Once you have kids, you realize that taking a vacation isn’t quite the same as it was before. Trips with children aren’t about politics, fine dining, and late-night parties.
So, if you’re thinking about taking the kids to DC, here’s everything you need to know.
1. Read up before you leave home. Kids of all ages will find it easier to engage with something when they know a little about it. Pick up a few books about the capital—and the Capitol—at the library and read them together before you take your trip.
2. Book a sightseeing trip to get your bearings. A new place, especially a big city like Washington DC, can be intimidating at first. A sightseeing trip with an experienced driver and guide can help you get the lay of the land before exploring on your own. Check out our Washington Monument and DC Highlights Tour, now with a 10% discount.
3. Take your time and do less. This isn’t the time to try and fit in absolutely everything. Plan one big activity each day, and spend the rest of the time hanging out together and enjoying the vacation. You don’t want to rush through it and need another when you get home!
4. Find activities everyone will enjoy. DC is such a great place to take kids because there’s so much to do for the whole family! Learn about news reading and the free press at the Newseum; plan your next career as a spy at the International Spy Museum; explore the impact of architecture at the National Building Museum; then, dream about flying at the Air and Space Museum.
5. Plan downtime and time outside. Kids need time outside (so do adults, we’re just better at ignoring it). As long as the weather is good, take advantage of DC’s many parks. Explore the U.S. Botanic Garden; examine the USA’s largest bonsai collection at the U.S. National Arboretum; and spot snapping turtles and ride bikes at Rock Creek Park.
Trips with kids can be relaxing and fun for everyone. The key is to manage everyone’s expectations and make sure to fit in plenty of fun activities and playtime.