Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Two Days at The Mall

Naturally, if you are in the Washington D.C. area playing tourist, you need to spend some time on the National Mall.  Many of the nations iconic monuments reside here (you know, the ones the aliens or other bad guys always destroy first when attacking in the movies?).  The Capitol building, White House, National Archives, Washington Monument, Jefferson Monument, Lincoln Monument, memorials for several of our wars, as well as many of the museums and holdings of the Smithsonian Institution are all nearby.

Washington and Jefferson monuments.

Getting to the mall from Baltimore and finding parking was expected to be a chore. We decided to drive to a park-and-ride and then take the Metro into the city. During the week, parking is a little over $5 but it is free on the weekend. To use the Metro, we needed a reloadable fare card ($2) and then could put money on it to cover the $3.60 fare to the mall. Once on the mall there is a D.C. Circulator bus that does laps around the mall and monuments. It costs 1$ to ride, but was free as a transfer from the Metro since we had the card.  With the card it seems that rides within a couple hours are considered transfers and are free or a discounted rate.  In the end, it cost us right around $18 to ride the train and a few laps around the mall with the circulator.

Thomas Jefferson Statue.

Washington Monument, Capitol, and gold dome of the
Natural History Museum.

Over the weekend we visited several of the monuments, visited the National Archives, National Gallery of Art, and toured the Smithsonian Institution's Natural History Museum, American History Museum, and the Air and Space Museum,

Statue at the Lincoln Memorial

Vietnam Memorial

A residence I would never want.

A few VanGogh paintings from the National Gallery.

And a couple from Renoir.

The Smithsonian "Castle"
visitors center.

Bert and Ernie at the
American History Museum

A "flash mob" style picnic at the mall.

Hopefully I will find some reason to be back in this area with more time to explore these national treasures.

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