Though revered for its treasured tributes to the USA’s history and leaders, Washington DC is finding itself amidst a cultural and entertainment renaissance. Despite all these change, driving remains the primary method of transportation for the District’s residents and tourists alike. They do not call Washington “Inside the Beltway” for nothing. So, make sure you get the right car to check out the three M’s that are dominating the capital: monuments, museums, and Michelin.
Without a doubt, touring Washington’s many monuments is the best way to get an effective and visually stunning crash course in American history. Moreover, as with any history class, there is no better place to start than the beginning and with the monument to the man who gave his namesake to the city, George Washington.
Situated between the Potomac River and the U.S. Capitol Building on the gorgeous National Mall, the Washington Monument stands at 554 feet. This is good enough to make it the world’s largest stone structure. On top of that, it is among the signature visual icons of the entire District. Another reason the Washington Monument makes a great starting point is its central location. The Lincoln Monument, Jefferson Memorial, Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial , and many other monuments are just short walks away.
No word in the American vernacular is more synonymous with knowledge than the Smithsonian, and this institution’s 19 museums located throughout Washington are all fantastic places to learn more about all elements of American and human history. They are also free of charge. If you only have time to visit one, make sure you check out the National Museum of Natural History, also conveniently located on the National Mall. Over a century old and the world’s most visited natural history museum, the National Museum has every angle covered with its over 126 million artifacts that spanning plants, fossils, and even meteorites.
In case you have time to squeeze in a few more museums and are looking for something slightly more off-the-beaten-path, check out the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum or the U.S. Postal Museum, both of which consistently get rave reviews from visitors.
Finally, you would be remiss to leave Washington without discussing what can only be described as an exploding food and culture scene. Hyped for some time as the next big city in American cuisine, Washington D.C. officially arrived this spring when Michelin announced it would publish a guide for America’s capital, making it sure just the fourth American city (following New York, Chicago, and San Francisco) to be featured in the famous red book.
The guide, published in October 2016, featured three restaurants earning two stars, Minibar, Pineapple and Pearls, and The Inn at Little Washington. Eight additional restaurants received one star, including Rose’s Luxury, the selected venue for President Obama’s 2015 birthday celebration and potentially the hottest restaurant going in the entire capital.
Making sure you rent the right vehicle is definitely the way to tour Washington D.C. and experience America’s past and present. At Orbitz, we have the widest range of classes and sizes, so regardless of how many different attractions are on your check list, we can perfectly suit your car rental needs.