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Washington beyond The White House

Washington - Beyond the White House

Visit the Museums

The Smithsonian Institution is the largest museum collection in the world. With 19 museums and galleries spread across the vast National Mall, you could fill a whole holiday just exploring the spectacular museum zone.

The National Air and Space Museum is a key favourite where you can see the Spirit of St Louis – the aircraft that took Charles Linbergh on the first non-stop transatlantic flight from New York to Paris in 1927. Or marvel at Neil Armstrong’s Apollo 11 command module and other fascinating machines from our air and space history. With an African American History museum also scheduled to open in 2016, Washington, DC is a museum-lover’s dream. 
 


Go on a Food & Drink Tour

Washington, DC has a fantastic food and drink scene, so why not experience the city through your taste buds? Explore how the multicultural population has affected its foodie offerings, by visiting Little Ethiopia and China Town. Or understand the city’s past by taking a food tour around historic Georgetown. Visit restaurants from pre-prohibition era, taste Maryland crabcakes and visit a bakery that used to be a printing house. Washington has a fantastic craft beer scene too, so why not enjoy a tour that combines artisan food with the best craft breweries?

 

Get a Bird’s Eye View from The Washington Monument 

The Washington Monument is one of the best places to start if you are touring the city’s many monuments. Fifty flags surround this obelisk structure, each representing an American state. If you start queuing early, you can take a lift 555 feet up to the top and enjoy some impressive city views.

 

Explore the Monuments & Memorials of The National Mall

As the USA’s power city, Washington, DC has an impressive range of monuments that honour the soldiers and political figures of America’s past. From the Lincoln Memorial that offers glorious views across the Reflecting Pool, to the 56 granite columns and dancing fountains of the National World War II Memorial, each and every one is set to inspire.

Other fascinating memorials you can visit here include The Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial, Korean War Veterans Memorial and Vietnam Women’s Memorial. So pick the ones you’d most like to see and get exploring.
 


Visit the Jefferson Memorial

Explore the dome-shaped Jefferson Memorial and see the 19-foot statue of Thomas Jefferson and extracts from the Declaration of Independence upon the walls. While you’re in this area, check out the Martin Luther King Jr Memorial. Both structures sit on the shore of the Tidal Basin so it’s a fantastic place to enjoy reservoir views.

 

Explore the Waterways

Washington, DC is located on the Potomac River and Chesapeake & Ohio Canal so it’s a great place to hit the Big Outdoors. Find ‘Bike and Boat’ tours that take you along a section of the 184.5-mile canal towpath.

For paddleboats, kayaks and rowing boats, head to The Georgetown waterfront. If you’re feeling brave you can try out Stand Up Paddle boarding. And for the really adventurous, the fast-moving Shenandoah River is great for whitewater tubing and rafting.

 

Visit Old Town Alexandria

Take a day trip across the Potomac to visit the cobbled streets of old town Alexandria, the former home of George Washington. Alexandria goes back 13,000 years to when Native Americans settled here and has a slave trading history. See the landmark George Washington Masonic Memorial, and visit the stately antebellum Woodlawn Plantation, part of George Washington’s Mount Vernon estate.
 


Do a Skydive

If seeing the great sights of Washington, DC on level ground just isn’t enough, get the ultimate adrenaline rush by booking a tandem skydive at DC Skydiving Center. With widescreen views of northern Virginia and the Capitol included with every freefall, you can guarantee a unique view of the city!

 

Get some Retail Therapy

Beyond all the glittering white marble and neoclassical architecture, Washington, DC offers some fantastic shopping. Head to M Street in the historic Georgetown for high-end stores and fashion brands, or shop ‘til you drop in the many indie and speciality boutiques of Dupont Circle. Thankfully it’s filled with plenty of coffee shops and cafes, so you can stop and refuel.

 

Explore the Music Scene

Marvin Gaye and the Supremes and Ella Fitzgerald are just some of the music legends to have come out of Washington, DC. So visit the musical landmarks where these stars began their careers.

The Howard Theatre on U Street is great for jazz and the Rock & Roll hotel on H Street is the go-to place for DJs and a great rooftop bar. The Verizon Center in the revitalized Penn Quarter hosts some of the biggest concerts the city has ever held so make sure you book ahead. Adams Morgan is a lively nightspots where you’re bound to stumble upon a place to party.
 


See our Washington, DC offers »

Tagged in:

  • Washington, DC
  • City and shopping breaks
  • Travel tips
  • Travel tastes
  • Shopping
  • USA
  • Off the beaten track
14 Jun 2016 | Lucy McGuire

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Over the past few weeks, we have repatriated our customers from overseas who wanted to come home.  

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Looking for inspiration? Explore our destinations and holiday types and save your faves to your very own Wishlist. Or dive right in to our 2021 holiday offers.

For extra piece of mind, new bookings made before 31 August 2020 for travel up 30 April 2021 also have the flexibility to amend free of charge. If you need to change don’t worry, you can move your holiday as far out as 31 December 2021 subject to availability.

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With many customers needing our help, we are prioritising those customers due to travel before 06 October 2020. Log in to Manage my booking where you can message us about your options or you can give us a call. Bear in mind you may have to wait longer than expected. We continue to review this and working to open up these options to more customers. In the meantime check out our FAQs to see if this can help answer any immediate questions.

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Rest assured; we will notify you as soon as we know if your holiday has been affected.  

We are prioritising those customers due to travel before 06 October 2020. Log in to Manage my booking where you can message us about your options or you can give us a call. Bear in mind you may have to wait longer than expected. We continue to review this and working to open up these options to more customers. In the meantime check out our FAQs to see if this can help answer any immediate questions.

Please look out for emails from us or visit our dedicated Covid-19 (Coronavirus) page for the latest updates.

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If you need to speak to us to change or cancel your booking, and you are due to travel before 06 October 2020, please log in to Manage my booking to call or message us. 

Payment flexibility


Don’t worry if you’ve missed a payment or just need a little more time to pay; we have options available to help you. If your holiday is going ahead as planned, you can continue to pay for your holiday in Manage my booking, even if travelling in less than 12 weeks. If you’re unsure, you can delay any additional payments by choosing a new time to travel by requesting a call back in Manage My booking for one of our team to look at options. If your holiday is more than 6 months away, you may wish to set up a Direct Debit to spread the cost. This can be arranged whilst rebooking or afterwards in Manage my booking.

We're flexible with your holiday plans


We understand that you may wish to change your holiday plans and we appreciate the need for flexibility. 

We'll be in touch by email letting you know how to register to change your holiday plans. You can also log into Manage my booking to find the details there. 

Please look out for emails from us or visit our dedicated Covid-19 (Coronavirus) page for the latest updates.

You're good to go


If we haven’t notified you of any changes, your holiday will be going ahead as planned but if you prefer to move your holiday to a later time we can help. Log in to Manage my booking to request a call back to amend your holiday. Please bear in mind we’ll work through requests in departure date order so may take longer than usual for us to get back to you

Please look out for emails from us or visit our dedicated Covid-19 (Coronavirus) page for the latest updates.

Thank you for your patience and understanding


Payments are being prioritised based on when the request was made, working in order from March 2020 onwards. We will always try to process refunds at the earliest opportunity, for requests before August our maximum timeframe is 120 days. As we are steadily reducing the maximum processing time for each new request, for refund requests made in August, we expect the maximum processing time to be 80 days, from the date the refund is requested. For those requesting a refund in September, we expect it to be processed within a maximum of 60 days, and then reduce to 30 days for refunds requested in October, before returning to normal levels.

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To finalise the amendment, one of our customer advisors will phone you. We need to work through amend requests in departure date order so we can prioritise those with the most imminent travel plans, so you may have a longer wait than usual until we’re able to ring you back. We will help everyone that wants to move their holiday.

I returned early from holiday and have further questions?


You can contact our team by emailing feedback.backhome@virginholidays.com to discuss options on unused portions of your holiday. If you need to contact our team about amending an existing holiday or requesting a refund please log in to manage my booking.

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