Washington D.C. in spring is truly one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been. Beyond the cherry blossoms, there are a few spots you shouldn’t miss!
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To celebrate the gorgeous weather and get a little adventure in, I spent a long weekend with my best friend Laura in Washington D.C.. My husband was intending to come, but at the last minute law school took priority and we realized he needed to get some things done at home. (Only one month left of law school, hooray!) But never fear, I went anyway! Twist my arm to go have a girls’ weekend. We always have the best time together, even if its just us on the couch goofing off on Snapchat.
We had far too many fun things to do, see and eat to spend the weekend on the couch, though. Here’s how we spent our time!
Laura and I had three main things we wanted to do. First on my list was to see the cherry blossoms! We ended up heading down to Capitol Hill and the tidal basin on Saturday morning – the blue skies contrasted perfectly with the creamy pink blossoms, looking like snow in the sunshine. The beauty made the enormous crowds worth it!
We had a great time, and everything was phenomenally beautiful. For more cherry blossom love, check out my other post here.
That being said, the crowds squeezed in elbow to elbow for miles, everyone wanting the perfect Insta. The photo below shows just how many people mobbed the trees.
Near the tidal pool, I had to stop by the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial. Even though its been around for a few years, I hadn’t yet seen it. I knew I couldn’t miss it this trip!
The memorial was incredibly powerful. The simplicity of it’s setup underscored the importance of what MLK did for our country. I stood for a long time in front of the wall of quotations, struck by his wisdom. May we never forget the lessons that are recorded here.
If you haven’t yet, this memorial is a must. It’s off the tidal basin, not far from the Franklin D Roosevelt Memorial.
Next up: Dumbarton Oaks. I love hanging with locals – they always know cool, under the radar places to check out. I hadn’t heard of it, but Dumbarton Oaks is a historic house-turned-museum. Nestled is residential Georgetown, the area feels miles away from the hustle of the city. Maybe if D.C. met colonial Williamsburg, or Savannah. Picturesque homes complete with cobblestone roads and gardens, the way you never see in such a packed-in metropolitan area.
Laura most wanted to see the gardens, but we arrived early enough to spend a couple hours touring the home first. Architecturally, the home is crazy interesting. Part old-school Victorian elegance, partly the strange-but-nonetheless-strikingly-beautiful that defines my novice’s understanding of modern architecture. Bonus: touring the house is free!
The owner of home, Robert Bliss, was a diplomat. Over the course of his work he traveled all over the world and developed a significant collection of artifacts which make up the exhibits now found in his home. Each room focuses on a different geographic area and time period. We spent about 45 minutes in one room with the meso- and South American artifacts. Another room held early and medieval Christian symbols on jewelry, tools, and sacred implements. The main parlor (called the Music Room) is rumored to be the place where a small group of world-changers first batted around ideas for the United Nations. Just being in there felt… significant. To think that this was where people grappled with how to move forward as a global community after the destruction and inhumanity of World War II.
After spending a few hours reading plaques and studying artifacts, we needed some sunshine. The garden has a separate entrance (because there’s a fee). To our surprise, there was a HUGE line waiting to get into the gardens! We were committed though, so we jumped in.We ended up waiting an hour! They had some technical difficulties which slowed down the process, but there’s only cashier so that means it’s always going to be a bit slow.
But SO WORTH IT! The gardens were fantastic. Sprawling, with a mix of meticulously manicured gardens and more wild, freer areas of foliage. Even so early in the spring, the colors exploded into the air.
My new favorite plant – pink magnolias! They’re breathtaking!
In spite of the huge line, the gardens were big enough that they didn’t feel crowded or even full! Big plus. The gardens cost $10 and they’re a must.