In case you visit the capital of the United States of America with your children, you must visit a few museums, after marking the other major tourist attractions. The museums in the National Mall area are directed by the Smithsonian Foundation—a government agency, which makes them imposing, with various and rich patrimonies, providing activities for children, in exploration rooms especially created. In fact, all American museums in big cities have a space dedicated to education, which is either available to everybody or by appointment.
Therefore, here are a few museums (with free entrance) in which your children can have fun and learn new things:
- The National Museum of Natural History— a museum for the whole family. By its exhibition design, the content of the texts and its exhibits, this museum can be instructive at any age. Here you can learn a lot of information on mammals, the origin of humans, oceans, geology, fossils, dinosaurs, butterflies, etc. Everything is interactive and multi-sensorial (sight, hearing, touch). This is an educational experience for the whole family.
- The National Museum of African Art—a museum as colourful as Africa. The concentrated exhibition succeeds in combining traditional and contemporary African art, explanatory texts are short and clear, there are many relaxation places inside the exhibition space (comfortable sofas). Besides the permanent and temporary exhibitions, which do not necessarily target children, children especially enjoy the Discovery Room, a room where children can colour, listen to various African music instruments, play with various textures of textiles, learn about the geography of the African continent and can even flip through children books on this theme. In this small, but cozy room, with small tables and chairs adapted to children, parents will spend pleasant moments and will be able to enjoy that special time spent with their children.
- The National Gallery of Art—a wonderful museum, dedicated to European and American art between the 14th and the 21st century. There are numberless activities for children, but, since it is very likely that your time is limited, we recommend you the family tours for children 6+ (but they can also be used by children 4+). These are, in fact, a few small brochures which can be taken for free from the information desk. They are dedicated to American, Dutch, Italian and French art, that is to a small, but significant part of the collection on display. We have tried these tours and we have discovered that they are very useful even for adults which are not necessarily familiar with the artistic field; they help us see details and learn pieces of information easy to remember on various works of art and artists
We state it plainly and clearly: in Washington D.C activities for children, especially in museums, are rich and various. Dear all, these are only a few kind recommendations, based on our experience. Feel free to send us your feedback.
All the best,