History/Politics tour to Washington by air: 5 days, 3 nights

We have selected excursions that specifically relate to and provide the best learning opportunities for different areas of the GCSE revisions for the AQA, OCR and Edexcel syllabuses. Please ask your travel advisor for advice on which excursions are most appropriate for your exam board. ‘Prices from’ is based on low season departure, inclusive of flights, transfers and room only accommodation.

Suggested itinerary

Day one
Fly from the UK to Washington
Arrive in Washington
Transfer to your accommodation

Day two
Lincoln Memorial
Vietnam Veterans Memorial
Washington Monument
The White House Visitor Centre

Day three
Supreme Court
Capitol Hill
Union Station
American History Museum

Day four
Depart accommodation
Transfer to airport via Arlington Cemetery
Board flight back to UK

Day five
Arrive back in the UK

Excursion locator map

Excursion Ideas

  • The Lincoln Memorial, Washington

    Subject range: History

    What you’ll experience: The Lincoln Memorial is a monument built to honour the 16th President, Abraham Lincoln. It is located on the western end of the National Mall in Washington, across from the Washington Monument. The building is in the form of a Greek Doric temple and contains a large seated sculpture of Abraham Lincoln. There are inscriptions of two of Lincoln’s famous speeches – The Gettysburg Address and his Second Inaugural Address.
    Select says: This was also the site where Martin Luther King made his ‘I Have a Dream’ speech.

  • Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Washington

    Subject range: History

    What you’ll experience: 

    Honouring the men and women who served in the controversial Vietnam War, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial chronologically lists the names of more than 58,000 Americans who gave their lives in service during the Vietnam Conflict. The memorial also includes ‘The Three Servicemen’ statue and the Vietnam Women’s Memorial.

    Select says: 

    On the National Park Service website, Park Ranger Jeff Jones briefly describes the significance of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial – useful for pre and post tour classwork.

  • Washington Monument

    Subject range: History

    What you’ll experience: The Washington Monument is an obelisk that dominates the United States Capital, built to commemorate George Washington the first American president. It is constructed from marble, granite and gneiss.
    Select says: The monument is the world’s tallest freestanding stone structure at more than 555 feet.

  • The White House Visitor Centre

    Subject range: History

    What you’ll experience: The White House is the official residence and principal workplace of the President of the United States, located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW in Washington, D.C. It has been the residence of every U.S. president since John Adams in 1800. You may also choose to visit the ‘White House Visitors Center’ which features many aspects of the White House, including its architecture, furnishings, first families, social events, and relations with the press and world leaders.
    Select says: Interactive tours are available on the White House website for pre tour work and post tour follow up.

  • Supreme Court, Washington

    Subject range: History

    What you’ll experience: This building is majestic and richly ornamented – it serves as both home to the Court and the symbol of its importance as a co-equal, independent branch of government. 30-minute tour programs are designed to introduce visitors of all ages to the judicial functions of the Supreme Court, the history of the building, and the architecture of the courtroom. The Supreme Court Building was designed by Cass Gilbert and built from 1931 to 1935. The Court first sat in the building on Monday, October 7, 1935.
    Select says: Architectural information describing many of the building’s sculptural elements may be obtained from the Visitor Desk on the ground floor.

  • Capitol Hill, Washington

    Subject range: History

    What you’ll experience: The Senate and the House of Representatives have met within the Capitol building for more than two centuries and it is among the most architecturally impressive and symbolically important buildings in the world. The Capitol Visitor Center is the newest addition to this historic complex. The entire facility is located underground on the east side of the Capitol so as not to detract from the appearance of the Capitol and the grounds.
    Select says: Look out for the numerous huge canvases with scenes of American history on the walls. The dome is painted with the huge fresco ‘The Apotheses of Washington’.

  • Union Station

    Subject range: History

    What you’ll experience: Union Station is a major train station, transportation hub, and leisure destination. Visited by 32 million people a year, Union Station is one of the busiest train stations in the country. The station opened in 1907 and at its height during World War II some 200,000 people passed through it every day. In 1988 a new headhouse wing was constructed to the north and the original station renovated for use as a shopping mall.
    Select says: For pre-tour there is a detailed history of Union Station available on their website.

  • American History Museum, Washington

    Subject range: History

    What you’ll experience: The National Museum of American History preserves and displays an enduring record of American past in the areas of social, political, cultural, scientific and military history. The Museum collects artifacts of all kinds from gowns to locomotives. Tours are self-guided.
    Select says: Among the items on display is the original Star-Spangled Banner.

  • Arlington Cemetery

    Subject range: History

    What you’ll experience: Arlington National Cemetery’s rolling hills mark the final resting place for more than 14,000 veterans, including those that fought in the Civil War. It is one of the country’s oldest national cemeteries. Your first stop should include the Welcome Center, located by the entrance where maps and information is available along with exhibits and displays that tell the story of the cemetery’s significance to the nation.
    Select says: Arlington Cemetery is also the gravesite of President John F Kennedy.

History/Politics trip to Washington by air: 5 days, 3 nights Accommodation

Comfort Inn Downtown DC

Our rating:

Location: Washington


In a prime location in the heart of Washington, half a block from Pennsylvania Avenue and the Whitehouse. This contemporary hotel in downtown Washington DC offers classic American charm.

Rooms: En-suite bathrooms.

Facilities: Restaurant, free Wi-Fi, 24 hour reception, lounge area.

Hotel Harrington, Washington

Our rating:

Location: Washington


Ideally located downtown within walking distance of the main attractions. The White House is 10 minutes’ walk from the hotel and the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History is 650 yards away. A great group friendly accommodation with an unrivalled location!

Rooms: Ensuite bathrooms with hairdryer, cable TV, air-conditioning.

Facilities: 3 restaurants, games room, free Wi-Fi, vending machines, safety deposit box, lift. Select says: Packed lunches are available.