The Greatest City Ever

Trip Start Jan 13, 2005
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Flag of United States  , District of Columbia
Sunday, August 28, 2005

Calling Washington D.C. the greatest city ever is a bold statement and I'm sure that it would stimulate much debate in a hostel bar. I've been here for almost a month now and I can't get enough of this place. This Metro system is excellent and clean. It is a little bit on the pricy side, but I've never felt threatened while riding to and from work. If you plan ahead and buy extended passes like day or week you can get really good deals. It's not just the transportation system that I like, it's the proximity to the most important pieces of American History ever assembled in to area affectionately known as "The Mall". In the American History museum you can see the jersey of Wayne Gretzky and Michael Jordan. View the flag hung over the Pentagon after the September 11th Terrorist attacks. Or even view the first apple computers ever built. On either side of that museum you can wander into the National Archives and view the most important document ever written; The United States Constitution. That document is displayed next to the second and third most important pieces of information ever written down on one peace of paper, the Bill of Rights and the Declaration of Independence. Cross over the Mall and step into the Air and Space Museums. I implore you to take a guided tour and learn about the history of space flight in America. Check out the first plane to break the sound barrier, view one of the test lunar landers used by NASA while practicing for the moon, or look inside the capsule John Glen sat in to be the first American to orbit the Earth. "Discovery Stations" are regularly found around the museum and allow you the opportunity to feel an astronaut's suit, see their freeze dried food or even try on a space suit glove. After exiting this museum you can turn to your right and gaze upon the United States Capitol. Tours here are frequent and incredibly informative. If you instead turn to your left you will see all 470 feet of the Washington Monument. Behind that you can see the flags from the new World War II memorial and beyond that the reflecting pool and Lincoln Memorial. Adjacent to that is the sobering Vietnam and Korea War memorial. However, if your like me and enjoy animals I would recommend the National Zoo. A quick trip down the "Red Line" will take you with in walking distance. Once there you can view Panda's, Elephants, Monkeys, Cheetah's, Bears, Lions and even Octopus. While more constricting than Zoo's in Australia that allow you to pet the animals, the ones at the National Zoo live longer because they don't have to deal with the stress of constantly being touched. Enjoy the pictures and I would recommend that anybody visiting the East Coast you must stop and relish in the incredible history of Washington D.C.
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