Apple Chronicles: Washington, D.C.

The last leg of our East Coast tour (outside New York) is further south, Washington, D.C.  There’s more to it aside from being the capital of the United States of America, its imposing neoclassical monuments and buildings, and history.

Our adventure started here: Washington Union Station.

This is part of a series

We arrived in Washington, D.C. early morning—too early to check-in but just at the right time to start our tour.  And so after having a quick breakfast at the Union Station, we’re off to explore!

First attraction: the American Legion Freedom Bell just in front of the station.  It is a 2:1 scale replica of the Liberty Bell located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Just a few meters in front of the bell is the Christopher Columbus Memorial Fountain.

We can actually see the dome of the US Capitol from where we’re standing so it’s quite obvious where our next stop would be.

The US Capitol.

Arriving in the area early in the morning meant that we practically had the entire place to ourselves!  Several pictures later, we started walking along the National Mall.

Here in the presence of Washington and Lincoln, one the eighteenth century father and the other the nineteenth century preserver of our nation, we honor those twentieth century Americans who took up the struggle during The Second World War and made the sacrifices to perpetuate the gift our forefathers entrusted to us: a nation conceived in liberty and justice.
A plaque at the entrance of the World War II Memorial along the National Mall.

The World War II Memorial is one of the solemn places along the National Mall.  As a person who did not experience a war, let alone a World War, we can only imagine the gravity of this event for humanity and the world.  This memorial gives us a hard reminder of how many people died, in the hope that we learned our lessons not to make the same mistakes again.

An arch dedicated for the martyrs of the Atlantic.  On its opposite is an exact match for those of the Pacific.
View of the Washington Monument from the WWII Memorial.
As the Philippines was part of the USA during the world war, our country’s name was mentioned alongside other states and territories.
Here we mark the price of freedom
The stars that represent the lives lost during WWII.
Freedom Wall holds 4,048 gold stars. Each gold star represents one hundred American service personnel who died or remain missing in the war...
405,399 lost lives.

Our next stop is the Lincoln Memorial.  It is a long walk but the sights along the way makes it feel easier.

On our way to the Lincoln Memorial.  Stopped for a while to admire this manicured path.
The Lincoln Memorial from a distance.
Be prepared to take a lot of steps to reach the memorial.  The view from above is worth it though.

Being inside the memorial felt surreal.  I’ve only seen Lincoln’s statue in the movies, and at that moment I was actually there.  Reading the writings on the wall, seeing the exhibits, there’s a feeling that this place is more than just what you can see and touch—it’s what it stands for.

In this temple as in the hearts of the people for whom he saved the union the memory of Abraham Lincoln is enshrined forever
The statue of Abraham Lincoln, preserver of the union of the United States.

Our last stop before we finally settle in our hotel is none other than the seat of the US government, The White House.

The White House as seen from the south lawn.
Zero Milestone in front of the south lawn.  It is the US equivalent of Luzon’s Kilometer Zero.

We must’ve been exhausted with all the walking as we spent the rest of the afternoon in our hotel room.

Our home for this trip, Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill.
From another angle.

That night, we went out and revisited the sights that we visited earlier in the day.  And everything sure looked differently and worth the extra miles of walking.

Lincoln Memorial at night.
Washington Monument from a distance.  It was cold and foggy giving the night some eerie look.

The following morning, we were out on a relatively further trip just outside D.C., in the state of Virginia.  Our destination: The Pentagon.

I really admire Beaux Arts buildings like this one of the US National Archives.
US Navy Memorial Plaza.

The Pentagon is one of the sites that were targeted during the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.  Lives were lost.  To commemorate the victims of the attack at the Pentagon, a memorial called the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial was established just outside the premises.

A plaque at the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial.
Each one represent a life that was lost.
And there was so many lives lost that day.
The Pentagon as seen from the memorial.
National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial.
National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial.

By midday, we’re back at the National Mall to explore the other attractions that we skipped the day before.  And the first one is the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.

This huge elephant would be among the first things you’d see when you enter the museum.
Among the things that caught my eyes in the museum are these crystals.
There are obviously so many things to see inside but that’s for you to find out.

Next stop is the National Air & Space Museum, still by the Smithsonian.

Inside National Air & Space Museum.
Some displays are interactive and you can get into.
Expect lots of planes and other flying machines.
A longer view of the museum.
Getting close with some of the displays.
There’s also a section dedicated to space.
And a throwback to the first airplane.
Did I mention they have rockets?
And more space for space!

We spent the rest of the afternoon just exploring what else the National Mall has to offer.

The US Capitol as seen from the National Mall.
The 169-meter tall Washington Monument.
Having my tourist moment in front of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building.
A tourist in front of The White House (view from Lafayette Square).

As the sun was setting, we headed towards Thomas Jefferson Memorial to cover more of the spots we haven’t been to yet.

Thomas Jefferson Memorial as seen from Maine Ave.
At the footsteps.
The statue of Thomas Jefferson.

Thomas Jefferson Memorial is a great place to catch the sunset as the place is relatively quiet and the view by the waters is relaxing.

Washington Monument as seen from the Thomas Jefferson Memorial.

That night was also our last in the capital.  But before we finally close the trip, we found an Irish pub and gave ourselves a mini feast before our long journey back to New York City.

Would you believe me if I told you that that slab of meat is a corned beef?  At least that’s what they call it in this Irish pub we found.

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