I already wrote a little bit about my weekend in Washington DC, but I wanted to show you guys how I usually do it up when I visit the District! Since I lived there for 2 years, I have a nice routine of what I like to do, eat and see when I travel there!
Getting to DC is super easy. It is a little confusing on flight booking websites, because they tell you that there are three DC airports. In reality, the closest one to the DC metro area is the DCA – Reagan Airport. Dulles is a good option, but it is about 40 minutes away from the city. BWI is in Baltimore, and is just a short train ride away from the district, too. I always fly into DCA, then take the metro (DC’s subway) to the city or out to the suburbs!
Please excuse some of the grainy photos! I took them all on my phone this trip. I promise to do better next time.
We flew in on Thursday afternoon for our weekend in Washington DC and immediately went to our favorite Korean BBQ spot in Annandale, VA called Kogiya. It is an experience unto itself. We ALWAYS order the spicy bulgogi beef with udon noodles, and fill up on the delicious little salads and sides that come with the meal. After dinner, it is our little ritual to head to The Block, which is an asian-fusion cafeteria in a strip mall (also in Annandale, Virginia). Since Dan and I are on a diet, we split a Sno Cream bowl! It is delicious shaved ice with yummy toppings. Dan picked thai tea sno cream with condensed milk drizzle, m&ms, and corn flakes.
We’re lucky that my brother and sister in law live in Springfield, Virginia, a 30 min drive from the city. Dan and I really enjoyed using her basement for our workouts (we can’t skip!) before heading out for the day. One of our go-to brunch spots is Founding Farmers. They have really good and affordable brunch food at multiple locations. Since we stayed in Virginia and didn’t have a reservation, we went to the Tyson’s Corner location and it was perfect!
After brunch we drove into the city to go paddle boating on the tidal basin. I can’t believe that in the two years that I lived in DC I never got around to doing that! It was seriously SO fun. If you’re planning to visit the tidal basin, I recommend parking closer to the Potomac River and the MLK memorial/FDR memorial area. There are always spots back there. You’ll have to walk around the tidal basin to get to the paddle boats, but it is a really nice walk.
Since it was super hot, we decided that an indoor activity would be smart. So we hopped in the car and headed to Georgetown for Dan’s first ever Escape Room! We chose the Escape Room Live company, and did the Egyptian Tomb-themed one. It was tough, but super fun! I highly recommend it. It wasn’t scary at all, and the puzzles were hard but not impossible. We did end up escaping, but we had to ask the moderator for 2 clues. Oops.
The Escape Room worked up an appetite. After grabbing THE BEST iced dirty chai lattes at Baked and Wired, we popped in to Trader Joe’s to buy some charcuterie and snacks for one of my favorite DC summertime events: Jazz In The Park! On Fridays in the summer, the sculpture garden hosts an evening Jazz party. The park floods with young people, families, and friends, for picnics, conversation, and the famous Sculpture Garden sangria pitchers. The event is super popular – so much that every inch of grass is covered by a blanket or a group of people! Get there early to secure a good spot in the shade.
Dinner was at the best casual Indian food spot in DC: Indigo. They have a low key yet romantic patio with string lights, a cute little bar, and picnic tables. You wait in line to get your food, and they bring it out to you by calling your number. And they allow dogs on their patio – a definite plus! Our friends Grace and Pat brought their adorable dog, Hobey, and we probably sat there for 2-3 hours just catching up. This spot is truly a hidden gem.
Saturday I changed things up a bit from my usual weekend in Washington DC routine and stayed with my friend Dani in Old Town, Alexandria. If you haven’t been to Old Town, then you’re seriously missing out. Old Town has all the equivalent shopping, restaurants, and nightlife of Georgetown, but without the crowds and douchedom. We chilled at Dani’s pool in the afternoon (and sipped on some delicious Aperol Spritz’s – my fave!) then headed out to Hi-Tide Lounge for Dani’s birthday celebration. Hi-Tide is a nostalgic PanAm-style bar with fun cocktails and yummy food. We ended the night at The People’s Drug, a hipster little bar that used to be a soda fountain style lunch counter in the early 1900s. Old Town is so amazing because the history constantly surrounds you – if the walls could talk!
On Sunday I just hopped on the metro and went to the airport. Super easy and painless! DC’s public transportation systems makes it so simple to get places. And if you do have a car, you just have to be a bit patient, or know the sweet spots for parking.
To recap my weekend in Washington DC Trip:
Where I Ate:
I didn’t stay at a hotel on this trip, but I’ve stayed at a few of these hotels and know they are all wonderful!
- The Embassy Row Hotel (Dupont Circle)
- The W Hotel (Metro Center)
- The Willard Intercontinental (Metro Center)
- Kimpton Hotel Monaco (Chinatown)
- The Mayflower (Farragut North)