Our next city stop in our US trip last March 2008 after New York City was Washington, DC. We arrived at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport through low-cost carrier Delta. We chosed the airport because it is the only one within the city and the others are at least an hour away and located in other nearby states. Like what we did in New York, we took the train from the airport to our hotel.
Metro-Farragut North Station. This seemed to be the nearest station from our hotel based on the map. We found the metrorail system in the city very efficient and the maps easier to understand unlike the one in New York City which comprises of a lot of lines and seems to be very complicated. We bought a prepaid card for train access which we were able to maximize the use throughout our stay here.
We stayed at Courtyard Embassy Row. Located in Scott Circle, we are near from a lot of schools, churches and embassies.
We stayed in an ordinary Deluxe Room. This was the most expensive accomodation we had in the US, even more expensive than the one we payed for in Las Vegas even if this stay was shorter. This is because a lot of people are in the city for a convention we didn't know about when we booked last December 2007. Wrong choice of date I must say.
After we settled in our room, we got rest for a couple of hours and so and just went out for a dinner in a nearby Quiznos Sub outlet. On the way back to our hotel, I fancy seeing almost all of the buildings are transparent and that if you are working in one of these offices, you can literally be seen from outsid the building if you are near the window.
Human Rights Campaign building
We are booked for a tour the next day. Early in the morning, we left our hotel to go to the old post office where the tour started. Riding the metrorail, we went down Federal Triangle and was led to Woodrow Wilson Plaza at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center.
Old Post Office Pavilion
The tour we booked was organized by OnBoard Washington, DC, one of the top-rated tours in the city that boasted fun and excitement of their services. I should say that I agree with this rating and I definitely would recommend this to anyone coming in to the city.
Our first stop was in the United States Capitol, the seat of the US congress, located on top of the Capitol Hill and on one end of what is called the National Mall, an open area in the city where different parks, monuments and memorials are located.
The next stop was in the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, a memorial for the third president and American founding father. The building that housed the memorial is a neoclassical type said to be modeled after the Pantheom of Rome.
We also visited Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial. Unlike the previous one, this memorial is bigger, spanning across 7-8 acres of land that is divided into four rooms which represents each term of FDR as a president.
Back at the National Mall, we also passed by the Korean War Veterans Memorial.
Nearby is the Lincoln Memorial staged in honor of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States. The structure is said to be in a form of a Greek Doric temple. Inside is a larger-than-life seated sculpture of the said president.
Across the memorial is an obelisk called the Washington Monument, built to commemorate George Washington. It is said that this is also the world's tallest stone structure and the world's tallest obelisk.
Also nearby is the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, a memorial that honored the soldiers who fought during the Vietnam War, especially those who died or were left unfound.
There is also a memorial called World War II Memorial, dedicated to the armed forces as well as states and colonies of the US during World War II who fought and risked their lives for the war.
After having lunch in the food court of Pentagon City mall, we went to nearby Arlington, Virginia where United States Air Force Memorial stood. It is a memorial in honor of all the members of the US Air Force.
The Pentagon can be seen from on top of the hill where the Air Force Memorial is. It is the headquarters of the US Department of Defense.
United States Marine Corps War Memorial is dedicated to the Marine personnel who gave their lives for the country. It is also commonly called as Iwo Jima Memorial because the statue is actually a scene that happened in Iwo Jima.
Towards the end of the tour, we passed by a lot of embassies of different countries. We also passed by the Washington National Cathedral.
The end of the tour was a visit to the White House, the official house of the president of the United States. Unfortunately a tour inside the White House would require months of advanced reservation that you should file with your local embassy.
After the tour, we were dropped off where we started. In front of the Old Post Office is a statue of Benjamin Franklin.
Near the drop off point is the White House Visitor Center, 15th and E Streets. To have a feel of what's inside the White House, we came in here and settled for some relics that were showcased since the White House is closed to public.
We went back to our hotel after the tour to take a few hours rest. This is a monument of Daniel Webster in Scott Circle recognizing his achievements as a Senator and a secretary of the state.
Also located within the Scott Circle is the Philippine Embassy. Too bad it was closed when I tried to get in.
That night we decided to have a dinner outside. On the way to the train station, we assed by the Cathedral of St. Matthew, The Apostle.
We had our dinner in Chinatown. I will be telling more about this in my upcoming blogs.
The next day was spent in going through a lot of museums in the Smithsonian Institution. I'll be writing more about this later on.
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