I took Nathan on a little father-son trip on Friday to celebrate his 10th birthday. We had planned this trip for a couple of months and Nathan chose to visit Washington DC to hang out in the various Smithsonian museums. We left Friday morning early in the car and arrived at the hotel at around 11am.
Our room wasn’t ready when we got there, so we stored our bag and headed straight out to explore the city (or in other words, find somewhere to eat). We were immediately attracted to the Capitol building which was three blocks from our hotel. We stood there, in front of the building for a while taking in the views. The Washington Monument could be seen clearly in the distance.
I relied very much on the new Mapquest 4 Mobile app I downloaded for the iPhone to find our way about. For a free app, it’s pretty useful, with even spoken turn-by-turn directions. It also recalculates the directions when you take a wrong turn – just like a proper GPS. We used it to find some local places to eat.
After lunch we headed to Union Station and got the train out towards the Zoo. After a short walk from the station we arrived at the zoo entrance. The main attraction, the Panda Bears, decided they did not want to show themselves. Still, some of the exhibits were really well done. I enjoyed the invertebrate exhibit. We were pretty much tired out for the day after that. We returned to the hotel and watched some Man, Woman, Wild on Discovery.
The next day we got up early, grabbed some breakfast at Union Station and then headed to the air and space museum. It was really busy and we spent all morning there. One of the highlights was the fighter jet simulator which made me feel quite ill afterward!
In the afternoon, we spent time walking the down through national mall past the Washington Monument and reflecting pool to the Lincoln Memorial and then back up past The White House. After all that it was time to go get the car and drive home.
It was a good journey home. We chatted for a couple of hours before Nathan finally feel asleep from exhaustion. I can’t wait to go back to Washington and take the whole family next time. It’s an amazing city with so much to see and do.
Noah is already planning his 10th birthday trip. Only he wants to hit up New York.
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