Looking for info and tips on eco-friendly accommodation, tours and activities in Washington, D.C.? Here you’ll find our favorite sustainable hotels, hostels, tours and recommendations for restaurants in the capital of the United States of America. We’ve also put together some links to the weather forecast for Washington and other useful travel info. Enjoy!
Washington, DC and sustainability
The US Capitol is more than politics and prose, or donkeys and elephants. It’s a budding environment for millennials, families and businesses alike. Community has been at the heart of DC since its roots in 1790. The city is always striving to create environmentally, supportive events and opportunities for its locals.
Since 2011 the Capitol has been diligently promoting sustainability by solutions in areas of economy, wellness, equity, energy, transportation, climate and environment.
Eco-friendly hotels in Washington DC
This stylish boutique hotel is situated in the heart of downtown DC. It is walking distance to the National Mall and the hip, Dupont Circle area. Green Key certified and part of the Kimpton line hotels, it has progressive eco-friendly practices and is working to ensure a healthy environment. The Hotel Helix’s projects include waste reduction, eco-friendly transportation for guests, organic snacks and coffee, and green meetings and events.
HI Hostel DC
HI- DC is a hostel committed to environmental stewardship. They boast being the only hostel in the area designated “Eco-friendly” by Hostel World, with low water consumption, a fantastic recycling program, monthly documentaries on environmentalism and no disposable dish ware. All of the guest rooms are made from recycled materials and use low VOC paint and carpet.
Travel activities & urban adventures in DC
Washington DC Unveiled
Join this small group tour of the National Mall on board an all-electric Red Roadster — perfect for covering the huge area and many monuments in DC. The local guide will give you the scoop on the White House, Capitol Building, Smithsonian, and more.
Start your urban adventure here
Monuments by Night
Experience a whole different side of Washington, DC during the Monuments By Night tour. Climb into the all-electric Red Roadsters and tour the National Mall in style while enjoying the moonlit magic of the monuments, White House, and Capitol Hill.
Start your night adventure here
Capitol Hill Tour: Politics & Pint
Stroll the streets of Washington, DC’s oldest residential neighborhood and discover the birthplace of American politics. See the iconic U.S. Capitol Building, the Supreme Court, and Library of Congress. Engage in a lively discussion and debate about historic and current American politics, all lead by a local guide. Finish up with a drink on DC’s historic Barrack’s Row.
Start your urban adventure here
National Geographic Headquarters & Museum
National Geographic headquarters is in Dupont Circle and was the first LEED Silver certified building in the country! They have a Green Team on staff that ensures quality control and sponsors “green events” throughout the year. They also have a waste reduction program, a bee farm on the roof and an organic cafeteria for their employees. The museum is open to the public and hosts year-round exhibits and interactive experiences focusing on nature.
Walking tours are an inherently eco friendly way to see a city. While historical walks are generally pretty fun, and DC has plenty of history, Ghost tours are the way to go. Washington Walks has several tours for you to choose from, but we recommend the Capitol Hauntings tour for the thrill seekers.The tour starts at 7:30 pm and takes about 2 hours.
Healthy eateries: cafes and restaurants in DC
Founding Farmers is the spot to dine in downtown DC. With it’s market-driven menu and rustic American cuisine, it’s the perfect spot to end a long day of sightseeing. Not only is the food carefully selected and crafted from local sources, but the building itself is LEED Gold certified and the Founding Farmers are an official Carbonfund.org partner.
They also boast their own line of rye whiskey and gin. And they offer juice cleanses to go.
Art, poetry and organic food all in one place! Busboys and Poets is a cozy spot with a lot of character. Their green practices include organic and fair trade products, bio-dynamic wines, recycling oil for bio fuel, and 100% renewable wind energy to power the building. They also consciously uplift diversity and believe in creating a space where art, culture and politics intentionally
Weather in DC & other travel info
For the latest news on weather in Washington DC, check weather.com.
For all sorts of useful information about Washington as travel destination, check wikitravel.org.
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Still need travel insurance for your upcoming trip to the USA? Here’s why World Nomads is our favorite travel insurance for city trips.
This article on eco-friendly things to do and places to stay in DC was curated by Misty Foster of Green Suitcase Travel – a boutique online travel agency specialized in trips centered around responsible travel.
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