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Washington D.C. — mighty nice

Washington brings to mind images of broad streets, impressive monuments and the sight of the White House softly lit in the evening. Yet D.C. also consists of Victorian buildings, hipster hangouts and vistas of the Potomac. Washington, D.C., is as unique and incomparable as it is versatile and iFly KLM Magazine has compiled a quirky itinerary just for you.

Three days in the heart of America
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Day 01

Around The Mall

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In the Capitol

Washington D.C. is the political heart of America. Get up early and start your day with a walk over the National Mall to the stately Capitol, the home of American politics. Make sure you’ve arranged tickets for a tour online in advance as the complex is, if possible, even more impressive on the inside than out, and you won’t want to miss out. The huge dome is decorated with ceiling frescos and detailed sculptures that show important events in American history.

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    Unlike many other American cities, in Washington you don’t need a high vantage point to get a good view of the city. Buildings are not allowed to exceed the width of the street on which they are situated, which ensures a modest skyline. The bell tower of the Old Post Office Pavilion (1899) affords stunning views of landmarks such as the Capitol. This former post office also houses dozens of eateries.

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    Cycling along monuments

    The many monuments of Washington are world-renowned. As your feet may well be sore from walking along the Mall all day, a bicycle is the ideal way to visit them all. The memorials are spectacular by day, but even more impressive in the evening. The silence and lighting combine to create a serene atmosphere around the Vietnam Memorial and the Korean War Memorial, for instance. You can rent bicycles yourself or join a tour. With a bit of luck you might even see some fireflies on summer evenings.

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    Day 02

    Georgetown vibe

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    Rowing past presidents

    By far the most beautiful vistas of the city can be seen from the broad Potomac River. But don’t settle for a boat ride – the Key Bridge Boathouse in Georgetown lets you go on the river with a kayak and row along the shores of Roosevelt Island to the Lincoln Memorial. L A longer trip can brings you as far as the memorial to former President Thomas Jefferson on the Tidal Basin. The boathouse rents both one and two-person kayaks – rowing together is more fun, after all.

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    Romance in Georgetown

    Once back on shore it’s time to explore romantic Georgetown and its historical treasures such as old street lanterns and houses dating back to the eighteenth century. President John F. Kennedy lived at various addresses here and asked his wife Jackie to marry him at Martin's Tavern. Thanks to the many students from Georgetown University, Georgetown is also a young neighbourhood. M Street in particular has many shops, bars and restaurants – the famous Pie Sisters make great tea and cake.

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    Literary refreshments

    As you head from Georgetown toward Dupont Circle in the evening, don’t miss Kramer Books, an always busy local favourite. The place fills up at 07:30 with people enjoying their morning coffee and newspaper, and stays busy through brunch, lunch, dinner and late night desserts & cocktails until 1 am. The books are intriguing, the scents seductive and the live music (from Wednesday to Saturday) contagious. Shopping for books has never been this much fun!

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    Day 03

    It’s all in the mix

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    Museum curiosities

    Start the day with a cultural visit to the Newseum. This high-tech, interactive museum devoted to journalism and media over the centuries is anything but a dusty old cliché. The Newseum has six floors and includes two real, frequently used recording studios. It also lets you test your mettle as a newsreader or photojournalist. An extraordinary element is the Today's Front Pages gallery, which shows eighty current international headlines every day.

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    Ben’s Chili in U Street

    U Street, which runs from Columbia Heights to Logan Circle, is as happening as Washington gets. Georgetown students, yuppies and hipsters love to come here for the many bars and restaurants. But Ben's Chili Bowl stands out as an institution. This snack bar has existed since 1958, and big names like Bill Cosby, Miles Davis and Barack Obama have all been here for an authentic chili dog. Don’t miss Ben’s signature dish (and Cosby's favourite), the chili half-smoke. 

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    Curry on Capitol Hill

    Do as the locals do and have an evening meal on Barracks Row on Capitol Hill. This part of 8th Street is located between Pennsylvania Avenue and M Street, and consists of a chain of small restaurants. Indian curry, Greek meze or Mexican tortillas: you name it, they serve it. 
Near Barracks Row is the popular Eastern Market with a variety of food stalls and artists. The market closes at 18.00, and makes a great last stop before sitting down for a sumptuous meal. 

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