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International Spy Museum Washington Dc

Or Wander Through The Streets Of Eastern Market

The International Spy Museum, Washington DC

Eastern Market is a neighborhood in DC, but its also an interesting weekend street market that I didnt group into the farmers market category because it is so unique.

During the weekend, street stalls here sell a variety of oddities, from maps to clothing to soaps and more. On top of that, theres a market building that houses meat items, fresh local vegetables, and other foods.

In addition, there are several coffee shops and brunch spots lining the streets, opening their doors to hungry market-goers who need some refreshments. Its worth spending a whole morning here just wandering around and checking out whats for sale.

Wander Through A Farmers Market

Except for the winter time, there are farmers markets all over the city of Washington DC. Two of the largest ones are Dupont Circle and Columbia Heights, but there are many others you can peruse as well.

Farmers markets offer fresh produce, artisan food items, prepared food, live music, and often, the best partFREE SAMPLES. My favorite farmers market is the Dupont Circle market, because it spans a few blocks and seemingly has everything. These are a great place to people-watch, too!

Tickets To The International Spy Museum

Unlike the Smithsonian Museums, the International Spy Museum is not free.

That being said, there are several ways to save money on tickets!

Admission is offered via timed entry tickets, which means you are free to enter the museum after the time printed on your ticket.

You are able to re-enter the museum throughout the day, as long as it is after the time printed on your ticket.

FREE

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Spy Rings In American History: From The Culper Ring To The Illegals Program

Spy rings. There is something about that phrase that captures the imagination. Think about it: a ring of spies. They are as much a feature of American history, however, as grandmas apple pie: the Culper Ring helped win the Revolutionary War and the Richmond Spy Ring helped pick the pocket of the Confederacy the Nazis had a spy ring in America prior to WWII while the Illegals Program was a network of Russian sleeper agents who were arrested in 2010 in raids from Boston to Westchester County, and from New Jersey to Northern Virginia. Is there a spy ring in your neighborhood?

Y It Up At An Embassy

My Adventure at the International Spy Museum in Washington D.C.

Occasionally, DCs embassies from a variety of countries will open their doors to the public for a night of cocktails and events. For example, Mexicos embassy did a Day of the Dead celebration in November of last year to celebrate this important holiday in their culture.

Some of these events are even free to the public. This is a great way to see DC and avoid the tourists.

Typically you have to buy a ticket in advance for these parties, but it depends on the event. If you want to know more about embassy and cultural events going on here, check out this list.

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James Bond: One Part Fiction Two Parts Fantasy Shaken Over Facts Voila

The names Bond, James Bond. With these five words Sean Connery launched a cultural phenomenon. The Bond franchise went on to become the most successful in the history of cinema and many people get their knowledge about espionage and intelligence from movies and pop culture. Does Bond inform or misinform, illuminate or darken our understanding of the secret world? This talk breaks down the Bond cocktail into its constituent parts and then employs some mixology to reconstitute it: sip, savor and prepare to be enlightened Sláinte!

Dr. Andrew Hammond is available to speak at your event virtually or in-person. for more information.

Hit Up The Hottest Happy Hours

DC young professionals LOVE happy hour. For many of us happy hour is the new dinner. Typically occurring from 4-7 PM, people flock to some of the best bars in Washington, DC for discounted food, drink, and social time.

There are happy hours all over the city, but some of the most popular areas to go are Dupont Circle/Adams Morgan, 14th Street, U Street, Shaw, and Gallery Place.

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Visit A Historic Home

OK, OK, I know these are ~kind of~ museums, but they never get mentioned anywhere in museum posts, so I thought Id include them on this post of alternative things to do in Washington DC. This is an often neglected attraction in Washington. Because it has been a city critical to the formation of the United States, DC has a lot of historic old homes you can tour.

In Georgetown, the Old Stone House is the oldest house in DC, and offers guided tours throughout the day. Or, head to the Heurich House, which is a historic home that boasts some odd decor and architecture inside its four walls. For a list of historic homes in DC, check out this site.

Go Out For A Night Out On The Town

The International Spy Museum – Washington, DC

While its not Las Vegas, the nightlife scene in DC can be super fun, if you know where to go. Some of the hotspots for night time activity include Adams Morgan and U Street, but there are bars all over the city, from Navy Yard to Columbia Heights.

Some restaurants even turn into clubs at night the one that always makes me laugh is the club on the third floor of a quaint Russian restaurant, Mari Vanna, in downtown DC.

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Security And Visitor Policies

While there are not required to go through a scanner at this museum, your bag and belongings as subject to be searched upon entry into the museum.

While in the galleries, there is no flash photography allowed. Photography of certain areas and artifacts is permitted.

The museum asks that you pay attention to signage and obey the No Photography signs when posted.

Other Gallery Policies

  • The museum asks that visitors do not have food, drink, or chewing gum while in the galleries.
  • They, also, ask that visitors do not talk on cell phones and refrain from smoking.
  • All guests under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
  • The museum asks that strollers be checked in the Clock Room at the Museum Lobby.

Sport & Spies: Theres More In Common Than You Think

From the World Cup to the World Series, from World War II to the Olympics spying and intelligence gathering have been a feature of professional sports. Presidents and prime ministers have wanted to know what opponents are up to: so have players and coaches!

Andrew will talk about the links between sport and spying using the worlds greatest collection of intelligence and espionage related artifacts. Among other stories, hear about the baseball player who was tasked with assassinating the Nobel Prize winning physicist on Germanys nuclear project! Oh, and his last words were, How are the Mets doing today?

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Visit The National Harbor

DC doesnt really have a Coney Island, but the closest thing is our National Harbor. Home to different things and sights such as casinos, fantastic dining options, and bustling walking areas, the National Harbor is a great place to spend an evening.

One of the most well-known sights on the National Harbor is the ferris wheel, also known as the Capital Wheel.

Riding the wheel boasts some views of the Potomac River and is a fun way to spend a little while when youre at the National Harbor.

Locals frequently visit here, so the National Harbor should be on your list on non touristy locations in Washington, DC. You can learn more about pricing and tickets on the Capital Wheel website.

Peruse The Stalls At Union Market

Tickets International Spy Museum

Located in the up-and-coming NoMa neighborhood, Union Market is a newer warehouse-like establishment featuring many indoor food vendors and boutique shops.

This is definitely the most upscale of the markets here, designed to be a place for young professionals and families alike to hang out, sip on a glass of wine, and eat finger foods while catching up with friends.

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Run In A Scenic Road Race

Running is a huge activity in Washington DC, and you can find people running almost all hours of the day on the citys sidewalks. If youre a runner yourself, you can get to know the city by joining a road race! Races in DC happen very regularly, so you can almost always find one if you really want to.

Some of the most popular races are the Army 10 Miler, the , the Pride 5K, the Rock and Roll Marathon and Half Marathon, and the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler. Even if you dont like running, its worth heading to the races to spectate if you happen to coincide with one of them!

Top International Spy Museum Parking Resources

  • SpotHero book discounted parking in International Spy Museum garages online or on your smartphone
  • Spy Museum Check out the official visitors page for more parking and visitor tips
  • Yelp read customer reviews of parking facilities and amenities near the Spy Museum
  • TripSavvy read the advice of TripSavvy users about public parking and tips about the Spy Museum
  • Parking Panda reserve International Spy Museum parking online
  • Destination DC- Check out insider tips on how to optimize your time in DCs unique Adams Morgan neighborhood
  • TripAdvisor Check out reviews and insider Spy Museum tips

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Quick Links

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Exhibits & Interactive Activities Of The International Spy Museum

There are plenty of exhibits for everyone to explore spread over different levels at the museum.

Explore the Briefing Center, where visitors will receive their cover identities and test out their spy skills. On the 5th floor, visitors come face to face with spies and spymasters, gadget makers, scientists, and engineers from the ages. See how the best of human imagination and ingenuity is channeled to steal secrets.

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Learn to think like an analyst at the Make Sense of Secrets exhibits and try one’s hand at code-craking and think like an analyst. Learn about age-old techniques used to surreptitiously influence events abroad and learn about covert missions, both successful and failed.

On the 4th floor, visitors see how spying has shaped the world all the way from the American Revolution to today’s cyber warfare. Hear what real spies think of on-screen spies like 007.

Visitors get to test their spy skills in 17 different digital and physical interactives in the permanent exhibitions.

Explore The City By Night

International Spy Museum | Things to Do In Washington, DC

One of the most beautiful times of day to see Washington, DC is at night, when the monuments are all lit up amidst the night sky.

I know, I know, I promised there wouldnt be any monuments on this list, but seeing the monuments via the citys main thoroughfares is a different thing altogether, and you can avoid the hoards of tourists by going at this time.

One of my favorite places to visit at night is the area near the Washington Monument here, you can see the monument itself as well as the WWII Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Capitol building all lit up.

Theres a really awesome night tour of DC you can take to see some of the citys most beautiful areas in the most tranquil time of day.

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How To Get To The International Spy Museum

The International Spy Museum is located in downtown Washington, DC near L’Enfant Plaza.

The museum is on L’Enfant Plaza SW near D St SW just south of Independence Ave SW.

The closest Metro station is the L’Enfant Plaza station . There are many exits from this Station, but the 9th and D St SW L’Enfant Plaza Promenade is the closest. Use our guide to using the Metro to get there.

Many of the Hop on Hop Off Bus Tours have stops nearby. Read more about the best Washington DC bus tours to find a company and a bus pass that fits your itinerary.

  • International Spy Museum Parking

The museum does not have any on-site parking, but they have partnered with Spot Hero to help visitors find parking in nearby parking garages. They recommend reserving parking ahead of time through this partnership.

Dc Museum Showcases Cool Gadgets And Fake Poop Among Its 10000 Artifacts

Its no secret: Lucy Stirn loves working at the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C. And not just because she gets to tell kids about spies hiding things in fake tiger poop a highlight of any museum tour.

Youre never going to have a kid come in and say Oh, thats boring, said Stirn, director of youth education at the museum, which celebrates its 20th birthday this month.

Theres something for everyone among the museums 10,000 artifacts. Part of the appeal for kids is its a little naughty and a little sneaky, said Stirn, a former teacher who has worked at the museum for 10 years. They come in looking for the cool gadgets, she said. They dont know about the historical aspects, so we that, too.

Visitors are surprised when an object that appears to be one thing turns out to be something very different, said Andrew Hammond, the museums artifacts curator and historian.

What looked like tiger poop was actually a device used to detect enemy troop movements in jungles during the Vietnam War . No one ever thought to pick it up and examine it.

All is not what it seems, Stirn reminds young visitors. Another example: An ordinary-looking dead rat in an alley might have been gutted to hide money or messages in it. Spies used these rats during the Cold War with the Soviet Union . When stray cats began picking up the rats, agents sprinkled them with hot sauce. Problem solved.

If you go

Where: 700 LEnfant Plaza in Southwest Washington.

Word wise

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The Fine Arts & Exhibits Special Section

The museum takes a forthright look, too, at intelligence failures, dissecting the catastrophically mistaken estimates about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and pairing the attacks on Pearl Harbor and on Sept. 11, 2001, in illuminating ways. A creepy set of rooms depicts East Berlin as a surveillance society gone out of control.

Why Spy: Traitors Turncoats And Double Agents

Professional Freelance Content: The International Spy Museum: A Blend ...

Lets be honest, espionage and intelligence are fascinating. Within that world, traitors, turncoats and double agents are more fascinating still. This talk will look at some of the twentieth centurys most famous, one American, one British and one Russian: Aldrich Ames , Kim Philby and Oleg Gordievsky . Why did they do what they did? What could motivate someone to spy on their friends, colleagues, comrades or country? Money, ideology, revenge, or something else?

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Or Do Some Hiking At Great Falls

If you have a car , you cant miss Great Falls. Although its located a little bit out of the city on the Virginia-Maryland border, Ive included it on this list because it is an absolutely spectacular sight.

Here, the Potomac cascades and crashes over sharp rocks in a canyon-like area, causing a mesmerizing set of waterfalls. Its truly like being in another world there. There are several miles of hiking trails here, ranging from flat, easy hikes to tricky rock scrambles. You can take your pick.

Highlights Of The International Spy Museum

  • Pretending to be a spy! — You can go undercover where you are assigned a secret identity. It is then your job to withhold that identity and keep your cover. You are tested on whether or not you succeeded in that mission with 17 different interactive stations.
  • Dive into the history of espionage! — You’ll see amazing inventions use to steal secrets, keep covers, and crack codes. The museum’s section on spying during the Cold War is especially fascinating.

Your museum experience will start when you enter the first floor and will wait for the elevator to take you up to the 5th floor.

In the lobby you will see various artifacts and props that will give you an idea of what is in store for the rest of your visit.

In the lobby, you wait for an elevator to take you up to the 5th floor where you will learn if you have what it takes to be a spy.

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