Often overshadowed by the more flashy New York City, Washington DC represents an essential destination of an East Coast tour. In fact, the District of Columbia is a real must-see for those who want to discover and get in touch with the true essence of American history and culture.
Not only a political capital but also an important cultural and artistic center, Washington DC is found between the states of Virginia - on its southwest side - and Maryland - on its southeast, northeast, and northwest sides.
The ideal tour of Washington starts from the National Mall, a monumental avenue of about 3 km that runs along the east-west from Capitol Hill to the Lincoln Memorial.
Bordered on the north by Constitution Avenue and on the south by Independence Avenue, this spectacular green artery of the city is also home to major museums, including the Freer and Sackler Galleries - parts of the National Museum of Asian Art - the Hirshhorn Museum - which is the modern Art museum of the Smithsonian Institution - the National Air & Space Museum - visited by more than 8 million tourists per year - and the National Gallery of Art - gathering a huge exhibition of paintings, sculptures and other decorative arts from the Middle Ages to today.
Near the gleaming white marble of Capitol Hill, you cannot miss the Washington Monument, known obelisk located in the western part of the National Mall, and the White House, the most famous house in America and residence of all the U.S. presidents since John Adams.
Moving from the city center you can reach the famous Arlington National Cemetery, the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial and the George Washington Memorial Parkway.
For a pleasant evening stroll, the choice is definitely on Dupont Circle. This trendy area is the focal point of social life in the city. The neighborhood of Georgetown is also worth visiting, home of the famous Georgetown University and of the Georgetown Waterfront, spectacular group of buildings on the banks of the Potomac with beautiful fountains, trendy bars and excellent restaurants.