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IAD - Dulles, Washington

jmalone
Not applicable
I had the opportunity earlier this month to have several IAD (Dulles, Washington) overnights.  I took advantage of my rather long overnights to explore the nation's Capital and the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum.  We stay at a hotel near the airport, so to get to the Mall area in D.C. is approximately an hour and a half bus ride.  This was quite the experience.  Of course, once you make it to D.C. you can avail yourself to the Metro Subway System which is very convienient to get around on.    On the first overnight, I went down to the Mall area and checked out the Smithsonian Institute, (I basically just wanted to see what all was there so I could plan a more thorough visit later.)  I then visited the U.S. Capital, took some pictures at the Washington Monument, then I took a night bus ride of the Washington Monuments.  This was a GREAT way to see the monuments in a beautiful setting when they were all lit up. The next afternoon, I went to the Udvar-Hazy Air and Space MuseumAmerica's HangarEnterprise ShuttleThis museum is affectionaly known as America's Hangar.  It houses some great exhibits as well as some historical items of interest.  Below are some of the pictures that I took. If you haven't had the opportunity to visit our nation's capital, I would strongly encourage it.  It will most likely take several visits of varying lengths to see all the this magnificent place has to offer as well as the surrounding areas.  I plan to make several trips a year to check it all out.Pan Am ClipperConcordeEnterprise    
12 Comments
Micah2
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One day a plane from the airline that revolutionized the airline industry by offering lower fares and higher standards will be in the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum.
Colin_G1
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It may not be the Smithsonian, but we have part of an aircraft in the Frontiers Of Flight museum Dallas. http://www.flightmuseum.com/ You can see a picture of Mechanics preparing the aircraft at the bottom of this page http://www.flightmuseum.com/photos/02_20_04constrphotos.pdf
Leah4
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I LUV Washington D.C! I've flown there 5 times. It's an awesome place. One year (the summer between 5th & 6th grade) when I went, I was with a group. One thing we did was watch the changing of the guard; I was one of four from my group chosen to walk down when the wreath was laid. It was an awesome experience!
FriendofBlogBoy
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James, I sure do envy you! Our nation's capital is a place that I cannot imagine ever getting enough of in terms of visiting and sightseeing. One place you might enjoy going to is the Old Post Office building ( http://www.oldpostofficedc.com/ ), which is on Pennsylvania Avenue about halfway between the White House and the Capitol. This historic building has a lot of eating places in the basement (it reminds me of Grand Central Terminal in NYC), and a neat observation area at the top of the tallest spire that offers a great view of the city. I took several memorable pictures from there. If you happen to be into stamp collecting, be sure to visit the National Postal Museum ( http://www.postalmuseum.si.edu/exhibits/2_exhibits.html ), which is a branch of the Smithsonian. Even though it is for ground-based transportation and not for you folks paid to fly around, it is hard to beat the beauty of Union Station ( http://www.unionstationdc.com/ ), another reminder of the size and majesty of Grand Central Terminal. The tour at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing ( http://www.moneyfactory.gov/ ) is interesting for both collectors AND spenders of U. S. currency, and although I haven't seen the place since it was recently remodeled, The National Archives ( http://www.archives.gov/ ) provides a wonderful opportunity to see several very significant documents from our history. Last, but certainly not least, I very strongly believe that everyone should visit the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum ( http://www.ushmm.org/ ). This is a powerfully moving experience that teaches us many important lessons and is likely to make a deep impression on you. Of course, us aviation buffs can't possibly resist the Udvar-Hazy Museum, as you've mentioned above and as discussed in an earlier thread in this blog. This annex to the Smithsonian was not open when I was last in D. C., so I hope to get back there to peruse their collection soon. Hope you get to spend more time there soon! Kim 🙂
Leah4
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I agree with Kim that everyone should visit the Holocaust Museum. My parents & I visited there one year. My mom & I are ethnically Jewish. I also remember going to the Old Post Office building, as well as many other places. D.C. is an awesome place!
Adam_Stanger1
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Did you eat at Potbelly's by gate B48? Best lunch at Dulles. The place is always packed with SWA FA's grabbing a bite to eat between flights.
jmalone
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Adam - Being Chicago based, I get enough of Potbelly's. I did however get to tour the B concourse of which we are a part and let me tell you it is GREAT. They have some some awesome shops (including the Smithsonian Shop) the Rosetta stone and many more that I can't remember. If you ever get to IAD, (Dulles, WA) be sure to take some time and tour the concourse. Have a GREAT week! James Malone MDW FA
FriendofBlogBoy
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James and Adam, I, too, enjoy and am known to frequent Potbelly's after being introduced to them by a friend. However, when considering the marketing implications in today's world of larger portions and tendencies for people to be overweight, I thought twice before my first visit to one in Dallas. Remember that in the South, the term "potbelly" carries a different connotation than it does in the cold Northern part of our country! Kim 🙂
Mike3
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hey jim, D.C is definitely quite a trip... I truly enjoyed it... I recently just applied to be a southwest FA, and i'm from chicago.. So if you could send me an email and we can chit chat some that would be great. deadradio34@yahoo.com is the email... thanks jim and glad you enjoyed D.C. Hopefully soon to be FA Mike
Scott5
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Just looked at Southwest Vacations and noticed that there are three packages available. One notable problem. All three packages ran the air portion of the package through BWI not IAD. I understand that they (Southwest Vacations) are NOT a company owned or controlled by Southwest Airlines but don't you think they should be encouraged to run packages through IAD?
Kristen_near_IA
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I'm glad Southwest is now at IAD. However I have one big complaint, and I haven't found the proper person to talk to about it. Southwest replaced another low cost airline at IAD, that was Independence Air. We _loved_ that airline because they flew between IAD and places like Boston and Albany, NY. Southwest's flights out of IAD consist mostly of flights to the midwest and west coast. Why can't flights go from IAD to the NorthEast? Yeah.... I know Southwest flies to the NorthEast out of BWI - but do you know that it takes me 1.5 hours to drive to BWI? The same amount of time it takes me to fly from BWI to (most spots in) the NorthEast. I'm about 10 min. from IAD by car. It would be wonderful if Southwest could _truely_ replace Independence Air and travel their old routes.
Cygnus
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Hi, Kristen. I don't work for SWA, and I don't play a SWA employee on television either. I made a quick check of the official IAD site, and near as I can tell, SWA has only been allocated two (2) gates at IAD. That makes it difficult for SWA to go to as many places as it would like. I suppose that it didn't want to duplicate all the BWI routes. At any rate, it seems that SWA is still operating via the good graces (whatever) of United and US Airways at IAD. It's all about gate access. It took SWA 14 years to get as many gates as it has at BWI now. I'd like to see SWA have ten or fifteen gates, or its own pier or two, at IAD, but it's just not going to happen overnight. Also, have you ever tried going to BWI by way of Rt. 15 from Leesburg through Point of Rocks and Frederick? I'm sure that'd be faster than going around the Capital Beltway. I live near Frederick, and although IAD is closer as the crow flies, I find it much easier to get to BWI traffic-wise. "The clustered spires of Frederick stand..." Paul