Off the Beaten Path Washington: Beyond the Monuments – A Tourist’s Guide to Living Like the Locals



Description:

Maybe you’ve visited Washington, DC before and you’ve already seen all of its “big ticket” tourist attractions. Or maybe you’d just like a slice of Washington life, as lived by real Washingtonians. Whatever your reason, there’s nothing quite like getting to know the secret gems of a city – the places and activities that most tour guides don’t tell you about. Washington is ever-changing, rich with history and full of interesting neighborhoods. This guide will help you get to know them on a more intimate level.

Author: Torie Castiello


Day 1 - Washington


Petworth, a neighborhood about three miles north of the city center, is a diverse area that is becoming home to an increasing amount of young professionals. The Intown Uptown Inn, in the heart of Petworth, serves as a great launching pad for exploring this and nearby neighborhoods. Innkeeper Sandra Gartrell has lovingly decorated each of the eight rooms in this lovely Inn with different styles, for different tastes and budgets. If you’re looking to save a little money, you can choose a room that shares a bathroom; if you’d rather splurge a bit, the “Room with a view” has its own sitting area. Make your way down 14th Street to the U Street Corridor, stopping along the way at interesting local art galleries like the Nevin Kelly Gallery (http://www.nevinkellygallery.com/) and Irvine Contemporary (http://www.irvinecontemporary.com/). Have lunch at Café Saint Ex; it’s hard to find a better hamburger than the one Saint Ex serves. Order it with the sweet potato fries, which are criminally tasty. Afterwards, browse some of the funky boutiques down the block, before a mid-afternoon coffee at Busboys and Poets. Head back up to Petworth for dinner and a drink at Domku before calling it a night. Domku is one of the few places in the city where you can find a wide assortment of Slavic food, beer and wine. Settle into one of the comfy couches and relax in this interesting, exposed-brick restaurant and bar.


1

The Intown Uptown Inn

Location:

4907 14th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20011


2

Cafe Saint-Ex

user rating

Location:

1847 14th Street NW
Between S and T sts
Washington, DC 20009

Contact:

tel: 1 202 265 7839


3

Domku

Location:

821 Upshur Street, NW
Washington, DC 20011

Contact:

tel: 202 722 7475


Day 2 - Washington


Capitol Hill is more than just the area of the DC where the politicians do their thing. It’s also one of Washington’s most revitalized neighborhoods, teeming with gorgeous row houses and cool hang-out spots. Head over to Eastern Market in the morning and browse the various offerings in this permanent farmers market. Despite being ravaged by fire in 2007, this venerable Capitol Hill market has persevered and is in the process of rebuilding (while still keeping its proverbial doors open). On weekends, the market extends to include arts, crafts and jewelry, created by local artists; you can find some really unusual items here. Be sure to enjoy the crab cakes at Market Lunch counter, within Eastern Market itself. Your evening plans depend on what side of DC city life you’re interested in seeing. Want to mingle with Hill staffers? Go to Hawk and Dove. “Hill Rats” abound at this laid back bar; the beer flows and the crowd gets a little noisy after hours. There are always happy hour specials, and if you decide to extend your happy hour, the bar serves their famous “Midnight Breakfast” late at night. Or wander over to Sonoma to sip wine with Washington’s well-heeled set. If the weather is nice, sit outside at this simple, elegant bar/restaurant. You’re bound to spot first-date couples among the smartly dressed patrons. The upstairs area is usually reserved for parties and receptions. And for something completely different, finish your evening in the Atlas District at The Red and the Black with the hip locals (and sneak a peek next door at the racy Palace of Wonders - http://www.palaceofwonders.com/home.html - for everything from burlesque dancing to female arm wrestling contests). Although not Metro-accessible, this area is served by a free shuttle that runs to and from Minnesota Avenue and Gallery Place Metro stations every 30 minutes or so during the evening. Check the Red and the Black’s website for more information.


1

Eastern Market

Location:

225 7th Street SE
Between N. Carolina Ave. and C St. SE
Washington, DC 20003

Contact:

tel: 202-544- 0083


2

Hawk & Dove

user rating

Location:

329 Pennsylvania Avenue Southeast
(near 4th St Southeast)
Washington, DC 20003

Contact:

tel: 202 543 3300


3

Sonoma Restaurant and Wine Bar

user rating

Location:

223 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE
At 2nd St. SE
Washington, DC 20541

Contact:

tel: 1 202 544 8088


4

The Red & The Black

Location:

1212 H St. NE
Between 12th and 13th Streets
Washington, DC 20002

Contact:

tel: 202/399-3201


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