The capital of the most powerful country in the world, Washington DC draws visitors primarily for its impressive monuments, world-class museums and lavish design with a European flair. Washington DC’s elegant National Mall, a 2.5-mile stretch stretching from the Lincoln Memorial to the Capitol, was once a swampy area. Today, its green spaces, wide avenues and surrounding residential areas form a very chic part of the city. For many, the city’s ambience of power and politics makes it an exciting place to live, and the truly excellent restaurant, The club and culture scene has more than adapted to this claim. Washington DC loves the international spotlight, and having the US President in the White House guarantees a high level of global attention. The city’s most tragic moment was September 11, 2001, when Islamic terrorists hijacked a plane and crashed it over the Pentagon. Since then, increased security has changed the face of the city noticeably. when Islamic terrorists hijacked a plane and crashed it over the Pentagon. Since then, increased security has changed the face of the city noticeably. when Islamic terrorists hijacked a plane and crashed it over the Pentagon. Since then, increased security has changed the face of the city noticeably.
- Travelationary: Covers basic information about District Of Columbia geography and economy.
Arriving by plane
There are direct flights to Washington DC from major German airports, Zurich, Geneva and Vienna. Swiss (LX) flies from Zurich and United Airlines (UA) flies from Geneva to Washington DC
Washington DC – Atlanta: 2 hrs; Washington DC – Chicago: 2 hrs; Washington DC – London: 7 hrs 30; Washington DC – Los Angeles: 5 hrs 40; Washington DC – Miami: 2 hrs 30; Washington DC – Montréal: 1 hr 40; Washington DC – New York: 1 hr; Washington DC – Orlando: 2 hr 10; Washington DC – San Francisco: 6 hrs; Washington DC – Toronto: 1 hr 30; Washington DC – Frankfurt: 8 hrs; Washington DC – Vienna: 9 hrs; Washington DC – Zurich: 8 hrs 10.
Note on arrival by car
Average car travel times: Washington DC – Baltimore: 1 hour; Washington DC – Richmond: 2 hrs; Washington DC – Norfolk: 4 hrs; Washington DC – New York and Pittsburgh: 5 hours each; Washington DC – Charleston (West Virginia): 7 hrs; Washington DC – Charlotte: 8 hrs; Washington DC – Cincinnati: 10 hrs; Washington DC – Chicago: 14 hrs; Washington DC – Miami: 22 hrs; Washington DC – Dallas: 28 hrs; Washington DC – Los Angeles: 55 hrs; Washington DC – Seattle: 58 hours Average bus travel times: Washington DC – Richmond: 2 hours; Washington DC – Philadelphia: 3 hrs 30; Washington DC – New York: 4 hrs 30; Washington DC – Pittsburgh: 5 hrs 30; Washington DC – Knoxville: 12 hr 30. Speed limits:
Arrival by train
Express trains run regularly on the New York – Philadelphia – Baltimore – Washington route. You can drive directly to Pittsburgh from Philadelphia and Washington. Florida-bound trains depart from Washington DC via Richmond. Regional trains go to Philadelphia. New York is 3 hours away on the Acela Express and other Amtrak trains. Learn more from Amtrak.
Passport and visa regulations
Entry with children
Since June 27, 2012, children need their own travel document (passport / children’s passport) for trips abroad (also within the EU). Entries of children in the parental passport are no longer possible.
The public holidays for the period from January 2014 to December 2015 are listed below.
Vietnam Veterans Memorial
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is simple and uncluttered in design, yet is probably the most moving attraction in Washington DC The memorial, completed in 1982, consists of 70 individual slabs of black granite set 150 m in length to form a V-shaped wall. The granite slabs are engraved with the names of more than 58,000 Americans killed or reported missing during the Vietnam War. The memorial also includes the Vietnam Women’s Memorial, which commemorates the soldiers who died in the Vietnam War, and the bronze statue “Three Soldiers”. The memorial stands in the beautiful Constitution Gardens in a spectacular setting with a wonderful view of the Washington Monument. Out of respect for the dead
The famous Lincoln Memorialis at the west end of the long, square Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool. It consists of a columned hall made of white marble. Behind it flows the Potomac. The impressive, almost 6 m high, white marble statue of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States of America, is enthroned in the main room of the columned hall. The statue depicts Abraham Lincoln sitting deep in thought. The 16th President’s gaze seems to be fixed on the United States Capitol, located at the other end of the National Mall. Anyone standing in front of the statue cannot escape the sublime charisma that emanates from Abraham Lincoln. Martin Luther King Jr. chose this location for his “I have a dream” speech in 1963 because Abraham Lincoln declared the abolition of slavery in 1862 with the Emancipation Proclamation.
Smithsonian Air and Space Museum
The popular Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum on the National Mall is an experience where visitors can explore the history of space and aviation through various exhibitions such as America by Air, Apollo to the Moon, Explore the Universe and Experience “Golden Age of Flight”. The museum has an IMAX and a planetarium. The museum’s collection includes the Wright Brothers’ 1903 flying machine, Charles Lindbergh’s “Spirit of St. Louis” airplane, the Bell X-1 (the airplane that broke the sound barrier in 1947) and the Apollo 11 Lunar Module, as well as countless aerospace memorabilia.
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museumis located on the southern edge of the National Mall and is east of the Tidal Basin. The permanent exhibition of the museum is dedicated to a phase of the Holocaust on three floors and is arranged chronologically: on the fourth floor, the exhibition “Nazi Assault” (1933-39) traces life in the 1930s and how the Nazis came to power, the exhibition “Final Solution” (1940-1945) on the third floor is about how the Nazis treated the Jews and the mass extermination of the Jews, the “Last Chapter” exhibition shows the liberation of the Jews by the Allies on the second floor of the museum. The recommended minimum age for visiting the permanent exhibition is 11 years. The exhibition “Remember the Children: Daniel’s Story”
Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
The sprawling and impressive National Museum of Natural History north of the National Mall is a natural history museum affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution that has been in existence for over a century and, with several million visitors annually, ranks as one of the top most popular natural history museums in the world. The main attractions of the National Museum of Natural History include the last American dinosaurs, the 45.5 carat Hope Diamond, the Sant Ocean Hall with replicas of a giant whale and a rare squid, the O. Orkin Insect Zoo, daily feedings of the Tarantulas, a giant African elephant in the rotunda, the butterfly pavilion and the Neanderthal exhibit. Admission is still free.
The Park National Mall is an elongated rectangle like a green ribbon on the east bank of the Potomac on the southern part of downtown Washington DC. A number of famous attractions are concentrated here, such as the US Capitol, which lies on the eastern edge of the National Mall, and the Lincoln Memorial at the western end of the park. In between, visitors will find the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool, the Washington Monument, the Smithsonian Castle, as well as memorials, gardens, galleries and countless museums, some of which belong to the Smithsonian Institution. If you want to visit all these exciting public institutions and world-class museums in and along the National Mall, you should allow several weeks.United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the National Air and Space Museum, the National Museum of Natural History, the National Gallery of Art, and the Newseum.
The Washington Monument, a 550-foot (169 m) obelisk, was erected on the National Mall in 1885 in honor of George Washington, the 1st President of the United States of America. Visitors must first pass through a security gate before taking the elevator to the top of the obelisk. A great photo opportunity is the reflection of the Washington Monument in the Reflecting Pool along with the full height of the obelisk. Queues of visitors often form as early as 6 a.m. in front of the Washington Monument. Tickets can be booked online in advance.
The United States Capitol at the east end of the National Mall is a grand neo-classical Greek style building with a dome, colonnades, side wings and a grand staircase leading to the main entrance. The Capitol stands on Capitol Hill. The south wing houses the House of Representatives and the north wing houses the Senate. Throughout the building are 100 statues of famous American figures who shaped American history, including Ronald Reagan, John Winthrop, Roger Williams, Samuel Adams, Helen Keller and Dwight D. Eisenhower. Tours depart from the US Capitol Visitor Center.
Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI)
The National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) pays homage to Native Americans and is part of the Smithsonian Institution. The impressive structure of the building is circular and faces east in accordance with Native American traditions. Decorated in earthen tones, the building aims to reflect the indigenous aesthetic taste. The museum’s collection includes 825,000 artifacts spanning as much as 12,000 years of Native American history throughout the western hemisphere. The artefacts relate to the art, religion and everyday life of 1200 indigenous cultures. Some have historical relevance.
Anyone with an eye for a good headline will use the Newseum find very interesting. On a turbulent tour of the museum, visitors learn about the scandals and breaking news that shaped the world of media. In more than a dozen exhibition rooms, the museum traces the history of news reporting and shows how, rightly or wrongly, important events of world importance were reported in the past. The museum’s exhibits include a broadcast studio, a news center and the largest section of the Berlin Wall outside of Germany (complete with an East German watchtower). These exhibits alone are worth going straight to the Newseum. Some of the most dramatic events in the history of journalism are shown in a 4D film adventure time travel.
The White House is the residence and official residence of the President of the United States. It is the most famous building in Washington DC, and was built between 1792 and 1800 by Irish-born architect James Hoban. Although the building was commissioned during President George Washington’s lifetime, the first occupants of the White House were President John Adams and his wife, Abigail, who moved into the home in the 1800s. The building has an eventful past. It burned down in the 1812-1814 War between America and Britain (often referred to as the Second American Revolutionary War) and was rebuilt in 1815. In 1929, under the presidency of Harry S. Truman, it survived another fire in the west wing. For toursyou can visit the Vermeil Room (vermilion room) and the library as well as various reception rooms. Foreign visitors are only permitted to take part in tours of the White House after applying to their responsible embassy in Washington DC. However, not all embassies are helpful. Fortunately, international visitors can also request visitor passes from any Member of Congress. There is always a limited contingent of tickets available for the tours, which are allocated according to the first-come, first-served principle. The responsible embassy can be contacted no earlier than 3 months and no later than 21 days before the planned visit.
There are several business districts. The F Street Mall (between 15th and 11th Streets) has the usual shops. Connecticut Avenue between K Street and Dupont Circle offers interesting shops where you can also find unusual things. In Georgetown, the block between Wisconsin and M Streets, you can choose from boutiques, antique shops, craft stores and street stalls selling jewelry and leather goods. Particularly unusual souvenirs are sold in the numerous souvenir shops in the government buildings.
The National and Ford Theaters are located on Pennsylvania Avenue. The John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts at the end of New Hampshire Avenue overlooks the Potomac. Operas, concerts, musicals, plays and festivals are performed in four theatres. Another theater houses the American Film Institute. In the summer, outdoor concerts are held at the Jefferson Memorial; The National Gallery of Art’s East Court Garden has concerts every Sunday night from September to June. There are few nightclubs with entertainment programs in Washington DC. However, there are numerous bars and nightclubs in the city centre, in Georgetown and in the suburbs.
Washington DC has a wide variety of restaurants offering cuisine from all countries.
In Washington state, it is legal to purchase and use marijuana.
Best travel time
The summers are hot, in the winter it can get very cold.
Population density (per square km)
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