East Coast Trip in May to DC/NJ - What should we do?

LFC911

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You all helped me out on my trip to WY/MT last year, so i thought I would ask again. My wife and I are planning a trip to DC/NJ in a couple weeks and looking for ideas of things to do. We're flying into BWI and spending the weekend in Brick, NJ where my uncle lives. Then we have an AirBNB in Alexandria, VA and plan on spending the week there doing stuff in and around DC. We have Arlington Cemetery and changing of the guard on the list and probably the Smithsonian, which I think we need reservations for that?!? What else would you recommend doing and/or not doing?
 

jayhawk

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Might want to look into the Smithsonian more because I think part of it is closed down right now….

Here are some cool spots in the area:
Mt Vernon (in Alexandria)
Marine Corps museum (Quantico)
Manasas battlefield
NRA museum
National Mall
 

CorbLand

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Hit the Holocaust Museum in DC. It is free or you can buy tickets early for a dollar a piece (in 2018 at least). Plan on a couple hours.
 
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Kenai_dtracker

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I was there a few weeks ago, and ditto on what the others have said. Lots to do in DC and good food to eat. Have your walking shoes on for sure. The only museum that we needed a reservation for was the air and space, just to set up a time, but of course it's free. The Smithsonian natural history and American history museums are great. Give yourself plenty of time, as they all take longer than you anticipate. The National Archives was worth it as well.

I was there in 2012 as well, and it has changed a bit...
 
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LFC911

LFC911

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I was there a few weeks ago, and ditto on what the others have said. Lots to do in DC and good food to eat. Have your walking shoes on for sure. The only museum that we needed a reservation for was the air and space, just to set up a time, but of course it's free. The Smithsonian natural history and American history museums are great. Give yourself plenty of time, as they all take longer than you anticipate. The National Archives was worth it as well.

I was there in 2012 as well, and it has changed a bit...
Speaking of food, would also take recommendations for that if you have any...not looking for honey holes LOL :ROFLMAO:
 
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Lincoln’s Waffle is a great greasy spoon breakfast diner.

Udvar-Hazy (the bigger part of Smithsonian Air and Space) is critical if you like aircraft.
 

Kenai_dtracker

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Speaking of food, would also take recommendations for that if you have any...not looking for honey holes LOL :ROFLMAO:
It might sound crazy, but I like to hit up ethnic food, if there's a good scene and the mood hits me. Tons of good restaurants along Wharf st of Maine Ave, and a great little taco bar called Surfside taco stand. If you like Indian, Rasa was great for bowls (https://www.rasa.co/). Also, along the DC mall, there's a million food trucks as well.
 
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I've heard the spy museum is a must visit. Go out to to the Naval Academy if you have time. It's gree to get into. There is a lot of good restaurants right outside the academy.

G&M crabcakes 10 min north of BWI is my favorite restaurant in the area.
 
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I was on large construction site in Bethesda Maryland for a couple years, so I was able to check out all the tourist attractions in the area and my favorite by a country mile was Gettysburg, specifically the museum & the cyclorama. Gettysburg is about 90 miles north of where you'll be in Alexendria. If you at all a history, war, or gun nut it's a must see for sure. We also went to some caverns somewhere close by that were pretty cool as well. The area down by the Lincoln memorial was cool because you can check that out and while your there go see Vietnams Veteran Memorial, World War 2 memorial, Washington monument & the National Air & Space Museum.
 

ODB

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The museums will keep you busy for a week or more. Some of the best.

Vietnam memorial area is also great.

Prepare to walk.
 

Pramo

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Check out the metro map for an easy way to get into DC and not fight parking and look for a Nats game

Other nice things are Harpers Ferry and hiking up Maryland heights and Gettysburg

Baltimore I’d skip
 
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LFC911

LFC911

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Check out the metro map for an easy way to get into DC and not fight parking and look for a Nats game

Other nice things are Harpers Ferry and hiking up Maryland heights and Gettysburg

Baltimore I’d skip
I was thinking about that, we have a rental car for the week but I wondered if we should park somewhere and then uber/walk everywhere else? Would love to see a Nat's game and will have to check their schedule.
 
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I was thinking about that, we have a rental car for the week but I wondered if we should park somewhere and then uber/walk everywhere else?
Definitely, we parked a ways outside of DC and then just took the metro in and that was pretty easy.... even for small town farm kid like myself.
 

CorbLand

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The metro is pretty easy to navigate. I wish I would have had a week there when I went.
 
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Two things I'd recommend:

1) Make reservations at Old Ebbitt Grill - it's just a couple of blocks from the White House, and contains a substantial portion of Teddy Roosevelt's big game trophy room. There are some absolutely amazing mounts in there, especially given how old they are. It's a DC institution, so make sure you get reservations in quickly and be there a bit early for them. But it's a very special place, with absolutely killer food.

2) Reach out to your Member of Congress and set up an appointment to get a staff tour of the Capitol building - the Rotunda is an amazing museum tour itself of American art and history, and Statuary Hall contains two statues from each state of their revered figures. It's a cool tour. It's also free, and Members and staff go out of their way to make their constituents feel welcome and treated well with them.
 

Pramo

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Here a link to the metro map, you can use SmartTrip on your phone to pay if your register with the app or you buy a card at the station


DC is a neat area another cool place is Great Falls on the Potomac which is very close. Metro is very easy, it’s not like public transit in New York, Philly and Baltimore those I’d rather never ride unless I have to for business
 

11boo

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I got the rental car towed last time I was there, and I was parked at a meter that was paid up. What I didn’t notice was the No parking from 4 to 6 or sometime. They turned the parking lane into a traffic lane at rush hour.
Still was a great trip.
 

Clovis

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Not sure if it is too late to arrange through your congressman, but white house and congress tours were very cool. Lots of interesting good eating in DC too.
 
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