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Sunday, July 08, 20071183953395

Things to see in DC

I will be in Quantico, Virginia, for the Boyd conference Thursday and Friday nights, but starting on Tuesday I will be in Washington, DC itself. The following sites have already been suggested to me:

International Spy Museum
8 and F Streets NW
Right by Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro Stop (Yellow line right from
airport, also Red and Green)

US Botanic Gardens
245 1st St SW (just off the southwest corner of the US Capitol grounds)
Either Federal Center Southwest or Capitol South Metro Stop (Blue Lines)

US Holocaust Memorial
Right along Independence Ave and 14th Street
Smithsonian Metro Stop (Blue/Orange Lines)

Biggest Church in America
Brookland-CUA Metro Stop (Red Line)
Take the CUA exit out

Arlington Cemetery
Arlington Cemetery Blue Line Stop

What else is worth seeing in our nation's capital?

22:56 Posted in America 2007 | Permalink | Comments (9) | Tags: dc


Can't comment on your blog directly as I'm underway now but read your post through Google Reader.

The Air & Space Museum is simply awesome! I've been there 3 times in the past and still didn't see everything I wanted to.

There is also a second, smaller one near Dulles Int'l that has the SR-71, Space Shuttle Enterprise and other interesting aircraft from the past 100 years.
http://www.nasm.si.edu/udvarhazycenter/ Its worth going to because of the sheer amount of craft and exhibits.

... as is the new Native American museum.
http://www.nmai.si.edu/ Which does a worthy job of presenting thousands of years of history with intricate detail and memorable design.

The National Gallery of Art is also worth noting. I'm not very appreciative or knowledgeable of art but it quite impressed me and the tours are especially informative and dare I say it, fun!

Alexandria, VA (right outside of D.C) has many excellent restaurants...

Hard Times Chili is delicious!
Five Guys & A Burger is a great place to eat a classic American burger.
The Afghan Restaurant is a mouthwatering experience.

Have a safe trip and a great time. I look forward to reading your post-Boyd conference writings and I think a lot of good will come out of so many bright minds and bloggers milling about together for 2 days.

Posted by: Eddie | Monday, July 09, 2007

the Capitol is must-see, in my opinion, including the original SCOTUS chambers. i also like the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials

Posted by: Sean | Monday, July 09, 2007

Since you'll be at Quantico carve out at least an hour to visit the new USMC museum. First class.

Nat'l Portrait Gallery

Smithsonian American and Nat'l History Museums. Air and Space is OK, but crowds will be a bugger.

If you are mobile, head up 295/BW Parkway to junction with 32 and hit the Nat'l Crypto Museum. Ask to see the box of lobs.

You've been to Henry Doorley no doubt, so don't bother with the zoo.

Posted by: Michael | Monday, July 09, 2007

The Spy Museum was tons of fun, but is pricey if I remember right. Unfortunately they don't allow photography inside the building which is incredibly stupid since they have a cooling vent you can climb through.

I went to the Holocaust Museum about a decade ago and then again last winter and its greatly improved. Must-see.

And I assume you already know about those Smithsonian things.

Posted by: Adam | Monday, July 09, 2007

There's a great used book store just off the west side of Dupont
Circle on P street:

Second Story books

St. Matthew's Cathedral is very nice. This is where that photo of JFK, Jr. saluting at the JFK mass was taken. The interior in beautiful.


The Nat'l Cathedral is also very nice. It sits up on higher ground and they have an observation level that gives a great view of the city.


The Awakening is a very cool outdoor sculpture. If you visit the Holocaust Museum or the Jefferson Memorial you can drive down to Hains Point, unfortunately I think its too far to walk down there.


If you visit the Jefferson walk over and see the George Mason memorial. And if you go over there, bring back the titles of the three books sitting next to Mason on the bench.


At the C&O Canal in Georgetown, the NPS operates a canal boat for tours with people dressed up in the old clothes. A mule pulls the boat and it goes through the locks.


A few blocks from the Spy Museum at 12th and Pennsylvania is one of my favorite buildings, the Old Post Office. You can take the elevator up into the tower and will give a great view from right in the downtown area.


I'll second Eddie's recommendation of the Hard Times Cafe, great chili and great onion rings.

Posted by: Philip | Monday, July 09, 2007

I've been to DC twice and would love to spend another week or two just seeing the sights. The metro makes it pretty easy to get to the places you want to go and is pretty cheap when you buy a day pass.

Any part of the Smithsonian is a must if you have the time as is Arlington and the change of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns. Most of all I would recommend a long walk down the mall spending time at each memorial along the way.

Avoid the FBI building (unimpressed) and bug your congressman to set up a tour of the Capitol Building (but don't let the intern leave you. Ours did and the Capitol police were not amused. It was pre-9/11 but not too long after that gunman tried to shoot up the Speaker's office)

I understand there is a news museum somewhere near the Iwo Jima memorial that is supposed to be nice but I haven't seen it since it opened after I last was there.

Also, see the FDR memorial at night. The lighting adds a certain something that makes the progression somehow more powerful.

Posted by: arherring | Monday, July 09, 2007

The Botanic Gardens are surprisingly good. Well worth it. Don't plan on spending an entire afternoon, though, if you're time is pressed.

Of course, you're also getting about the worst weather we've had this summer.

But why didn't you let us know you'd be in town!? Drop me an email or a call at my office if you want to grab coffee or somesuch.

Posted by: Daniel Nexon | Monday, July 09, 2007

I was able to take photos in the spy museum...but that was maybe two years ago.

When in DC try to see the USMC's Barracks parade or the similar event at the Iwo Jima monument.

I just remembered a little prank I pulled at the spy museum.

It was pretty crowed in one area. There was a nuclear family in front of me (mom, dad, 2 sons). The kids where maybe 8 and 10. The younger one seemed bored and was blocking my view of something. Since he had been whining a bit to his parents...I learned down and whispered in his ear: "Your mother was a spy". He looked startled, moved, and started to tell his parents. I walked away quickly.

I continued on in the museum. Later on I saw his mom by herself. I walked up to her and told her what I had done. She thought is funny. The kid was all excited and thought I had maybe been a spy too. He thought maybe his mom was a retired spy. Then they kid came up "hey that's the guy who says mom was a spy". So, I pulled my baseball cap down and quickly walked away all suspicious like. Heh.

Children are on the earth to amuse me.

Posted by: PurpleSlog | Tuesday, July 10, 2007

I've never been to DC, but I saw part of the Phillips Collection when a travelling exhibit passed through Denver. It's a good art view for people like me who're semi-literate, artwise.


Posted by: Michael | Tuesday, July 10, 2007