10 Things to Do in Arlington That You Shouldn't Miss

July 30, 2017 Deane Carmody

Known for walkable urban villages like Crystal City, Rosslyn and Ballston, Arlington was part of the "10 miles square" surveyed in 1791 to be the United States capital. Just across the Potomac from Washington, Arlington is home to the Pentagon, Arlington National Cemetery, the Marine Corps War Memorial (Iwo Jima), Air Force Memorial and Pentagon Memorial. With 11 Metro stops, Arlington is car-optional and offers visitors everything from eclectic theater to Bohemian cafes.
Restaurants in Arlington

1. Lincoln Memorial

2 Lincoln Memorial Cir NW, Washington DC, DC 20037 (202) 426-6841
Excellent
78%
Good
18%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 26 reviews

Lincoln Memorial

Reviewed By internationalmama - Wooster, Ohio

We took our friend from Zambia to DC, and she was so interested in seeing the Lincoln Memorial, as this President is known world-wide. I'd been there previously, but visiting again gave me a new appreciation for the simple beauty, something President Lincoln would have loved. It's a great place to bring families to talk about the price that was paid to keep this country unified.

2. Tomb of the Unknowns

Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA 22211 +1 877-907-8585
Excellent
89%
Good
8%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 3 reviews

Tomb of the Unknowns

Guarded around the clock by the Army's 3rd infantry, this memorial in Arlington National Cemetery honors unidentified American soldiers from the two World Wars and the Korean War.

Reviewed By Heather G - Anderson, Indiana

Great experience with teenagers. Arrived and waited forty-five minutes for the next changing of the guards and it was worth the wait.

3. Korean War Veterans Memorial

10 Daniel French Dr SW, Washington DC, DC 20002 +1 202-426-6841
Excellent
75%
Good
20%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 9 reviews

Korean War Veterans Memorial

This memorial to Korean War veterans consists of the Pool of Remembrance and the triangular Field of Service depicting 19 soldiers on the field of combat.

Reviewed By LizNnawlins - New Orleans, Louisiana

We saw this during a night tour and there was no lighting near the statues. I have pictures from my oldest daughter's night tour a few years back that showed subtle light cast on the statues at night. There was trash among the statues too. I hope this is just out of the ordinary and that this memorial gets as much attention as any other. Don't let my review discourage you from seeing it, even with neglect it is a powerful tribute.

4. Arlington National Cemetery

Entrance at Arlington Memorial Bridge, Arlington, VA 22211 +1 877-907-8585
Excellent
81%
Good
15%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 8 reviews

Arlington National Cemetery

Veterans of every American war from the Revolution to the country's most recent conflicts are buried at Arlington, which was officially declared a military cemetery in 1864. Among the more than 260,000 dead are three unidentified service members, buried at the Tomb of the Unknowns, and John F. Kennedy, whose gravesite is marked by an eternal flame.

Reviewed By JWWA - Everett, Washington

We took the Metro over to the cemetery and just found our way to the places we wanted to see. Since most people go to the same spots it was easier to navigate since we just followed the crowd.

You will need to bring your patience for being around the school groups. They were a little rowdy and sometimes it was the chaperones being loud too.

Anyone that isn’t in good shape to do all the walking up hills may want to take a tram. It will be a while before I beat the number of floors my iPhone says we did as we walked that day.

5. United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

100 Raoul Wallenberg Plaza SW, Washington DC, DC 20024-2126 +1 202-488-0400
Excellent
79%
Good
15%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 9 reviews

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

A living memorial to the Holocaust, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum inspires citizens and leaders worldwide to confront hatred, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity. Tickets are only needed from March 1 to August 31 to visit the Museum's Permanent Exhibition, which tells the history of the Holocaust from 1933 to 1945. Exhibitions Include: Permanent Exhibition: The Holocaust Spanning three floors, the self-guided Permanent Exhibition presents a narrative history of the Holocaust and features historical artifacts, photographs, and film footage. Personal objects and the concluding eyewitness testimonies highlight the stories of individuals. Recommended for ages 11 or older. The Portal: A Real-Time Conversation with People Forced to Flee Persecution The Shared Studios Portal allows you to have a face-to-face conversation with someone in another part of the world-as if you are standing in the same room. Through this installation, visitors will be able to converse in real time with displaced persons or refugees in Iraq, Jordan, and Germany Remember the Children: Daniel's Story Representing the experiences of many Jewish children during the Nazi era, "Daniel" narrates through his diary the history of the Holocaust in ways that children can understand. Recreated environments present life in a middle-class German home, in a Jewish ghetto in occupied Poland, and finally at the Auschwitz concentration camp. The exhibition is explicit without being graphic. Recommended for ages 8 or older. Some Were Neighbors: Collaboration & Complicity in the Holocaust Some Were Neighbors: Collaboration & Complicity in the Holocaust addresses one of the central questions about the Holocaust: How was it possible? The central role of Hitler and other Nazi Party leaders is indisputable. Less well understood is these perpetrators' dependence on countless others for the execution of Nazi racial policies. Within Nazi Germany and across German-dominated Europe, circles of collaboration and complicity rippled throughout governments and societies wherever victims of persecution and mass murder lived.

Reviewed By jamusaba - Florida

Graphic description and historical account of the racial atrocities committed by the Nazi’s during WW II. Starts with the history of the rise of the Nazi Party and Hitler in Germany and their sweeping expansion throughout continental Europe and their inhuman treatment of the Jewish peoples in concentration camps. The graphics pull no punches and it is impossible to leave this memorial/ museum unmoved.

6. U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial

Arlington Blvd. and Meade St, Arlington, VA 22211 +1 703-289-2500
Excellent
77%
Good
19%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 2 reviews

U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial

Commonly called the "Iwo Jima Memorial," the statue is a depiction of the famous raising of the U.S. flag on Iwo Jima and is dedicated to all Marines who have given their lives defending that flag.

Reviewed By Sharpattack - Ireland

As war memorials and monuments go this is a truly evocative one. Perhaps the Marines most famous one but the inscriptions around the plinth show that it is dedicated to the corps rather than that one battle. Well worth seeing

7. Vietnam Veterans Memorial

5 Henry Bacon Dr NW, Washington DC, DC 20242 +1 202-426-6841
Excellent
75%
Good
19%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 9 reviews

Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Emotionally stirring memorial pays tribute to the men and women who served in one of America's most controversial wars.

Reviewed By hisons - California

This was my second visit here, but the first with our 13 and 10 year olds. My oldest daughter couldn't believe how many names (and lives lost) are on the memorial. It makes for a good discussion about war, and why or why not such a thing happens. Paying respects is important, and this is so beautifully done...names etched forever.

8. John F. Kennedy Grave Site

1 Sheridan Dr, Arlington, VA 22211 +1 877-907-8585
Excellent
68%
Good
23%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

John F. Kennedy Grave Site

Reviewed By Grover R - Pensacola, Florida

All of Arlington cemetery is moving but this location simply may have the best location between Lee's Arlington House and the Lincoln Memorial. Very fitting for a President who served 100 years after the Civil War and who to resolve outstanding issues from that event.

9. National Air and Space Museum

6th and Independence Ave., SW, Washington DC, DC 20560 +1 202-633-2214
Excellent
70%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 19 reviews

National Air and Space Museum

The most popular of the Smithsonian museums features the Wright Brothers' 1903 Flyer and Lindbergh's Spirit of St. Louis.

Reviewed By Reasonable50 - Greenwich, Connecticut

This was a great choice for tired me. I was able to go to displays and then take 25 minutes for each IMAX or Planetarium show in between. I ended up seeing 4 very educational shows in all. Of course admission to the Museum is free.. the shows are not. They are worth it however and are discounted by $3 after the first. Great museum for adults and kids alike.

10. Pentagon Memorial

1 Rotary Road, Arlington, VA 22202 +1 703-697-7351
Excellent
69%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Pentagon Memorial

Reviewed By jennifera399 - Reading, Pennsylvania, United States

As understanding the simplicity and importance to those who lost their lives on that day, this particular sight in my opinion was the least exciting unless I missed something that gives the overall educational experience to this sight in comparison to the NYC and PA sights. In overall the sight is beautiful and definitely a quiet place for reflection. The direction of the memorial plaques are in alignment to the direction of the crash. If it was not for someone native to the area explaining things I myself would not have known the meaning of the dates on along the sides of the wall. So of course this was just a stop off along our way home on a Sunday afternoon, but do some research to see if there is something more to this sight via Pentagon to gain the overall experience here.

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