Last week G and I went to D.C. and New York and I really had such an amazing time exploring (i'd never been to D.C.!) eating, and learning new things thanks to my sister and her academic endeavors! The things mentioned below are just SOME of the touristy things we did that we thought were fun (or not so fun!) and a ton of photos because the architecture in both of these cities is mind blowing, enjoy!
We stayed in Foggy Bottom and walked EVERYWHERE in D.C. If you've been, you'll know that there are a million museums, monuments, and things to explore. Garrett has been a few times so he really knew where to go and what to avoid at certain times which was really helpful! I could spend all day photographing buildings in D.C., and watching the sunset over them is pretty darn cool.
We watched the presentation at Ford's Theatre, JFK Center for Performing Arts (watched the most intense student debates ever), visited the Peterson House, went to the Smithsonian (Presidential Portrait's at the National Portrait Gallery was AMAZING), the Air & Space Museum, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, The Hill, both war memorials, and my absolute favorite part of the trip: sunset at the Lincoln Memorial. You guys, it was breathtaking. It was fairly empty when we went and honestly I just sat there and admired for a while. As a history teacher and someone who greatly values preservation of history, I really felt profound gratitude while standing in front of this memorial and also the Washington Monument in front of it, just - wow! All of the museums except for the special presentations are free and donation based - so if you can reserve tickets ahead of time online, I recommend!
We had a lot of coffee while in D.C. because - duh, and I really liked La Colombe, which we have here in LA! They are based in Philadelphia and their espresso is delicious. They also had yummy pastries and although we felt a little weird hanging out there in the morning (only people not in suits or a hurry ;) ) we went two times! Compass Coffee (pour over), Bakers & Baristas (pastries, try them!), Chinatown Coffee, and Pitango Gelato (affogato - yum!) are all places i'd recommend :) There was also a restaurant called Ted's Bulletin (Logan Circle) that has homemade pop tarts and Founding Farmers (best name!) was delicious. We ate there two times (always a wait of 30+ mins), and their deserts were incredible!
I have to admit that there aren't that many good food options for someone who is used to OC/LA restaurants - we ate a Le Pain Quotidien one day because we just got over trying to find something "new" so I will say you don't really come here for the food, but Founding Farmers & Shake Shack made up for it for the most part. I REALLY craved a burrito and chilaquiles by the time we left D.C.!
We took the Amtrak into New York from D.C. (easiest thing EVER) and it was comfortable and affordable! We stayed with my sister who goes to NYU the first night and got to explore Williamsburg which really is my new favorite place in NY!
We visited Bakeri for pastries & coffee in the morning (so tiny and a liiiitttle expensive but the interiors and taste made it worth it.) Did breakfast at this restaurant called Egg which was good and pretty simple. There are so many cute shops off of Bedford in Williamsburg, as well as DUMBO and I loved how lively this funky little city is. I could people watch all day! My sister lives in East Williamsburg which has a TON of really cool spots such as a cool Tiki Bar with a live band off of Bogart, a movie screening bar called Syndication (super rad!), Sey Coffee and Swallow Cafe (yummy as well.) Even the grocery stores in Brooklyn were adorable and unique. I had probably 2 bagels a day while we were there and I couldn't believe that the bagels in Brooklyn were 75 cents at some places - but my favorite were from Tompkins Square Bagel in the East Village which my sister and her boyfriend recommended!
We walked about 9-10 miles a day while in New York because Garrett and I are freaks and love sight seeing, but it didn't feel like it because of the hustle and bustle of the city and how many parks we stopped and ate at along the way. My favorite park is Washington Square Park, just for a sit and sightseeing - but Union Square Park had a really cool farmers market on a Wednesday! Central Park is also amazing and ginormous, and we spent some time there on the way to the American Museum of Natural History.
Rooftop bar at the Viceroy is one of my favorite views of the city (get there early!). On Thursday we attended New York Comic Con which was insanely busy and there were so many people in costume, really cool to see the contrast between SDCC! After the con a friend and I grabbed a drink and snack at Freidman's near the Garment District then walked to Chelsea Market which was a little underwhelming for me but I hear the flea market that goes on there Saturday is the best part, which we missed!
Some coffee places I really recommend are Bibble and Sip - chai, and Frisson Espresso (the absolute kindest owners and cute hole in the wall in Hell's Kitchen!)
I made it a point to spend time in Nolita which is adorable, we did some shopping at the random flea market and shops which boast the cutest store fronts i've seen, another new favorite!
If you follow me on instagram you'll know just how much I love Chinatown and Noodle Village which I always visit when I am in the city. They have the best noodles and dumplings!
I honestly never feel like I have enough time in New York but the subway and how easy it is to take (once you get the hang of it) make the city one of my favorites and I am already looking forward to another Brooklyn trip!
p.s. Thanks for stopping by and reading ^ that novel of a blog post :) and i spent a LOT of time with my sister but she doesn't like being photographed so ya get building pics instead ;)