Day 1 of Washington DC

Washington Travel Blog

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Washington DC June 2008

Day 1 - Depart Thunder Bay - VIA - Air Canada and Air Canada Jazz

My plane is on time leaving Thunder Bay - flight to Toronto is good and smooth.

On board the plane have my ceremonial first vacation meal of trail mix and Coca-Cola.

Finally arrive in Toronto to which I have a small layover which is good as I have to get through US Customs and again Security as the US are quite strict on air travel these days. I go through the terminal to retrieve my bad and of course it’s the last bag to arrive, all well.

I check into US Borderland Security checkpoint and the border guard makes me rewrite my declaration card because I wrote it all in pencil, oops. These guys are too paranoid over the terrorism thing. Eventually I do make it pass and onto security check, which again have to take my belt off and change out of my pocket, what a pain!.

Finally make it to the departure gate and have to wait some more.

To pass the time I have a breakfast of champions from the gift shop, Coca-Cola and chips, yay.

While waiting for my flight, on the moving walkway nearby, a mother is letting her young daughter do the moon walk on the walkway. She is trying to walk backwards on the walkway like being on a treadmill, looks dangerous. She of course does fall and hurt herself. To which all the mother did was lift her up and let her do it all over again. Everyone in the departure lounge is watching this and shakes their heads with disbelief.

Finally we get to board the plane to get to Washington DC. While waiting on the plane, I look out the window and see the pilot get off and go check the engine, never seen that happen before. Anyways, the plane finally takes off for DC. On board the plane there are personal televisions for every seat with a large variety of shows and movies.

I watched an episodes of Mythbusters about the secrets behind the show MyGyver on truth of his gadgets. I never believed the show in the first place.

Finally land in Washington DC and I can see the famous monuments here and looks amazing, I can’t wait to explore. We land at the downtown airport of Ronald Reagan Airport named after a former president.

I get my bags at the airport and can’t decide to either take the metro into town or a taxi. I decide to spoil myself and take taxi to the hotel I will be staying at. It was only a 10 minute ride to my hotel from here.

I check into the hotel of L’enfant Plaza which is a very good hotel, check out m review on this hotel I have for details. I got a room with construction going on outside as I was offered a reduced rate here. It started to rain a bit outside to which I planned out my afternoon. I finally leave the hotel and make my way out to the Smithsonian Institute.

Here is a short description of the Institute:

The Smithsonian Institutionis an educational and research institute and associated museum complex, administered and funded by the government of the United States and by funds from its endowment, contributions, and profits from its shops and its magazines.

Most of its facilities are located in
Washington, D.C.
, but its 19 museums, zoo, and nine research centers include sites in New York City, Virginia, Panama, and elsewhere. It has over 136 million items in its collections publishes two magazines named Smithsonian (monthly) and Air & Space (bimonthly),

The main office building and HQ is very impressive to my opinion with a very elaborate garden area out side.

The building itself is amazing looking and worth taking a billion photos of. My mission today is to first visit the National Air and Space Museum here. Inside it is a really huge building with many exhibits of planes and space exploration. There are many fully restored airplanes here from all the early wars to modern times. As well, lots of information of commercial aircraft and the industry. The top attraction here is the Wrights Brothers First airplane. It is fully restored original, totally amazing.

Overall, this was a fully impressive museum, one of the best ones I have ever experience, I highly recommend you all to come here. It must been really good as I spent about 3 hours in there.

Now it is past 530pm and all the museums are closed now. I go for a walk within the immediate area. I Walk to the middle of the National Mall and walk towards the Capital building. The Capital gets bigger with every step I take towards it. I finally reach the front of it.

Very impressive in person, even though you see it all the time on TV, in real time it is amazing and impressive. I consider this as the best looking building in all of Washington DC. I continue my walking journey around DC. Going to the other side of Capital Building. I make it by the Justice Building which is being marched in front by many protestors. They are protesting about someone being executed soon, maybe justice is being served. Also today I walk by the library of Congress Building which is also an amazing structure of American History.

During my walk outside, dark clouds are starting to come. I decide it is time to walk back to the safety of my hotel. I get caught in the rain and it pours down really hard for a long long time. I am walking back but I am now very soaked, but it’s a warm rain.

I make it back to my hotel room and decide its time for a change.

This evening just go for a simple supper in the hotel’s little pub. Have fish and chips with a cold beer for supper.

It goes down quite well. During this time, I have a second beer as well and it was really that good. I plan out my evening for the night.

For the evening I will check out the sights and statues of the National Mall. At night everything is light up and amazing looking. The atmosphere is totally amazing. First stop is the National Monument which litterally glows at night. Quite amazing and the most visible site in the Mall at night. As I go further down following the many other tourists I can make out in the distance the Lincoln Memorial. I could tell you everything I saw that night but I have my photos to show you everything. So check out below of my blogs for all photos. Eventually I make it to the Lincoln Memorial. His statue is very huge and looks like he is following you around in the room with every step you take. Many other people here are doing the same, the most must see sight. From here I look back towards the Capital building and it’s the best sight I have ever seen.

From here I make it to the Vietnam Memorial wall, its quite a memorable experience, all the names of the lost ones from Vietnam are here to pay respect to. The area is very huge and the names go on forever, makes you think. Many former vets are here and willing to tell any passerby of the history and their life stories, come check it out. I then make it to the Korean war memorial, which is also quite amazing. They rebuild an entire battle scene of a field with life size soldiers here. Quite an eerie sight and good history lesson in time.

I venture to many other sights that night. I head off to another long walk and make it around the Washington Basin to the Jefferson Memorial. It is a very grand site. A statue of hime over about 14 feet, he must have been very tall. It is a good and powerful place to go to. Overall this is my first evening in Washington DC, it has been very amazing so far. Check out my next days adventures.

gejah says:
been to washington this year for just one and a half day. But it is a wonderful city. Like it more than new york.
Posted on: Jul 12, 2009
sylviandavid says:
Sounds like a great day and night.... Washington DC is really wonderful with the different memorials...
Posted on: Jul 07, 2009
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Washington DC is an excellent city to visit for those who love to spend a lot of time sightseeing. An absolute feast for the eyes for anyone who is into world and American history and buildings. Washington DC with all of its political nature, is one of the most important cities in the world.
Beyond your typical genetic sights such as the White House to which think first of Washington DC. There’s way more beyond this. A major abundance of many and amazing areas of the city to see.
From the National Mall, Georgetown, Dupont Circle, Adams Morgan to name a few. As well one must not overlook at day trip to Alexandra, Virginia as well to Mt Vernon to George Washington’s House. This city caters to anyone almost, from families, to couples to seniors and singles.
Washington DC offers some great night life options as Dupont Circle and Chinatown.
Great antiques in Georgetown and for a great mall, Pentagon City.
This city is good to come at anytime of the year rain or shine.
Feel free to email me at
Hotel I stayed at
Hotel I stayed at
Air and Space Museum
Air and Space Museum
first view of national mall
first view of national mall
space stuff
space stuff
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photo by: b93sp