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Constantly reinventing itself through centuries of presidents, senators and political hopefuls, Washington DC prizes her refineries, not her extremes. Capture a slice of America from the White House and US Capitol to the Washington Monument and the Library of Congress. See the star-spangled streets during Fourth of July, and stroll through the Smithsonian's metropolis of museums. Walk along the National Mall where Martin Luther King Jr shared his dream, and kayak through Georgetown. Bring the kids to the Bald Eagle Refuge where they'll learn about the country's symbol.
Whatever you elect on your Washington DC vacation, let Orbitz cast a ballot on your itinerary. Our D.C. insiders dish the best time to go and top 10 attractions, plus reveal a declassified dossier of to-dos.
In a vibrant city like Washington DC, vacations are ideal any time of year. The city is abuzz during Cherry Blossom Festival (spring), 4th of July, and when Congress is in session (mid-September through Thanksgiving, and mid-January to June).For fewer crowds and lower hotel rates, travel between late August and early September, or after Thanksgiving into mid-January.
Weather-wise, winters can be erratic (flurries, ice storms), while falls are warm, crisp and colorful. Summers are hot and humid, but hotel rates are low from early July (after the 4th) through August. Spring showers are common, but come May D.C. comes alive with sunshine and greenery.
Learn about the history of crime and what happens to the bad guys at this police station exhibit. Get fingerprinted, stand in a police lineup and try to pass the lie detector test. Participate in the simulated shooting range and high-speed police-chase.
Drink seasonal beers and snack of pretzels with Capitol Hill staffers. The crowd is lively and the American dishes are delish.
Shop for farm-fresh goodies on Sundays, rain or shine. Farmers and producers sell everything from the usual suspects (fruit, veggies, breads, flowers) to fish, fruit pies, soaps and herbal products.
The unassuming front door is easily missed, but this high-end consignment shop shouldn’t be. Climb the stairs to get to two rooms full of Manolo Blahnik, Prada, Chanel and more
Put a little muscle into your sightseeing. Pedal past the monuments, rent tandem bikes, or a take a Segway tour. Kayak through Georgetown under bridges and around Roosevelt Island – better yet, book an evening paddle on the 4th of July.
The historic Washington Plaza Hotel in Washington DC has been accommodating travelers since it opened in 1962. Originally designed by world-famous architect Morris Lapidus, the hotel maintains its class and charm with its cosmopolitan ambiance. The hotel hosts 340... More
With 897 rooms, the Grand Hyatt Hotel is one of DC s largest accommodation options. To bring the outdoors inside, the hotel boasts a large 12-story atrium in the center of the building. The Grand s exterior is stone, and large windows provide plenty of natural light. When... More
Many people prefer staying at the State Plaza Hotel Washington, D.C., because of the spacious suites, centralized location and exceptional customer service. There are eight floors at this hotel and 230 guestrooms. Some of the amenities included with the State Plaza suites... More
The Fairmont Washington is a AAA Four Diamond luxury hotel in D.C.'s West End neighborhood. The hotel borders Georgetown and has hosted famous actors and politicians. The hotel immerses guests in elegant design, original artwork, plants and natural light. Guests love the... More
The Beacon Hotel and Corporate Quarters, in Washington D.C. encompasses nine floors and features 197 contemporary accommodations, including eight deluxe turret suites, 60 corporate quarters and 42 executive suites. Each room is equipped with high-speed Internet,... More
Every sleekly decorated room at the Holiday Inn Washington Capitol in Washington DC contains a coffee maker, a wall safe, a mini-fridge and a 42-inch flat-screen television with cable and a selection of movies. Business travelers will appreciate the Holiday Inn's 24-hour... More
With more than 800 guest rooms, the Hyatt Regency Washington in Washington, D.C. is a high-rise building that truly stands out. The contemporary facade and sheer size of the hotel creates a stark contrast to the Greek Revival motif that dominates the surrounding area.... More
The Dupont Circle Hotel in Washington, D.C., features eclectic artwork, a sleek design and a coveted location as well as a 24-hour state-of-the-art fitness center. The hotel boasts 327 lavishly equipped suites and rooms as well as Level Nine, a private access guest... More
The Hotel Lombardy was built in 1926 as an apartment building and retains its original character with 1920's decor and elegant interior design. Cafe Lombardy, a European-inspired bistro, serves breakfast, lunch and dinner and offers a children's menu. The Venetian Room... More
A restored 19th-century Victorian mansion, Morrison Clark Inn blends historic elegance and contemporary accommodations. Situated close to downtown attractions and sights, Washington DC Convention Center, federal and local government buildings, this full-service hotel is... More
Book a qualifying 4-night flight + hotel vacation package between January 1, 2014 12:00AM CT and March 31, 2016 11:59PM CT, for $1000 or more for travel between January 1, 2014 and June 30, 2016, via Orbitz and instantly receive $50 off the hotel portion of your booking through the use of the promotion code. Limit one discount per hotel room and one promotion code per booking. Discounts are not redeemable for cash for any reason. Promotion codes cannot be resold. Any attempt at fraud will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Void where prohibited, taxed or restricted. Orbitz reserves the right to change or limit the promotion in its sole discretion.
Queue up for a public tour to see the where the president entertains (Gold-and-White East Room), Jefferson's dining room (the Green Room), the setting of the White House Christmas tree (the Blue Room), the State Dining Room and more. Contact your Congressperson one to six months in advance for a special group tour.
Snap pics of the Court's pediment and media frenzy on the southwest corner of the plaza. Arrive early to get in line -- you can hear high court debates Monday to Wednesday (April to October) and bench sittings (Mondays, mid-May to June).
Experience the evolution of flight, chronicled through exhibits and interactive displays. See the original 1903 Wright Flyer, and let space suits, lunar vehicles and the 1,650-pound back-up mirror to the Hubble Space telescope explain the challenges and triumphs of technology. Don't miss the moon rock or the IMAX films, including "To Fly" where you'll feel like you're cruising over the planet.
This massive shrine honors US heroes and veterans, buried on green hills overlooking the capital. Witness a 24-hour honor guard watch over the Tomb of the Unknowns. Walk uphill to the Arlington House, built by George Washington's grandson, near the graves of John F. Kennedy and Pierre Charles L'Enfant.
A menagerie of cultural icons, you'll see the flag memorialized in "The Star-Spangled Banner," a Model-T Ford, Dorothy's ruby red slippers from the Wizard of Oz, Dizzy Gillespie's trumpet and a baseball autographed by Babe Ruth. Allow time for the Hands-On Science Center, where families perform their own experiments.
Learn about bugs, bones, blue whales, jewels and more. Ogle the bling in the Hall of Geology, Gems and Minerals, home of the 45.5-carat Hope diamond. The freeze-action dioramas in the renovated Behring Family Hall of Mammals depict how animals adapt and evolve. African Voices uses personal accounts, proverbs, folk tales and hundreds of objects to convey African culture. Top off your visit at the O. Orkin Insect Zoo where your kids can feed the tarantula her meal of crickets.
Discover Native American culture from the Arctic Circle to Tierra del Fuego. Nations tell their stories through dazzling gold shields, feathered regalia and pottery. Cultural interpreters present discovery carts with arrowheads, moccasins and more. Free tickets are available for timed entry -- a great way to avoid the long lines.
Real life whodunits are the subject of this espionage museum. Learn about fictional cloak-and-dagger characters and unlikely American spy heroes like cooks who parlayed fame into fact-finding for the government. Test your mettle by discovering audio bugs as discreet as a strand of hair. Check the schedule for KidSpy Overnights, suited for kids 9 to 15 accompanied by an adult.
Learn about the leaders that shaped the Congress, the Supreme Court and the Library of Congress. View hundreds of artworks and sculptures inside the Rotunda and National Statuary Hall. Visit the Crypt, or the Senate and House Galleries when either body is in session.
View the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. Search for documents recounting the Titanic and Challenger disasters, even the Watergate burglary. Read angry letters from college students protesting the Vietnam War, view declassified war plans, and create your own Oval Office seal.
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