Jun 20 2011


Things to Do With Preschoolers in Washington DC

Washington DC was just named by Parenting magazine as the #1 city in the US to raise a family. There are a lot of things to do with your kids in DC, and the majority are free, like the Smithsonian museums, the Smithsonian zoo, touring historical and government buildings, and looking at monuments.

I’m surprised DC ranked that high considering factors like affordable housing and crime rates, as well as commuting time for parents. But, I guess someone crunched the numbers in 84 categories and came up with this.

My sons aren’t old enough to appreciate most of the museums or history of Washington DC, but we’ve tried or want to try taking them this summer to these preschooler-friendly places:

Smithsonian Zoo
We took Jacob here last summer, and several of the exhibits were closed. I hope it’s improved.

Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum
Since my husband works for NASA, I’ve been to this one more times than I’d like to remember. But, I think Jacob (almost 4 yrs) would enjoy seeing the huge airplanes and spacecraft. And, they have a McDonalds and Pizza Hut in this museum. The food is overpriced but kid-friendly.

George Washington’s Mount Vernon
We took Jacob and his cousins to Mount Vernon last summer and took a boat ride on the Potomac River. They loved it. You can’t take strollers inside the buildings, so I wouldn’t recommend it with babies. We probably won’t do it again until Lucas is older.

National Building Museum
We want to take the boys here this summer. They have a Building Zone for kids ages 2-6 where kids can build a tower or wall with giant blocks, drive bulldozers and other play trucks, and wear construction gear while doing it. Sounds like a fun place for any preschooler like mine who is obsessed with anything “construction”. It looks like you can even have a birthday party there for a mere $400–yikes!

For more things to do in DC:  100 Things to Do With Kids in Washington DC.

Have you been to Washington DC with your kids? What would you recommend?

Permanent link to this article: http://jenreginald.com/things-to-do-with-preschoolers-in-washington-dc


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  1. Anonymous

    I am sure this article will get lots of interesting comments.

  2. Jenny

    Hi Shamalee. If we end up liking the Building Museum, maybe we can take Sheishan and Jacob during your next visit.

  3. Anonymous

    I liked the zoo when we went a few years ago. Are the pandas still there? Sarah

  4. Jenny

    The baby panda went back to China, but I think the parents are still there.

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