Sunday, August 3, 2014

Our trip to the Washington, D.C. - Part 1 - The Zoo

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Washington DC Zoo
We left Skyline Drive early in the morning to head over to Washington DC.  Be prepared to hit some serious traffic.

We stayed at the Americana Hotel in Arlington, VA.  I had made reservations before we came.  Now, if I did not hear good things about this hotel, I probably would have driven right past it.  I am sure glad we stayed there.  It does not look so great outside, but the inside was nice.  The hotel was also inexpensive and close to the Crystal City Metro (within walking distance).  Also, the hotel had made a mistake with our room and already had a remedy for it before we arrived!  Now that is service.  They also have a free little breakfast in the mornings.  Two more important things - It is FREE to PARK at the hotel if you are staying there and they let you leave your car there for the day for FREE after you check out!

So, as soon as we arrived at the hotel and were all settled, we headed out to the Metro to go to the Smithsonian National Zoo.  It is best to study the Metro directions before you go.  I had an app, but it did not work for me.  We asked the Metro attendant, who helped us and my sister figured it out.  I was overwhelmed, I realized I was out of my element.  I was not outdoors anymore, I was in the big city and confused.  Thank goodness my sister is a city girl.

Turns out you take the Metro to the Woodley Park/Zoo stop.  (we had also purchased a one-day ticket for the Metro).  Check out the exit at this stop in the Metro.

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It was sooooo steep and long!

When you get out onto the street, you just follow the signs to the zoo.  It was a couple of blocks away not too far to walk to.

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The best part, the Zoo is FREE and it is huge! (Also, I did not do this until too late, but join the Smithsonian Membership when you buy something at the gift shop. You get a discount at all the Smithsonian Gift shops and some food, at least that is what I was told the Museum of American History)

Nadia, was saving her money all year to buy a stuffed Panda Bear.  Which one will she get?  We had to visit the Gift Shop first. :)

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Then onto the real Pandas.

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The Baby
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Mom and Baby
The Zoo had so many animals and other critters to see:

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Doesn't it look like he is dancing?
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Otters
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A Bear
One of the neatest things that I thought they had was the Amazonia Exhibit. (I believe it was that one).  In this exhibit, you walked around with monkeys and birds not in any cages!!

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The Little Monkey is Hiding
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Isn't he cute!! 
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We had to be on our way around 4:30 p.m. because it was going to rain on us :(  So we walked back to the Metro and rode it back to Crystal City.  By now, I understand how the Metro works.  What a fun day we had!

Remember the zoo is free!
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