Sunday, June 16, 2013

Day 16 - Washington, D.C.

We had a full day of sightseeing! The Metro station is a short drive and parking there was great on Sunday so that's how we got into the city today.

We got off the Metro at the Archives Station. This was taken from the top of the escalator after our train had already left the tracks below...isn't it beautiful?

Since we got off the train close to it, we began our day at the National Archives and were in line about a half hour before it opened. The kids had been looking forward to seeing the original Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. They were certainly not disappointed. The rotunda where these documents are displayed provides a gorgeous setting for them.

Walking to the Washington Welcome Center to get our trolley tickets, we saw the Capitol as we crossed a street.

Our transportation in the city took two forms today...the Old Town Trolley and our own two feet! Mine are tired and my ankle hurts; we walked a lot.

We got off the trolley near the Lincoln Memorial. Here the kids are standing at the base of the stairs up to the Memorial with the Reflecting Pool and the Washington Monument in the background.

Dylan was excited to stand on the spot where Martin Luther King, Jr delivered his "I have a dream..." speech.

And we were all thrilled to see the Lincoln Memorial, the most popular of all the Memorials.

From the Lincoln Memorial we walked to the Vietnam War Memorial...The Wall. I had looked up the panel and line numbers of the two guys Rich and I knew who died over there so finding their names made that memorial more meaningful for the kids.

Leaving the Vietnam Memorial we walked to a snack shop for a break, then back across the front of the Lincoln Memorial to our next stop. I remembered this as one of my favorites from our last visit here. There is something about these life-sized soldiers at the Korean War Memorial that made a powerful and lasting impression on me.

Returning again to the base of the Lincoln Memorial, we turned and walked alongside the length of the Reflecting Pool to the World War II Memorial. They are still working on one side but most of it is completed. The kids are standing in front of the Pacific end of the memorial since that is where my dad served.

The Washington Monument is completely cloaked in scaffolding for renovation but we walked up the hill to it from the World War II Memorial. Taking a break, we noticed this view of the White House across the way.

Continuing our walk, we ended at the Smithsonian's Museum of American History where we viewed the flag that inspired Francis Scott Key to write The Star Spangled Banner in 1814. Most impressive!

Our last stop was the United States Navy Memorial, where the tour guide said the fountain contains water from every ocean in the world.

The Navy Memorial was just steps from the escalator down to the train for our return to Maryland. We saw such important American History documents today, the kids had a great time, they all saw places that were meaningful to them, and there is so much more here that we would love to experience...wish we had a month here!

Lovin' Life ~~ Sharing American History With Our Grands

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