East Local Travel

Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C.

Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel Blog

As I’ve mentioned before, I love Washington D.C. Before this trip, I had only been once before, for less than 48 hours, but it was a place I instantly clicked with. Between a good friend of mine already out there and the 20th anniversary of the Million Man March taking place, I had more than enough reason to go. Thursday night I hopped on a red-eye flight out of Los Angeles, I woke up in Baltimore, drove an hour into Washington D.C. and I hit the ground running. Since I only had three days, and a very specific itinerary for each day, I didn’t want to waste any time.Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogI think of Washington D.C. as one of those places that pretty much lays your itinerary out for you, and that was fine by me. When I travel, I usually like to venture off the beaten path but I’d never had the typical tourist experience in DC, so I was ready to dive in headfirst. The history lover in me couldn’t resist a stroll down the National Mall, which houses some of our country’s most recognizable monuments and museums.Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel Blog Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogWhat better place to start than the Washington Monument, which practically greets you as you arrive in Washington DC. This obelisk stands out in the DC skies, and once you spot it, you instantly know where you are. The last time I was in D.C. it was under construction, repairing damage caused my an earthquake in 2011 so it was great to see it restored to its former glory.Washington Memorial Before and AfterMy friend and I continued to make our way down the National Mall towards the Lincoln Memorial. There’s something special about the moment you see something up close that you’ve only seen in books, films, and television shows. The exterior of the Memorial is beautifully surrounded by marble columns, and the statue of Abraham Lincoln on the interior is just as striking.Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel Blog Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogOur nation’s capital also served as the stage of many profound moments in history such as 1963’s March on Washington where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famed I Have a Dream speech. Outside of Lincoln’s Memorial, you will find a commemoration of this historic day, marking where Dr. King once stood. Could you imagine looking out and addressing hundreds of thousands of people who were waiting to hear you speak? This moment was very humbling.Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogMemorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel Blog

MLK Memorial_2After
seeing this, it was only right that I visit the newly built memorial honoring his legacy a stone’s throw from the Lincoln Memorial. The last time I was in Washington D.C., I didn’t get a chance to see the memorial honoring Dr. King so seeing it was at the top of my to-do list.

As you enter the memorial site, you’re greeted by his words, and this culminates in you setting your eyes on Dr. King’s striking figure chiseled out of stone. His words etched in the granite walls surrounding the monument were a perfect touch as they are as impactful today as when first spoken.

When discussing American history and the founding of this country, the Founding Fathers and other political figures are mentioned and credited with building this nation, and rightfully so. But I feel it is only right to acknowledge the works and sacrifices of men like Dr. King. He never held a political office or even campaigned for one, but his service to the American people is undeniable and we owe our freedoms to him as much as any other historical figure. I cannot imagine a more fitting tribute or location for the Memorial honoring one of America’s greatest leaders and selfless heroes.

Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogMemorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogThe National Mall is easily a place you could spend hours. Between the museums, monuments, and memorials there’s enough history to soak up and last you a lifetime, but as I said earlier I only had about one day set aside solely for sightseeing in D.C., so we decided to head out.Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogAfter grabbing lunch, we went to one of Washington D.C.’s popular neighborhoods, Georgetown. Bordered on one side by the Potomac River, Georgetown offers shopping, entertainment, and great views. As we were driving, I told my friend I wanted to catch a sunset, and he said he knew of a spot along the river that would be ideal. While walking, we started to notice these dark clouds rolling in.Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogMemorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogNeedless to say, I did not get to witness that sunset because those dark clouds turned into a torrential downpour. We ducked under a bridge to wait for the rain to pass, but I wanted my picture. So we said “forget it”, ran into the rain, and got SOAKED. I don’t have a good picture to show for it, and soaked is probably an understatement, but I would do it all again!Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel BlogMy return to DC was everything I imagined it to be and then some. The connection I felt with this place two years ago grew stronger with this trip, and DC has permanently staked claim to a piece of my heart. I’m already planning my next return because I know there is so much more to discover about this historical place. So, until next time D.C.!

Be sure to check out my other posts covering my time spent in DC:
Your Crown Has Been Paid For: The Million Man March
History & Charm: A Day in Charlottesville, Va
Eats & Treats: Washington D.C. & Virginia


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Memorials, Monuments & Museums: A Day in Washington D.C. - I'm Taking Off - A Travel Blog

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