Best Hotels & Areas to Stay in Washington DC

Best Hotels & Areas to Stay in Washington DC

If you’re traveling to Washington DC I’m going to tell you about the best areas where you can stay. Welcome to Trip Hacks DC. My name is Rob. I’m a tour guide here in the nation’s capital. If you’re coming to Washington DC and you’re looking for the best tips, tricks, and hacks for exploring the city, make sure to subscribe to this channel and hit the bell notification icon so that you don’t miss any new videos. And if you’re interested in signing up for a Trip Hacks DC tour, head on over to afterwards, to see the tours that I offer. If you’ve traveled to Washington DC before, leave a comment on this video and let me know where you like to stay and why. A very common question that people send through goes something like this: I’m traveling to Washington DC for the first time and I don’t know anything about the city. Can you please recommend an area that’s safe and convenient for tourists? I understand that finding a place to stay can be challenging because there are an almost overwhelming number of options here. To help with this I have created the Trip Hacks DC Recommended Hotels guide, which you can access by heading over to In this video I’m going to tell you about 11 areas of the city where I would recommend staying ranked in order from which I consider the best. These areas line up exactly with the Recommended Hotels guide and I’ve created a Google Map that shows you where they are as well. So the cool thing is that if you have your eye on a particular hotel but it’s not in my guide you can plug it into the Google Map and it’ll put a pin on the map showing you whether it’s in one of my 11 areas or not. I will leave a link to the guide, the map and all of the resources I’m mentioning in this video in the description. Now, let’s jump in to the eleven areas… the best area in my opinion for tourism and general sightseeing is downtown, specifically the area around the White House. For most people this is a good mix of being close to sightseeing, transportation, and some restaurants and nightlife. If being close to transportation is important, depending on exactly where you stay, you could be close to all six metro lines; but in a lot of cases you’ll be able to walk to whatever destination you’re going to because it’ll be so close. The next area I recommend is around our Convention Center. Washington DC hosts a ton of big events so it makes sense that there are a lot of hotels near the Convention Center to accommodate all the attendees. If you’re coming in for an event at the Convention Center then staying here is a no-brainer; however these hotels are well located for the general tourist as well. You’ll be within walking distance of the Capitol and the museums on the National Mall. This is also a great area if you’re attending a concert or a game at the Capital One Center (formerly the Verizon Center) and you don’t want to have to worry about transportation or getting back to your hotel after the game. The next area is what I’m calling Georgetown / Foggy Bottom. The most important thing you need to know about hotels that have the word “Georgetown” in the name is that most of them are not actually in the heart of Georgetown. They’re usually about 1/2 to 1 mile down the street from the main intersection of Wisconsin and M Streets. If you’re looking for the highest-end hotels in DC this is where you will find them. The Four Seasons, Ritz-Carlton, Fairmount and Park Hyatt are all in this area. There are also plenty of more modest hotel brands in this area as well like, Embassy Suites, Hilton Garden, and Hyatt Place. This area is best if you want to be close to Georgetown for whatever reason. It’s not too far from the monuments on the National Mall and you can use the Foggy Bottom metro station for fairly easy transportation. The next area is around Dupont Circle. Most hotels in this area are actually not too far from the ones I mentioned in the Georgetown area, but they’re a little bit closer to the Dupont Circle metro, rather than the Foggy Bottom metro. This area is best if you want to be close to nightlife. There’s a decent number of bars on Connecticut Avenue right near Dupont Circle; but more importantly you’re within walking distance of the Adams Morgan corridor and the U Street corridor, two of the biggest nightlife areas in DC. For general sightseeing this isn’t a bad choice. It’s a little bit farther away from the National Mall than some of the other options but it’s not bad; and of course you’ll have Metro there if you need it as well. The next area is around Union Station. The Capitol is only about a half mile north of Union Station so the hotels in this area serve the dual purpose of serving train travelers and general tourists. Just like with the Georgetown hotels, be very careful about any hotel that slaps the words “Union Station” on to its name. Some of them can be as far as miles away. You want to stay in the area directly adjacent. The hotels in this area will give you easy access to Metro if you want it, or you can use DC Circulator to access the museums, the monuments, and the memorials on the National Mall. The next area is Woodley Park. There are two big hotels near the Woodley Park Metro station. They attract a lot of conference business from organizers who don’t quite need as much space as they’d get at the Convention Center, so if you’re coming to DC for a conference it’s possible you might wind up here. It also means that if you come to DC during a time when they’re not booked up for an event you can get some great deals on these hotels. This is the best area to stay if you want to be close to the National Zoo. For most other tourism you’re going to be hopping on the Metro, and remember that there’s only one line here: the red line. Next is Southwest DC. In 2017 the massive multi-billion dollar Wharf development opened in the southwest quadrant of Washington. There are three brand-new hotels in this area, and I personally think this would be one of the coolest areas to stay if I were coming to DC. The big downside is that the closest metro stations are at least a 10-minute walk away. But there is a free Southwest shuttle that will take you to metro stations and the museums on the National Mall. There are also a few hotels in the southwest quadrant of the city that are typically booked by business people who are traveling to federal office buildings, but on weekends these can actually be great options for tourists due to their proximity to the Capitol and National Mall. The biggest downside is That there isn’t a ton of restaurants or nightlife right nearby. The next area is around the Navy Yard Metro. This is another newly developed area of the city. Nationals Ballpark is located here, so if you’re coming to DC for a baseball game, this is the ideal area to stay. For general sightseeing it’s not a bad option as well. The Capitol is about a 20 minute walk to the north and most hotels are very close to the Navy Yard metro station, so you can hop on the Green Line to get elsewhere. The next three areas are actually going to be in Virginia, not Washington DC. I generally recommend that people try to stay in the city, if possible, because it’s just much more convenient; however I understand that people have many reasons for choosing the areas where they stay, so I wanted to make sure I mentioned a few suburban locations as well. Crystal City is located directly adjacent to Ronald Reagan National Airport, so this is the ideal location for airport travelers or those who need to catch a really early morning flight. For general sightseeing it’s actually not bad either because it’s only three stops on the yellow line to get into the National Mall. Next is the area that I’m calling North Arlington. If you are going to stay in Virginia, my recommendation is not to venture any farther west than the Rosslyn or Court House metro stations. Once you start getting farther away Metro fares start going up. Remember that that’s because Metro doesn’t charge a flat fee but rather charges you based on how far you travel, so if you’re trying to stay really far away to save money on a hotel you have to be careful that any savings isn’t being wiped out in higher Metro fares. That said, if you are adamant about staying in the suburbs, this would be my preferred location. Lastly, let’s talk about Old Town Alexandria. Old Town is a fantastic historic area that I often recommend for people who are looking for a fun day trip. There’s plenty of great restaurants, shopping, and things to see and do; however it is quite a bit farther away from DC than a lot of people realize. You Can use Metro from the King Street station or an uber or taxi to get into DC, but if you’re staying here but spending majority of your time in the city, commuting costs can start to add up. So my recommendation is to stay in Old Town if you think you’re going to spend 50% or more of your time in Old Town. And that’s it! Thank you for watching this video. If you found it helpful you can subscribe to this channel by clicking on the Trip Hacks DC logo which is popping up right now at the bottom of the screen. And if you’re coming to DC and want to sign up for a Trip Hacks DC tour you can click on the Capitol dome on the left side of my head, that’ll take it over to where you can see the tours that I offer. Enjoy your trip!

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29 Replies to “Best Hotels & Areas to Stay in Washington DC”

  1. You can check out the Trip Hacks DC Recommended Hotels Guide over at If you want to see the 11 recommended areas on a Google Map, click or tap right here:

  2. Great video! Please add some hotels that are pet friendly. I stayed at the Monaco in Alexandria with my cat. Nice hotel! Do you have any suggestions?

  3. I just stayed in DC last week, and found that the H-street corridor (around 7th and 8th) was very good. I stayed in an air bnb, though not a hotel. The restaurants and stores were very close to where I was staying, and the street car was only a few minutes walk away.

    Thanks for all of your videos! They really helped me out with my trip!!

  4. Hi Rob. Me and my friend went to DC last year for the first time. We stayed at the Holiday Inn in Greenbelt, Maryland. The hotel had the best customer service I’ve ever seen. They also had a free Shuttle that would take you to and from the Greenbelt metro station. One time the shuttle wasn’t available when we requested it, and the staff paid for us a taxi so we didn’t have to wait. I’ve never seen a hotel staff go out of their way to help customers like they did. Being outside the city we were able to save a lot of money on the hotel price and were able to do a lot more on our trip. Would definitely recommend Holiday Inn Greenbelt, Maryland to anybody!

  5. Hello Rob. Excellent videos! I'm planning a family trip to DC and was wandering if you have any recommendations for good Bed&Breakfast places to stay.

  6. Hey Rob, I’m in the process of getting an internship with the Smithsonian this summer. Do you have any tips for interns? Such as housing options and things to do during free time.

  7. I'll also add in some inner Maryland suburbs: Bethesda and Silver Spring. Both are 30 mins and 20 mins away from downtown, respectively too. Both also have pretty interesting downtown districts of their own too 👍

  8. We stayed in Georgetown at the Residence Inn (Marriott). We loved the location, it was close to the Foggy Bottom Metro and there were restaurants and several grocery stores around. We had a room with a small kitchen, free breakfast each day and they did an evening social Mon-Wed that was our dinner. We chose to stay there to help save on Metro expenses but honestly once we figured out how to calculate the metro fees via city mapper I realized that we could have stayed in Arlington and saved ALOT of money. It was only $.25-$.50 more for each person taking the Metro to be in Arlington and the hotels were $100+ per night cheaper. I think they even have a Residence Inn in Arlington so you'd have breakfast/kitchen and possibly the evening social also. The Metro is so fast that it really wouldn't take that long to get into the city (just avoid AM or PM rush hours) and you could save alot. If we go again and there is a big discrepancy in price we will stay in Arlington instead. FYI I think Arlington even has a Costco and some of the hotels I looked into offered a 1 mile radius shuttle so they'd drive you there. Think cheap lunch/dinner.

  9. I use to find a hotel in Washington DC but right now I stay in my cousins apartment in Falls Church,VA, downtown silver spring and Comfort inn in Beltsville because I normally take Wmata subway to Washington with my metrocard with a lot of money and my mom works in the FDA

  10. I'm in Massachusetts & will be in DC soon, & I sent ur video 2 my niece in Texas bc she & some friends will b going 2 DC & I told them 2 check u out 4 a tour! Ur videos r so informative!!

  11. Excellent video and you are so right, I have found that at different times of the year, sometimes it is easier and cheaper to stay across the river in Crystal City. Keep up the great videos!

  12. A Hilton in laurel an hour away from Washington. Very nice staff, modern and nice. But you have to drive to get to dc though. If you just walk than don’t stay there

  13. I also had good luck in the Friendship Heights area though a bit farther out. Even Bethesda/Rockville though he is right about higher Metro fares but a $100 or more cheaper for a hotel adds up to a lot of subway fares plus there are a lot of nice places to eat etc… in those areas. My biggest tip would be, use the shoulder seasons and check when big conventions were in town. Lots of rooms that can be very reasonable at off times even in desirable times of year. No cherry blossoms, holidays or big conventions.

  14. Got good deals for either The Darcy or the Georgetown Suites. Which one do you suggest? We plan to do a bit of everything and like to walk whilst sightseeing. Love your videos, so informative. Thanks

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