Washington DC is a city that makes history. It’s a unique tourist destination, providing visitors with some of the world’s most famous attractions, including authentic monuments, impressive gardens and landmarks, interesting museums and galleries; add to this fantastic shopping and dining venues sure to amaze. Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, White House, US Capitol, National Cathedral, National Zoological Park and Jefferson Memorial are just a few examples that make Washington DC a wonderful place for a vacation. No matter this is your first visit to the nation’s capital or the fifth, you’ll always find something new to explore and enjoy.
Washington DC enfolds some of the world’s most fabulous and remarkable museums to appeal a wide range of interests. One of the top museums is undoubtedly, the Smithsonian Institution – the world’s largest museum and research complex boasting 19 spectacular museums and galleries and the National Zoo. Founded in the 1800s with a purpose to increase knowledge, the Smithsonian museums offer everything from art and culture to science and out space. Get ready to experience the treasured icons of the nation’s past, the vibrant art of the present and the scientific promise of the future. Most museums are found on the National Mall and are open 7 days a week from 10:00am to 5:00pm, except December 25. Admission is free to all of the museums, making it ideal for student and family tours.
National Air and Space Museum
If you are interested in the progress the country has made in flight technology, then a visit to the National Air and Space Museum – the most popular of all Smithsonian museums, is a must. The museum has two display facilities: the National Mall building and the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center near Washington Dulles International Airport. The collection includes over thirty thousand aviation-related and over nine thousand space-related artifacts. You’ll see such historical aircrafts as Apollo 11 — the original airplane, invented by Orville and Wilbur Wright and the Spirit of St. Louis airplane. Also of great significance are the Space Race with a V-1 and V-2 display, the Wright 1903 Flyer, the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird and Boeing B-29 Superfortress Enola Gay.
Natural History Museum
Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History takes you another interesting world full of surprises. Established in 1910, this is the second most popular of all Smithsonian museums, where you can enjoy a 125 million natural science specimens and cultural artifacts.
Be sure to check the Hall of Dinosaurs, featuring 46 fossilized dinosaurs, the terrific Mammals Hall with the largest collection of vertebrate specimens in the world, the Sant Ocean Hall with several exhibits on the waters of the world and sea life in general and the Insect Zoo, where kids learn that there are more insects on the planet than any other living creature. The museum contains over 350,000 mineral and 10,000 gems samples, including one of the largest sapphires in the world, the Star of Asia Sapphire, as well as the Hope Diamond.
For a whole day of fun, the National Zoological Park is truly worth to pay a visit. Home to 2,000 animals of 400 different species, the 163-acre park is set amid Rock Creek Park in Washington, DC and warmly welcomes visitors again free of charge. Visiting the zoo involves a lot of walking, so make sure to wear comfortable shoes. The zoo comes with new exhibits, the Giant Panda Habitat and Asia Trail and the Elephant Trails that you shouldn’t miss out.
From watching the seals eating their daily meal and indulging in one of the many animal shows designed to teach about a particular animal to enjoying the beautiful, tranquil gardens to breeding and studying endangered species, you will have a lifetime experience you’ll not soon forget.