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Guide to

Downtown / Penn Quarter / Chinatown

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What it's like

Museums, theaters and galleries share the streets with bustling restaurants, lounges and hotels. The neighborhood is full of must-see sights like the International Spy Museum, Newseum, Madame Tussauds Washington D.C., the National Museum of Women in the Arts, the Crime Museum and Ford’s Theatre. DC’s Chinatown, with its authentic Chinese restaurants and shops, is nestled in the heart of the neighborhood. You'll know you're in the right place when you see the brightly colored "Friendship Arch" that spans H Street. The neighborhood is also home to the Walter E. Washington Convention Center and the Verizon Center, which hosts college and professional sports action and star-studded concerts year-round.

Museums, theaters and galleries share the streets with bustling restaurants, lounges and hotels. The neighborhood is full of must-see sights like the International Spy Museum, Newseum, Madame Tussauds Washington D.C., the National Museum of Women...
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Where to find it

North of the National Mall between the White House and the Capitol.

North of the National Mall between the White House and the Capitol.
What to do

View a complete collection of presidential portraits at the National Portrait Gallery, and watch art preservationists at work in the Lunder Conservation Center. Try your hand at espionage in Operation Spy, an interactive experience at the International Spy Museum. Catch a midday production or lecture at the Shakespeare Theatre Company’s Harman Center for the Arts.

View a complete collection of presidential portraits at the National Portrait Gallery, and watch art preservationists at work in the Lunder Conservation Center. Try your hand at espionage in Operation Spy, an interactive experience at the...
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What's in a name
Downtown DC has come to signify urban revitalization and the rise of new districts like Penn Quarter, a dining and entertainment hotspot named for its proximity to Pennsylvania Avenue. In Chinatown, you'll notice the storefronts have their names...

Downtown DC has come to signify urban revitalization and the rise of new districts like Penn Quarter, a dining and entertainment hotspot named for its proximity to Pennsylvania Avenue. In Chinatown, you'll notice the storefronts have their names spelled out in Chinese characters, a requirement to do business in the neighbhorhood.

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How to get there
Take Metro to Gallery Pl-Chinatown, Metro Center, Archives-Navy Mem’l-Penn Quarter or hop on the Circulator's Georgetown –Union Station route, which runs through Downtown.

Take Metro to Gallery Pl-Chinatown, Metro Center, Archives-Navy Mem’l-Penn Quarter or hop on the Circulator's Georgetown –Union Station route, which runs through Downtown.

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DC Details
A crossroads of culture and entertainment, Downtown has served as the backdrop of pivotal moments in the history of the city and the U.S. Experience a picture-postcard moment in front of The White House at Lafayette Square.

A crossroads of culture and entertainment, Downtown has served as the backdrop of pivotal moments in the history of the city and the U.S. Experience a picture-postcard moment in front of The White House at Lafayette Square.

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