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Do you recommend the ANC tour or walking ourselves?

Kansas City, MO
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56 posts
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Do you recommend the ANC tour or walking ourselves?

We are traveling in 2 weeks with our two children (ages 9 and 7). We will definitely be visiting Arlington National Cemetary. We want to see the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier for sure. Less important to us, but we'd still like to see it, are the Kennedy graves. I would also like to see the Challenger memorial.

We will have a car and we will probably plan on driving from our hotel (near the Capitol) to Arlington National Cemetary and then will head to the Udvar Hazy afterwards.

My question is...do you recommend that we take part in the tour (ANC Tours) or just walk the cemetary ourselves? About how far/how arduous is the journey from the parking lot to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and possibly by the Kennedy Graves? Is the tour suited toward children? About how long will the tour take if we don't linger at any particular site other than the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier? Last question...do we need to buy tickets for the tour in advance or can we get them on that day when we arrive? (We are planning to visit first thing in the morning).


Washington DC...
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1. Re: Do you recommend the ANC tour or walking ourselves?

Using the tram to get around in Arlington National Cemetery can save a lot of walking. And climbing hills. But it will only get you so far. You will still have some walking to do for each stop. It is a hop-on hop-off sort of tour rather than an organized survey of the cemetery. I doubt you need to purchase tickets in advance, but I cannot say for sure. If your children are good walkers, it can be done on your own. I would plan on a couple of hours unless you really race.

washington dc
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2. Re: Do you recommend the ANC tour or walking ourselves?

The walking is not bad - I did it recently with a bunch of niblets. Some uphill, but not more than 1.5-2 miles total, and it is really part of the experience to walk along seeing all the small plain markers of lives and war. Glaring sunshine was actually more of an issue - bring sunglasses.

Springfield, VA
Destination Expert
for Fairfax
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3. Re: Do you recommend the ANC tour or walking ourselves?

The Kennedy graves are, I think, an easy (although uphill) walk from the visitors' center. The Tomb of the Unknowns is further from the visitors' center, but not impossible. Wear comfortable shoes and bring bottle water if it's a warm day.

Groton, Connecticut
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4. Re: Do you recommend the ANC tour or walking ourselves?

I would also recommend going to the Arlington House. Great view of DC.

5. Re: Do you recommend the ANC tour or walking ourselves?

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