In September, some of our Educational Tours team crossed the pond to scope out the must-sees and hidden gems in both cities. With so much to see and do, you won’t struggle to jam-pack your itinerary. But what are our team’s top picks?
This week, we’ll share our favourite excursions in New York and Washington that we think should go into every itinerary. Yesterday Jackie told us about The Smithsonian Museums and today we hear from Tracey.
Tracey’s favourite: Arlington Cemetery, Washington
Arlington Cemetery is the country’s largest military cemetery and the final resting place for more than 400,000 military veterans and their immediate families from the fronts of Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as World Wars I and II, the Korean conflict, Vietnam, the Cold War and America’s Civil War. You can wander freely through the scenic landscapes and grounds, passing the headstones and monuments and reflecting on the stories each person could tell.
There’s so many poignant sights in the cemetery and you could spend hours simply wandering around. The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is a large white, sarcophagus that stands atop a hill overlooking the city and is a tribute to the unidentified fallen soldiers who fought in WWI, WWII, Korea and Vietnam. The words “Here rests in honored glory an American soldier known but to God” are inscribed on the back of the tomb – somewhere to pause for a moment and reflect.
The tomb is guarded 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and the Changing of the Guard ceremony is a must-see event that happens every hour from October through to March, and every half hour from April through to September.
The gravesite of President John F. Kennedy can also be found here and can be identified by the eternal flame that was lit at his funeral and remains alight today.
There’s so much to see in Arlington Cemetery that I could go on, however, I’d highly recommend visiting the welcome centre as you arrive to get further information, view a map and get an introduction into what makes this one of the most visited cemeteries in the country. If the weathers not great then take advantage of the mini-train, a great way to see the cemetery and the best $14 I spent as it saved me from the torrential downpour.
COMING TOMORROW: Lidija tells us all about her favourite New York excursion.