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Vietnam Veterans Memorial

This stark, powerful monument offers a pause for reflection on one of America’s most controversial conflicts.

Take some time to contemplate the thousands of U.S. soldiers who gave their lives in the Vietnam War, at this massive black granite wall located between the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial. 

More than 58,000 names of men and women are inscribed on “The Wall” built in their honor. Those known to be dead are marked with a diamond, while those still considered missing in action are marked with a cross. The overwhelming number of names of those who lost their lives provides visitors with a profound sense of the vast national and personal loss still associated with the Vietnam War. 

The memorial is not one single wall, but actually two, 250-foot (76-meter) long walls arranged in a V shape, with one end pointing to the nearby Lincoln Memorial and the other to the Washington Memorial. The split is not just an architectural quirk. It reflects the divide in opinion about the controversial war. Look into the list of names and you will see that the stone into which they are inscribed is highly reflective, a deliberate feature intended to bring together the past and the present. 

At any time of year you will find wreaths, cards and presents left at the foot of the memorial from grieving families. There’s a hushed somber tone in the air, as many visitors pay their respects to a loved one they lost in the conflict, and others reflect on the overall tragedy of this war.

Nearby the wall you’ll see other statues: the Three Soldiers and the Vietnam Women’s memorial. More traditional in appearance, these were constructed in part to appease those who felt that the wall was too abstract. 

The memorial is open to visitors 24 hours a day. Staff are on site from 8 a.m. to midnight, and interpretive tours are available every hour on the hour.

Popular Activities at Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Make the most of your time at Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Here is a list of the top activities:

Wondering what activities you can do at this celebrated attraction? We highly recommend purchasing a D.C. Twilight Tour: Guided City Highlights Tour.

If you're seeking more options, peruse our Washington things to do page.


Guide to Exploring around Vietnam Veterans Memorial


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Lodging Near Vietnam Veterans Memorial

See all 1,558 Properties near Vietnam Veterans Memorial
The Wink Hotel $84
Reviewed on Jun 10, 2019
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The Wink Hotel

The Wink Hotel

1143 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, DC
     
    4.3 of 5
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Great location, close to everything Rooms need to be updated

    Washington Plaza $109
    Reviewed on Jun 14, 2019
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    Washington Plaza

    Washington Plaza

    10 Thomas Circle NW, Washington, DC
       
      4.3 of 5
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      The staff, service and property were excellent! The location in DC is prime!

      The Watergate Hotel $212
      Reviewed on Jun 10, 2019
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      The Watergate Hotel

      The Watergate Hotel

      2650 Virginia Ave NW, Washington, DC
         
        4.5 of 5
        5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        The service was quality...price of buffet breakfast 90.00 disliked

        Hamilton Hotel Washington DC $111
        Reviewed on Jun 16, 2019
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        Hamilton Hotel Washington DC

        Hamilton Hotel Washington DC

        1001 14th St NW, Washington, DC
           
          4.2 of 5
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Location was great - nice bar if a little small attached to restaurant

          Hotel Harrington $99
          Reviewed on Jun 14, 2019
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          Hotel Harrington

          Hotel Harrington

          436 11th Street NW, Washington, DC
             
            3.3 of 5
            3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Within walking distance of the National Mall, the main Smithsonian museums, the White House and assorted other places. Not up to date but clean and comfortable.

            Hotel RL Washington DC $107
            Reviewed on Jun 16, 2019
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            Hotel RL Washington DC

            Hotel RL Washington DC

            1823 L St NW, Washington, DC
               
              4.1 of 5
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Very comfortable, clean and well located. An extremely convenient hotel with spacious yet cozy rooms. The only difficulty was the low water pressure in the shower.

              Grand Hyatt Washington $122
              Reviewed on Jun 16, 2019
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              Grand Hyatt Washington

              Grand Hyatt Washington

              1000 H Street NW, Washington, DC
                 
                4.4 of 5
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Location is perfect. Check in was easy. I will definitely stay here next time.

                Hotel Hive $84
                Reviewed on Jun 12, 2019
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                Hotel Hive

                Hotel Hive

                2224 F Street NW, Washington, DC
                   
                  4.5 of 5
                  3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Great cute pod-style hotel. Rooftop bar is fun! Right next you GW campus and easy walk to Foggy Bottom metro.