Washington, DC is often the first stop on a trip to the United States. After all it is the nation’s capital – home to the government, monuments and Smithsonian Institution. But, what many people don’t realize is that its also a great jumping off point for trips to some other great areas of the country.
1. Charlottesville and the Shenandoah Region
Just a little over 2 hours south of Washington, DC is the town of Charlottesville, VA. It’s home the the historic (and UNESCO world heritage site) University of Virginia which was founded by Thomas Jefferson. Its also the location of some beautiful scenery and wonderful wine tasting options.
Located nearby is the famous Shenandoah Park which is part of the Appalachian Trail. One great hike to do is the Old Rag peak. It’s around 10 miles round trip but it rewards you with stunning views and the feeling of a job well done.
The city of brotherly love is actually only a two hour drive away from Washington, DC. The city is famous for its historical sites of interest such as Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. However, the city is also worth a visit for the food scene and to check out some other off the beaten track attractions such as the Magic Gardens.
3. New York
Arguably New York City might be an even bigger draw than Washington, DC to visitors of the United States. The concrete jungle, the city of lights, the Big Apple. Whatever the name, NYC is The City – and if you are in D.C it’s closer than you might think.
Although, it might be possible to do a day trip, you are better off looking up New York vacation rentals so that you can take full advantage for your stay and see everything NYC has to offer.
Depending on how you head to NY, the city is only around four to five hours from D.C – and there are a plethora of options. Buses run almost hourly and Amtrak offers similar train service. In fact, they are even looking at a high speed rail that would put commuting time at around an hour.
4. Rehoboth Beach
Rehoboth beach is only three short hours from Washington DC. Although the traffic can get heavy on weekends in the summer, its close enough that you can easily go for the day. The beach is actually part of a series of several beaches including Dewey Beach, the Delaware Beach Park and Ocean City, Maryland.
In addition to beaches, the beach also features a retro style boardwalk with carnival games and rides. This combined with the typical pop corn, hot dogs and funnel cake sales can make for a evening of family fun after a day at the beach.
The area is also known for its great shopping. There are several outlet malls within a short distance featuring stores such as J. Crew, Coach and Banana Republic. Plus, since Delaware doesn’t have a sales tax, you are up for even greater savings.