East Coast Cities
East Coast Cities
Four iconic cities stand out when we think of American history, culture, government and commerce, Philadelphia, Boston, New York City and Washington, DC. These great cities along the East Coast are fundamental to the development of our nation, the ongoing dynamics of international commerce, the governance of our nation and world-wide diplomacy. Our heritage is displayed in their museums, our music played out in their concert halls and our laws worked out in their corridors of power. The soul of America is showcased in these dynamic and exhilarating cities.
New York City, NY
New York City has something for every taste and every traveler, from incredible art galleries and museums to some of the world’s best restaurants. Start along 5th Avenue at the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Guggenheim Museum, or visit any of the other 30-plus major museums in the city. Take a leisurely bike ride through Central Park or window-shop on the Upper East Side. View the city from the 102nd floor of the Empire State Building or browse through SoHo’s art galleries and unusual boutiques. Visit the Statue of Liberty, Lincoln Center, Gracie Mansion, Times Square, and the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, just to name a few of the famous sights. If you still have some energy (and cash), don’t miss the chance to snag tickets to an award-winning Broadway show or hop over to one of the many rooftop bars and jazz clubs illuminating the Meatpacking District after dark. There are endless ways to spend your time in the city that never sleeps.
Washington DC, DC
You’ve learned about America’s capitol city in textbooks, but there’s nothing like seeing the real thing up close. When you visit Washington, DC, you experience so much more than a portal to the past or a glimpse at the flexing power of government. With its neoclassical government buildings and broad avenues, Washington, D.C., looks its part as America’s capitol. The Capitol, White House, Supreme Court and National Mall get the lion’s share of attention. Majestic monuments and memorials, scattered throughout the National Mall, pay tribute to notable leaders and great achievements, and definitely merit a visit. The internationally renowned collections of the Smithsonian make Washington one of the great museum cities. The 140 million holdings of the 19 Smithsonian museums range from a 65-million-year old Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton to masterpieces by Leonardo da Vinci and Pablo Picasso, the original “Star-Spangled Banner,” and the space shuttle Discovery, and all are on view for free. However, DC is, also, a serious music, culinary, and nightlife hub. You’re in America’s capital, and this city belongs to you.
The first World Heritage City in the United States celebrates its past at sites such as Independence Hall and revels in its present as a modern metropolis on a cultural upswing. Founded by William Penn and nurtured by Benjamin Franklin, Philadelphia today buzzes with lively neighborhoods, excellent restaurants, and fun nightlife. Consider Philadelphia’s sightseeing possibilities; more than 90 museums; innumerable Colonial churches, row houses and mansions; stately public squares like Rittenhouse and Logan; more Impressionist art than you’ll find in any place outside of Paris; and leafy parks. Beyond Independence Hall, the birthplace of the Declaration of Independence, and the Liberty Bell, there are plenty of things to do. Visit the Philadelphia Museum of Art, take time to explore the Rodin Museum (home to the largest collection of Rodin’s work outside of Paris) and the Barnes Foundation, which has a remarkable collection of Impressionist art. In addition to its impressive American heritage, vibrant waterfronts now flank the city, chef-driven restaurants dot hip neighborhoods, and world-class music abound. At its core, Philadelphia is a city that runs on a medley of history, tradition, and “brotherly love.”
For all intents and purposes, Boston is the oldest city in America. And you can hardly walk a step over its cobblestone streets without running into some historic site. The Freedom Trail winds its way around the city center, connecting 16 historically significant sites, from the country’s oldest public park to a Revolutionary War battle site. Boston is also arguably America’s greatest walking city, and it’s easy to stroll its historic districts, see a museum or three, and grab dinner on the waterfront within one day. The options are endless: view masterpieces of art that span millennia at the Museum of Fine Arts, sample gourmet treats from the newly opened Boston Public Market, or get some fresh air hiking around the Boston Harbor Islands. A well-rounded trip to Boston integrates the classic with the contemporary.