Washington DC capital of the United States of America and it is one of the most sought after tourist destinations in the world. The city is the standing monument of the rich American history, the vibrant culture and a reminder of how it came to become one of the most powerful nations in today’s time. There is so much to see and do in this vibrant city that it is very hard to cover all of it in just a single trip (search the best Washington D.C. tours). The city is home to more than two dozen free museums, galleries, historic landmarks, parks, memorials, neighbourhoods, local shops, funky marketplaces, breweries, pubs, clubs and a plethora of gardens where one can soak in the American culture the way it was meant to be experienced. One of the best ways to capture the essence of the city is to indulge in some of the best things to do in Washington DC which include memorials and historical structures like Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Veterans and Korean War Veterans Memorials, The White House and the Washington Monument, U.S. Capitol and the Library of Congress, National Archives and the National World War II Memorial.
The city is home to more than 19 museums and it is one of the major attractions in the city including the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, National Air and Space Museum, National Museum of Natural History and American History Museum. There exist several leisure opportunities in the city as well, including venues like The Tidal Basin, National Gallery of Art, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the National Zoo. Washington DC is well known for its vibrant nightlife and one can find various bars, jazz and blues clubs that make a perfect setting to spend an evening with your friends while enjoying some excellent life music. Washington DC is such a beautiful city that will surely leave you mesmerised by its magnificence.
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#1 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 66867 times in trip plans
6th Street and Constitution Avenue NW, Constitution Ave NW, Washington D.C. 20565, United States
10:00 am - 05:00 pm
If you are an art lover or a culture seeker, then National Gallery of Art would already be on your list of things to do in Washington D.C. From classic to contemporary art, there are arrays of excellent works to see inside the National gallery of art. Go around the National Gallery of Art to have a sight of some of the iconic works of art that include Adoration of the Magi, Alba Madonna, A boy in a red Waistcoat, and almost all of the famous works of Leonardo Da Vinci. National Gallery of Art is free to visit and the architectural interior is impressive to gaze at.
#2 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 113987 times in trip plans
2 15th St NW, Washington, DC 20007, United States
11:00 am - 06:30 pm
Standing tall in all its glory is the iconic vantage point of the Washington Monument. Finding a place in almost everyone's list of things to do in Washington D.C., Washington Monument is baffling and will definitely give you goosebumps. If you are a lover of history, then Washington Monument is ideally the place to visit. While visiting the monument, do sure to bring your cameras and start clicking photographs for your Instagram. To avoid the crowd, visit the place early in the morning and unforgettable experience will just be elevated. Washington Monument is surrounded by several other attractions which also need to be checked.
#3 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 98318 times in trip plans
First St SE, Washington, DC 20004, United States
08:30 am - 04:30 pm
Out of all the things to do in Washington D.C., spend time to visit the phenomenal and the prestigious United States Capitol. Go on scaling the perimeter of the building and the surroundings gazing at the majestic building in the center and the amazing scenery in place which comes alive especially during the nights. As you get inside the gem of the building of the United States Capitol, interact with the officials to learn more about the iconic building in place and the rich American history. The experience in the United States Capitol is totally enlightening and to do bask in the glory for as long as you can.
#4 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 106095 times in trip plans
2 Lincoln Memorial Cir NW, Washington, DC 20037, United States
A top spot to visit in Washington D.C., Lincoln Memorial is a memorable landmark that needs to be visited at least once in your lifetime. As you get inside the Lincoln Memorial you will literally have goosebumps and to for a complete experience talk to the rangers to share their reflection. There is also a gift shop in the Lincoln Memorial which is the right place to get some souvenirs for your loved ones. As Lincoln Memorial attracts plenty of tourists especially on the weekends, find time during the weekends and make a note of it on your list of things to do in Washington D.C. this weekend.
#5 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 90529 times in trip plans
1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20500, United States
07:30 am - 11:30 am
Visiting White House is inevitably one of the top things to do in Washington. There is a constant curiosity as of how the place will look like in real rather than in the movies. To clear your doubts on that, go on a quick stroll around the prestigious White House which is opulent and beautiful in all its senses. While visiting take your cameras and make sure to empty the storage as you would fill it with your thousand interesting photographs. In addition to this, it would be great if you could find someone to gain access to the inside of White House, which will be a fantastic experience.
#6 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 69039 times in trip plans
Independence Ave at 6th Street, SW Washington, DC 20560
10:00 am - 05:30 pm
Simply a top thing to do in Washington D.C. for those who are interested in science and technology, National Air and Space Museum has a special something for everyone and will keep you occupied. Impressively built, you can go on a learning curve inside the National Air and Space Museum that comprises of models of Apollo 11 module, Boeing, and the Friendship 7. Admire the huge collection of objects inside the museum that includes some of the most astonishing achievements of the aviation industry. Further to this, you will also understand the topics of planetary science, spaceflight, terrestrial geology, and geophysics.
#7 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 62214 times in trip plans
10th St. & Constitution Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20560, United States
10:00 am - 05:30 pm
One of the best things to do with kids in Washington DC, the national museum of natural history is a place where you can have a fun-time along with an enriching educational experience. Walk in the museum and you’ll come across the variety of endangered species including the human-killer Leopard of Punani. Various interactive sections dedicated to diverse flora, fauna and geological specimens team up to offer an interesting experience for your kids. You can also experience periodic exhibitions, special events and feeding sessions on your visit. Don’t forget to observe the highlight of the museum- the Tarantula! For slightly older kids, there are exhibits dedicated to mummies, African voices and Live insect Zoo.
#8 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 56148 times in trip plans
3101 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC 20016, United States
10:00 am - 06:00 pm
Visiting the Washington National Cathedral would be definitely a part of the list of things to do in Washington this weekend. Completely gorgeous, the gothic style building has to be explored to the fullest without skipping even a tiny spot in the place. As you through the pristine environment of the architecturally wonderful Washington National Cathedral, you will be in loss for words as the cathedral is totally out of bound, go through stained glasses that carry the story of the history, attend a mass with a splendid choir on offer, unwind at the garden in place and strike a conversation with the visitors to learn more about the specialty of the Washington National Cathedral.
#9 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 73845 times in trip plans
Arlington, VA 22209, United States
Right outside the Arlington National Cemetery, you will find the Iwo Jima Memorial. Known as the US Marine Corps War Memorial, this site commemorates the raising of the American flag at Iwo Jima.
There is a statue of the 6 men who reached the peak of Iwo Jima to end the war one and for all in 1945. The memorial is homage to each and every person from the Marines who had laid down their lives for the country since the year 1775. A very historic moment that has been recorded for posterity, this memorial is certainly worth the visit.
#10 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 73914 times in trip plans
900 Ohio Drive SW, Washington, DC 20242, United States
09:30 am - 11:30 pm
Also known as the Jefferson Memorial, this is one of the best things to do in Washington DC. The towering statue of Thomas Jefferson stands in the memorial and the walls are decorated with pieces from the declaration of independence written by him. Walk the marble steps leading to the monument and enjoy a good people watching session. The monument looks pretty during the day and looks vibrant when illuminated, making it a good place to visit any time of the day. Visiting Thomas Jefferson memorial is also one the best things to do in Washington DC with kids.
#11 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 67993 times in trip plans
800 F St NW, Washington, DC 20004, United States
10:00 am - 06:00 pm
Intrigued just by the name, International Spy Museum is for those who dream in becoming a secret agent in their life and get excited every time they watch a James Bond movie. Go through the international espionage artifacts on display for a global perspective, indulge in a live spy adventure of 'Spy in the city' and 'Operation Spy', and explore the 007 exhibit. For kids, they is spy camp and for the adults, there are several other activities to keep you engaged. Get closer to the collections that date back to the time of the war and you can also get your hands on the official merchandise from the store.
#12 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 65428 times in trip plans
5 Henry Bacon Dr NW, Washington, DC 20024, United States
10:00 am - 11:00 pm
Visit the iconic and the most heartbreaking site of the Vietnam Veterans memorial set in the politically popular destination of Washington D.C. Scan the expansive length of the Vietnam Veterans memorial built in remembrance of the soldiers passed away in the controversial Vietnam War. Get a catalogue from the entrance of the memorial to help you locate a particular name on the wall; enroll for Ranger programs to get a thorough information on the history and the real happenings. Completely lit in the nights, visiting Vietnam Veterans memorial is one of the best things to do in Washington D.C. tonight.
#13 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 46936 times in trip plans
1964 Independence Ave SE, Washington, DC 20003, United States
The Martin Luther King Memorial is a giant statue of the brilliant man who has been one of the most influential figures in relation to equality in the United States. The memorial pays tribute to a truly amazing personality. The statue or rather the monument is built on the basis of a small saying in King’s famous “I have a Dream” speech that goes “Out of a mountain of despair, a stone of hope.” This part has been carved in the stone too. His figure has been carved out of stone making the structure very symbolic.
17 quotes from his various writings and speeches have been put up on the inscription wall. The atmosphere of the place and the memory of this amazing man are both truly inspiring. Do certainly put this one on your must-list.
#14 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 62870 times in trip plans
Washington D.C., United States
10:00 am - 11:00 pm
Interested in walking and at the same time, be in a wonderful destination in Washington D.C. then National Mall is the place to go. Expansive in nature, National Mall requires a lot of walking and the lush green place is perfect to unwind and relax. Symbolizing the amazing nation of America, National Mall offers plenty of exciting spots to check out. Alternatively, you can rent a bicycle and explore the National Mall riding rather than to walk amidst the crowds. While heading on to the National Mall, do not forget to carry a water bottle, umbrellas, and walking shoes.
#15 of 161 Things to do in Washington D. C. | Added 59626 times in trip plans
511 10th St NW, Washington, District of Columbia 20004, United States
08:30 am - 05:00 pm
For those who love Abraham Lincoln and to want to learn about the interesting piece of history in the place, visiting Ford's theater is of high priority. Join a Ranger program to understand everything about the history and the death of Abraham Lincoln, rent an audio guide, and indulge in the some of the interesting shows inside Ford's theater that include Christmas Carol, Edwards Albee's Who is afraid of the Virginia Wolf? & Lincoln Assassination. For the book lovers, the spiral structure of the Lincoln book tower inside Ford's theater is a great place to educate themselves. Visiting Ford's theater is one of the best things to do in Washington D.C. for history buffs.
The capital city of United States is a perfect place for a budget vacation since there are plenty of free things to do in Washington DC. Most of the prime museums and attractions in Washington DC are free. The list of free museums in Washington DC (mostly belonging to the Smithsonian institution) includes United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, National Air and Space Museum and National Museum of Natural History. Take a tour of these culturally rich museums that will offer a delightful experience on your visit. Other free things to do in Washington DC include National Zoo, National WW II memorial, National Archives, National gallery of art, Washington National Cathedral and the Tidal Basin. Other important things to do in Washington DC for free are the world-famous landmarks like the White house, the Lincoln memorial and United States Capitol and the Library of Congress.
Discover Washington DC with kids
If you are visiting with kids, there are plenty of fun things to do in Washington DC. For the nerdy toddlers, there are museums where you can literally spend your day including Museum of Natural history whereas for toddlers, one of the best things to do in Washington DC is to visit the National Zoo. A guided tour of the White House where the kids can see how a presidential home looks like is also one of the best things to do in Washington DC with kids. For kids who can't stop reading thriller novels, the International Spy museum can be one of the interesting things to do in Washington DC. For a little celeb-touch, you can visit the Madame TussaudsWashington DC and let you child pose with their favourite Hollywood superstar or president! Planning a day out in the National Mall is an all-time favourite activity that can be done with family and kids in Washington DC.
This dazzling capital is quite a game when it comes to nightlife. For a classy experience, head to Kennedy centre and catch a performance or a show. To experience the local nightlife of Washington DC, go to Penn Quarter or Georgetown. Excellent bars (often with live music), array of good restaurants will solve your concern of things to do in Washington DC tonight. You can also catch the performance of the world-famous Washington Ballet or National Opera. There are plenty of places to eat in Washington DC if you want to skip all the jazz and just enjoy a fancy, sit-down dinner.
A weekend in Washington DC - Explore how to enjoy the city in weekends?
Got a weekend in Washington DC and don't know what to do? If you don't want to go for the typical sightseeing that takes you to the top attractions of Washington DC, you can try offbeat things to do in DC like visiting the National Museum of Health and Medicine, packing a picnic at the Gravelly Point Park or stay at a luxurious mansion and feel like a royal! You can also walk along the Graffiti in Capitol hill and explore the city in a totally different perspective!
Christmas in Washington DC - a lot more fun activities to do during Christmas
Holiday season opens up numerous entertainment options in the capital city and there is no dearth of things to do in Washington DC at Christmas. If people watching and admiring the twinkly xmassy lights is not your thing, don't you worry! There are plenty of happenings that you can be a part of! Witness the National Christmas Tree on the 15th and 17th Street, go Ice skating in any of Ice Skating rinks like Canal Park Ice Rink, Washington Harbour Ice Rink and Pentagon Row Ice Skating. Enjoy beautiful Christmas lights at the events like Zoolights, Georgetown Glow and City Centre DC.