Washington, D.C., is a great town for walking, although tourists making the long trudge between the Jefferson Memorial and the Capitol on a broiling summer day might disagree. If you're in D.C. this weekend, though, you can take advantage of our brief, glorious spring and visit some fascinating neighborhoods beyond the Mall. On Saturday April 26, and Sunday, April 27, Cultural Tourism DC is hosting its annual WalkingTownDC weekend, offering free walking tours of 18 different neighborhoods, with 80 free guided walks, and guided bike rides too, led by experts who know these neighborhoods inside out.
For most tours, all you need to do is show up at the right time at the designated starting point, but for some you need a reservation. Check the detailed schedule and pick the walk you want. In Northeast D.C., walk the history of Brookland, a one-time trolley suburb. In Northwest, find the 19th-c. village vestiges of Old Mount Pleasant, now a vibrant multi-ethnic melange. Stroll Logan Circle, "the city’s only unaltered Victorian residential district." Explore the alleys of D.C. with Richard Layman of Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space blog.
The very popular DC Green Buildings EcoTour on Saturday is already full, but if you register you'll be on the waiting list for the next one (they run roughly five times a year). This is a bike tour that visits ten local LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) certified green buildings. Led by Scott Pomeroy, the environmental programs manager for Downtown DC BID, the tour begins and ends at our own National Geographic Society headquarters (our campus was the first to gain LEED certification in the city). Reservations required; go to www.WholenessforHumanity.com or call 202-686-9813 to get on the waiting list. This bike tour meets and ends at National Geographic's blooming courtyard (check out the Trash People display), and includes a free eco-friendly lunch. Need we say more?