Washington, DC: A Travel Guide for Couples on a Budget
Disclaimer: Affiliate links may be used in this post. You can read my full disclosure here.
The nation’s capital, Washington, DC is a place that I visited in the eighth grade. But, let’s be honest, traveling there later in life with your own schedule is way better.
Our first full day in Washington, I ended up walking thirteen miles… in ankle boots. Let me just tell you right now what I learned that first day: wear some decent walking shoes. I absolutely did not realize how much walking I would be doing to visit everything. 😛
For this trip, we flew JetBlue. It was my first time flying with them & I honestly think it’s one of the best flights I’ve ever had (maybe the bigger seat, free drinks, & short flight time had something to do with it).
Next word of advice for Washington is to get yourself a metro pass. I grew up in a small town & where I am now has nearly non-existent public transportation, but I found the metro system to be really easy to navigate. You can get an unlimited pass for several days, so you don’t have to worry about paying each time.
Second, we stayed outside of the city center & took the train in each day which was only about a 20-30 minute commute. We didn’t have to worry about car traffic each day & it’s cheaper than staying right in the middle of the city center.
Alright, so you know there is a lot to see in the capitol, but so much of it is FREE, that it’s also friendly on the wallet! See my favorite things below.
Smithsonian Museums – There are nineteen to choose from! We enjoyed the Air & Space (it was being renovated, but still fun) and Natural History. Most of these are located near the mall.
The National Mall – Once again, free to walk around and see buildings and memorials such as the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, & more! A lot of museums are also located near here. I highly recommend the National Archives Museum; get in line early!
Georgetown – The campus and the neighborhood are both beautiful. I loved walking the brick sidewalks and waterfront.
Library of Congress – Technically located at the end of the National Mall, this place is GORGEOUS. As a book fiend, I really, really wanted to be down in the actual library browsing the books, but settled for looking longingly at those lucky enough to study under the majestic ceiling.
Memorable Mentions: Supreme Court Building, Capitol Building, White House, Chinatown, Dupont Circle.
ProTip: To get a tour of the White House, contact your congressperson several months in advance to schedule!
I actually only have ONE ‘have to go’ place when it comes to food for Washington, DC. But I have included a few other recommendations below, too.
Far East Taco Grille – This is my HAVE TO GO recommendation. And of course it is Asian-Latin fusion fare. Located near the city center, but off the normal tourist path, you create you own tacos, burritos, & bowls. DELICIOUS.
Farmers Fishers Bakers – Located on the Georgetown waterfront, this is a great place for breakfast.
Bullfeathers – Near Capitol Hill, this is a cozy-feeling place to grab a drink (and some food). It also close to a Metro station, so win!
Kangnam BBQ – Technically located in College Park, MD this restaurant served some delicious Korean BBQ, had a super cool vibe/atmosphere, & friendly staff.
Do you have other recommendations for Washington? Let me know down below!