Most Instagrammable Spots in D.C.
where to go during a Washington D.C. shut down
Hi, lovelies!😍 I was super excited about my trip to D.C. because I hadn’t been there since I was sixteen years old for a hip hop dance performance. Therefore, I didn’t do much sight-seeing but, this time would be different. After I confirmed the trip, I created an itinerary for myself that included museums, parks, restaurants, etc. Then, quite unfortunately, the government shut down 😑 and those plans had to be altered. Talk about great timing right? Though many of the main attractions were closed, there were still places to explore locally. Honestly, sometimes I prefer it that way because that’s how one discovers a city’s hidden gems and that one dope spot to take amazing pictures.
My first stop, was an impromptu induction into the Women’s March. We were walking to the theater and inadvertently got sucked up by the masses into the march. I was ecstatic because it completely slipped my mind that it was taking place. I was glad I could witness and take part in an event advocating for the equality of women. Shortly after, I took a ballet class at the Washington School of Ballet. I took a beginner’s class because that was the only one that fit my schedule; the cost was $20. I must say that their space was sleek and pristine; there are storage spaces for your items inside the studio, vaulted ceilings, sturdy bars and my favorite, a live pianist during the class. If you’re looking to take a dance class, I would definitely recommend the Washington School of Ballet. After class, we ate dinner at Proper 21. Be sure to make reservations because it is often busy and a challenge to find open seating at the bar area. I liked this restaurant in particular because they had vegan options. I ordered the vegan tacos which were delicious. As for my cocktail, I had the Blood Orange Paloma, which gave me a mojito/margarita vibe, it was lovely.
Day 2: On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I went to visit the statue. However, when we got dropped off, an officer immediately informed us with a vague, cryptic message that the statue was closed and that we wouldn’t be able to enter the site for about an hour. So, to kill time we went to see the Abraham Lincoln Memorial and the Veteran’s Memorial. If you visit the Lincoln Memorial, when climbing the stairs, be sure to take note when you reach the middle section. Quite hidden is a small insignia of where Martin Luther King Jr., gave his “I have a dream” speech. We took a couple of pictures at the memorial and walked around. When we were finished, instead of just leaving, I wanted to attempt to see the statue again even though an hour had not yet passed. Lo-and-behold the reason they prevented us from seeing the statue was because of the 🍊. Since his security detail was all in black, I recognized him easily, I watched him stop and rub the side of the wall, 🤦♀️. I digress, after his charade, we could finally see the statue and it was truly remarkable. The detailing of the Martin Luther King Jr. statue, down to his facial expression gave a vivid and lifelike feel to the statue. It was definitely well worth the wait.
Day 3: I met up with an old friend from high school and we went to see the capital columns but it was closed. As an alternative, we took a quick detour to the National Mall. I will say, I did not desire to take any tours, pictures or explore the grounds. I struggled with the feeling that taking pictures with these national monuments meant that I was in support of the current President in office or the current political state of this country, which I am not❗️The overall climate was disheartening and stifling due to multiple instances of “maga” sighting; supporters taking selfies with the capitol building in the background, etc. Although the two aren’t mutually exclusive, I personally could not separate them. So, after realizing that I was uninspired and did not care to see anything else we went to eat at Bus Boys and Poets. The minute my friend introduced me to this restaurant it became my fave instantly, so much so, I ate there three times during this trip 😂. They have amazing vegan options, inexpensive and the food tastes amazing. I had both their vegan barbecue sandwich and the vegan burger. Absolutely adored both, I hope they branch out to different states. It isn’t meat but you could not tell the difference. The taste is extremely savory. I love healthy food that tastes amazing 🙌. Afterward, he took me to U-Street to see the amazing mural of the greats of D.C. We filmed a cute afro-vibes dance video there, check it out on my Instagram. I had a blast that day, a great mini-reunion, good vibes, and great food 😍.
Day 4: This is where the trip became very reminiscent of my solo trip to Hungary. I ventured out on my own, as my comrades could not brave the cold weather 🙄. Onward and upwards to the Observation Deck at CEB Tower. I purchased my ticket ahead of time online at a discounted rate because of the government shutdown. I was so ecstatic when I arrived because they informed me that I had the place all to myself. That is an influencer’s dream because there are no ants (humans) in your pictures. Also, you’re able to get greats shots undisturbed and uninterrupted. The elevator ride to the top was about a minute long and probably a lot nicer during the summer 😅 . As you walk in, a staff member greets you and gives you a rundown of all the activities they offer. One reason I really liked this observatory and awarded it lots of cool points was because of the interactivity! They had the Brezi Cam, which allowed you to connect your phone to their camera and take selfies (this was my favorite feature). They have touch screens in which you’re able to participate in surveys and at the end; it shows you a poll of everyone’s answers. Last but not least, is their virtual helicopter ride, HoverDC. They give you a pair of headphones and you step onto a platform. Once the static settles, you’re met with a soft gust of wind from fans. As you look down the floor opens up and you begin your flight over D.C. It is a great aerial view of sites in D.C., such as Georgetown University, National Mall, the White House, etc. Side note: not to toot my horn or anything but how dope is it that Wale retweeted the dance video I did on their sky deck😁! Observation deck: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐!
Day 5: Until this point, I was taking shared Lyft rides everywhere. It was quite cheap as I was staying at the Homewood Suites in the heart of downtown D.C., not even five minutes 🚕 away from the White House. During one ride on the way back to the hotel, I noted a neighborhood I wanted to explore called Dupont Circle. During my journey and exploration of Dupont Circle, I discovered beautiful art, the Congressional Black Caucus building, and uniquely colored brownstones. I also happened upon a pretty dope book store/cafe called KramerBooks. Shortly after I went to the watermelon house and Blagden Alley (see pictures below). I enjoyed Blagden Alley because the pieces although random felt very cohesive at the same time. Each piece felt like it was a part of the building itself while depicting very strong statements. Some referenced the political aspect of today’s society, while others celebrated culture. I especially liked that some storefronts had the original antique framework bringing a sense of nostalgia to the area.
I spotted a coffee shop called La Colombe Coffee Roasters and ordered a chai tea latte with almond milk. The shop is a mix of industrial modern day fixtures with exposed brick and seating areas to chat, work, study, etc. I thoroughly enjoyed my chai tea latte and its beautiful presentation. If you’re ever in the area, definitely stop by.
Day 6: Hopped in a Lyft and headed to my destination, the Blind Whino SW Arts Club. When you first pull up, you’re immediately captivated by the bright colors adorned in graffiti-like fashion on the building. I could stare at it for days and pick out little details previously unbeknownst to the eye. As I entered the building, there was a deejay playing throwback R&B. Little did I know, I came just as the club was hosting a pop-up hip hop museum 🙆. An unexpected bonus, however, I wanted to take a gander at the rest of the building before I headed over to the museum area. It wasn’t till I went upstairs and saw the window panes and choir balcony did I realize that this was a re-purposed church! (do your research kids🤦♀️) Cool beans right? Make sure you take your time and notice all the little details because it’s fascinating. Especially the parts of the church that are deteriorating/cracking, it adds depth and dimension to the drawings. I caution you, it definitely smells old so prepare for that for sure. Nothing unbearable just being honest. After taking shots of the church, I headed back down to the museum and was instantly catapulted back into the 90s era through the memorabilia on display. There were VHS tapes of throwback movies such as House Party, Men in Black and everybody’s favorite Friday. As well as cassette tapes, Nike’s, and articles from the time when Source magazine was initially published. It really embodied the era of old school and transported you back to the origins of hip hop. If you’re lucky enough to catch it, check out its FREE 🙌.
Day 7: My final day in D.C. was spent at Yards Park and might I say a great way to end the trip. Yards Park is an upcoming area in D.C.; I felt as though I was hanging out on a boardwalk. One of the initiatives is to get the Anacostia River clean and swimmable by 2024. Well, I saw that water and let’s just say they have a lot of work ahead of them but I have faith. We love and support the environmentally conscious! Yards Park as a whole is definitely a hot spot, there were multiple people doing photo shoots including me 😅😂. People walking their dogs, babies, it’s extremely family friendly. After my impromptu photo shoot by the main attraction, a dope spirally bridge, we went to eat. There were a few places to choose from but we settled on All Purpose. I ordered the cheese pizza; the pizza was good but the crust not so much. Their hot cider is what I would go back for, talk about delicious 😍! Then we headed back to the hotel to meet up with some friends, only to head back over to Yards Park because I wanted to go to the District Winery. We made a reservation, but they suggested that we go ahead to the other side if we were interested in the wine tasting as opposed to the restaurant. We went over to the wine tasting, this was my first one so I was super excited. I felt like a real grown-up, very "adultish" 😂. We had a wonderful sommelier, they even made an exception and gave us a quick tour of the distillery even though they’re usually only done during the day. I had a blast and was tipsy by the end 😂. My first wine tasting was a complete success and might I add she even turned me onto some red wines when usually I stick to white. Overall, customer service was above and beyond, she suggested wines that were individually palatable. I woke up the next morning with a headache 😩😑😂. Well, that’s all folks, like, share, and comment if you would like below. Be sure to follow me on all social networks (Instagram @dancetravels) and check out my fashion section for more pictures and details on the looks of this trip https://dancetravels.org/fashion/howtolayer! Until next time lovelies😘.