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    Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    Our family is heading out east after the 4th of July to visit Gettysburg, Washington D.C., Mt. Vernon and Boston. Is there anything great we should be looking at while we are out there? Is there anything great that we should be going to while we are out there. There is a 4 year old boy and a 14 year old girl going.



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    If you like caves, Luray Caverns in Virginia are pretty spectacular.



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    Have to make a stop to get Blue Fin "Chesapeake Bay" crab. The one thing I miss about living out in that area.

    The best places are bars/taverns that sever by the dozen. Slop them down on butcher block paper, and hammer away. A true experience and great eats. 2 of my favorite old haunts are Woody's in North East, MD, or the Tap Room in Chesapeake Ciy, MD. Tap Room is more of a bar, and Woody's more of a restaurant. With your group, I would recommend Woody's. It is just a short hop off of I-95.



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    DC - If it's a nice day, the monuments are a nice walk (Lincoln Memorial, WW2 Memorial, Viet Nam Memorial, Washington Monument, White House, etc). There's more museums than you could ever visit if that's your cup of tea. Also Great Falls National Park is 15 miles from DC, although I've never personally been there.

    Boston - I highly recommend walking the Freedom Trail. It's well marked and takes you through the heart of Boston, pointing out historical sites (mostly Revolutionary War related) along the way and ends at the USS Constitution (which you can tour). You can go to the top of the Prudential building for a great view of the city as well, although you might have to buy something at the bar/restaurant that lives at the top. There's plenty of other things to do, like tour Fenway, take an afternoon cruise (great family fun), or just wander around downtown and see what you can find. I've also done the duck tour, which was a nice way to see some sights. It's really a fun city to visit, and there's some fantastic restaurants.


    Last edited by benjay; 06-01-2008 at 05:15 PM.

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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    Also the Blue Man Group has a permanent stage in Boston. If you've never seen them I'd highly recommend that as well.



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    In DC, there is a program called Bike the Sites. We paid like $9 and we got a full tour of all the monuments, white house, capitol. It was totally worth the money, you can rent a hitchback for your 4year old and your 14 year old (and you) will definitely enjoy biking around better than walking. Plus there are a lot of cool facts you learn from teh guide.



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    Colonial Williamburg,Virginia is neat and educational. Another is Monticello, T.Jefferson's home. See is inventions and the agonomy and horticulture. Very scenic. Arlington Cemetery-with Tomb of the Unknown Soldier(I know it's called something else now, but can't think), the changing of the guard is impressive.



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    Ideas for kids: The National Zoo (see the Pandas), National Aquarium (Baltimore), Gettysburg battle grounds, Hershey Park, and Natural History Museum (DC). All kid friendly, fun and interesting.



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    I just got back from a one-day trip to DC. We took the Old Town Trolley around town, $35 per person, but you can come and go as you please. I had never taken a tour bus like that before, but it was well worth it and saved alot of walking time, which I didn't do the last time I was there.

    We saw the Capital, White House, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial and they even take you over to Arlington National, where we saw the Changing of the Guard.

    There were numerous other stops along the way, but worth every penny.


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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by CyCloned View Post
    Our family is heading out east after the 4th of July to visit Gettysburg, Washington D.C., Mt. Vernon and Boston. Is there anything great we should be looking at while we are out there? Is there anything great that we should be going to while we are out there. There is a 4 year old boy and a 14 year old girl going.
    If you are taking little kids, walking around the mall and seeing the monuments around D.C. is a lot of walking! Your kids will get tired half way through the day. I know when I lived out there we went a few times and we still didn't get to see everything we wanted to see. One thing I recommend is going to the National Aquarium in Baltimore one day. It is only a 20-30 minute drive depending on traffic from D.C. and the kids would love it. It is in the inner harbor in a real nice shopping area down there.

    If you are heading out there for the 4th definately make it to Washington D.C. for that. The one thing I caution you on is the traffic afterwards is ABSOLUTELY outrageous. We went last 4th and sat kinda off the side of the White house, and it wasnt the best few of the fireworks. You can either get close and expect an hour or so to get out of the area, or you can sit a few blocks away and not see all the fireworks and book it afterwards to the metro trains. The thing about that is we sat pretty far away and we ran to the metro stop prolly half block away and by the time we got there we crammed ourselfs in teh train to where the doors wouldn't even close on the trains. Might be an unfortable situation with teh wife and kids, up to you!

    I really suggest going to Gettysburg as you say you are heading through there. Lots of stuff to see, and I believe they have some sort of reinactment type deal where they come over the hill and shoot fake rounds and have like a cannon competition to see you can get closest to a flag for the audience to see.

    If you are going to be in Gettysburg, might as well make your trip over to Hershey Pennsylvania. Always a fun trip to take the kids to the hershey factory and see how it is all made. There's an Imax theatre in there I think and they Hershey park which is awesome too right next to it. If you go, notice all the street lights are hershey kisses lol.

    Traffic is going to be horrible in/around the D.C. area so I suggest you take the Metro train anywhere which is real easy to get to. With you going down there and seeing everything you will prolly be getting on and off the train quite a bit so I'd buy an all day pass for each person therefore you don't have to worry about buying certain fares for each stop to stop which can get confusing if you haven't done it before. if you have any other questions feel free to pm me



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    For going to Gettysburg I would highly recommend reading Killer Angels before going. It will be over the 4 year old's head and potentially boring for the 14 yr depending on her interest in history but it brings the battle fields to life. Depending on your preferences they have a strong establishment of bed and breakfast places for overnight accommodations.

    For DC I would call either one of the Senator's or Representative's offices. You may be able to meet them if they happen to be in town. They can give you some help if you are looking for a tour of the White House or other Federal Buildings. Typically one of the staffers will offer to give you a tour of the Capitol, which is better and free compared to the red coat tour.
    All have different offering, but I would say the Aerospace Museum is the most kid engaging of the Smithsonians. Generally there is a festival on the Mall around 4th of July although they clear a majority of it out for the fireworks.

    Mt Vernon is interesting from a historical perspective. It has a bit of the Living History Farms feel to it.

    Boston the Freedom Trail is very interesting if you are a revolutionary history buff. Fanial Hall is a pretty neat experience. A good place to find something to eat and can help sate the shopping bug. The Boston Aquarium is pretty cool both for stuff to look at and to escape the midday heat. Boston Commons can be a good place to take a break.

    As mentioned before both Washington DC and Boston traffic can be a bear and the other motorist unforgiving.



  12. #12
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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    Get the tour guide at Gettysburg. They drive your car and give you a tour of the battlefield.



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    The Smithsonian is a must. You could easily spend an entire day there and not see everything there is to see.



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by clone52 View Post
    Get the tour guide at Gettysburg. They drive your car and give you a tour of the battlefield.

    Normally I'm not much for organized tours but the Gettysburg battlefield is one place where its well worth it. Due to the size, its really hard to get an appreciation for the events without someone taking you through it. It is a wonderful experience.

    My tour actually stopped about 1/2 way up little round top and we walked up the hill that the guys from Alabama attacked up right into the 20th Maine's lines.

    Enjoy your trip!



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    Re: Heading out east to Gettysburg, DC, etc.

    I used to live in Maryland and work in DC. I see you have most of the typical suggestions being listed here. I will give you two that most won't list but you should take in:

    The Antietam Battlefield (known as Sharpsburg by the Confederates). It is between Gettysburg and DC in Maryland.

    The National Portrait Gallery in DC...it is north of Pennsylvania Ave a few blocks about half way between the White House and Capitol Hill...sorry I cannot remember the address.



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