camping Washington DC

Discussion in 'Campground / Trip Planning & Suggestions ?' started by tentcamper, Mar 12, 2015.

  1. tentcamper

    tentcamper New Member

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    Planning a family trip to see the capital this summer... looking for any useful input. Campgrounds, transport in/out of the city, parking, time management. Here's what I got in mind... open to suggestions...
    Planning latter half of July... one week.
    One day for Manassas/ Air and space at Dulles.
    Two days on the mall
    One day for Mt. Vernon/ Arlington
    One day open for whatever might have been missed.
    two days travel... one there/ one home.
    Looking at setting up at Pohick Regional Park , VA... and working public transport to and from the city.
    (I wanted to go with General Smallwood in MD and drive... wife want the amenities for the kids... nether of us know about public transit there)
    Of course on a budget.

    Have you been there, done that? let me know any other ideas you might have... I'm a little nervous about this one.

    thanks.
     
  2. Halford

    Halford Well-Known Member

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    No Smithsonia? It takes 2 weeks to view all by viewing each object 30 seconds each... heh...
     
  3. Love the outdoors

    Love the outdoors New Member

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    I live in the area so I have only been to Pohick for picnics, but I have heard good things. You are about 10 miles from Springfield metro (20+ min drive about 45 min to an hour to the city) or drive into the city, park at union station( about 1 to 1 1/2 hours) and Metro from there. Plan more time for travel than you think, because of the traffic.(va511.org is VDOT's traffic site) Contact your senators Durbin 2022242152 or Kirk 202224 2854 or you congressmen, they have staff who can help you out with stuff to do in DC. Defiantly do the Smithsonian, they are all free, Spy museum and Newsuem are private, but well worth it. Capitol, Holocaust Museum, Monuments, and Arlington Cemetery are just a few things to hit. Just remember it is hot and humid here, we could be pushing 100 with 100% humidity with afternoon thunderstorms. Have a great trip.
     
  4. WannaTravel

    WannaTravel Member

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    You might want to consider Duncan's Family Campground in Lothian, MD. It is 15 miles from DC, and they have a daily shuttle to the end stop of the metro on the blue line.

    They are on Route 4, which becomes Pennsylvania Avenue when it crosses into the District.

    I have camped there several times and found it very nice. Their restrooms/showers are very clean. restrooms are like a personal bathroom with the toilet, shower and sink. They have an enclosed dog park, pool, mini golf, volleyball, basketball, horseshoes, shuffleboard, two playgrounds, nature trail...

    There is a camp store, smallish, and laundry facilities.

    Their website is very informative and if you want to call with a question, they are very friendly.

    www.duncansfamilycampground.com

    There is also a video from RVTV with an interview with the owners, and the video shows the amenities in the park. This is on their website


    Have a great time and let us know where you ultimately end up please! Can't wait to hear about it :)
     
  5. paklein58

    paklein58 New Member

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    I also live in the DC area, so can't comment on the CGs here. I strongly recommend you use the Metro (DC subway www.wmata.com) to go into the city. Parking is either nonexistent or ridiculously expensive. Subway is clean and safe.
     
  6. phoodieman

    phoodieman Active Member

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    I second the subway suggestion. It is one of the cleanest, safest, and on time systems I have ever ridden. I stayed eleven days in Virginia and commuted every day. Get one of the charge cards at a kiosk and put $20.00 or so on it. DC is a walking vacation. (Especially the mall). All the Smithsonian institutes are great. The Washington Memorial opened a week after I left DC. [:(!] Most of the stuff in the mall is free. Catch the changing of the guard. It is profound. Arlington cemetery was impressive. I was there the very last days of the Cherry Blossom Festival. Just as they started falling off the trees. It was jam packed. Best vacation I have ever been on.

    Phoodieman
     
  7. Garywt

    Garywt New Member

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    On 3 previous non camping trips we have driven in with a major issue one Memorial Day weekend. We are planning a Sept trip and plan on Cherry Hill. I guess the shuttle picks you up at the park and takes you to the Metro.
     
  8. catseye

    catseye all I remember is dirt...sky...dirt...ambulance

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    USE METRO!

    depending on your kids' ages, do the Spy museum. Interactive mission and a real hoot. The Mall with all the museums and memorials can keep you busy for years. Air and Space.

    Again, depending on your kids' ages, the Holocaust Memorial is powerful and very well worth it. Arlington Cemetery...
     
  9. Noni

    Noni See ya' out there !

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    There are several campgrounds in the area. I would recommend the ones in Virginia that are more familiar to me. Some of these would require a 20 or 30 min drive into DC, and that is the best distance you could find. Pohick Bay Regional Park, Bull Run Regional Park, Lake Fairfax Campground are some of the campgrounds in the area that would give you quick access to downtown DC from the Northern Virginia area.
     
  10. tentcamper

    tentcamper New Member

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    Thanks for all the input.
    Questions on the METRO... Many have suggested the metro vs. parking...I've been trying to get some info on rates and such to budget for this.

    anyone know... fare cards.... can we share one, and reload it... or does each rider need one? Not familiar with how to purchase tickets and fares for the whole family.

    on the other side... parking. I've seen several garages that allow you to reserve, prepay parking... which almost seems more economical... when compared to fare cards for five.

    What's the better... more economical way... to travel into/ out of the mall area?

    thanks again.
     

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