Daily Escape

Washington Monument

Photo by Getty Images

Washington Monument

Washington, D.C.

It’s fitting that the most prominent structure in our nation’s capital is a memorial to the most famous of our Founding Fathers: George Washington. Located on the National Mall, this marble obelisk rises nearly 555.5 feet and is the tallest stone structure in the world. Construction began in 1848, with its cornerstone-laying ceremony taking place on July 4. Though currently closed for repairs due to damage sustained from a 5.8-magnitude earthquake in 2011, the Washington Monument still stands tall, surrounded by 50 US flags, one for each state in the nation.


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New Orleans Plantation Tour
New Orleans Plantation Tour

New Orleans Plantation Tour

Explore New Orleans’ antebellum past on a plantation tour. More than 400 plantations once lined the banks of the Mississippi between Baton Rouge and New Orleans. Today only a handful remain. Among them is The Houmas and the Destrehan Plantation, the closest plantation from New Orleans, located just 25 miles upriver. 960 1280

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NOLA Cocktail Crawl

NOLA Cocktail Crawl

Did you know America’s oldest known cocktail, the Sazerac, got its start in The Big Easy? Explore New Orleans’ rich cocktail history on a bar crawl, swinging by the French Quarter’s best bars, like Pat O’Brien’s, whose motto since 1933 has been, “Have Fun!” We’ll drink to that. 960 1280

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Big Easy Neighborhood Tours

Big Easy Neighborhood Tours

Get a feel for The Big Easy’s diverse communities on a New Orleans’ neighborhood tour. Top of our list is the Vieux Carré, the famed French Quarter and oldest neighborhood in the city. Right next to the Quarter is New Orleans’ Treme neighborhood, which was originally settled by “Free People of Color,” often referred to as Creoles. 960 1280

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New Orleans Garden Tour

New Orleans Garden Tour

Love gardens? You’ll find no shortage of plant and flower varieties at the New Orleans Botanical Garden. A city fixture since 1936, the grounds are home to more than 2,000 species of native and exotic plants, including the largest palm collection in Louisiana. Step inside the garden’s conservatory (pictured) for an exhibit on fossils of prehistoric plant life. 960 1280

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Big Easy Aerial Tour

Big Easy Aerial Tour

For a truly unique view of New Orleans, take an aerial tour of the famed city by the banks of the Mississippi, and prepare to go, “Wow.” From up high, get a whole new perspective of city landmarks such as St. Louis Cathedral and Chalmette Battlefield. 960 1280

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Culinary Tour, Big Easy Style

Culinary Tour, Big Easy Style

Crawfish etouffee, Southern oxtail soup, jambalaya … ah, worked up an appetite yet? Satisfy your taste buds for New Orleans’ dining best on a culinary tour. With more than 1,300 restaurants to choose from, you may have a hard time choosing -- we suggest including classic New Orleans restaurants like Arnaud’s on your tour. 960 1280

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Louisiana Swamp Tour

Louisiana Swamp Tour

Set foot in one of Louisiana’s wildest swamps. Just 50 minutes from New Orleans, the New Orleans Honey Island Swamp comprises nearly 70,000 acres of permanently protected wildlife area. The waters are home to fish such as bluegill, largemouth bass and warmouth, as well as alligators and … maybe even a Bigfoot-like creature. Ask your swamp tour guide about the Honey Island Swamp monster. 960 1280

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French Quarter Tour

French Quarter Tour

See where legend and history intersect on a tour of the French Quarter. New Orleans’ oldest neighborhood spans roughly 70 city blocks, home to some of the best-preserved architecture in the US, including the Pharmacy Museum (pictured), which was constructed in 1823 for the first licensed pharmacist in the US. Also check out Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop, which, according to legend, was once owned by a pirate. You decide. 960 1280

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Spooky New Orleans

Spooky New Orleans

Believe in ghosts? Explore The Big Easy’s spooky side on a tour of haunted New Orleans. Must-see stops include LaLaurie Mansion. Located on the corner of Royal Street, the 3-story property was where Louisiana-born socialite and serial killer Delphine LaLaurie tortured and murdered slaves, before an outraged mob intervened. 960 1280

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Mardi Gras Tour

Mardi Gras Tour

See where all the magic surrounding New Orleans’ biggest annual celebration happens. Take a tour of Mardi Gras World, the massive 400,000-square-foot warehouse where parade floats -- more than 500, each year -- are made for the grand event. Open 7 days a week, Mardi Gras World tours last about 1 hour. 960 1280

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Big Easy Sounds

Big Easy Sounds

Savor Big Easy sounds in the city where jazz was born. Top of any New Orleans jazz tour list should be Preservation Hall, a music venue in the heart of the French Quarter that features jazz concerts nightly. And just outside the French Quarter, tour the 2-block Frenchmen Street, home to some of New Orleans' most epic jazz. 960 1280

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Mississippi Riverboat Tour

Mississippi Riverboat Tour

Board a paddlewheel steamboat to see the Mighty Mississippi. Up to a century ago, steamboats like this were the only way to reach New Orleans. Step into the past, as you board from the French Quarter to embark on a 2-hour riverboat cruise. New Orleans' only steamboat, Steamboat Natchez, provides tours with live jazz accompaniments for extra-smooth sailing. 960 1280

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Romantic NOLA

Romantic NOLA

Where there’s jazz and good food, romance isn’t far behind. Board a mule-drawn carriage for a view of New Orleans' romantic side. You’ll find local company Royal Carriages on Decatur Street at Jackson Square and on the corner of St. Louis and Royal streets. Bring the champagne. 960 1280

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Abraham Lincoln's Birthplace (Hodgenville, KY)
On February 12, 1809, Abraham Lincoln was born in a one-room log cabin on Sinking Farm. Today this site bears the address of 2995 Lincoln Farm Road, Hodgenville, KY. A cabin symbolic of the one Lincoln was born in, is preserved in a memorial building at the site.
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National Park Service  

Old State Capitol (Springfield, IL)
Abraham Lincoln announced his candidacy for the US President in 1858 at The Old State Capitol State Historic Site in Springfield, IL. President Obama also announced his presidential run at the same location in 2007.
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Cooper Union Speech (New York, NY)
On February 27, 1860, Abraham Lincoln delivered The Cooper Union Speech in New York City. It is considered one of his most important speeches. Lincoln elaborated on his views about slavery, affirming that he did not want it to expand into the Western Territories, claiming that the Founding Fathers would agree with this position.
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DavidShankbone [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC-BY-SA-2.5-2.0-1.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5-2.0-1.0)], via Wikimedia Commons  

Inauguration of Abraham Lincoln as President (Washington, DC)
Abraham Lincoln was sworn into office as the 16th US President at his inauguration on March 4, 1861, in Washington, DC.
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Library of Congress  

Fort Sumter Charleston, SC
On April 12, 1861, the first shots in the Civil War were fired here at Fort Sumter, located in Charleston, SC.
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Lincoln's Summer Home (Washington, DC)
Located on a picturesque hilltop in Washington, DC, President Lincoln's Cottage is the most significant historic site directly associated with Lincoln's presidency aside from the White House. During the Civil War, President Lincoln and his family resided here from June to November of 1862, 1863 and 1864.
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Library of Congress  

Antietam Battlefied (Antietam, MD)
Lincoln issues the Emancipation Proclamation after claiming a Union victory at this bloody battle in Antietam, MD, in September 1862.
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Getty Images  

Gettysburg Address (Gettysburg, PA)
On November 19, 1863, President Lincoln (center without cap) delivered the Gettysburg Address during the American Civil War at the dedication of the Soldiers' National Cemetery in Gettysburg, PA. The speech is regarded as one of the greatest speeches in American history.
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Library of Congress  

Ford's Theater (Washington, DC)
Ford's Theater, a historic theater in Washington, DC, was the site of the assassination of Abraham Lincoln on April 14, 1865. John Wilkes Booth shot the president who was fatally wounded and carried across the street to the Petersen House. President Lincoln died the next morning.
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Library of Congress  

Peterson House (Washington, DC)
On April 15, 1865, Mary Todd Lincoln and her son waited in the front parlor of the Peterson Boarding House, as her husband lay wounded in the back bedroom. He later died in the house.
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Library of Congress  

Mount Rushmore (Keystone, SD)
Abraham Lincoln, along with Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Theodore Roosevelt, was memorialized in a 60-foot sculpture carved into the granite face of Mount Rushmore, located near Keystone, SD. The carving started in 1927 and ended in 1941.
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Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum (Springfield, IL)
Figures representing the family of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln (far R) and Lincoln's assassin, John Wilkes Booth (L, background), are pictured in front of a small replica of the White House inside the new Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, IL. President George W. Bush took part in ceremonies dedicating the library to President Lincoln.
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Lincoln Memorial (Washington, DC)
The Lincoln Memorial, located on Washington, DC's National Mall, was built to honor Abraham Lincoln. Henry Bacon was the architect, Daniel Chester French was the sculptor of the main statue and Jules Guerin was the painter of the memorial's interior. A dedication ceremony was held in May 1922.
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Reuters