Washington, DC Itinerary
How long was your stay?
How did you travel?
Tell us why you traveled to this destination.
I lived there for 2 years but go back often to visit friends on weekend trips.
What was your itinerary?
Day 1: Traveled to National Mall and Smithsonian Museums
Day 2: Went to Georgetown, National Zoo, and Navy Yard.
Day 3: Visited Alexandria and Mount Vernon
Give us all the details! Tell us where you went and what you did on your trip.
Day 1: National Mall / Smithsonian
The National Mall is of course very touristy, but a must-do when visiting DC – especially for history buffs. Seeing most of the monuments will easily take half of the day, and there are so many tucked away that you might not have time for, so choose the ones that make you most excited! We stuck around the tidal basin for ease, but it’s still a long walk with a ton to see, or you can rent bikes or scooters. Lincoln, Jefferson, Washington, MLK, FDR, WW2, and Vietnam Korea are all located around or near the tidal basin on the National Mall, with the Capitol building situated at the far end. They are pretty magnificent to see up close. You can go inside and up the Washington Monument for free, you just have to get tickets in advance for the time you want. It takes about 30 minutes to go up and down it, and the views are pretty cool. If you want to see the White House, it’s a short walk or ride from the National Mall as well. Right near the White House is an awesome lunch spot called Old Ebbitt’s Grill. It’s a little pricey, but it’s famous, and the food is super good.
Thankfully, they situated all the Smithsonian Museums right near the Mall and White House, so they are all pretty easy to get to within a few miles. Some that you could see might include the National History Museum, Air and Space, Native American, African American, and American History Museums. The Archives are also located close by. My favorites were always the Holocaust Museum, the African American History Museum as well as the Air and Space Museum. All of them are free! So, you can spend as little or as much time as you want there. After dinner, we went out to one of the lively nightlife scenes in D.C. at DuPont Circle. There is a bar called the MadHatter that is really popular as well as a multi-tiered club next to it called Decades. Both are super fun, and Decades features a different decade of music on each floor!
Day 2: Georgetown and Nats Game
Georgetown is like a completely different city culturally and is kind of set on the northeast side of DC away from everything else. You can walk through the gorgeous, medieval-looking campus, as well as through the quaint streets of downtown, famous for its unique food options (Georgetown Cupcakes) and higher-end shopping. It’s right along the river and a really beautiful area to spend a morning or afternoon. After spending a bit of time in Georgetown, we zipped over to the National Zoo to see the pandas! It’s one of the best zoos in the country, and it’s absolutely free! They are one of 2 nationally that have pandas. In the evening, we went to a Nationals Game at the Navy Yard! Tickets are generally pretty cheap for nosebleeds and still a blast. If you’re not there during baseball season, you can still go to the Navy Yard as it’s a really fun part of DC with tons of breweries, restaurants, and fun things to do. Or, you can check the hockey schedule, and go see a Capitals game instead! After the game, we went to a brewery close by to close out the night.
Day 3: Alexandria, Mount Vernon
Alexandria is the cutest little city about 7 miles south of DC. It’s historic and still has cobblestone streets downtown and a free trolley that runs along King Street right down to the waterfront. It’s beautiful to go explore, shop and eat. If you are looking for good food, Virtue Grain Feed, Viola’s, Bilbo Baggins, and Cafe Bahn Mi are some of my absolute favorites. If you’re there in the morning in need of coffee, Killer ESP and Misha’s are the go-to shops. All of these can be found downtown. We stopped here on our way to Mount Vernon, grabbed a coffee, and walked to the waterfront. Mount Vernon is south of Alexandria, and you can book your tour of George Washington’s estate in advance, but it’s a self-guided tour around the grounds. You can see where he lived, and where he kept his animals, and learn a lot about the first President’s daily life. It’s a fun little spot to go to, and actually very pretty. If afterward, you’re feeling like going out, on the way back to the city is Arlington, where there is a pretty good nightlife scene in Clarendon. It’s a little more chill than the city spots, but still pretty lively, which keeps it fun!
Would you recommend this trip to a friend?
What was the highlight of your trip?
The National Mall
If you were to take this trip again, is there anything you would add or do differently?
Take the metro, or scooters around the city! It helps a ton. Except, you cannot take the metro to Georgetown and will have to Uber or drive there.
Reserve ticket times in advance for the African American Museum, Holocaust Museum, and Mount Vernon
There is SO much to see and do in DC, don’t try to cram it all in a few short days. If you’re limited on time, do the things that you really want to do first.
Travel itineraries are an essential part of MyPinerary. By sharing the details of your own travel experiences you are helping other travelers plan their perfect trip. Become part of the MyPinerary community by submitting your travel itineraries.