After we landed in Baltimore on 14 October, we met our fantastic tour guide, Brien, who would be taking us around the sights in Washington DC the next day. After a short drive into the centre of DC, we checked into the Hotel Harrington and got some well-deserved rest. We set off the next morning with a walking tour through the heart of the city. Over the course of the sunny morning, we visited the Washington Monument and Lincoln Memorial, walked through the National Mall where we learned plenty about American history, and then went on to pay our respects at the memorials of World War I and Vietnam.
In the afternoon, we headed to the National Museum of African American History and Culture – one of many people’s favourite experiences on the trip. The day concluded with an authentic American dinner at the Hard Rock Café and an evening walk to see the White House in all its glory.
Our second day kicked off with a visit to the United States Capitol, where we not only had the opportunity to be taken on a tour inside, but we were also given the chance to sit in the House of Representatives! A personal favourite moment of mine was the afternoon on this day when we took the metro to the peaceful Arlington National Cemetery and spotted many resting places of famous politicians and judges, such as JFK and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. We ended the day at Arlington watching the changing of the guards, accompanied by schools from all over the world.
On day three, we bid farewell to Washington DC and headed off on the bus to New York City. After checking into our hostel, we explored the beautiful Central Park. In the evening, we visited Times Square and had a well-deserved shopping break, before eating at Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. and enjoying the Rockefeller Centre and its famous ice rink.
The next morning, we took the subway to the NYC Highline, where we took in the views of the city. Then we headed to the United Nations Headquarters, where we had an insightful tour and were lucky enough to be given the chance to go into the General Assembly Hall. The day concluded with a dinner at the Tick Tock Diner, capping off our New York City experience!
Our final day in the Big Apple began with a metro and bumpy ferry journey to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. We immersed ourselves in the history of immigration and freedom, learning about the creation of modern-day America whilst overlooking the infamous New York skyline – it was a great way to end the trip!
A big thank you to Mr Smart for organising the amazing trip, and to Mrs Wilson and Miss Shuter who helped make it possible.