Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C. Travel Guide

The Brewmaster’s Castle, open for guided tours, captures the elegance and opulence of the Gilded Age. However, the 31-room home of German brewer Christian Heurich was also ahead of its era with indoor plumbing and a pneumatic communications system, among other innovations.

The rustic-gourmet grocer specializes in edibles from Lancaster County produced by Pennsylvania Amish and Mennonite farmers. Pickings include flavored popcorn, freshly baked breads, jams, cheeses, Soupergirl soups and, for dessert, whoopie pies, and stroopies.

Visitors to Ford’s Theatre immerse themselves in the life and death of Abraham Lincoln. Tours encompass the theatre, site of the assassination; the Petersen House, where the president died; the Center for Education and Leadership, which covers his legacy; and the newly renovated museum.

The corner hangout wears many hats: brunch spot, bar, music venue, d.j. danceteria. However, if you can only choose one, go for the beer garden, a spacious patio with communal picnic tables, trees draped in twinkling lights and chatty co-cocktailers.

Tucked in a graffiti-splashed space, the multi-disciple venue spotlights underground and experimental art, film and music.

Follow the ranger on a National Park tour that goes beyond the surface of the monuments and memorials.

A constellation of jazz legends–Duke Ellington and Cab Calloway, for example–have lit up this celebrated music venue, which opened in 1926. Today, the club hosts national and local acts who jam in an intimate space that resembles a cool secret cave, complete with faux-rock walls.

Paddle or sail the Potomac in a canoe, single or double kayak, rowing shell or Sunfish rented by the hour or the day. Go left and float by Watergate, the Kennedy Center and the Arlington Memorial Bridge; turn right for a snapshot of Georgetown’s convivial waterfront.

The spiritual center describes itself as “not just a church,” an accurate characterization considering its extracurricular activities. Every Friday and Monday nights, the Westminster raises the roof with live jazz and blues jams.

The department’s Indian Craft Shop has been representing Native American artists since 1938, showcasing an array of traditional works by 60 tribes.

Open since 1922, Heller’s tempts visitors with pastries, cakes and cookies that flashback to a more decadent age, one with more frosting, butter, and calories. Signature treats include mocha rum cakes, éclairs, and blocks of marshmallow doused in chocolate.

With its mismatched furniture and insomniac hours (open until 3 a.m. on weekends; reopens at 6:30 a.m.), Tryst is more than just an indie coffeehouse and bar: It’s a temple of loafing.

Tudor Place, owned by Thomas Peter, son of Georgetown’s first mayor, and Martha Custis, granddaughter of Martha Washington, stayed in the family for nearly 180 years.

Beer is king at this upstairs-downstairs bar. The assortment of brews is epic, with more than 500 types of bottled beer from around the world and 50 different drafts on tap. To be sure, the drink menu itself is longer than a Raymond Carver short story.

The TV- and martini-free watering hole is heavy on the German brews and good intentions: 25 cents of each tab goes to charity. To date, the bar has helped build 15 schools in such developing countries as Uganda, Nicaragua, and Laos.