Welcome to Washington DC!

DC is our nations capital, the location that formed and built our country. Wandering the streets, the history comes to life - the monuments, the history, the stories of who came before feel tangible. DC is also home to incredible food, amazing shopping, and beautiful art and architecture. A trip to DC will be filled with all of this and so much more. Whether you love history, science, art, food, theater - you name it - it’s all right within this city for you to wander, explore, and take in. We’re taking you to the room where it happens!

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Here's Whym's top ten things to know about Washington DC

Welcome!

History. Art. Power. Food. Culture. Sports. Nowhere represents this collision of interests better than Washington, DC. The heart of America, a tiny non-state making up only 68 square miles & yet somehow defines & leads America. Whether you’re here for America’s Pastime, unparalleled art & history with the Smithsonian, culture & comedy with the live performance scene, your time will never pass slowly in this town

Finding Your Way

DC is a confusingly laid out city, so a rental car isn’t the way to go. Within neighborhoods, it’s eminently walkable & taxi’s & Lyfts are easy & everywhere. There is a bus system although it’s not the most time efficient. The Metrorail is clean & efficient, but only runs until midnight if you’re out late. The whole city is designed on a grid, with all points leading back to the Capital.

Airport Deets

There are two airports that are easily accessible to DC. Reagan is closest to town, about 15-20 minutes & costs $15-20 in a Lyft. Dulles International is larger, about 30-35 minutes away from city center & costs $45-55 in a Lyft. There is also Baltimore Washington International which is far away but often cheaper. Grab a seat on Amtrak for about $15-30 & you’ll be dropped off right at Union Station

History

DC has a storied history. With its location between the north & south & along the Potomac River, George Washington declared it to be the nation’s first capital in 1790. Interestingly it was kept as a district so as to not be mixed up with state or federal issues, but kept separate for its own safety. American history grew through the capital & survived attacks & battles & fires. Later, it became the epicenter of the Civil Rights movement. It is a city of contrasts but one that proudly highlights the history that pulses through the streets.

Why Am I Here?

DC is an amazing place to visit with a wealth of things to fill your days. Shopping in Georgetown, wandering through the Smithsonian’s, touring historical landmarks, attending sporting events & concerts, there is something to always keep you entertained. Every neighborhood is proud of its own history & style, so you never run out of things to explore. The history is amazing & around every corner, so enjoy!

Weather

Due to its location near Virginia & Maryland, DC is a fairly temperate climate. The winter is usually between 30-50, but very cold with the winds off the rivers. Spring warms up going from 40-80 & rainy. Summer is warm & muggy, 60-90, & fall is the same as spring in temperatures with less rain.

Local Delicacies

If DC has one love, it’s the half smoke. A hot dog like sausage, a little spicier & half pork/half beef, topped with chili. Who has the best is debated, but we like Ben’s Chili Bowl. And because of its international population, you’ll find it all, which is DC’s other specialty — every cuisine the world has to offer. And don’t leave without a famous Georgetown cupcake!

Souvenirs

Anything from the Smithsonian is fun. At the Bureau of Engraving & Printing you can get unique items like uncut or shredded bills. Another collectible is the annual White House Ornament – a tradition since 1981. For a presidential favorite, Feridies Peanuts are from Jimmy Carters farm, or mulled cider from Mt. Vernon, a favorite of Washington.

Style

Washingtonians are all about sophistication & they dress the part. There’s a lot of cobbled streets, so look sharp & wear walking shoes. DC isn’t a fashion mecca but you’ll see lots of politicians in suits running around & out for dinner or drinks. Don’t forget layers as museums are often kept chillier.

Must Know

You’ll want to see a lot, but the monuments & museums are spread out so be prepared. The cherry blossoms bloom March-April & are breathtaking but be prepared for it to be more crowded this time of year!

You can practically smell the bills becoming laws. You can taste the sweet sugar of bureaucracy at work

- Leslie Know