Washington, D.C. with Kids – A Two-Day Itinerary

Washington, D.C. is a fun and educational destination for families. Even if you can only go for a day or two, don’t miss the opportunity to visit our nation’s capital. Here are the top things to see in Washington D.C. with kids in a two-day itinerary.

Day 1 – Monuments and Museums
To get an overview of the most important sites and memorials, consider taking a bus tour which will allow you to see the most sites with the least amount of walking. We chose to do the three-hour “Must See” Tour with Signature Tours which included photo stops at The White House and the United States Capitol Building, plus stops at Lincoln Memorial and Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial. We also saw many well-known landmarks along the way.

Washington DC with kids, 2-day itinerary - FDR Memorial
One stop on the Must-See Tour was the FDR Memorial in Washington, D.C.

The tour drops you off at Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History so you can have lunch in the museum café and explore the Natural History Museum at your leisure, including the new exhibit “The Last American Dinosaurs: Discovering a Lost World” and the display of The Hope Diamond. When you are finished sight-seeing, head back to a convenient and luxurious hotel such as Capital Hilton on 16th Street to rest before dinner.

A highly-recommended dinner spot near the Capitol and the Capital Hilton is Old Ebbitt Grill which is Washington’s oldest saloon founded in 1856. It’s a popular spot for local politicians and visitors to the area and offers a wide variety of food options for you and your family.

Day 2 – Space and Spies
Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum is the most popular museum in Washington, D.C. and an excellent choice for kids. Start your day here and make sure to see highlights such as the exhibit on the Wright Brothers first flight and the story of sending Apollo to the moon. You can eat lunch at the museum and then walk a few blocks to the International Spy Museum. Some of the unique exhibits here include “School for Spies” and “The Secret History of History.” Several of the interactive experiences are best for kids ages 10 and older, but everyone will learn something interesting at this museum.

Take a rest break at the hotel if you need to, and then take a taxi to Georgetown for a walk and dinner. Georgetown is a neighborhood in NW Washington, D.C. that is home to historic houses, upscale shopping and dining, and Georgetown University. The best stores and sight-seeing are on Wisconsin Avenue and M Street. When you’re ready to eat, a great family-friendly choice for dinner is Pizzeria Paradiso on M Street with delicious thin crust pizzas. Then for dessert you have your choice of sweets from Sprinkles Cupcakes or Georgetown Cupcake, both of which are located nearby on M Street.

Washington DC with kids, 2-day itinerary - Historic homes in Georgetown
Seeing the historic homes in Georgetown is a fun thing to do in Washington, D.C. with kids.

You could easily spend a week seeing all of the attractions in our nation’s capital, but if you only have time for a short trip these are my suggestions for the best things to do in Washington, D.C. with kids in two days!

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Know Before You Go

  • Many of the monuments and memorials surrounding the National Mall are open 24 hours a day!
  • Driving through the city isn’t recommended – walking or taking the Washington Metro are great ways to navigate the city.
  • Be prepared for numerous security checks if you are visiting any government buildings!

This post was written by Hilton Suggests Team Member, Susan K. Are you interested in traveling to Washington DC? Let us know if we can help you with any other recommendations. Tweet us for more great local travel tips!

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