When visiting any city for the first time, there are many monuments, museums, and restaurants you should not miss. To really get to know a city means diving in much deeper. Once you’ve checked all the famous places in Washington, D.C. off your bucket list, put away your map and start exploring like a local. We’ve come up with some insider tips from folks who really know the city and who want everyone to see everything Washington, D.C. has to offer! From whiskey bars to the arts, we’ve got you covered.
Art Walk — First Friday of Every Month
If you happen to visit Washington, D.C. during the first week of the month, don’t miss out on the art walk. A popular movement throughout the United States, First Friday Art Dupont is a popular event in the nation’s capital. Head over to Dupont Circle — a typical quiet neighborhood — and watch it liven up with artists, musicians, and small store owners set up to sell their work! Find photography, paintings, clothing, crafts, and food. Go back on Saturday for the farmers market and buy fresh produce and baked goods!
Churchkey — Best Brunch and Beers
This is not only a great place for your Sunday brunch, it’s also the “it” spot for beer lovers. Churchkey has the best beer menu in the city. With beers categorized by flavor profile and intensity, the servers will help you find one (or five!) to your liking. Churchkeyoften holds events featuring beers not typically found in the area, and is a great place to spend an afternoon testing out new brews.
Jack Rose — 999 Bottles of Whiskey on the Wall
Another noteworthy and not-to-miss bar in Washington, D.C. is Jack Rose, home of the largest collection of single malt whiskey in the Western Hemisphere. According to Spotted by Locals, when Thrillist didn’t include Jack Rose on their Best Whiskey Bars in America list, they received so much overwhelming and vocal feedback they had to issue a retraction. Pencil in some time when visiting Washington, D.C. for an afternoon of whiskey tasting at one of the most famous establishments in the area.
Barracks Row — Foodie Heaven in the Capital
The food scene has grown rapidly over the past few years, and Washington, D.C. is no exception. The area known as Barracks Row is home to restaurants that serve everything from Indian and Pakistani specialties to deep southern soul food. Head to 8th Street between Pennsylvania Avenue and M Street — that’s where you’ll find most the of restaurants from which to choose!
National Gallery of Art’s Sculpture Garden
From when the cherry trees blossom to when the kids go back to school, the National Gallery of Art hosts a free open-air jazz fest every Friday from 5:00-8:30 p.m. in their sculpture garden. Get there early to claim your spot on the 6-acre lawn, as space fills up quickly! Bring a picnic or feast on favorites from food trucks parked nearby.
Other honorable mentions of favorite local spots go to Kramerbooks, IOTA Club, M.E. Swing, Teaismo, and Off the Beaten Track Warehouse. Also check out the beautiful boutique hotels around Washington, D.C., as well as some travellers favorites.
Image by JulieK via Trover.com