If you are planning a tour of New York and its surroundings, a day should be dedicated to Washington D.C. where you will find one of the most iconic buildings in American history, the White House and beyond!
The distance between New York and Washington D.C. is 328 km, more than the distance between Venice and Milan 279 km. Let’s get used to thinking that in the U.S. everything is huge: the buildings are huge, the portions of food are huge and the distances between one city and another are also huge.
How to get Washington from New York?
1. Renting a car (4h);
2. Taking the train (3h) about € 85;
3. By a tour operator with guide and bus (4h);
4. Take an internal flight between NY and Washington (1,5 hours).
I chose the third option, which is a travel package with bus and tour guide. I soon made this decision considering the fact that there is a long way to go and the time available is one day, so I left the effort and care of the times to a very knowledgeable guide who spoke Italian and thanks to the bus have taken me to easily see the points of interest, at the price of €150.
Tour stages of Washington
National Cemetery of Arlington and the tomb of the Kennedy family.
A place of deep respect and silent reverence for the many buried. The Arlington Cemetery was created during the war of secession and over the years has welcomed the heroes of the world wars and subsequent wars in Korea to Vietnam. In the cemetery, one of the most visited tombs is that of J.F. Kennedy and his wife.
The National Mall is a 3 km long avenue that stretches from the Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial and along this avenue, we find all the monuments that are symbols of American history:
The Lincoln Memorial is the monument built in memory of Abraham Lincoln, emblem of human rights and it was here that Martin Luther King made his speech starting “I have a dream…”. Also, for film fans like me, from the top of the staircase of the monument I stopped to look at the large obelisk of the Washington Memorial and I imagined “Jenny” of the movie “Forrest Gump” crossing the large pool.
The large marble obelisk is erected at the center of both the boulevard and the American capital and is in honor of the first American president George Washington, commander of the continental army throughout the war of independence from the British (1755-1783). He is considered the founding father of the nation and his face is also portrayed on Mount Rushmore, alongside that of Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson and Theodore Roosevelt.
The United States Capitol dominates the National Mall Avenue from the eastern point from the top of Capitol Hill and is home to the two branches of the United States Congress. It represents the reference point of the American Government and in fact prevails in the landscape.
Monuments to the Korean and Vietnam War
The Korean War Memorial (1950-1953) honors its heroes with the inscription “Freedom is not Free” and makes us reflect on the price of the freedom we have and take for granted. The memorial is composed of 19 life-size statues representing a group of soldiers equipped as at the time.
The memorial to those killed during the Vietnam War (1955-1975) is composed of parts: the statues of three soldiers, The Vietnam Women’s Memorial and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. The latter consists of two long black granite parts with the names of the 58.318 American victims listed and is still a memorial destination.
The White House is the most famous house in the world and is where the highly appointed President lives.
The White House is in the center of Washington, D.C. and connected by a 120-meter-long avenue to the Capitol. The city was designed by Frenchman Pierre L’Enfant who designed it as a big chessboard. Destroyed and rebuilt several times, it currently has 132 rooms and is home to the Oval Studio from which the President speaks to the nation. A curiosity is that each president has $100,000 available for modernization and for example Obama used it to build a basketball court.
National Air and Space Museum
For being the first nation to arrive on the Moon (for those who believe in it ;), the dedicated museum must be visited to discover the largest collection of American planes and spaceships, which remains a point of reference for scientific research.
After this roundup of Memorials and Monuments I can say that this place has fascinated me for the scent of history of the entire landscapes and in my opinion also for those who are not passionate about history to see these places of which we have always heard so much and seen in the movies is very interesting. I can therefore tell you that Washington is approved by Call me Claire.