Take in the sites

January 1, 2007

The FDR Memorial features inscriptions of some of the president’s most famous speeches.

MUSEUMS

Corcoran Gallery of Art

Located just a block west of the White House at 17th Street and New York Avenue, the Corcoran is one of the oldest and most prestigious art museums in the nation. Here, the emphasis is on American art, with works from frontier artists such as Remington and Bierstadt to the modern-day Warhol and Rothko. You'll also find a sampling of Dutch masters and French Impressionists. Guided tours are available. For further information, call (202) 639-1781.

This is where you'll find the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, as well as a revised copy of the Magna Carta, an English document that formed the basis of our legal system. For further information, call (202) 357-5000.

National Gallery of Art

Located on the north side of the Mall on Constitution Avenue between 3rd and 7th streets, the National Gallery of Art is not a government institution. Industrialist Andrew Mellon bought the building and donated many of the paintings. Many of the paintings here once hung in the world-renowned Hermitage in St. Petersburg, Russia. You'll find everything here from Renaissance masters to the Impressionists. Admission is free. For further information, call (202) 737-4215.

Korean War Veterans Memorial

National Museum of the American Indian

A recently opened attraction (2004), the museum is a centerpiece for the preservation, study and exhibition of the life, arts, culture and history of the native peoples of the Western Hemisphere. The museum also features educational and public programs, including ceremonies and performances. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. For further information, call (202) 633-1000.

National Museum of Women in the Arts

The museum, dedicated to women artists, is located at 1250 New York Ave. NW. Opened in 1987, it showcases pieces by Georgia O'Keefe and Helen Frankenthaler, among many others. Admission charge varies. For more information, call (202) 783-5000.

The Smithsonian Institution

The granddaddy of all museums, the Smithsonian is actually a collection of museums, most of which are located near the Mall. In addition to the National Museum of American History, the Smithsonian also includes the National Museum of African Art, the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, the Freer Gallery of Art, the National Museum of Natural History, the National Air and Space Museum, and the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, among other institutions, both in Washington and throughout the country. Admission is free for all Smithsonian museums in Washington. For further information, call (202) 633-1000.

The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

A disturbing testament to humanity's inhumanity, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum commemorates the persecution and murder of more than 6 million Jews by the Nazis. You'll find case after case of chilling newspaper accounts and newsreels documenting Nazi atrocities. Be warned: There are displays that bring this tragedy down to a very personal level.