Last weekend, I visited the Arlington National Cemetery. Located in Arlington County, Virginia, across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., it serves as the final resting place for more than 400,000 military veterans.
WHAT TO SEE
John F. Kennedy gravesite:- The former President, his wife and 2 of his children are buried at this cemetery. There are only two U.S. presidents buried at the Arlington Cemetery, the other is William Howard Taft, who died in 1930.
Memorial Amphitheater:- The location of the nation’s official ceremonies to honor those who have served the nation. There are 3 major annual ceremonies held at the Amphitheater on Easter, Memorial Day and Veterans Day. The Amphitheater is beautifully constructed with Vermont-quarried Danby marble and the marble in the Memorial Display Room is a stone mined in Italy.
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier:- Located on top of a hill overlooking Washington, D.C., this tomb is to honor all the missing or unknown American soldiers. The words on the tomb read “Here rests in honored glory an American soldier known but to God“. The tomb is guarded by a soldier 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, in rain or snow. Sentinels, all volunteers, are considered to be the best of the elite 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment.
The Changing of the Guard:- A guard changing ceremony happens every hour from October 1 to March 31st and every 30 minutes from April 1 to September 30th. This ceremony is witnessed by thousands of visitors daily as the guards are ceremoniously changed.
The Women’s Memorial:- A separate building has been constructed dedicated to the brave women who have served over the years. As you walk down the hallways. you will learn about how the uniform’s have evolved over the years, posters from the past decades encouraging women to join the military.
Check out the Arlington Cemetery website to learn more about the other monuments and memorials here.
HOW TO GET THERE
The Cemetery can be easily accessed by either car or the metro train. Arlington is accessible from the major roadways in the D.C. area such as Interstate 95, the Capital Beltway (I-495), and the George Washington Memorial Parkway. During peak seasons, parking can be difficult, hence I recommend using the metro. Check out their website for more information.
Less than 3 miles away near the Pentagon, is where I discovered a new personal favorite coffee shop. If you are on the hunt for a good coffee, I would highly recommend Commonwealth Joe Coffee Roasters. I tried the mocha latte with a coconut pie, let me tell you that it was amazing! The ambiance is very chill, books are used as decor and the customer service is excellent.