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Washington D.C.

United States Capitol

On a weekend we took a trip to Washington D.C. We started our journey on Friday afternoon. At first we drove through NYC, which was quite busy at that time. But after the city, on the Interstate the driving was much smoother. We made some stops in rest areas and found accommodation in a cozy motel near Washington D.C.

Washington D.C. welcomed us with very warm weather. So far it had been mostly cloudy and rainy; the sun really gave its value to the trip. Saturday morning in Washington DC is busy, we entered the city at 11AM, but already then it was difficult to find a parking place near the center where all the famous attractions are. But somehow we managed.

Washington, D.C. is the capital of the United States of America. "D.C." stands for the District of Columbia. We wanted to see here ordinary touristy stuff – The White House, The Capitol, The Lincoln Memorial, The Arlington, etc.

The White House

As a first thing we went to The White House. The White House is the official residence and principal workplace of the President of the USA. The White House is a white-painted, neoclassical sandstone mansion located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW in Washington, D.C. At that time The White House was a hot topic due to the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Hordes of tourists (Americans and foreigners) stood at the line to see the Oval room. We did not do that, but just walked in the park and enjoyed the scenery. If you want to go inside you need to be aware of the time when you can take a tour. But still, even walking around makes you think – is it really true, you just walk next to the house where American president lives.

After The White House we walked towards the Lincoln Memorial. The weather was really hot. We passed the fountains and really felt that some refreshment is needed. If Forrest Gump was allowed to jump to the Reflecting Pool in front of the Lincoln Memorial, we thought it should be allowed to fresh a little in one of the several fountains in Washington. This was really good!

Most of the famous attractions are in the National Mall - an open-area national park in downtown Washington, D.C., so is the Lincoln Memorial. The Lincoln Memorial (on the extended axis of the National Mall) is a United States Presidential Memorial built for Abraham Lincoln. The building is in the form of a Greek Doric temple, and contains a large seated sculpture of Lincoln and inscriptions of two well-known speeches by Lincoln. The memorial has been the site of many famous speeches, including Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech, delivered on August 28, 1963.

After that we walked towards the Capitol. The United States Capitol serves as home for Congress. It is located on top of Capitol Hill at the east end of the National Mall. If you come at right time you have a possibility to meet congressmen, but also go inside. At anytime you can walk around in the garden.

On the way to the Capitol, we passed the National Gallery of Art. We did not have time to go inside but even the building outside made us want to visit it. So you should plan time for that.

Before leaving the warm Washington D.C., we also visited The Arlington Cemetery. Veterans from all the nation's wars are interred in the cemetery, from the American Revolution through the military actions in Afghanistan and Iraq. The view is really impressive.

On the way back from Washington D.C. we also made a stop in Philadelphia. The city was beautiful, but I think we were so fully loaded with impressions from Washington, that we could not breathe in real feelings from that city. This needs another trip.

Our weekend for Washington D.C. was perfect, if something to claim, so you should take more time for that, if possible.