Discover Washington, DC (4-Day)

The choice of Washington’s site along the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers resulted from a compromise between Alexander Hamilton and northern states who wanted the new Federal government to assume Revolutionary War debts and Thomas Jefferson and southern states who wanted the capital placed in a location friendly to slave-holding agricultural interests. George Washington, the first president and namesake of the city, chose the site and appointed three commissioners to help prepare for the arrival of the new government in 1800. Pierre Charles L’Enfant designed the city as a bold new capital with sweeping boulevards and ceremonial spaces reminiscent of Paris of his native France. Benjamin Banneker, a self-taught African-American mathematical genius, provided the astronomical calculations for surveying and laying out the city. The full development of Washington as a monumental city, however, did not come until a hundred years later when the McMillan Commission updated its plan to establish the National Mall and monuments that most visitors to Washington now know. In addition to our touring DC we will also tour Arlington Cemetery, spend the day at the Smithsonian Institute, and see the new Martin Luther King Jr Monument!


ITINERARY

DAY 1 - We are off to Washington DC where we can rediscover our past and imagine an exciting future.  As we travel toward DC, we will make a comfort stop approximately halfway and arrive late afternoon at The Holiday Inn Arlington at Ballston (703-243-9800) in Arlington, VA.  Upon our arrival you will have time to relax and freshen up. Dinner will be on your own at the hotel or in any of the restaurants in the surrounding area.       

DAY 2 - Today you will view the stark, black granite walls of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and drive past Capitol Hill where laws are made, the Library of Congress, the Supreme Court, the Smithsonian Institute, the Washington, Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials, the World War II Memorial, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, Korean War Memorial, & the Air Force Memorial.  There will be time for visiting and photos at the memorials. Lunch will be on your own at Union Station. We will return to the hotel later this afternoon, and you will then have time to relax and freshen up. Dinner will be on your own tonight in Arlington in our hotel’s neighborhood.

DAY 3 - Following our full breakfast we are off to the Smithsonian Institute, which encompasses more than a dozen different buildings. We will drop off at the National Air and Space Museum, but you may wish to visit one of the other museums.  At the National Museum of American History you will find a wealth of Americana;  at the National Museum of Natural History you'll find the 45.5 carat Hope Diamond; and at the National Portrait Gallery you'll find portraits of famous Americans from the world of politics, sports, literature, stage and screen. The Smithsonian Institution Information Center, known as The Castle, the oldest of the 14 Smithsonian museums in Washington, is located at 1000 Jefferson Drive, SW, Washington, D.C.  Lunch will be on your own today, and you will have the day to explore the Smithsonian at your leisure. We will return to the hotel later this afternoon, where you will have time to relax and refresh. Dinner is included this evening at the Fish Market in Alexandria, VA. Your meal includes beverage, entrée, mixed green salad and dessert. We will do a night light tour of the monuments after dinner. You will have the opportunity to disembark the coach & take in some of these monuments during the tour.      

DAY 4 - Today following our full breakfast at the hotel, we're off to the Arlington National Cemetery for a narrated Tourmobile ride.  The Arlington National Cemetery is our nation's largest burial ground with more than 600 acres of landscaped hills.  Among the thousands of white headstones are Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall and World Champion Boxer Joe Louis.  You will be able to leave and board the Tourmobile at different points on the route.  You can visit the gravesite and eternal flame on the grave of President John F. Kennedy.   After our tour we will depart for home. 

Tour Includes:

  • Round-Trip Motor coach Transportation
  • Hotel Accommodations
  • Baggage Handling and Taxes
  • Union Station
  • Guided Full Day City Tour of DC including the MLK, WW II & Air Force Memorials
  • Arlington National Cemetery
  • The Smithsonian Institution
  • Night Light Tour of DC Monuments
  • 3 Breakfasts
  • 1 Dinner
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