Washington DC travel guide

Washington, DC, is the epicentre of power in the United States – something you won’t easily miss as you meander from the Lincoln Memorial to the Washington Monument, then down the National Mall to the Capitol Building. This city oozes energy and ambition, but you’re also in luck if you want to find a quiet restaurant or a stylish wine bar to rest up in while you plan your next cultural adventure. Don’t miss DC’s notorious Happy Hour and if you want to enjoy this city like a local, pack a lot into your day and have some fun when the sun goes down. Planning a visit? Explore our Washington, DC travel guide. We’ve collected the best tips from our travel experts, and have all sorts of suggestions for things to do, the best time to travel, where to stay in DC, getting around and more.

Where to stay

Pondering where to stay in Washington, DC? You have a host of equally great regions to pick from. If you’re keen to be in the thick of the action, Capitol Hill, Dupont Circle and Penn Quarter are classed as some of the best areas to stay in Washington, DC due to their close proximity to all the major tourism precincts.  Georgetown is home to historic options and high-end boutique hotels, while more budget-friendly lodgings can be found farther afield. Thanks to the public transport system being so efficient, most city precincts still feel close to the history and excitement.

Things to do

Whether you’re after history, art or stunning urban design, there are things to do in Washington, DC that cater to every taste. This is a location where museums and monuments sit comfortably next to upmarket eating precincts, world-class shopping boutiques, and carefully manicured parks. With so many sights and experiences to choose from, it’s a destination to settle into and explore at your leisure.

Travel tips

Visiting America’s capital is generally a safe and enjoyable experience, with just a few Washington D.C. travel tips to keep in mind. Like many nations, the US remains alert to terrorist activity with high security at airports and public places including the government buildings of Washington, DC though this shouldn’t generally affect your travels....

Getting Around

Getting around the US capital is designed to be easy and Washington, DC boasts one of the most functional transport systems in the world. The underground MetroRail allows you to quickly get from place to place, with the MetroBus then servicing any additional stops. If you’re looking to really explore the monuments and museums then walking is the best way to take in the full scope of your surroundings. The majority of the city’s most famous sights are all accessible on foot from the central point of the National Mall.

Where to eat

The Washington, DC food and drink scene has moved with culinary fashions, so hip and happening districts sit alongside traditional and upmarket fare. Indulge in the Asian delicacies of Chinatown, then turn the corner to explore a bounty of new restaurants all adding to the city’s vibrant dining scene....


Whether you’re looking for high-end fashion, a weekend flea market or a lazy Sunday stroll perusing Georgian antiques, the Washington, DC shopping scene is more than happy to scratch your shopping itch. It’s important for shopping districts to look as inviting as the stores that line them, so the regeneration of DC’s retail realm is a welcome one. A modern precinct in the heart of the city satisfies seasoned shoppers, while the much-loved flea markets and premium boutiques that sell handcrafted indie items means there’s a wonderful range of shopping opportunities to suit all budgets.

Best time to travel

The weather in Washington, DC plays a major role in determining the best time to visit as it varies greatly from season to season. ...


From important public spaces to mansions with formal gardens, Washington, DC parks are a striking feature of the city. ...