With its marble floors and barrel-vaulted ceilings laced with 22-karat gold leaf, Union Station ranks among Washington's finest architectural gems. But the working train station also houses souvenir shops and specialty boutiques, as well as chains such as Ann Taylor, Chico's, and Jos. A. Bank. The Royal Norwegian Embassy hosts an annual Christmas bazaar and provides the model train display and a magnificent 30-foot-tall Christmas tree.
Head next to beautiful Georgetown, where exclusive boutiques, antiques stores, and furniture showrooms line the cobblestone streets. More than 500 businesses are located within a five-block radius of the intersection of M Street NW. and Wisconsin Avenue. Serious shoppers also make the trek to Tysons Corner, Virginia, 14 miles west of downtown. The area's three shopping mallsTysons Corner Center, Tysons Galleria, and Shops at Fairfax Squarecontain more than 400 stores.