Published: June 19th 2012June 17th 2012
Well our sleeping patterns were a bit weird but we were up as planned around 7.30am in time for breakfast. Plenty to choose from the buffet included in our room rates and I showed some discipline by having a bowl of cereal with some yoghurt and fruit as well (doubt that will last !).
Weather was fine and sunny. Top temps of around 30 degrees Celsius expected.
We had two activities planned and headed to the nearest Metro station at Pentagon City to catch a train to Washington DC. Had some trouble with the ticket vending machine which only gave me 2 day passes when I ordered 4 ($9- each) and did not give me change from $40- ! Complained to the local station master who gave me a form to fill in and said someone would send me a refund cheque in a few weeks. Great ! After a while he eventually gave me 4 free sector passes that would get us through the day anyway.
The Metro stations are very dark so look pretty unsafe at night but in day time they were OK. We jumped on the Blue Line. First stop the Pentagon, then Arlington
Cemetery then we went underground under the Potomac River that acts as a state border between Virginia and DC. Soon we came across a strange station called Foggy Bottom ! I was not keen to ask how this place got it's name.
We disembarked at Federal Triangle which was really close to the old Post Office Pavilion / Clock Tower. This would be our start point for the tour we booked "DC The Best" by On Board DC Tours.
Tour guide was Dale with Rob our driver. About 20 guests in total all Americans. The tour was a really good idea to show us the key sights & monuments in 3 hours.
Luke liked it so much he wants to liverhere ! He wants to live in the Eisenhauer Executive Building next to the White House.
I thought the highlights were Washington Monument, Capitol Building, Lincoln Memorial, Korean War Memorial, White House (from North Entrance), Iwo Jima Memorial, Martin Luther King Memorial and Jefferson Memorial. The grand nature and Architectural diversity of this place is truly brilliant.
After the tour we had a quick lunch at the food court at the Old Post Office Pavilion
where we found this building has recently been bought by none other than Donald Trump who will no doubt transform this tired building into something truly magical in time.
Next we were off to the International Spy Museum where we had booked the Catbird Experience. We were given 4 GPS devices and headsets and we used these to received clues via SMS text messages to try and solve the mystery. The game was played out on the streets of DC where we had to visit sites of significance and scan for access to more clues etc. The kids had lts fun with as Kerry and I just followed them around and took some happy snaps along the way.
This only cost $15- each and us great way to force you to absorb a little more detail.
We then decided to head back to Hotel for dinner. Trains were packed as the Braves vs Yankees game had just finished and since it was Father's Day people were everywhere.
Had dinner at Californian Pizza which was decent Italan fare. Service was OK at best so tip was somewhat underwhelming. Back to the room in time for Luke to
watch game 3 of NBA Finals and he was happy to see Miami take a 2-1 series lead.
Uploaded photo's to IPad and very tired and weary after carrying Compact Camera, Video Camera and the new SLR as well. Tomorrow is still in DC and we will have a quieter day planned.
There are more photos below