In 1791, a young French architect named Pierre Charles L’Enfant conjured a vision for a new capital city on a spit of swampy land nestled at the confluence of the Anacostia and Potomac Rivers. More than 200 years later, the District of Columbia spans 68 square miles and boasts more than 160 monuments and memorials, dozens of museums, libraries, and theaters, and countless festivals and street fairs. Once touted as “The American Rome,” the city’s gridded streets are graced by grand facades and animated by the energy of seasoned politicians, bright-eyed students, and everyone in between.
Washington, D.C. is full of endless possibilities no matter what your interests, but with so much to offer it can be intimidating to plan how to get around. Our personalized orientation experience, led by a Context docent, is the perfect introduction for newcomers to Washington, and is designed to answer practical questions about life in the District.
We will begin our experience in your hotel lobby or apartment where our docent, a resident of and expert on Washington, will explain the geographical layout of the city and how this relates to the area where you are staying. We can discuss your itinerary and help you make any last-minute plans, as well as answer all your questions, from what is the best day to visit certain museums and monuments to how the Metro works. We will bring along maps and guidebooks to the city to help you get acquainted with the places and things that you will be seeing, and will offer tips on local customs and suggestions for dining, shopping, insider events, and concerts.
We will then head outside for a stroll, allowing for a discussion of the area’s history and an opportunity to absorb the neighborhood ambiance under the guidance of a seasoned local. We will stop occasionally to talk about historic buildings and monuments, or maybe to go over how the Capital Bikeshare works. We will point out the best restaurants, cafés, and food trucks, and certainly where the best morning coffee or late-night cocktail can be found. We will leave you with maps, a little bit of history, and a better sense of how to best enjoy your visit to Washington, D.C.