Washington, DC has one of the safest, cleanest and most efficient transportation systems in the world. Metrorail and Metrobus are the most convenient ways to get around DC, with Metrobus providing connections for locations not serviced by Metrorail. The Walter E. Washington Convention Center even has a dedicated Metro station serviced by the yellow and green lines, and many hotels are conveniently located near Metro stations or bus routes.
Metrobus runs a total of 338 routes throughout the city and the greater Washington, DC area, with more than 485 buses using compressed natural gas or a hybrid electric drive system helping to keep DC eco-friendly. Metro operates from 5 a.m. to midnight on weekdays and from 7 a.m. to 3 a.m. on weekends.
Taxi service is plentiful and economical in DC. In fact, DC has one of the highest taxi-to-citizen ratios in the country, with more than 6,000 taxis servicing the city. Taxis use a metered system just like every other city in the country. (The once-controversial zone system was dropped in favor of the universal meter system in June 2008.)
Rental cars are yet another option. All the major rental companies have locations throughout DC, and most have offices at the airports. Of course, some visitors choose to drive their own vehicles. Most hotels have parking facilities located within their structure, and visitors can find convenient street or garage parking with Parking Panda. The online marketplace offers access to local parking garages and lots. Simply log on and reserve your spot ahead of time. Prices vary based on location and date.
The DC Circulator is one transportation option that gets rave reviews from residents and visitors alike. It’s incredibly affordable at just $1 and travels along five specific routes designed for easy-on, easy-off access at points of interest throughout the District. Explore neigborhoods such as Anacostia, Adams Morgan, Dupont Circle, Georgetown, Woodley Park/Cleveland Park, U Street and more with the Circulator. Buses arrive at stops every 10 minutes, making your travels are the District a breeze. Click here for routes and schedules.
One of the best ways to experience Washington, DC is on foot. The city’s wide sidewalks meander past the inspiring monuments and museums found on the National Mall, as well as the intimate museums, world-class theaters and splendid gardens in the neighborhoods. In 2007, the Brookings Institution ranked DC No. 1 among Walkable Cities in the U.S.
For our recommendations for exploring DC by foot, check out our Outdoor Tours in DC page.