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vacation to dc

Phoenix
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vacation to dc

Hello- I am trying to plan a trip for my family to Washington DC and was wondering about the Residence Inn in Manassas. We are coming from AZ and don't know much about the area. I am hoping to not rent a car and just use the bus/taxi and the metro for our DC touring. Is this a good idea? The hotel in DC are SO expensive, I just can't afford them. Is this too far away from all the sites in DC? Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks

Richmond, VA
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1. Re: vacation to dc

We always use Priceline for the hotel when we go to DC. We always end up at the Marriott. Check the priceline zones to see which area you want to be in. Our last trip we were at the Marriott by the MCI center because we were going to the spy museum. My kids are 9 and 12 and we all enjoyed it. If the spy museum interests you I would recommend getting your tickets ahead of time at Ticketmaster.com. You can also get advance tickets to the top of the Washington memorial online at the national park service(nps.gov). It is well worth the minimal charge $2 for the convenience of not having to get up early for tickets and wait in line. I would not stay in Manassas. When are you coming and how many in your family?

Phoenix
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2. Re: vacation to dc

Thanks VASusan- We are coming Spring break on March. There are 5 of us. My kids are 3,11,and 17. The Washington Memorial idea is super! Thanks! Where would you suggest we stay. We ar flying into Richmond because we have friends close to there that we will spend a couple days with. We will eb in DC suring the weekdays, I think. Which seem to more expensive too. I'm not usre what to do.....

Williamsburg...
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3. Re: vacation to dc

Hi. If you're not renting a car, how are you getting to DC, and how are you getting back to Richmond? It's doable, if you have a plan. You might find the DC Metro site helpful. It's http://www.wmata.com/default.cfm

You can view a clickable map, find stops, etc.. Then you will find it easier to search for a hotel that is near a bus or metro stop.

You might also post this question on the Washington DC forum and the Virginia forum, where more people who know the DC vicinity may be able to help you. Hope this helps!

Ashburn, VA
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4. Re: vacation to dc

Getting from Manassas to DC without a car is difficult. You are not near a Metro but you can take the Virginia Railway Express train. Go to www.vre.org for stations and information. Staying in Manassas can be questionable. Let us know what hotel you are looking into and perhaps someone who lives in that area can give their opinion. I'm about 40 minutes away so I don't think I could give you the best answer on that.

You may also want to look into staying in the Springfield area. That is on the Metro line.

Montgomery Village...
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5. Re: vacation to dc

I would personally say that it's too far out. Although on a map it may seem relatively close, Route 66 traffic can be very unpredictable. GoogleMaps says it's 22 minutes down 66 to the Vienna/Fairfax Metro station at the end of the Orange Line. If you could stay in a hotel very near a Metro station, you'd be in good shape for getting almost anywhere in DC. Although Manassas is an ok area, it doesn't have too much to offer. The taxi or bus from Manassas to the subway isn't worth it unless you're really saving a substantial amount or you're visiting people in Manassas. Otherwise I'd strongly advise staying close to a subway station. Although it would probably be harder to find a cheap hotel, I'd recommend Springfield, VA. There's a subway station on King Street and the old town area is beautiful with lots of shops leading to the Potomac. It's not far from National Airport (with a Metro stop) and a stone's throw from the heart of downtown. If you were going to take a bus or taxi anyway, you'd be better off doing it in this area. Much more to see and do in my humble opinion. Bethesda, MD is also very conveniently located and although it could be pricy, there are enough hotels that I'm sure you could find something in your range. The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority website has Metro and bus maps at www.wmata.com. I hope this is helpful.

Virginia, USA
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598 posts
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6. Re: vacation to dc

Hi azfamphx and welcome to the forum! I have pasted a couple of websites below that might be of interest to you. In particular, the first one links you to the Metro stations. Just click on a station, and then click on the neighborhood map and you can see hotels near that metro stop.

If I were you, I would try to stay closer than Manassas. You would have to drive to the metro stop, which would take about 20 to 30 minutes, depending on traffic. The ride in is about another 30 minutes, depending on where you are going.

If you are within walking distance of a metro stop, you could forgo the rental car and save money that way.

The VRE (Virginia Railway Express) is a nice option if you were in Manassas. However, it does not operate on the weekends and has limited hours of operation during the day. Parking is an issue, as well.

www.wmata.com/metrorail/stations.cfm…

dc.about.com/od/hotels/a/budgethotels.htm

…about.com/od/…metrositesguide.htm

hotel-guides.us/washington-dc/dc-hotels.html

Good luck with your search!

MB

Manassas, VA
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7. Re: vacation to dc

azfamphx -- The link below is my explanation on how you can get to DC from Manassas. I think without a car it's doable, but you have to be careful of the times.

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g60895-s4/Manassas:Vi…

I am on vacation right now, but when I get home, I will do a drive by of the Residence Inn and let y ou know what I think. I am 99% sure it is the hotel I used for our Weight Watchers meetings while the storefront was being renovated last Fall, but I want to double check. Manassas is a safe place to stay.

Richmond, VA
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8. Re: vacation to dc

I would use Priceline for the hotel and select Downtown/white house zone 4star and hope for the JW Marriott. You will be able to walk to the Mall and monuents as well as Smithsonian from there. It should be less than $100 per night. See biddingfortravel.com for current bidding rates people are having success with. I would not stay in Manassas as it will be a transportation nightmare. If you decide to stay out of the city then I would look at Crystal City area and take the metro. If it were me with my kids we would stay in the city because it really will make your trip more enjoyable.

Transportation from Richmond to DC:

Amtrak $26 per person

Groome Transportation- shuttle van, unk cost

Activities:

1)The Smithsonian Air and Space is a must

2)he Smithsonian Natural HIstory - another must

3)The zoo -http://nationalzoo.si.edu/default.cfm?fonzref=index.htm

4)Go up to the Top of Washington Monument

5)Walk around the mall to Lincoln Memorial, WWII memorial.....

6)I would go into National Archives to see Declaration of Independence, BIll of Rights...

7) We enjoyed the spy museum, but you will need to read, so you would have to read the display cards to your little one. There were a lot of little kids there when we went. Your older kids would like it. You pick a spy identity and travel on your mission through the museum. The is a lot of cold war spying devices.

8) The Holocost Museum- it was very much a learning experience for all of us.

I hope that helps. Let me know if you need anything else

Midwest
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9. Re: vacation to dc

I know that this hasn't been active in two years but I am also planning a DC trip and want to stay in Manassas. We have a family of 5 and are trying to stay on a budget. We have found an affordable hotel in Manassas that will meet our needs. Anything closer will cost about $40 per night. It will be at least $100 per night more to stay in DC. We will have a car and the plan is to drive to the nearest metro station and use public transporation while in DC. If azfamphx is still out there let us know how your trip went and would love to hear any thoughts or suggestions.

Manassas, VA
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10. Re: vacation to dc

Tell me what hotel you are staying in. I want to make sure it's not one of our lesser quality establishments.