Wednesday, May 18, 2011

I Love DC, Everything is FREE!

This weekend I met up with Jess for a day of fun in DC; we had both been busy with school so it had been a few months since we last saw each other.  Conveniently this is the halfway point between where we live so it makes for a doable day trip.  After deciding not to conquer navigating the streets and parking of downtown DC we parked at a metro stop in VA and instead explored the city using the metro.

Here are the FREE sights we saw:
First stop, the Botanical Gardens.  My favorite was the orchid room but the jungle was pretty cool too.  It was a beautiful and fairly quiet place to start our morning after a Starbucks pit stop.  There are also outdoor gardens with roses and other flowers but it was kind of a dreary day so we spent most of our time inside.
So beautiful!

Exhibit where you smell the spices from different food dishes...some were very stinky.
The jungle from above. See the cool tree bridge?

Just outside the Botanical Gardens is the Capitol
On the way to our next spot we saw the Washington Monument and the set up for GWs graduation.  What a perfect spot for a graduation (yay Toni!).
Second stop: The National Museum of American History.  After sneaking in a snack break we got to see lots of different exhibits.  My favorite was the first lady dress collection.  It was interesting to see the changes in fashion trends over time.  There was also a very neat Lincoln exhibit but it got so crowded I had to get out of there before I could see everything.
Michele Obama's inaugural ball dress, it was gorgeous!
After the museum we were in dire need of lunch and a place to rest our feet.  We ate at a wonderful restaurant called Old Ebbitt Grill right near the White House.  It was packed and there was a wait even though it is an enormous place (they have 4 separate bars and a whole atrium of additional seating!)  We were starving and luckily found a couple spots to sit at the bar in the back.  The Sam Adams Summer Ale and pulled pork bbq sandwich with fresh fruit really hit the spot!  Sorry no pics, I was too busy scarfing down lunch.

We then made our way via metro to the zoo!  The rain held out and I was so excited to get to see the animals.  My all time favorite animal as a kid was the panda bear.  I have a collection of pandas at home but they aren't your typical zoo animal so I was so ecstatic when we finally found the two pandas in the panda house chowing down on bamboo.  They just look so cute and cuddly!
We then met up with Francesca and Matt and looked at the big cats.  The tigers were majestic but the lions stole the show.  There was a dad, 2 moms, and at least 6 cubs who were hilarious and so mischievous.  The cubs were biting the parents, chasing each other, trying to climb trees, wrestling, etc. and the one mamma was doing her best to keep them all in line.  No wonder see seemed cranky and kept growling!  I was enjoying watching them so much I didn't bother to take pics.
It's really hard to believe that all the attractions we got to see were entirely free.  Can't wait to move to this awesome city and explore some more.  Overall a great day with good food and sights, and great friends!


  1. This sounds like so much fun. I have never been to the botanical gardens but it looks amazing so I need to plan a trip there soon.

    Also, as I was reading this all I could think about was our reading class and I was picking up on all the descriptor words you were using that aren't in our every day vernacular. you should write a childrens book haha

  2. Funny you mention the descriptor words, because I was very conscious of that when I was writing. It definitely helps to write about wonder most kids books include them!