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Posted at 1:46 PM ET, 09/28/2010

Seeing the city from a new perspective

By Rob Pitingolo

Last weekend, WalkingTown DC and BikingTown DC hosted more than 100 free tours across Washington. For anyone interested in learning more about the city, it was a fantastic way to see things from a new perspective.

D.C. tourism is often stereotyped as out-of-towners, open-top buses and amateur photographs of monuments. It can be easy for locals to forget that sites exist outside the federal portion of the city. Washington is home to many fantastic neighborhoods, and people who understand and appreciate their unique charms.

I’ve long believed that the best way to see any city is on foot or bike. Transportation is about more than the beginning and the endpoint. What happens as we travel from place to place, even as a pedestrian or a bicyclist, doesn’t have to be meaningless. It can easily become a journey, if that’s the experience that you want.

A guided tour is the perfect way to see a neighborhood that’s out of your comfort zone. You can discover the intricacies of a place you know virtually nothing about, or you can enjoy your favorite place with people who might be experiencing it for the first time.

The next time WalkingTown DC and BikingTown DC offer free tours, do yourself a favor and check one out.

Rob Pitingolo blogs at Extraordinary Observations. The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.

By Rob Pitingolo  | September 28, 2010; 1:46 PM ET
Categories:  D.C., tourism  
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