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Let me start out by saying that I am incredibly lucky and I will fly for free for the rest of 2018. I have a friend that works for an airline and he has signed me up as his companion and I am incredibly grateful! I work Monday – Friday so most of my trips are very quick 24 – 48 hours trips but I try to cram as much as possible into these trips with the little amount of time that I have. This is how I spent my 24 hours (actually I think it’s a little less than that) in Washington, D.C.
Landed at Ronald Reagan Airport and grabbed an Uber to the hotel. If you haven’t signed up for uber yet, you can use my link and get $5 off your first ride.
It took me almost an hour to get to my hotel from the airport and it was only 5.2 miles away. I will admit that the traffic in D.C. is not ideal. I think i probably would’ve made it to the hotel much faster if I would’ve taken the public transit and walked the two blocks to the hotel. We stayed at Capitol Hill Hotel and I highly recommend it. It was in a great location and was walking distance to a ton of attractions and restaurants.
Dinner at Mr. Henry’s restaurant. I love to eat and I love to find local restaurants to eat at when I travel. We found this restaurant on Yelp and it has pretty high reviews and it was also only a .3 mile walk from our hotel. I had the salmon and it was amazing and my sister had meatloaf (weird thing to order, I know) and she really enjoyed it.
Sleep time. I had been up since 4:30am and was struggling at this point and we wanted to be able to get up early and see as many attractions as we could before I had to head back to the airport.
Breakfast. We ate breakfast at the hotel because they had a ton of options and why not save some money? They had eggs, breakfast meats, lunch meat, bagels, pastries, and a lot of other options. I also feel the need to mention, they had GREAT coffee! I always try to find a local coffee shop but the coffee was so good at the hotel that I didn’t even bother the hunt for local coffee.
Off to exploring! We took an uber to the Lincoln memorial to start out our day adventuring. You can easily walk this from the hotel if you wanted but my sister is very pregnant and we knew we would already be walking a ton that day.
Once again, it took a very long time for us to go a short distance because of the traffic. I would recommend walking if you are able! I like to do as many free or cheap things as I can when I travel so we started exploring all of free sites and museums. These are all of the places we were able to go and walk to in just a short amount of time. I would recommend going to more museums if you have the time to go but we were running out of time and couldn’t squeeze anymore in. We really wanted to visit the Holocaust Museum but the line was crazy long. If you decide you want to see this, then get tickets ahead of time online. It is free to get into the museum if you wait in line in person but you can get tickets ahead of time for just $1 online and I highly recommend doing that.
- Lincoln Memorial
- WWII Memorial
- Washington Monument
- Constitution Gardens
- Vietnam Veterans Memorial
- National Museum of Natural History
Time to eat! Plan – B burger bar was DELICIOUS! Once again, I found this restaurant on Yelp. Yelp is typically my go-to app when I’m looking for food in an unfamiliar city. I had this amazing jalapeno burger with perfectly crispy French fries and some “special seasoning”. I’m pretty sure the seasoning was just rosemary and salt but they were perfect! This restaurant was also within walking distance of all of the sights we were seeing. I would also recommend splitting a meal if you don’t want to have to carry around a take-out box, both of our meals were pretty large portions.
Tour of the Capitol building. We were really lucky to get a free personal tour. My brother-in-law was there lobbying and got us a tour. This was probably my favorite part of the trip. I initially wasn’t excited because I thought we would be in a large group and unable to ask questions or we would skip over things I wanted to learn about but we had a personal tour! I probably learned more on this tour than I did in my high school history class, just saying, it was worth the time and it was completely free. If you wanted to take a tour, here is the website with instructions on how to book one.
Time for one last treat! I really wanted to try a local bakery while I was in town and we were able to walk to The Sweet Lobby. I basically just wanted a macaroon and they had pretty good reviews on Yelp. This place was super tiny but the macaroons were delicious and my sister said the cupcakes were pretty good too. I will say it was $3 for one macaroon which seemed expensive to me but I think most places around had similar pricing. This was also not far out of our way on our walk back to the hotel.
Sightseeing time was sadly over, back to the hotel and time to pack up and head to the airport. My trip was a little less than 24 hours but it was amazing. I will definitely go back because I would love to see the White House. We were unable to get a tour this time because I didn’t know I was going until the day before I left. Most of my traveling is decided very last minute and it makes it difficult to do some things that require more planning. If you can get a trip planned to the White House, do it! I would also like to see more of the Smithsonian and a large list of other museums.