Author Topic: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?  (Read 1629 times)

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Slartibartfast

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What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« on: April 12, 2013, 03:00:41 AM »
DH and I are taking the girls to Washington DC in a few weeks and I'm trying to have a plan because I'm that kinda gal  :P  Babybartfast is 4 and Bittybartfast is still tiny enough not to care what we do.  Anyone have suggestions for things Babybartfast will like AND which are accessible by Metro?  We'll have a full week to play around.  So far my list is:

- zoo
- Smithsonian museums along the mall
- Bureau of Printing & Engraving
- Botanic Garden?

Anything else worth seeing that a 4-year-old would enjoy?  I don't think she'd be up for all the civic stuff (monuments, White House, etc.) unless they're free and we can spend all of 10 minutes saying "See that?  Cool!  On to the next thing!"

sammycat

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2013, 05:31:24 AM »
We visited DC (from Australia) when older DS was 18 months old. We went to a fantastic museum which I think was called The Children's Museum (a local poster may be able to clarify). Great for babies, toddlers and school age kids. Very interactive and we totally enjoyed it and recommend it. 

We returned to DC when the DS' were 12 and 8 years old, but by that time they were old enough for the standard museums, however, your DD may enjoy the Postal Museum as DS1 enjoyed it as both a toddler and 12 year old.

kherbert05

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2013, 05:48:10 AM »
Air and Space


One thing that helped on both trips I took was remembering the Smithsonian is free. Take small bites and return another day. I think we returned to Air and Space 8 or 9 times because I was fascinated  Plan of frequent breaks outside where the kids can blow off steam. If your kids aren't used to taking mass transit, make it a hard and fast rule that your 4 yo hold X's hand every time you get on and off. Decide now which parent it is going to be - that way you don't have an eek I thought you had her hand moment. (We were older but unused to using mass transit Dad helped his Mom, Mom had Sis, I walked in front of both of them)
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POF

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2013, 05:49:52 AM »
Part of the air and space museum is now near Dulles airport. It is a large hangar with all sorts of planes, a space shuttle and really interesting items. I think a 4 year old would love it.

JenJay

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2013, 07:18:44 AM »
My kids like the museum of Natural History because it has dinosaurs, live butterflies, an insect zoo, mummies, etc. My 9yo loves rocks and he can easily spend 2 hours in the geology section.

hobish

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2013, 02:56:08 PM »

The Air & Space museum has a lot of stuff to touch and play with, I always see kids having a good time there Ö plus the carousel is nearby. That carousel is fast, too! I definitely recommend that. Iím a little bit of a merry go round fanatic, and that one is the fastest one I have ever been on. Itís so cool.  :D

Have fun ... DC is such a great city. It's kind of hard not to have a good time there.
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Bexx27

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2013, 03:25:20 PM »
This website has lots of ideas:

http://www.our-kids.com/

My DD's absolute favorite is the zoo. I also highly recommend the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, particularly the Discovery Room.

I've never been myself, but a lot of parents rave about the Building Zone at the National Building Museum.
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nrb80

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #7 on: April 12, 2013, 03:27:10 PM »
Building Museum!  Museum of the American Indian, Museum of Natural History, and Air and Space are very kid oriented

cattlekid

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #8 on: April 12, 2013, 05:23:09 PM »
My sister and BIL are taking their 4 year old to DC this weekend.  Niece has requested to "see the dinosaurs" so Natural History Museum it is!  And they are going to the hangar at Dulles for the Air & Space Museum. 

Thipu1

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2013, 11:01:40 AM »
We haven't been to DC in years but, if it's still open, the old post office would be good for kids.  It has a tower with a full carrilion.  The views of the National Mall are lovely but the best part is that the viewing platform is open.  It has wires to keep out the birds so it's safe but you can take pictures without having to shoot through plexiglass. 

I agree with the Smithsonian Museums.  They can be taken in small doses and the kids can blow off any excess energy by running around the in the Mall. 

The building museum in the Old Pension Building is full of models and other things children like. 

It may be dangerous to suggest but the gift shop of the Museum of American History has tons of inexpensive things for children.     

Curious Cat

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2013, 12:03:50 PM »
I do not care that much for the DC zoo.  It is rather small and most of the animals are in cages instead of big outdoor enclosures.  IIRC it is also a bit off the beaten path in terms of the other attractions. 

MommyPenguin

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2013, 02:08:06 PM »
I do not care that much for the DC zoo.  It is rather small and most of the animals are in cages instead of big outdoor enclosures.  IIRC it is also a bit off the beaten path in terms of the other attractions.

Yeah, we generally liked the Baltimore Zoo better (and the aquarium and science museum there were pretty cool).  Air & Space are fun (and some of Natural History, although some of it can be a bit too much).  Have you checked calendars to see if there are any neat events going on at the National Mall or anything?  Sometimes there are fairs, book celebrations, things like that.

Kiara

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #12 on: April 21, 2013, 06:39:26 PM »
Natural History and Air & Space for the Smithsonian.  American History may not be interesting for a 4 year old.    If there's any chance you'd have a car and are willing to go to Baltimore, I'd go to the Aquarium there over the Zoo. 

Sharnita

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #13 on: April 21, 2013, 06:52:32 PM »
The spy museum.

The Koerean War Memorial might interest them - it shows soldies carrying equptment and in various poses.  They are very lifelike.  I have a very young) nephew who also liked the FDR Memorial (particuarly his dog) and the Lincoln Memorial.

Is a baseball game a possibility?

cicero

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Re: What would kids enjoy in Washington DC?
« Reply #14 on: April 27, 2013, 02:01:42 AM »
I was in DC recently and visited mt. Vernon-it is beautiful ( I was there on a cold nasty day but I can tell it is beautiful in the sunshine), and if your kids are troopers it is accessible by public transportation ( metro to bus stop and then ~30minute bus ride thru beautiful landscapes). There is also a boat ride there ( it wasn't' running when I was there due to the weather). It is very children oriented, down to the recording on the Ez guide you can rent. Once there, there is a lot of walking, so plan accordingly.

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