Washington D.C.

Monumental D.C.

Explore Washington D.C. with experts and learn the stories behind the monuments, memorials and historic sites that pay testament to our national identity.
Rating (4.88)
Program No. 12392RJ
5 days
Starts at

At a Glance

The capital of the United States is truly “monumental” as you’ll discover in this exciting experiential learning program with American Civics Center. Explore major monuments, memorials, museums and historic sites on and off the National Mall. Through seminars with memorial founders and policy experts, learn what Washington’s monuments tell about those who created them, the people and events they memorialize, their eras and how our nation’s sons and daughters are remembered. Daily discussions and field trips provide keen insights into historic and current issues.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking 2-3 miles per day during field trips over level terrain; extended standing. Monuments accessible by elevator.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Delve into George Washington's life as a pioneering farmer, businessman, fearless soldier and leader at Mount Vernon.
  • Witness the changing of the guard ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington Cemetery and visit the grave of President John F. Kennedy.
  • Enjoy an introduction to the vibrant Washington, D.C. cultural and dining scene.
Featured Expert
All Experts
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Gary Regan
Gary Regan is a former U.S. Army officer who has worked at the Library of Congress and the U.S. Treasury. Since retiring in the mid-1990s, Gary has volunteered with Washington, D.C.-area organizations devoted to the performing arts and Americans with disabilities, and he is active in men's chorus and is an avid gardener. His expertise is in American history, modern European history, philosophy, French and Spanish.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

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Anna Patton
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Gary Regan
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Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
The Mall in Washington, 1791-1991
by Richard Longstreth
As the most important public space in the United States, the Mall in Washington, DC, has been a vital emblem of national spirit and ideals ever since Major Pierre Charles L'Enfant first envisioned it over 200 years ago. Although the Mall has undergone numerous changes since its conception, it has retained centrality within the life of the capital and has emerged as an essential symbol of American national identity and an influential model of city planning worldwide. Featuring 14 essays by prominent historians, architects, and leaders of some of Washington, DC's most important institutions, this volume explores the Mall's origins and growth, as well as the shifting political forces and cultural values that have shaped it. Over 140 illustrations help to tell the story of the site, including vintage maps, prints and drawings, in addition to numerous contemporary documentary and historical photographs. This edition features a new introduction discussing developments on the Mall since the first edition was published in 1991.
The Washington National Mall
by Peter R. Penczer
The Washington National Mall" is the first general history of America's greatest urban park. Learn the fascinating stories behind the monuments and museums, from the best known to the most obscure. The Capitol, the Washington Monument, and the Lincoln Memorial are all here, as are forgotten landmarks such as the Fish Commission, the Redwood Tree House, and Braddock's Rock. This amply illustrated volume has more than 100 archival photographs, many never before published, as well as recent color photographs of the monuments and museums. A detailed two-page map of the Mall and the surrounding area serve as a handy reference guide for visitors.

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