Washington

Travel Guide
Washington

Washington D.C. isn't just America's capital, home to its symbols of power and history. It's also a city that has woven itself into the global soul.

From the President's home at the White House, to the home of Congress and the Senate on Capitol Hill, this is the city where the government of America conducts it day-to-day business. And from the tall white obelisk of the Washington Monument, to the striking Lincoln Memorial, Washington is a city packed with reminders of an American past that stretches from Founding Fathers to Civil War to Civil Rights.

If everything seems so very familiar when you wander around Washington, that's because it is. Countless films, books and news broadcasts have stamped these symbols of power into the world's consciousness. The National Mall, that criss-cross of parkland that's the backdrop for much of the city's architectural and monumental drama, is really the only place to start.

Here you can walk the spaces that have packed with the American people at times of crisis and celebration – Martin Luther King's famous 'Dream' speech rang out here. So too did the noise of the Vietnam War protests, and the crack of fireworks each Independence Day on 4th of July. The Mall is also where America tries to heal its wounds. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is tucked into a corner, a poignant reminder that while America doesn't always agree, it can still put divisions behind it.

This capital city is big on celebrating all aspects of the national culture. The National Air and Space Museum vies for your attention with the National Museum of Natural History, which jostles with the National Gallery of Art. There is a museum dedicated to the news media at the Newseum, and one that thrusts you into the role of secret agent, the International Spy Museum.

Foggy Bottom has the remnants of a notorious slum tucked in amongst its government offices and cultural centres. Watergate hides here too. And the Arlington National Cemetery doesn't just provide America's fallen with their last resting place. General Lee – that hero of the South who almost broke up the United States – has his home here. His estate was chosen as the national war cemetery as punishment for leading the Confederates armies.

And what about the 'D.C.' bit – the District of Columbia – in the name. It isn't there merely to set the capital apart from the State of Washington, on the far-flung north-west US coast. As the capital, the District of Columbia is wholly separate from the strongly independent States that make up the United States of America. Visit any one of those States, and you'll get a window onto a piece of the American soul. But it's only in Washington D.C. that those pieces are woven together to make the American Dream whole.

Washington Travel Guide Video

Where to stay in Washington

Hampton Inn & Suites Alexandria Old Town Area South
Hampton Inn & Suites Alexandria Old Town Area South
2.5 out of 5
5821 Richmond Hwy, Alexandria, VA
The price is NZ$128 per night from 25 Dec. to 25 Dec.
Situated near the airport, this hotel is within 9 mi (15 km) of MGM National Harbor, Arlington National Cemetery and Lincoln Memorial. United States Capitol ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (955 reviews)
"Clean hotel . Friendly staff"

Reviewed on 30 Nov. 2021

Hampton Inn & Suites Alexandria Old Town Area South
Cambria Hotel Washington D.C. Capitol Riverfront
Cambria Hotel Washington D.C. Capitol Riverfront
3 out of 5
69 Q STREET SW, Washington, DC
The price is NZ$178 per night from 21 Dec. to 21 Dec.
This family-friendly Washington hotel is located near the airport, within a 10-minute walk of Audi Field and Nationals Park. National Mall and Smithsonian National ...
3.9/5 Good! (159 reviews)
"very calm. amazing guest service"

Reviewed on 28 Nov. 2021

Cambria Hotel Washington D.C. Capitol Riverfront
Hyatt Place Washington DC/National Mall
Hyatt Place Washington DC/National Mall
3 out of 5
400 E Street SW, Washington, DC
The price is NZ$221 per night from 2 Jan. to 2 Jan.
Located in Capitol Hill, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of National Mall and Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. United States Capitol and National ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (1,242 reviews)
"My room had a lot of noise from the highway."

Reviewed on 29 Nov. 2021

Hyatt Place Washington DC/National Mall
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Homewood Suites by Hilton Washington DC Capitol-Navy Yard
Homewood Suites by Hilton Washington DC Capitol-Navy Yard
3 out of 5
50 M St Se, Washington, DC
The price is NZ$194 per night from 19 Dec. to 19 Dec.
Located in Capitol Hill, this aparthotel is within a 15-minute walk of Nationals Park and Audi Field. United States Capitol and International Spy Museum are ...
4.4/5 Excellent! (883 reviews)
"The young man who checked us in and out was great! I can’t remember his name but he checked us in around 5 PM on the 27th and was also there when we checked out at 11 AM on the 28th. So friendly and knowledgeable about the area. He made us feel very comfortable there. The hotel was clean and quiet ..."

Reviewed on 29 Nov. 2021

Homewood Suites by Hilton Washington DC Capitol-Navy Yard
WhyHotel Washington DC Union Market
WhyHotel Washington DC Union Market
3 out of 5
331 N St NE, Washington, DC
The price is NZ$283 per night from 20 Dec. to 20 Dec.
Located in Capitol Hill, this aparthotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Union Market and Union Station Shopping Center. Walter E. Washington Convention Center and ...
5/5 Exceptional! (4 reviews)
"Wooooooww this place is one of the best places I ever stayed at. It has a great security system! I love the balcony and the view , the tv is great, the whole room/living room,kitchen, bathroom, was very clean,, all up to date amenities, I LOVED THE STYLISH IRON LOL , the place was well decorated, ..."

Reviewed on 12 Nov. 2021

WhyHotel Washington DC Union Market
Homewood Suites by Hilton Washington, D.C. Downtown
Homewood Suites by Hilton Washington, D.C. Downtown
3 out of 5
1475 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC
The price is NZ$199 per night from 2 Jan. to 2 Jan.
Located in Downtown Washington D.C., this aparthotel is within a 15-minute walk of Embassy of Australia, Walter E. Washington Convention Center and White House. ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (1,026 reviews)
"Good stay. The beds were firm and clean, the sofa bed was surprisingly big. Kitchen was clean, one stove top wasnt working, some items need replacing but it was fine. The area was very clean and safe..good for night life..lots of bars near by and WH was pretty close. Definitely should consider installing ..."

Reviewed on 28 Nov. 2021

Homewood Suites by Hilton Washington, D.C. Downtown
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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