We arrived in Washington yesterday afternoon to 32 degree heat and beautiful sunshine. Luckily our hostel offered a free pick-up, so we were able to get to the hostel, dump our bags and head straight out to enjoy the weather without having to worry about heaving our bags around in the heat!
Our first stop was the White House and we just about had time to take a few photos of it before snipers suddenly ran out onto the roof and security came out of nowhere to tell us (and the other tourists around us) to move along because the area was now closed. Earlier we’d seen a convoy of police motorbikes rush past with sirens blaring, so we wondered if all the fuss was because Obama was on his way, but none of the security would tell us anything except that it was a ‘security situation’.
After that excitement, we strolled over to the Washington Monument – picking our way through all the various softball games and ultimate frisbee matches that were taking place in the sunshine. The monument itself is surprisingly large – it’s more than 550 feet tall. Someone pointed out to us that there are no big skyscrapers in Washington, so the monument is the tallest structure in the city (which is really handy to help work out where you are!).
We finished off the day by walking alongside the pool down to the Lincoln memorial, which is just as impressive as it looks in all the films – but much busier as there were LOADS of kids visiting as part of school trips.
Today we walked into Georgetown, where we were told there was an amazing cupcake shop (Georgetown Cupcakes: https://www.georgetowncupcake.com/). When we found it, it was packed with people – so we had to try some to see if they lived up to the hype!
Then we walked along the waters edge to see the memorials we’d missed yesterday; the Martin Luther King Jr memorial, the Theodore Roosevelt memorial and the Thomas Jefferson memorial. All of them were worth the visit and really made you think about how inspirational each man was.
For the rest of the day we decided to check out the Holocaust museum that was nearby on the National Mall. Although we couldn’t get into the main exhibition (because all the school trips that are taking place at the moment had meant that their limited tickets had run out much earlier in the day), we took a look at a few of the open sections, including an interesting one that was presented from a child’s perspective.
The weather is set to turn nasty tomorrow, so we’ve planned to head back to all the museums on National Mall while it’s rainy. Hopefully we’ll be able to get around some of them before the rush of school kids!