History & Heritage

History & Heritage: The country’s history starts with ours.

3 Days of Favorites in the Nation's Capital

Morning The National Mall , home to many of the museums of the Smithsonian Institution , is a great place to start your day. See the magnificent jewels, dinosaurs and mammals on display at the National Museum of Natural History ; the airplanes and interactive flight simulators at the National Air...

5 Jazz Venues In DC That Are The Bee’s Knees

The online etymology dictionary credits jazz sax player Lester Young with coining the use of “cool” as an adjective to describe jazz, which helped give rise to the now oft-used descriptor. Young used to flash his sax chops in Washington, DC—sometimes at Olivia Davis’ Patio Lounge. Unlike that jazz...

Howard Theatre
Visiting the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial

What is the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial and where is it? The Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial is situated on a four-acre site along the National Mall 's Tidal Basin, adjacent to the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memoria l and shares a direct line of sight between the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials...

Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Spring
15 Things to See & Do in Southwest Waterfront

A renaissance is underway along this 47-acre riverfront community, and the new development is called The Wharf . Despite big changes, this historic neighborhood maintains many important remnants of its past including its historic seafood market, world-class theater, leisure cruise boat pier and...

3 Days Exploring Civil War to Civil Rights in Washington, DC

Morning Begin your day with breakfast at the Willard InterContinental , where Lincoln stayed prior to his inauguration, and where Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote his “I Have a Dream” speech. Freedom Plaza, located opposite the hotel, honor’s King’s legacy. After breakfast, walk down Pennsyl...

Where Martin Luther King, Jr. Delivered His "I Have a Dream" Speech on the Lincoln Memorial Steps - National Mall - Washington, DC
Visiting the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial

A visit to the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial is a solemn and powerful reminder of the very human cost of war. The memorial “conveys a combination of strength and vulnerability, of loss and renewal… through juxtaposition of granite and glass,” according to the National Park Service,...

american veterans disabled for life memorial
Visiting the Korean War Veterans Memorial

What is the Korean War Veterans Memorial and where is it? The Korean War Veterans Memorial resides on the National Mall , southeast of the Lincoln Memorial and just south of the Reflecting Pool. All of its components, including its walls, stainless steel statues and Pool of Remembrance, are...

14 Can’t-Miss Free Museums on the National Mall

To go with its monuments and memorials, the National Mall boasts an impressive lineup of free museums. Visitors should take advantage of the wide range of experiences on hand, from immersing themselves in classic art to marveling at the wonders of aviation and our natural world. Let your wallet...

Smithsonian Museums - Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History - Washington, DC
How Can I Tour the White House?

Requesting a tour Touring the White House requires some advance planning. Public tour requests must be made through your member of Congress (find your member of Congress and contact information here ) and submitted up to three months in advance and no less than 21 days prior to your visit. If you'...

The White House
Visiting the Lincoln Memorial

The experience The grand Lincoln Memorial towers over the Reflecting Pool, anchoring the western end of the National Mall . The best way to approach the memorial is from the east, by the Washington Monument and the National World War II Memorial . This will put you at the edge of the Reflecting...

Lincoln Memorial at night - National Mall - Washington, DC