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5 Opportunities for Family Fun in Washington, D.C.

Our nation’s capital is filled with rich history, culture and so many opportunities for learning! This makes it the perfect destination for families looking to spend time together while exploring the country’s past and present. From scientific breakthroughs to major cultural shifts, this city is overflowing with creativity and innovation. To inspire your family’s next trip, we’ve curated a five-item bucket list for the Washington, D.C., area!


1. Explore the National Mall and Memorial Parks

Climb the steps of the famous Lincoln Memorial, catch a glimpse of the Reflecting Pool and Washington Monument, take in the powerful message of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial and find even more inspiring sights across this major tourist attraction. As a visual representation of our past and an opportunity for learning and reflecting as a family, these are must-see places for a good reason.

If you happen to make your trip in the spring, check out the blooming cherry blossom trees at the Tidal Basin around the Potomac River. In 2024, the cherry blossom trees are expected to bloom late March through mid-April and represent over a century of friendship with Japan.

While taking in the impressive floral display, remember Hall of Famer Jokichi Takamine! Inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame® for his work that led to the use of adrenaline in medicine, Takamine found many meaningful opportunities to promote Japanese culture – including supporting efforts to beautify the D.C. area with the shipment of several thousand cherry trees from Japan.


2. Visit the White House

Seeing the White House in person is a memorable experience for many children because so much of our history has been made here. An impressive building inside and out, viewing it from a distance might be impactful, but you also can submit a tour request in advance to take your family’s experience to the next level free of charge. Didn’t grab a limited tour spot? Don’t worry! They have an interactive visitor center to provide a glimpse into the president’s famous home.


3. Check out the flora at the U.S. Botanic Garden

Science and nature come to life for a meaningful experience appealing to all ages at the U.S. Botanic Garden. While it has several fascinating experiences for families, the most exciting for many children can be found in the hands-on children’s garden. Here, kids can dig, play, climb, water and help care for plants and more, from spring through fall.


4. Discover interesting museums

There are plenty of kid-friendly museums in Washington – in fact, you could probably spend your whole trip wandering through their carefully curated exhibits. While each holds their own value and interesting appeal, we recommend making the most of your time by selecting a few that match your child’s unique interests. To enhance your child’s STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) learning, the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History or the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum might be a good fit!


5. Introduce your family to some of the world’s greatest innovators at the National Inventors Hall of Fame Museum

Spark curiosity, be inspired by world-changing inventors and become immersed in stories of passion, perseverance and progress at our National Inventors Hall of Fame Museum located within the United States Patent and Trademark Office in Alexandria, Virginia. Just a short drive from Washington, this free museum will introduce your family to more than 600 incredible Hall of Famers in an engaging, kid-friendly way.

Download the Checklist

Check It Out

To start preparing for your trip, we encourage you to download our interactive planning checklist to complete as a family. Then, visit our website and learn more about our museum.

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