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On July 16, 1790, the Residence Act was passed, creating the area we now call the Federal District of Columbia, or Washington, D.C. The area serves as home base to all three branches of the United States federal government and is home to more than 680,000 residents. The "District" is comprised of eight separate wards, each featuring vibrant neighborhoods along with eclectic dining, shopping and entertainment.
Did You Know?
Do you know why American foreign policy has been described as "foggy?" The U.S. Department of State is headquartered in Foggy Bottom, Washington, D.C.
Attractions and Landmarks in D.C.
No trip to D.C. is complete without a visit to the National Mall, home to renowned monuments, including the White House and the Lincoln Memorial. Book-lovers should be sure to stop by the Library of Congress, which houses over 164 million books and maintains the largest law library in the world.
Washington, D.C. neighborhoods represent a wide range of options, as you'd expect in such a culturally diverse city. Some notable neighborhoods include:
Apartments in D.C
For a charming apartment in a family-friendly neighborhood, check out The Palisades, which provides a small-town vibe along with a great school system.
Public Transportation and Commuting in D.C.
The Metro connects all four quadrants of D.C. to parts of Maryland and Virginia, making it ideal for commuters. There are three airports in the area, including Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and Washington Dulles International Airport.
Fun, Free Things to do in D.C.
Check out our top picks for free attractions in D.C.:
Top Washington, D.C. Adventures
Check out six of our favorite adventures as you get to know the city:
Family Fun in D.C.
Kids have a blast exploring the interactive exhibits at the International Spy Museum. Or, spend the day at the Smithsonian National Zoo. D.C. is home to 59 different school districts, providing families with excellent school choices throughout the District.
Don't miss the world-renowned cherry blossom trees lining Tidal Basin that bloom every spring. Yards Park features a waterfall, gardens, a dog run and a boardwalk. The venue often hosts outdoor entertainment such as live music, free movies and fitness classes.
Getaways from D.C.
D.C. is close to the beaches of Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and New Jersey. Cape May, New Jersey is a 3.5-hour drive and offers a variety of family-friendly weekend activities.