Tag Archives: National Geographic Museum

Ten Ways to Kill an Hour in Dupont Circle

23 Mar

The 50-room mansion that is now the Embassy of Indonesia was once home to the owners of the Hope Diamond. © Josh Carolina at Creative Commons

The other day my coworker’s husband left her waiting in Dupont Circle for an hour; this clever post was the result.

I think inevitably, at some point while everyone is living in DC, you find yourself with an hour to kill—before meeting friends for happy hour, or a date, or before a book club meeting or something like that. But you don’t want to spend any money.

10. From the circle, walk northwest along Mass Ave. and look at different embassy buildings. (Print out an embassy walking tour map to be able to ID them). The Indonesian Embassy is one of my favorite buildings in the whole city.

9. Watch the guys playing chess at the tables on the east side of the Circle.

8. Browse used books at Second Story Books at 20th and P. Or, go to Kramerbooks, pretend to browse, but really watch people who met on Match.com meet up for the first time on their blind dates.

7. General people watching. The best spots, I think, are the circle itself, outside the Metro station or in the lobby of the Mayflower Hotel on Connecticut Ave.

6. Watch the coveyor belt coat the doughnuts at Krispie Kreme with glaze. It’s awesome and disgusting all at the same time!

5. Walk over to Whole Foods at 15th and P and sample free fruit, cheese, crackers, dips, etc.

4. Watch the dogs playing at the overpriced dog park at 17th and R Streets.

3. Watch people playing basketball or soccer at Stead Park at 17th and P.

2. Visit Palace Florist at 19th and N to see if your name is on the chalkboard. Every day they pick a new name, and if yours is on the board, show your ID to get a free flower.

1. Check out the Nat Geo Museum at 17th and M. Some of the exhibits are free, and it’s open til 5 p.m daily.

Shout Out: Nat Geo Museum

27 Dec

$7 not only gets you admission into the gecko exhibit but also this great mask!

A while back I wrote about great local museums that charge admission, and for some unknown reason I forgot to mention the National Geographic Museum. So I thought I’d give it its very own post, especially since I recently visited and had an oh-so-fabulous time.

To be honest, I really had no great desire to see the museum’s current gecko exhibit—which ends January 5—but my boyfriend is a big fan of lizards so I went to be nice. And what do you know, I had an excellent time! They have over 70 geckos housed in really well-done displays including an albino gecko, my personal favorite. What I really like about Nat Geo in general is that it’s pretty small—and therefore not overwhelming—and it’s also not too crowded. The gecko exhibit is, I guess, geared toward kids, but I really enjoyed it.

The other exhibit currently going on—Wild Music—was free so we wandered over there and spent a good half hour banging on instruments and what-not. Again, it was geared toward kids, but I can’t imagine any child having more fun than I did. The only negative was that when I was taking a melody quiz at one of the stations, it kept telling me that I was getting the answers wrong and that most infants know how to differentiate melodies. Um, are you trying to hurt my feelings?

The Wild Music exhibit ends January 2, so if you’re interested you’ll need to go soon. The museum is located at 17th and M in NW. It’s walkable from the Farragut North Metro station (Red Line) and Farragut West (Orange/Blue Lines). Street parking isn’t usually too difficult to find as long as you’re willing to walk a few blocks. Tip: The museum is free on Wednesdays (though it’s also more crowded).

The exhibit after geckos will open February 2. It’s a touring exhibition called America I AM: The African American Imprint.

After the museum my boyfriend and I grabbed lunch and headed over to E Street Cinema for a movie. I must say, it was a wonderful Sunday afternoon.