Yoshino cherry trees will be blooming next month in the nation’s capital. March 27 – April 11 marks the National Cherry Blossom Festival this year. That’s when the banks of the Potomac River and the open National Mall will likely be exploding in fragrant color. The weather will also be more hospitable by then with temperatures in the low 60’s. With so many large parks, the city is ideal for walking tours so bring your camera!

Washington, D.C. is a study in contrasts for the first time visitor. While the city is a prominent center for national and international media, illiteracy is still a major problem within the predominantly African American population. Home to the FBI and CIA, D.C. continues to have a higher than average crime rate for cities its size. And the Department of Transportation’s presence has done little to relieve the congested traffic. Still, this fascinating area is worth a visit for anyone interested in American government, history or architecture. Some of the top U.S. buildings, including the White House, the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, the US Capitol, and the Lincoln Memorial are here. All of these structures will be framed by the pink blossoms soon, so if you want a different kind of spring break – this is a great choice.