Washington DC, Capital of the United States
The city is split up into four main districts. The Downtown area is home to the National Mall, the White House, the Smithsonian (one of many museums), business and theater districts as well as many fine dining venues. This area is the most popular tourist area for obvious reasons. North Central has some of the trendiest and most diverse neighborhoods in the DC area. Dupont Circle has an eclectic collection of cafes, bars, nightclubs shops and galleries, as well as Embassy Row. DC West consists of a group of upscale neighborhoods, including historic Georgetown, and boasts attractions including the National Cathedral and zoo. DC East is where you'll find Capitol Hill and the Library of Congress. Though it's the main bureaucratic headquarters of town, this section also offers bohemian nightlife in the Atlas District and a Roman Catholic area called "Little Vatican".
With the number of sites and museums seeming to outnumber the people, there are a few places to hit up that might not be on all the typical must-see-in-DC lists. The International Spy Museum is like peering into James Bond's toy chest. This fascinating museum highlights high-tech gadgetry, notorious spy cases and gives visitors complicated mysteries to solve. The National Zoological Park, known as the DC Zoo, is one of the nation's most-visited zoos which includes an extensive panda habitat and live gorilla cams. For the quintessential adventure through history, the downtown area is home to tourist-friendly attractions like the Washington Monument, the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials, the Air and Space Museum and the Vietnam Memorial.
In recent years, Washington DC has become a gastronomic tour de force. For a fine dining French bistro with a casual atmosphere and moderate prices, check out Cafe du Parc, which is located next to the Willard InterContinental Hotel. For a raucous night of blues and southern cooking, head over to Madam's Organ Blues Bar and Soul Food. The nightly live music and down home bar fare can be found nowhere else in the city. For cheap eats, try a chili dog and thick shake at Ben's Chili Bowl, or a Middle Eastern late night bite at the Falafel Shop in the Adams Morgan section of town. For award-winning mussels and over 50 different Belgian ales, check out the laidback gastropub, Granville Moore's.For more information about Washington DC visit our travel site.
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