This Washington DC travel guide is way overdue! I lived in the Washington DC area for over two years from 2018-2020. There is so much to do there, and I can’t believe I haven’t made a Washington DC travel guide sooner! I’m sharing my favorite things to do, places to eat, and hotels to stay in. Here’s my Washington DC travel guide.
Washington DC Travel Guide
Where to Eat:
There are so many amazing places to eat in DC! Here are a few of my favorites for this Washington DC travel guide.
- Good Stuff Eatery: the best burgers and milkshakes! Also the dipping sauces for the fries are absolutely insane.
- Georgetown Cupcake: if you love cupcakes you have to try Georgetown Cupcake! They’re my absolute favorite cupcakes.
- El Centro: really good Mexican Food, they have two locations, one in Georgetown & on 14th St.
- District Donut: these donuts are to die for! Seriously so good, and there are quite a few locations around the city.
- Tonic at Quigley’s: you need to go to Tonic for brunch! They have tater tot waffles that are one of the best things I have ever eaten.
- Soi 38: This is my number 1 recommendation for Thai food. They had pineapple fried rice that came in a pineapple!
- Ben’s Chilli Bowl: Ben’s is iconic, and is definitely not somewhere to miss in DC.
- La Vie: located in the Wharf area, La Vie is a really nice restaurant with Mediterranean food.
- Founding Farmers: fun place for breakfast or brunch.
Where to Drink:
I spent most of my nights out in the Arlington area, and am going to do an Arlington guide separate to my Washington DC travel guide. Unfortunately I did not go out a ton in DC, as it is pretty pricey, but here are my favorites I did go to.
- Rooftop at the Watergate Hotel: really nice rooftop to visit and drink at.
- Union Market: this is the perfect place to come and have a few drinks in the summer!
- U Street: there’s a lot of fun bars to visit on U Street. I can’t remember my favorites, but you are sure to find somewhere fun to drink there!
- Decades: Decades is my favorite club in DC. They play a ton of fun, retro music and it is a great place to go if you’re wanting to dance.
- The Bullpen: if you’re going to a Nats game, you have to visit the Bullpen first! Its right by the stadium, and has great music, food trucks, and of course, drinks.
- Tiki TNT & Potomac Distilling Co: located at the Wharf, this is a fun bar, and is right by the water.
What to Do:
Buckle up because this one is going to be long! Before I moved to DC I thought there wasn’t going to be that much to do besides the museums but boy was I wrong. This Washington DC travel guide is sharing ALL the things you can do in DC!
- Union Market: If there is one thing you take from this Washington DC travel guide let it be this – visit Union Market! It is a food hall with outdoor seating and good drinks.
- Visit the Zoo: The zoo in DC is really nice and its free! Take public transport or walk if you can, parking is $25 a vehicle.
- Visit the Wharf: this is one of the newest parts of DC and it is so pretty! There are also a lot of good restaurants and bars here.
- Take the ferry to National Harbor or Alexandria: you can take the ferry from The Wharf to National Harbor, Maryland, or Alexandria, Virginia. Both are really fun places to check out.
- Explore the National Mall: you can’t visit DC and not see the National Mall! It is really cool to see all the different monuments and buildings.
- Go up the Washington Monument: highly recommend going up the Washington Monument! It gives you a great view of DC and is really cool inside.
- Tour the Capitol: I thought the Capitol tour was really interesting, and it was cool to actually go inside it.
- Kayak the Potomac or pedal boats at the Tidal Basin: I haven’t kayaked, but had so much fun on the pedal boat at the Tidal Basin!
- Visit the Tidal Basin: it is really close to the National Mall, and so pretty! My favorite time to visit is when the cherry blossoms are in bloom because it is absolutely stunning.
- Go to Rock Creek Park: Rock Creek Park is HUGE, and is really pretty in the fall time.
Exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery
- Visit the museums: there are so many great museums, and a lot are free. I thought the National Portrait Gallery was really cool, and also like the Spy Museum, Holocaust Museum, and all the Smithsonian museums.
- Explore Georgetown and Georgetown University: Georgetown is another one of my favorite areas in DC. It has so many great restaurants and shops, and is just so cute! Definitely make sure to check out Georgetown University as well, it is a really pretty campus.
- Visit the Botanic Gardens: the Botanic Gardens are really pretty, and they’re free to visit.
- Go to a sporting game: I loved going to Nats and Capitals games when I was in DC! They are so much fun, and both stadiums have such good food too.
Where to Stay:
There are hundreds of hotels in DC. I have stayed in a few, some good and some really bad and am sharing my favorites for you on this Washington DC travel guide.
Intercontinental at the Wharf
- One of my favorite hotels I’ve stayed at in DC! The Wharf is such a fun area to stay at, and has lots of great restaurants and bars. The Intercontinental is so nice and it has a rooftop for guests with a pool.
The Watergate Hotel
- Another favorite DC hotel. The Watergate is iconic, and is really close to Georgetown and the National Mall. It also has a great rooftop bar.
Kimpton Hotel Monaco
- The Kimpton Hotel Monaco is right downtown, very close to Capital One Arena and the National Mall. It is perfect if you are relying on public transport, as it is right by the Metro Center.
The Darcy Hotel
- The Darcy is located off Mass Ave near Logan Circle, and is close to lots of restaurants. The hotel was really nice and we enjoyed our stay.
That’s a wrap on my Washington DC travel guide. If you enjoyed this Washington DC travel guide, comment below. As always, thanks for reading!
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