My Favorite Instagrammable Spots in DC Vol. 1

I first moved to Washington, DC back in 2008 for college. I think it’s pretty safe to say I have a pretty good grasp of some pretty photogenic places in the city. I know most visitors to town like to go to places like Georgetown and Chinatown, but DC has so many hidden gems as well so I thought I’d put together a list of some of my favorite places for that perfect Instagram shot! I had so many to choose from so I decided to break these down into several parts. Today is part 1:

City Center


CityCenter is a relatively new area but it’s definitely an Instagram favorite! The area has a lot of high end shops (think Louis Vuitton and Salvatore Ferragamo), restaurants, and luxury condos. The little alleyway always has cute installations! The lanterns in this picture are from Spring but in the summer they switch to beach balls, and kites, and in the winter they usually have snowflakes.

Union Market


I hang out at Union Market waaaaaay too often. This little warehouse market has pop up restaurants and a cute little shop called Salt and Sundry. The best part of the market are the fun walls like the famous heart wall! They also have a graphic quote from Yoko Ono as well.

Union Station


Union Station is incredible - it was built in 1907 by architect David Burnham (from Devil in the White City’s Columbian Exposition fame), and is created in what many experts believe to be the best example of Beaux-Arts style, for you art nerds out there. The outside has these amazing columns and arches and the inside is beautifully decorated as well.

United States Botanic Garden


Even though I’m terrible at taking care of plants, I love looking at plants and the best place in DC for that is the US Botanic Garden. They change the plants around every season here so there’s always something new to discover and learn about. The garden is broken up into different sections for different kinds of plants that thrive in different conditions (like a desert area, a tropical area, etc.). You seriously can’t go wrong photographing here.

Library of Congress


When I posted pictures from the Library of Congress on Instagram, I think my non-American followers just thought this place was a nice library. If you’re not American, Let me explain that the Library of Congress is a historical building and used as a research library that officially serves the US Congress. It is, in fact, the oldest federal cultural institution in the US. As you can imagine, the architecture is stunning and the building itself is gorgeous.

Little Leaf Shop


The Little Leaf Shop on U Street is adorable and very Instagram friendly. I think they basically designed the shop to be as photogenic as possible! Pick up a little plant on your way out!

Carnegie Library


This library is interesting - it was originally the very first public library in DC, donated by Andrew Carnegie. This public library was moved to the MLK library after 70 years in service due to overcrowding. The building itself was renovated and bought by Apple. It’s now known as the Apple Carnegie Library where they sell Apple products on the main floor and the upper floors have museums. The interior is GORGEOUS but the outside is so fun to shoot at! Look at the intricate columns! So beautiful.