One of my places on my travel wish list has always been Washington D.C, I know this is not somewhere that most people would think of but I’m a bit of a geek and really wanted to visit the Smithsonian museums. The Smithsonian museums are part of the Smithsonian Institute which is a group of museums and research centers administered by the Government of the United States. Thankfully fate was on my side this year and my husband was asked to go out and present at a conference in Washington so we decided to add a few extra days for touristy stuff, a bit like we did last year in Nashville.
We managed to get secure fairly cheap flights flying from Bristol via Brussels; this kept our costs down and only added an additional few hours onto the overall journey. We boarded a mini jet from Bristol to Brussels which was mainly full of important looking business men then onwards for our connection. The flight from Brussels was what can only be described as an experience. The plane itself was old and not in the best condition but it was the other passengers which really made this trip so bizarre. I have never seen so many people seat hop, people were moved on from seats on a regular basis, it was like no one realised it was allocated seating. The individuals on this flight were odd, or at least the ones sat near us were. Thankfully we had made sure to pre-book the two seats by the window and due to the plane configuration of 2-4-2 this meant we had our own little area away from the crazy.
We booked a transfer with lyft from the airport to our hotel which was relatively easy. We chose the rideshare option to reduce the price a bit and did end up picking up another person on the way, this was okay though as it meant we got to see a bit of the more residential part of Washington.
The hotel we booked after a lot of reaearch was called POD D.C, when trying to decide on which hotel we would stay in cost played a massive part of the decision. For anyone wishing to visit the city I will warn you that Washington hotels are not cheap. We settled on the POD though as it was new, had good reviews, was reasonably priced and within walking distance to most of the sights. Handily it was also right opposite a Metro Station and there was a Walgreens on the same street. The check-in process was smooth and the staff lovely and friendly, they sent us off to our room with some maps of the cities and pointed out the main areas of interest for us. Our room was larger than most others; we had purposely booked one of the larger rooms though because we were staying for several nights. It had all the amenities you could require though, including a lovely bathroom and views of the Washington Monument. There were plenty of hooks along the walls and a small cupboard/wardrobe with a few hangers provided. The bathroom was clean and had really good lighting; to help the room feel larger the door to the bathroom was a sliding glass panel. Without this I’m not sure there would have been enough room to open a door.
After a long day travelling we decided to spend our first evening going to visit Target to see what Halloween goodies they had in. We got the Metro from opposite the hotel and went a few stops on the line. The Metro is so simple to use, it’s kept exceptionally clean and people there actually abide to the rules unlike the chaos normally found on the London Tube. We went to Target in the Columbia Heights area of the city, this part seemed like a little hub of activity with a lot of people around all enjoying the last bit of the evening sunshine. We bought a few fun things from Target and played around with some of the amazing Halloween masks and costumes they sell in there. Unfortunately the unicorn head pictured below wouldn’t fit in my suitcase or I would have brought that home! My favourite purchase here was some pumpkin spice Oreos which were so good we visited Target again to get some more to take home. There was just time for a quick Panda Express before we crashed back at the hotel and had an early night.
The long travel day had taken its toll on both of us, I had throughout the day developed a horrid head cold and my husband had a really sore eye which we found out when back in the UK was actually due to his immune system playing up.