Washington DC is a huge, fascinating city with some of America’s most revered and best-loved sights. The Smithsonian, the White House, the Lincoln Memorial. All of these act as backdrops for some of the most iconic moments in American history, from Presidential inaugurations and speeches along the National Mall, to the Watergate Scandal and more.
There is a lot to take in when visiting Washington DC. The city is split across a couple of states, Maryland and Virginia, with the central DC area being independent administratively. That means you have to cross a river and state lines to visit Arlington National Cemetery or see the Pentagon for example. The best way to get to grips with it all is via a tour, and there are some great ones on offer to get the most out of a visit to Washington DC’s monuments.
FROM: $44/per person
This three hour tour is excellent value and provides one of the best modes of transport for covering the large distances between Washington DC’s many famous monuments. A local guide will lead groups on their custom fitted hybrid comfort bikes, which are designed for leisurely use around the city. The guide adds anecdotal and historical context to the monuments being visited, which include the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials, Washington Monument and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, among others.
From $75/ per person
Everything looks different at night. Some would say better. Experience some of Washington’s iconic monuments in the dusky light known by photographers as the magic hour. As day turns to night, glide by the White House, US Capitol and the Washington Monument, as the city lights illuminate the city skyline. The tour lasts approximately three hours. This particular tour is only available for over 16s for insurance reasons. Group numbers are usually lower than usual on this tour.
From $42/ per person
For those who feel a little perturbed by the idea of taking a Segway, but who still would like a good night tour of the Washington monuments, check out the trolley tour. This open-air trolley whisks you up to many of the city’s top sights over the course of two and a half hours. The FDR Memorial and Korean War Veterans Memorial are some of the additional visits made to the more popular and well known sights that are a given on any tour of Washington DC. Tours leave from the main entrance to Union Station.
From $89/ per person
For the snap happy, the camera lovers and the Instagram fanatics this is a great tour that will take you to explore some of Washington’s most photogenic locations. This tour doubles down as a good photography lesson from your professional photographer and guide. Tour attendee numbers are kept low so that you can get some extra personalised service. Durations can be negotiated but generally the tours last between a half and a full day to maximise the chances of getting plenty of good snaps.
From $79/ per person
It would seem that the most popular monument tours in Washington DC involve some form of transportation between landmarks. This tour is no different, employing an air-conditioned coach to ferry tourists between some of the most iconic sights in the city over the course of four hours. While many of the main sights are taken care of, including the Martin Luther King, Jr. Monument, White House and United States Capitol, the highlight of this tour is the queue-jump pass for VIP access to the interior of the Washington Monument. This gets you a fantastic view from the 500-foot high observation deck included in the price.