Free Attractions

Explore DC’s museums, memorials and other attractions without breaking the bank. There are more than 100 free things to do in Washington, DC.

Free Things to Do: Family-Friendly Washington, DC

There’s no shortage of free things to do in DC with kids, as well as family-friendly events that won’t cost a cent. From kid-friendly attractions to cool activities that the entire family can enjoy, the nation’s capital is a great destination for a vacation any time of the year. We’ve put together...

Family on the National Mall - Free family-friendly things to do in Washington, DC
The Smithsonian Castle: Gateway to Museums & History

Brit benefactor and an American castle For a man who never set foot in Washington, DC, French-born, British-raised James Smithson has had a huge impact on the city. The British scientist (1765-1829), an illegitimate son of a Duke, left his considerable fortune to a nephew with the stipulation that...

@travelwith_caro - Summer scene at the Smithsonian Castle on the National Mall - The best things to do this summer in Washington, DC
Fly High at the National Air and Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center

All about the Smithsonian's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center Opened in 2003, the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center serves as a partner facility to the National Air and Space Museum . The two locations together attract more than 8 million visits per year, making the National Air and Space complex the most...

@abroadwife - Child standing in front of Space Shuttle Discovery at the Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum - Free Smithsonian museum near Washington, DC
Visiting the Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC

What and where is the Museum of the Bible? As soon as you enter the Museum of the Bible through its 40-foot bronze doors, its majesty is undeniable. The grand lobby is long and awe-inspiring, with a digital display on the ceiling that rotates through colorful designs throughout the day. Upon your...

Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC - New state-of-the-art museum near the National Mall
Visiting the Library of Congress in Washington, DC

What and where is the Library of Congress? The Library of Congress is housed across three buildings on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC: the Thomas Jefferson Building (10 1st Street SE), the James Madison Memorial Building (101 Independence Avenue SE) and the John Adams Building (2nd Street SE,...

@eandmbambrick - Exploring the Library of Congress - Washington, DC
Guide to Visiting the Washington Monument

Please note: The Washington Monument is currently closed until spring 2019 for repairs that will modernize the elevator and increase long-term reliability and safety. Check the National Park Service's website for updates before you plan your visit. Built to honor George Washington, the commander-in...

Washington Monument from the Tidal Basin during cherry blossom season - The National Mall in Washington, DC
Visiting the National Archives Building & Museum in Washington, DC

What and where is the National Archives Building & Museum? The National Archives & Records Administration Building and Museum is located on Constitution Avenue NW, between 7th and 9th Streets, just north of the National Mall . The building houses both a museum and the National Archives and...

National Archives Building and Museum - Free Washington, DC Museum with Constitution, Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights
10 Reasons to Visit the United States Botanic Garden in Washington, DC

Washington, DC and the surrounding area are home to numerous national parks , but the city also offers the United States Botanic Garden (100 Maryland Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20001), a living plant museum that informs one million-plus visitors per year of the importance of plants to not just human...

Child at United States Botanic Garden on Capitol Hill - Free living museum in Washington, DC
Visiting the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC

What and where is the National Gallery of Art? The National Gallery of Art and its gorgeous Sculpture Garden (which features an ice rink in the winter time) are located on Constitution Avenue NW between 3rd and 9th Streets NW. Through its East and West Buildings, the museum preserves, collects and...

National Gallery of Art East and West Buildings at night - Museums in Washington, DC
Visiting the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC

Where and what is the Jefferson Memorial? The location and architecture of the Thomas Jefferson Memorial make it stand out among DC’s amazing array of monuments and memorials . Designed by John Russell Pope in 1925, the memorial resembles the Pantheon in Rome, an adaptation of Neoclassical...

@roy_howell4 - Nighttime at the Jefferson Memorial - Monuments and Memorials in Washington, DC