make the trip truly magical for you and your kids.
- National Zoo – The National Zoo is a beautiful urban park offering family fun, education programs, and a peaceful place to enjoy nature. And yes, it is completely free to enter.
- Bureau of Engraving and Printing – You’ll see how paper money gets printed, cut, sorted and inspected for defects. There is a self guided 35 minutes tour
- Arlington National Cemetery — Don’t miss the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns
- National Air and Space Museum – Hundreds of artifacts on display including the original Wright 1903 Flyer, the Spirit of St. Louis, the Apollo 11 command module, and a lunar rock sample that visitors can touch.
- National Postal Museum – The National Postal Museum is divided into galleries that explore America’s postal history from colonial times to the present. Visitors learn how mail has been transported, emphasize the importance of letters and learn about postage stamps. You can even mail yourself a postcard.
- National Gallery of Art — The National Gallery of Art hosts many activities that are child- and teen-friendly. Lots of family specific things to do on the site and children’s audio tour as well. Check out the website for lots of kids learning opportunities as well.
- U.S. Botanic Garden – The United States Botanic Garden (USBG) is a living plant museum. Exhibits interpret the role of plants in supporting earth’s diverse and fragile ecosystems and in enriching human life. The Conservatory and surrounding terraces, Bartholdi Park, and National Garden are all open to the public.
- The Washington Monument – The interior opened to the public in 1888. Today, an elevator takes visitors on the 70 second trip up to the 500 foot landing for magnificent views of the city. Arrive early to get your free, timed tickets. If for some reason you cannot get up into the Washington Monument (it’s closed right now due to repairs from the earthquake last year), the other place you can get a wonderful vantage point for looking over the city is from the Clock Tower in the Old Post Office Pavilion.
- Lincoln Memorial – Kids know a lot about the 16th president from school, and are generally very interested to visit the memorial of Lincoln. They are also quite impressed by the size of this memorial!
- National Museum of American History – Museum collections reflect the breadth, depth, and complexity of the experiences of the American people, from social and cultural history to the history of science, medicine, and technology. The Museum collects the ordinary as well as the extraordinary and is interested in how objects are made, how they are used, how they express human needs and values, and how they influence society and the lives of individuals.
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