You know what Washington, DC is the capital of? Our country, yes, but that’s not the point right now.
It’s the capital of our Instagram shots—or at least it could be. There are tons of cool places in DC to hit up for Instagram.
Whether you’re an influencer, just an art appreciator, or a true reporter, make sure you get a shot of at least one of the places below.
1. Outside the White House
It seems that no one, except tourists, gets any shots of the outside of the White House anymore. Sure, we have the flyover or long shots from the big networks, but where are people reporting from the scene?
Hopefully, they’re you and those reports are coming. It doesn’t matter what side you’re on or what you think about the inhabitants of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Show the people you’re willing to get as close to the scene as possible.
Just make sure you bring some sort of barrier to keep mischevious teens and crazy adults out of your shot.
2. A Blue… Rooster?
Want a more interesting shot where you can grab people’s attention while you caption about or talk about anything? How about a fifteen-foot blue rooster? That’ll catch their eye!
You’ll have to pay some admission to get there or speak to a director if you want to skip the fee. It’s at the National Gallery of Art’s East Building on the roof.
There’s a good landscape view to go with it too, depending on how you face the camera. Looking east you can see the capital hill, and looking west you can get our #1 spot in your shot as well as this blue giant.
3. Blagden Alley
Are you more of the artsy kind of photographer? Want to get some colorful shots that show more of the city’s personality than the city’s architecture?
You can do so on Blagden Alley, an up and coming hipster refurbished neighborhood. If you’re looking for murals that are works of art instead of plain graffiti, you’ll find them here.
There’s rainbows, depictions of cultural icons, and, of course, history. The houses this alley walks between used to house people on the underground railroad.
Talk about a colorful setting for a dark subject. There’s more history than just the presidents in DC!
4. The Library of Congress
Want something a little more serious than a blue rooster or colorful murals? How about the 130(ish) year old Library of Congress?
You can thank the presidents of old for this work of architecture. It’s not only the world’s largest library, but it houses priceless works of art.
The classic architecture is nothing to scoff at either. There are intricately laid tile floors and marble columns. It’s like a museum, but for books.
This is a government building, so check if there are any shooting restrictions before you spend all the money and time getting set up. Someone on-site should be able to give you the rundown.
5. Ben’s Chili (Pop Culture?) Bowl
Are you craving cheese fries a la Mean Girls? Whatever, I’m getting them at Ben’s—the line should go.
This is a cultural stable since 1958. The establishment itself is historic from the front, giving you some serious #throwbackthursday vibes.
But it’s the side of this building that you’ll really want to see—or shoot. There’s a mural that spans the entire length of the building showcasing famous and celebration-worthy people of color. We’re talking about everyone from Harriet Tubman to the Obamas to the artist formally known as Prince.
Bring a few different jackets or overshirts, and you can gram this spot at least three times.
You also don’t have to get a release if you want to film here. It’s public art, and it’s on the street. That makes it’s fair game. The snacks you get once you wrap are just a bonus.
6. The National Cathedral
Many people get so wrapped up in the governmental aspects of DC, they forget about this gem. It’s not quite Notre Dame of Paris, but it’s nothing to laugh at either.
The National Cathedral in the upper northwest of DC has over 200 stained glass windows that gleam light if you time your visit right. Whether you’re a Christian, Muslim, or a reporter talking about inter-faith relations, it makes for a great shot!
7. The Watermelon House
Feeling like more of a summery pic? Or want to talk about the agricultural industry? Head over to logan circle. At 1112, you’ll find the side of a building painted to resemble a giant watermelon slice.
And we mean giant. It would take you days to eat through this fake melon piece.
It is a residence, though, but the owner is used to people taking photo ops. Please be respectful of their home and don’t make too much noise.
If you’re making a national broadcast and lugging lots of equipment, you may want to ask or at least warn the people inside.
8. The Capitol Reflecting Pool
We’re back to the governmental aspect of DC now, but there’s a good artistic reason—we promise.
If you can get up early enough, try to catch the sunrise and the Capitol’s reflection in one shot at the reflecting pool. It’s a great aesthetic, and it’s classic.
Cool Places in DC
Washington, DC is a city full of arts and culture. We couldn’t come close to hitting all the best spots to gram in one article. If you come upon something you love, snap a pic and let us know where you found it.
We love finding new shots. That’s what’s so special about Instagram! The cool places in DC may be the same, but everyone approaches their shots differently.
Need some materials or equipment to make sure your trip out to that spot isn’t wasted? We’ve got you covered.