Rock Creek Park (Beach Drive)

Rock Creek Washington DC

Rock Creek Park is my favorite weekend destination in Washington, DC. It’s beautiful, wild, not far from my apartment, and our dogs love it. Though DC is the most densely populated “state” in the country, there are sections of Rock Creek Park that look every bit as wild and unspoiled as the most remote corners of West Virginia. The park is huge. I can’t say I’ve explored even a quarter of its 2000 acres. I know the southern end of […]

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Middleburg, VA and Apple Picking (again!)

Stribling apple picking virginia

Stribling Orchard Emily and I continued our annual tradition of fall apple picking this weekend, heading with our dogs to Stribling Orchard in northern Virginia. Our newest, Annie, is a 1 year old whippet or italian greyhound mix–we think. We actually have no idea. She had a broken leg when we adopted her (from Capitol Canines), having been hit by a car in North Carolina. Poor thing, the pin the vet had placed in her leg was too long and […]

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Annapolis, MD (July 2015)

Annapolis sailboats

I’m lucky to live within an hour’s drive of Annapolis, Maryland, one of the most picturesque seaports on the East Coast. Emily and I decided to pay a short weekend visit there with our dog Ollie to celebrate my birthday. On the way there, we picked up some sandwiches at Bay Zu Coffee and headed to Quiet Waters Park on the South River, a little bit outside of the city.  This 340-acre wooded park is a great place to spend […]

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St. Michaels, MD

St. MIchael's Talbot St

The summer’s approaching, so to get in the spirit Emily and I decided to head out to Maryland’s Eastern Shore to St. Michaels, MD, a quaint town about an hour and a half drive from Washington DC. Even before we crossed the four mile long Bay Bridge over the Chesapeake, I noticed the sand and pine trees characteristic of the coastline. I didn’t like driving over the bridge. It’s really high, the lanes are narrow, and there is no shoulder. […]

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Mason Neck State Park (Virginia)

Mason Neck State Park Virginia

I love to hike, but having been in the DC area since 2008, I’m running out of parks to try. It’s gotten so dire that I’ve resorted to using Google Maps to spot areas that are colored green, then zooming in close enough to where the name of the park shows up. It’s not the most efficient process–sometimes the green spaces are just golf courses. But I used this technique today to discover a park, about 45 minutes from DC, […]

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Frederick, Maryland

Downtown Frederick maryland MD

One of my favorite day trip destinations under an hour’s drive away from Washington DC is Frederick, Maryland. It’s a old city, dating back before the Civil War, and is laid out in a easily navigable street grid. It looks very similar to Fredericksburg, Virginia–so similar that I often mix up my memories of the two. I don’t know how much of stems from the similarity in the city names, or the fact that the city’s buildings and street-scapes look […]

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Old Town, Alexandria, VA

Alexandria is one of the East coast’s best preserved colonial cities.  Its historic architecture, walkable street grid, wide selection of restaurants and bars, and accessible riverfront all make this city a great place to spend a few hours. Itinerary For those DC-based travel junkies not feeling up to traveling very far, Alexandria is a great option for a short-term travel fix. You can take the metro there (which oddly drops you off nowhere near tourist sites of Old Town) or […]

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Fredericksburg, VA

Fredericksburg Virginia

Trip Summary: About an hour’s drive from DC, Fredericksburg’s walkable, historic downtown of quaint streets lined with shops and restaurants is a good place to spend a weekend afternoon. Itinerary Like many historic towns in the Mid-Atlantic region, Fredericksburg has an old historic district that is separated geographically from a suburban strip mall district surrounding it. After going through a decline in the 20th century due to suburbanization, Fredericksburg’s old downtown, about the same size as it was during the […]

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Theodore Roosevelt Island

Teddy Roosevelt Statue in Washington, DC

This 88-acre island in the middle of the Potomac River across from Washington DC provides a beautiful wooded setting for a quick and easy getaway from the city. Aside from Rock Creek Park, this is my favorite spot in DC to walk my dog.  It’s easy to get to, provides great views of Georgetown and the river, and has a few  miles of trails through beautiful woods and marshland. Suggestions for a visit: After crossing the footbridge from the parking […]

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The Steps of Northwest DC

Spanish Steps NW DC

If you’ve been to DC, you’ve probably climbed the steps of the city’s most recognizable monuments:  the Lincoln Memorial, the Jefferson Memorial, The Capitol.  But DC also has lesser-known public steps, tucked away in the residential areas of Northwest, that are worth seeing. With the exception of a broad flat plain extending north from the Potomac River to around U Street, DC is a city of hills. In the leafy neighborhoods north and west of Downtown there can be found […]

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