Sofitel Washington DC Lafayette Square - Luxury hotel - THINGS TO DO IN DOWNTOWN DC


Refined and elegant, Lafayette Square is a premier Washington address in the heart of the city, close to everything including the White House, National Mall and the Capitol. The District boasts a rich array of museums and monuments, lush green spaces and charming historic quarters. It is also home to major league sports, world-class cuisine, and outstanding theatre and music – from The Kennedy Center to intimate neighborhood venues.

In addition to these favorite things to see and do in Washington, scroll past Dupont Circle for a few museums and attractions that are unusual and fabulous.

Top Things to See


The White House

-16th & H Streets; the official address is 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, the home of the President of the United States of America.


Black Lives Matter Plaza

-H Street NW at Lafayette Square; Black Lives Matter Plaza was renamed as part of the George Floyd protests to reflect the movement for racial equality. The street was painted by the Department of Public Works in June 2020.


Smithsonian Museum of American History

-14th & Constitution; One of the many museums of the Smithsonian Institution. Why should you visit? This is where you can find a unique blend of iconic symbols of American History like the Star Spangled Banner and the First Ladies’ Inaugural Gowns, mixed with Archie Bunker’s Chair, Dorothy’s Ruby Slippers, and Seinfeld’s puffy shirt. Oh and Admission is free.


National Museum of African American History and Culture

-Located on the National Mall; This popular museum opened in 2016 and offers a unique and engaging look at the richness and diversity of the African American experience. Timed-entry passes required.


The Capitol

-1st Street & E Street, the meeting place of the U.S. Congress—the House of Representatives and the Senate. They offer tours of the building Monday through Saturday. The Capitol Dome is certainly one of the most iconic symbols of Washington.


Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial

-Independence Avenue; Located in West Potomac Park, the memorial to the civil rights icon spans over four acres.


The Library of Congress

-1st Street & Independence Avenue, The Library of Congress is the research library of the United States Congress, the de facto national library of the United States of America, and the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States. Located in four buildings in Washington, D.C., but the Jefferson Building conducts daily tours.


Union Station

-50 Massachusetts Avenue NE, the train transportation hub of Washington—featuring shops, casual eateries in a historic building modeled in the Beaux-Arts style and after the Baths of Caraculla and Diocletian and the triumphal Arch of Rome. Union Station’s arches symbolize its primary function as a gateway.


The Washington Monument

-15th between Constitution & Independence, this is the iconic obelisk-shaped memorial to the first President of the United States—George Washington.


The Lincoln Memorial

-23rd & Constitution, the memorial dedicated to the sixteenth President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln.


The Jefferson Memorial

-At Ohio Drive on the Tidal Basin, the memorial dedicated to the third President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson.


Smithsonian National Zoological Park

-Come see the world-famous giant pandas and thousands of other animals at this acclaimed zoo. Free admission.


The JFK Center for the Performing Arts

-This esteemed cultural centers hosts approximately 3,500 events a year, ranging from theater to ballet and other performing arts.


Walter E. Washington Convention Center

-D.C.’s go-to convention center features 703,000 square feet of space and a $4 million art collection.



-The center of this neighborhood is at Wisconsin & M Streets, a unique blend of charming architecture, shops and restaurants, nestled on the Potomac River.


International Spy Museum

-Dedicated to the history and contemporary role of intelligence, this museum features the largest collection international espionage artifacts currently on public display. Located in L’Enfant Plaza.


Dupont Circle

-The center of this neighborhood is at Connecticut & P Streets, browse art galleries, boutiques, and explore fantastic restaurants in this upmarket yet bohemian enclave.



-View innovative art experiences at this digital art space dedicated to modern artists.


Renwick Gallery

-Walking distance from our hotel, view a collection of American art at the nation’s first dedicated art museum.


The Phillips Collection

–This privately owned modern art museum in Dupont Circle Pre-dates MOMA in New York and is a hidden gem in DC.



–Dedicated to the news and First Amendment (Freedom of Speech and Freedom of the Press), this privately owned museum houses countless artifacts including pieces of the Berlin Wall, and is located on Pennsylvania Avenue next to the Canadian Embassy.


Hillwood Museum and Gardens

Marjorie Merriweather Post’s Washington Estate is an urban oasis blending priceless art and lush botanicals, right here in Washington.


Kramerbooks and Afterwords Café

–One of the only remaining independently owned book stores in Washington; this is also the home of an amazing café and bar in the back of the restaurant.


Eastern Market

–This legendary farmer’s market on Capitol Hill is also home of a fabulous craft fair on the weekends.

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