National Museum of Natural History

Member Rating 5 out of 5 by lgarcia45 on June 30, 2005

There is one overriding reason for women to take in this museum--the gem collection! An entire gallery is dedicated to some of the finest examples of rubies, opals, diamonds, and emeralds the most famous houses (Cartier, Tiffany, etc.) have designed. My personal favorite was a ruby/diamond ring with one of the clearest (very rare) pigeon-blood red rubies in the world. The stones are mesmerizing. Expect crowds in this gallery that inch along the display cases. The Hope Diamond is such a draw, it is mounted in a case that allows for visitors to encircle it. The gem in its diamond necklace rotates around, giving everyone a good look-see. Kids will love the dinosaur exhibit, as well as the Orkin Insect Zoo. The Insect Zoo features all sorts of living creepy crawlers, including the world's largest spider and a beehive housed in a glass-encased cement tree. The hive has a plastic tube with an opening drilled through the wall to exit the museum and forage for food. Be sure to pick up a guide and select what you would like to see, because your feet would fall off if you tried to see it all.
Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
10th Street & Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC
(202) 633-1000

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