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Top Rated Attractions in Washington DC

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National Mall

Part of the original design for the federal city, this massive park stretches from the US Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial and around the Tidal Basin to the Jefferson Memorial. It has played host to many momentous, world-changing events throughout history including the 1963 March on Washington, the Million Man March and several presidential inaugurations. Today, the National Mall serves as a place for reflection, a memorial to American heroes, a symbol of freedom and a forum for the exercise of democracy. The Smithsonian museums, the Vietnam Memorial, the Reflecting Pool and the iconic Washington Monument are some of the most well-known of the National Mall's many iconic sites. Certainly, any visit to Washington DC should start with a tour of the United States National Mall, aptly named "America's front yard."

United States National Arboretum

Best known for its vast collection of azaleas, (a popular porch-flower), this 446-acre (180-hectare) garden park has much else to offer. Fountains, pools and open space separate a series of focused gardens at the United States National Arboretum. The National Bonsai Collection, a gift from Japan, is a fascinating exhibit of tiny trees. Other notable sections are the aquatic garden (filled with lotuses of many varieties) and the National Herb Garden.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial

Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial not only honors the nation's 32nd president, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, but also pays tribute to the people of his time. Stretching over 7.5 acres (3 hectares) along the Tidal Basin, the memorial features four outdoor rooms, each depicting a different aspect of FDR's presidency. The second room, for instance, captures the hardship of the Great Depression with statues of people waiting in a bread line. Another room contains a statue of Eleanor Roosevelt, the only memorial to honor a First Lady. With its serene pools and cascading water, the monument offers a beautiful and contemplative space for visitors to reflect on the legacy of FDR and his era.

United States Botanic Garden

The gorgeous United States Botanic Garden presents botanical variety, from the desert to the tropics, along a series of calm and gently meandering paths. A particular waterfall and garden display the flora of the dinosaur age. Seasonal displays include Christmas greens and poinsettias in December and January, chrysanthemums in autumn, and blooming flowers at Easter. Additionally, within the beautiful expanse of the United States Botanic Garden (USBG), the National Garden was inaugurated in October 2006 and includes the carefully designed Butterfly Garden.

United States Capitol

The pristine facade, elegant dome, and porticoes of the Capitol Building are a symbol of the principles held dear by the nation's founding fathers and an emblem of representative democracy. Home to the Legislative Branch of the United States Federal Government, the Senate, and the House of Representatives, this iconic neoclassical building attracts many curious tourists from all over the world. Guided tours of the Capitol offer a glimpse into the everyday workings of government officials and the intricacies of its rich interiors. Offering a lesson about the nation's history and its electoral procedures, this monument continues to inspire awe and wonder.

Rock Creek Park

The Rock Creek Park contains a beautiful wild forest and serves as an oasis for city residents and tourists. Founded in 1890, the Rock Creek Park is a stunning haven for both people and wildlife. It features a multitude of attractions within which include picnic areas, winding trails and bike paths, a nature center, a public golf course, tennis courts, and stables. Rock Creek Parkway runs alongside the meandering creek. During winter, the park transforms into a popular spot for sledding and other outdoor winter activities.

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