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Trip Report Washington DC and Chincoteague, VA - Trip Report

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Here is the trip report for our trip to Washington DC and Chincoteague, VA. I want to thank everyone for all their advice leading up to the trip. It was very valuable.

Day 1 (Wednesday):
My husband and 1 flew from SFO to DCA on Continental – connected in Houston. We met my uncle in DC. My mom and one of my aunts were supposed to come too, but neither could make it, so it was just the 3 of us.

We checked into The Hamilton Crowne Plaza on 14th and K streets. It is a neat historic hotel, but a combination of small issues made for a less-than-ideal stay. They screwed up the rate for our rooms and it took a long time to sort out, the elevators worked only intermittently, the beds and linens were only ok, almost no counter space in the bathroom, our room looked out onto a wall, etc. I just expect more from a Crowne Plaza, so I would probably choose a different hotel next time. The location was pretty good though – a block and a half from the Metro, across from a park, near the White House. The area is more business oriented, so not much going on in the evenings with regard to restaurants and so on.

It was late by the time we checked in at the hotel, so we had dinner and drinks at the hotel restaurant 14K. The food was pretty good, if expensive. And the service was nice.

Day 2 (Thursday):
We had breakfast at the hotel (1/2 price for club members) – and the breakfast buffet was very good. Then we headed to the Capital for our tour. We took the Metro to the Capital South station and walked a couple of blocks – very easy.

The Capital tour was really neat – we got tickets through one of our Congress people. The guide took us around and told us about the history of the Capital building. Afterwards, we walked around the outside and headed to the National Mall.

The Air and Space Museum was tops on our list, so we went there first. Absolutely wonderful. We ended up spending 5 hours there, but could have stayed longer. We even ate lunch at the McDonalds in the cafeteria because we just didn’t want to leave. A storm came in while we were there, so we stayed longer to wait out the rain. Terrible, I know – to be forced to spend more time in the Air and Space Museum. What luck.

We had dinner at RFD on 7th between H and I, which has a fabulous beer selection – dozens and dozens (hundreds?) of choices. The food was pretty good, not great, but good. The place was crowded and loud though, so somewhat of a drawback.

Day 3 (Friday):
We had an 8:30 tour of the Library of Congress scheduled, so we got an early start. Again – tour arranged through a Congressperson. We took the Metro again – used the Metro to get everywhere. It is very easy and efficient.

The Library of Congress tour was a highlight of our trip. Our guide was wonderful. She was full of information and very entertaining. We learned a ton. And the building is incredible – absolutely covered in artwork: carvings, paintings, sculptures, mosaics. We spent quite a bit of time at the Library after the tour was over. There are some neat exhibits there.

After we left the Library of Congress, the weather was beautiful, so we went to the Sculpture Garden and had lunch. The Pavilion Café there is very good. Much better than we expected to find on The Mall. The food isn’t cheap, but it is good. After lunch we hung out in the Sculpture Garden and relaxed with our feet in the fountain. Lots of others were doing the same and it was just a nice place to be.

After lunch we wandered down the Mall to see the monuments. It was a hot afternoon, so we took our time. I had not seen the WWII memorial, so that was really neat to see. We saw the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, the reflecting pool, the Vietnam Memorial, the Korean War Memorial, and a couple more. We even found a statue of Albert Einstein. We wandered for hours until it was dinner time.

For dinner we went to the F Street Bistro – chosen because it looked pretty good and was only a few blocks from where we were. The restaurant is a little place down a small alley near George Washington University. The food was very good – I had some pasta with chicken and cream sauce, and for dessert a fried cheesecake. It was definitely a nice find.

After dinner we went back down to the Mall area because my husband wanted to get some night shots of the monuments. The Korean War memorial at night was especially interesting.

Then we wandered back down the mall toward the Metro to ride back to the hotel. By the end of that day, we were exhausted. It was a wonderful day, but we basically walked our feet off.

Next up - Chincoteague.

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