizens alike, Washington DC is naturally full of grand history, big ideas and extremely powerful people. As such, history and tradition are spread richly across the city and attract millions of visitors each year.
Of course, there is only one address that truly matters – 1600 Pennsylvanian Avenue, or the White House as it’s more commonly known. The residence of 43 of America’s 44 Presidents, the White House is undoubtedly the flagship attraction of the city but there’s much more to DC than simply that.
The machinery of government is an important part of Washington, so no visit is complete without visiting the stunning United States Capitol on Capitol Hill. Similarly, the inspirations of the city’s decision makers are an important part of the DC experience – given the gravitas of the figures they commemorate, the memorials to Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and George Washington are certain to put a lump in the hardest of throats. The Library of Congress is also an extraordinary place of interest, albeit one that requires more than an hour or two to appreciate fully.
As a city, Washington DC is hard to separate from its governmental function, but all kinds of fascinating exhibits, museums and experiences can be found throughout. As you can expect for such an important city, DC is home to a number of exceptional collections such as the Smithsonian Institute – the largest in the world. Often termed ‘America’s Attic’ due to its simple eclecticism, the Smithsonian is a collection of 19 museums, 9 research centres and even a zoo – home to some 137m items of interest from every subject conceivable.
Outside of the Smithsonian family, visitors to the city can expect to find themselves wowed by all kinds of cultural landmarks such as the National Museum of Natural History, the National Gallery of Art, the National Museum of American History and even more niche (but strangely appropriate) destinations like the International Spy Museum. Just don’t expect to be allowed in wearing a wire!