The National Mall in Washington is undoubtedly the most famous place in the capital of the United States and where most of the main monuments of the city are located.
It is a large esplanade of more than 3 km in length, built at the beginning of the 20th century, although the plans to build it date back to 1791.
Important events have taken place on this esplanade, such as the famous speech by Martin Luther King, the protests against the Vietnam War or the fireworks every 4th of July.
What to visit on the National Mall in Washington
On the eastern part of the National Mall we find perhaps the most famous monument in Washington, the Capitol,
The Capitol in Washington houses the two chambers of the United States, the Senate and the House of Representatives, and therefore the building that houses the power of the most powerful country in the world.
It is possible to visit the Capitol through a 1-hour guided tour that takes place from Monday to Saturday between 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
In front of the Capitol we can find the Monument to Ulysses Grant, a hero of the civil war and also president of the United States, located next to a large pond. On one side we can find the Botanical Garden.
The Smithsonian Museums
On both sides of the eastern part, located between the Capitol and the Washington Monument, we find a series of very interesting museums that are worth a visit.
Although, in our opinion, there is one that stands out above the rest, the Air and Space Museum.
It is undoubtedly the most visited museum of all and in it you can find a large collection of aircraft and spacecraft as well as take a tour of the history of aviation.
It is advisable to go early as it is usually full and it will surely be one of the museums that both children and adults will enjoy the most.
In addition, you will also find others such as the Museum of American History, the Museum of Natural History or the Museum of African Art, among others. You should also pay attention to the Castle of the Smithsonian Institution, headquarters of the institution and note that all museums are free.
The Washington Monument, the obelisk of the Nationa Mall
In the center of the National Mall we have other symbols of the city, the Washington Monument.
It is an obelisk built in 1884 in memory of the first president of the United States, George Washington.
It should be noted that with its 169 meters high it had the honor of being the tallest building in the world for 5 years until the Eiffel Tower was built.
It is possible to take an elevator to the top of the monument and have excellent views of the city, including the White House, although it has been closed since 2011 due to earthquake damage.
Monuments dedicated to wars
Already in the western part on the way to the Lincoln Memorial we can find a large pond, the Reflecting Pool, around which there are various monuments that commemorate the fallen in different wars.
The first of these monuments that we find is the World War II Memorial.
It is very modern as it was built in 2004 and is made up of columns arranged in a semicircle around a plaza.
Each column is engraved with the name of one of the states that make up the country.
On both sides of the Reflecting Pool we find other memorials such as the Korean War Veterans in the shape of a triangle where there are 19 stainless steel statues that represent soldiers in some Korean camps.
On the other side we have the Vietnam Veterans formed by the Statue of the Three Soldiers, the Memorial Wall of the Vietnam Veterans and the Monument to the Women of Vietnam.
Without a doubt, these monuments shrink the heart of anyone who passes by and remember the horror of wars.
Along the Potomac River and Tidal Basin
From the main esplanade, the one that forms the line that goes from the Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial, is the Tidal Basin, a cove next to the Potomac River.
There where we can find thousands of cherry trees in addition to several commemorative monuments. Of these memorials we must highlight 3.
These are the Martin Luther King Jr. Monument, located very close to where he gave his famous speech, the Frankin Delano Roosevelt Monument, not only dedicated to this president but also to the time in which he lived, and especially the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, one of the most beautiful in the area and whose best views are precisely from the other side of the Tidal Basin.
And finally, on the opposite side of the Capitol we find another of the most famous monuments in the United States, the Abraham Lincoln Monument.
It is a fantastic building in the shape of a Greek temple that is accessed through stairs that take you to the famous statue of a seated Abraham Lincoln that we have seen so many times in movies.
From this area, being elevated, you have a great view of the National Mall and it is one of the most photographed places.
You can find more information on the official website of the National Mall.
For information on the museums you can access the official page of the Smithsonian.