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Will be near DC for 5 days this summer, help me plan!

ChillyWillyChillyWilly Registered User regular
Howdy, folks. I'm attending a conference for work in Alexandria, VA this June. I'll be there for 5 days and I'd like to do some things with the down time I'll have, (which will be roughly 4-5 hours a day.

Can anyone recommend what I should do with my time and, if possible, recommend any decent accommodations in the area that I should book for myself?

Any help is greatly appreciated.

PAFC Top 10 Finisher in Seasons 1 and 3. 2nd in Seasons 4 and 5. Final 4 in Season 6.

Posts

  • RadiationRadiation Registered User regular
    Not sure about accommodations.

    Things to see.
    All the museums. The national mall has a bunch of free shit to see. Natural history and Air and Space are good ones. American History is pretty neat as well. I've not yet been to the African American museum, but its on the list. The American Indian one is pretty good and pretty neat food options as well.
    Checking out the monuments is pretty fun-ish as well. I highly recommend the FDR monument and the WW2.

    If you like outdoors stuff the arboretum is a pretty good time as well.

    It's going to be hot and humid, so brace yourself.

    Also this is a pretty good primer:
    https://wikitravel.org/en/Washington,_D.C.

    Also @Duke 2.0 @Quid @Darkewolfe and I know there are others but can't think of any currently.

    PSN: jfrofl
  • CelloCello Registered User regular
    Old Town Alexandria is nice and has a few cute hotels on King Street. Strong recommendation for most of the bars and restaurants down that way. Del Rey has a lot of decent stuff for local hipsters.

    Skip the Air and Space Museum downtown on the Mall and go to the Udvar Hazi instead out near Dulles. That's where all the *real* Air and Space is. There's plenty of other good museums on the Mall, but I guess I was just spoiled by similar museums in Ottawa and Toronto.

    If possible, fly into DCA instead of Dulles. Much closer to where you mean to be.

    Steam
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  • ChillyWillyChillyWilly Registered User regular
    edited April 2019
    Radiation wrote: »
    Not sure about accommodations.

    Things to see.
    All the museums. The national mall has a bunch of free shit to see. Natural history and Air and Space are good ones. American History is pretty neat as well. I've not yet been to the African American museum, but its on the list. The American Indian one is pretty good and pretty neat food options as well.
    Checking out the monuments is pretty fun-ish as well. I highly recommend the FDR monument and the WW2.

    If you like outdoors stuff the arboretum is a pretty good time as well.

    It's going to be hot and humid, so brace yourself.

    Also this is a pretty good primer:
    https://wikitravel.org/en/Washington,_D.C.

    Also @Duke 2.0 @Quid @Darkewolfe and I know there are others but can't think of any currently.

    I'm not worried about the heat and humidity. I grew up in Tennessee and currently reside in South Korea. Both are swamp-ass territory in the summer months. I don't like it, but I'm used to it. Thanks for the warning, anyway. Haha.

    Thanks for all of this info, too.

    ChillyWilly on
    PAFC Top 10 Finisher in Seasons 1 and 3. 2nd in Seasons 4 and 5. Final 4 in Season 6.
  • QuidQuid Definitely not a banana Registered User regular
    The Smithsonians are huge and free. Easy to spend half a day in any one.

    The U.S. Botanical Garden is a lesser known and should have plenty to see in June.

    Not sure for accommodations but if you can get one in walking distance of a metro station it makes getting around DC a ton easier.

  • zepherinzepherin Russian warship, go fuck yourself Registered User regular
    Definitely go to olde town Alexandria. Visit the Torpedo factory, a really cool art space. I always eat at the fish market when I go... I think it’s great but nostalgia is also a hell of a drug.

    National Harbor is really close. So you can take the water taxi there from olde town, and they have some good restaurants and bars. Bobby McKey’s Dueling Piano Bar Is fun, and MGM is there if you want to go to a casino.

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Quid wrote: »
    The Smithsonians are huge and free. Easy to spend half a day in any one.

    The U.S. Botanical Garden is a lesser known and should have plenty to see in June.

    Not sure for accommodations but if you can get one in walking distance of a metro station it makes getting around DC a ton easier.

    Walking distance of a metro or a short uber ride to/from a metro stop at the start of your day.

    What is this I don't even.
  • XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    Old Towne and The Mall are great ways to kill time for cheap (well not so much old towne)

    Definitely take metro

  • MugsleyMugsley DelawareRegistered User regular
    The last time I went to the Natural History Museum around this time of year, they had a butterfly exhibit in the temporary area (I believe it was on the third floor). You walk through a small greenhouse in small groups and get to directly interact with the butterflies.

    I'm not sure if something similar is currently available but it's worth a check.

    Also if you're in any way associated with or interested in the military, it's worth a visit to Arlington. The changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns is a great experience. The whole place can be quite powerful but is worth the visit.

  • XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    Mugsley wrote: »
    The last time I went to the Natural History Museum around this time of year, they had a butterfly exhibit in the temporary area (I believe it was on the third floor). You walk through a small greenhouse in small groups and get to directly interact with the butterflies.

    I'm not sure if something similar is currently available but it's worth a check.

    Also if you're in any way associated with or interested in the military, it's worth a visit to Arlington. The changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns is a great experience. The whole place can be quite powerful but is worth the visit.

    My cousin actually headed that up! She was in charge of both the maintaining the plants .... and ordering replacement butterflies =(

  • RadiationRadiation Registered User regular
    My wife went a few weeks ago and it was still up.

    PSN: jfrofl
  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    I dont have any advice other than to see the museums, and that if you only have 4-5 hours a day, take the metro whenever possible. Traffic is a bitch in the DC corridor and can easily eat 90 minutes where it should have been 30min. I haven't been in the city since our uber revolution, but its worth noting.

  • zepherinzepherin Russian warship, go fuck yourself Registered User regular
    Iruka wrote: »
    I dont have any advice other than to see the museums, and that if you only have 4-5 hours a day, take the metro whenever possible. Traffic is a bitch in the DC corridor and can easily eat 90 minutes where it should have been 30min. I haven't been in the city since our uber revolution, but its worth noting.
    It’s Uber not a magic wand. If you can take the metro. Definitely avoid driving between 6:45am and 9:15am and 3:30pm and 6:15pm. It will make you sad.

  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    zepherin wrote: »
    Iruka wrote: »
    I dont have any advice other than to see the museums, and that if you only have 4-5 hours a day, take the metro whenever possible. Traffic is a bitch in the DC corridor and can easily eat 90 minutes where it should have been 30min. I haven't been in the city since our uber revolution, but its worth noting.
    It’s Uber not a magic wand. If you can take the metro. Definitely avoid driving between 6:45am and 9:15am and 3:30pm and 6:15pm. It will make you sad.

    I left DC once at around 5:15pm on a wednesday.

    I should have just stayed an extra day and left in the morning I probably would've gotten home quicker.

    not a doctor, not a lawyer, examples I use may not be fully researched so don't take out of context plz, don't @ me
  • zepherinzepherin Russian warship, go fuck yourself Registered User regular
    Other places worth a metro trip spy museum (costs money but is fantastic), Georgetown has some historic landmarks, good food and fine shopping, and National Park is easily accessible if you want to catch a baseball game. Like the metro station is right there, you get out see some billboards almost forcing you into the stadium. Nationals tickets are pretty cheap.

  • ChillyWillyChillyWilly Registered User regular
    @Kamiro

    I currently live in Korea, so any great Korean food joints would be nice.

    PAFC Top 10 Finisher in Seasons 1 and 3. 2nd in Seasons 4 and 5. Final 4 in Season 6.
  • QuidQuid Definitely not a banana Registered User regular
    I don't know specifics, but I do know Annandale, VA is relatively nearby and home to a big Korean population. A coworker of mine routinely goes there to get various Korean sundries.

  • zepherinzepherin Russian warship, go fuck yourself Registered User regular
    ...yes Annandale has some decent Korean joints, I happen to like Honey Pig, but if you live in Korea, maybe try some local cuisine. The seafood in Alexandria is great and fried, the seafood in Maryland is crabs and old bay. There are cheese steaks that are about as good as you can get outside of Phili. 5 guys started in Alexandria, and the burgers are good.

  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    If you've never eaten a crab cake in Maryland, I recommend it. I'm a real snob and cant suggest a place that's not in Baltimore, but I wont eat a crab cake unless I'm home (I'm in TX now) because they are going to use bullshit spices and way too much filler to suit my needs. I'll just say try to avoid chains like phillips and try to get somewhere a little more small and local.

    A good crab cake eggs benedict brunch, I'd kill for it here.

  • zepherinzepherin Russian warship, go fuck yourself Registered User regular
    Iruka wrote: »
    If you've never eaten a crab cake in Maryland, I recommend it. I'm a real snob and cant suggest a place that's not in Baltimore, but I wont eat a crab cake unless I'm home (I'm in TX now) because they are going to use bullshit spices and way too much filler to suit my needs. I'll just say try to avoid chains like phillips and try to get somewhere a little more small and local.

    A good crab cake eggs benedict brunch, I'd kill for it here.
    I like Timbuktu, it’s near bwi. Annapolis and Baltimore also have good crab cakes. There are some differences in
    Style seasoning and filler amount. Also if you interested in eating blue crabs (picking crabs) that is a thing that is delicious and fun, but super messy.

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Quarterdeck, in Arlington which is most closer to Alexandria than these other places, is like a 40 year old blue crab place.

    What is this I don't even.
  • RadiationRadiation Registered User regular
    Iruka wrote: »
    If you've never eaten a crab cake in Maryland, I recommend it. I'm a real snob and cant suggest a place that's not in Baltimore, but I wont eat a crab cake unless I'm home (I'm in TX now) because they are going to use bullshit spices and way too much filler to suit my needs. I'll just say try to avoid chains like phillips and try to get somewhere a little more small and local.

    A good crab cake eggs benedict brunch, I'd kill for it here.

    @Iruka what places do you recommend for crab cakes?
    I suppose Annapolis likely has some good spots as well.

    PSN: jfrofl
  • CroakerBCCroakerBC TorontoRegistered User regular
    Everyone here really pitched in and helped me out when I asked about things to do and/or eat in DC last year. Thread's here. Hopefully it's helpful for you, as well!

  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    So in Baltimore the crab cake of my personal choice was Pappas, they are huge cakes, relatively reasonably priced, and if I got the triple plate I generally had a whole cake to take home for aforementioned crab cake eggs benedict. City Cafe, downtown, had a nice benedict that was low on filler and very simple which was a luxary, once or twice a year brunch for me at the time. Been a while since I've been there (4 years).

    It looks like the south most Pappas is in Glen Burnie which is a hike for you, and there's not much in Glen Burnie for making a tourist trip.

    I would stick to the VA folks recommendations, just dont let some rando on the street tell you "Uuuh you can go to phillips or mccormick and schmick's?", You wont get the worst food by any means, but they are generally overpriced/kinda yuppie chains

  • zepherinzepherin Russian warship, go fuck yourself Registered User regular
    I want a crabcake now.

  • RadiationRadiation Registered User regular
    edited May 2019
    Actually Glen Burnie isn't terribly far.
    @Quid you want to check out Pappas one weekend?

    Radiation on
    PSN: jfrofl
  • QuidQuid Definitely not a banana Registered User regular
    Crab is gross. So is Old Bay.

    Maryland is pretty much wasted on me.

  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    taste is subjective and you are allowed your opinion but I had to really restrain myself from geth ejecting you on the spot because I think my soul is made of old bay and I am deeply wounded.

  • zepherinzepherin Russian warship, go fuck yourself Registered User regular
    Glen Burnie has some good food, but not much else.

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    edited May 2019
    Quid wrote: »
    Crab is gross. So is Old Bay.

    Maryland is pretty much wasted on me.

    Sadly you are now dead to me.

    @radiation I am legit generally down for a Quarterdeck crab night whenever. We order a couple dozen and some pitchers of beer and spend like four hours there.

    Darkewolfe on
    What is this I don't even.
  • zepherinzepherin Russian warship, go fuck yourself Registered User regular
    Darkewolfe wrote: »
    Quid wrote: »
    Crab is gross. So is Old Bay.

    Maryland is pretty much wasted on me.

    Sadly you are now dead to me.

    radiation I am legit generally down for a Quarterdeck crab night whenever. We order a couple dozen and some pitchers of beer and spend like four hours there.
    That’s sounds like a legit good evening.

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Maybe we do a PA get together then.

    What is this I don't even.
  • Anon the FelonAnon the Felon In bat country.Registered User regular
    Seconding or thirding King Street.

    But go hungry. Some of the best food I've eaten has been on that street. Also do the torpedo factory, art + history is always worth the time.

  • RiusRius Globex CEO Nobody ever says ItalyRegistered User regular
    edited May 2019
    @ChillyWilly regardless of the current occupant(s), the White House tour is pretty awesome. I had the opportunity to go on it last fall after a work conference ended and I definitely was glad I did. You have to plan ahead some because you can't bring in any bags/backpacks and there aren't really any lockers in the area.

    What I did was I took a taxi back to the airport after my conference, rented a car, and drove the few minutes into DC proper. Parked at a garage, left my luggage and stuff in the trunk, then walked/uber'd around DC for the afternoon, then drove back to the airport ez pz.

    I can also recommend going to the National Archives; on top of having little stuff like the Declaration of Independence on display, this is the museum that holds on to all the official presidential recordings and papers. You can pick up a phone and listen to recorded phone calls of previous presidents.

    Rius on
  • ElvenshaeElvenshae Registered User regular
    If you want to do the WH tour, though, it’s something you need to set up well in advance.

  • SteevLSteevL What can I do for you? Registered User regular
    Elvenshae wrote: »
    If you want to do the WH tour, though, it’s something you need to set up well in advance.

    Yeah. My wife had to call the office of our congressional representative (in Illinois at the time) to request a visit and she got denied.

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