800 F St. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20004
Geared towards older children, and containing exhibits parents can enjoy as well, the International Spy Museum takes visitors through the history of spying with interactive exhibits One of the current exhibits is “School for Spies” where visitors can examine over 200 listening bugs, spy cameras, vehicles and weapons and other gadgets. Besides fiddling with gadgets, children can learn the stories behind the spycraft, test their observation skills and don a disguise. Museum hours are 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. from now until July 3. Tickets are $12.95 for adults (ages 12-64), $15.95 for senior and military, youths ages 7-11 are $14.59 and children 6 and under are free.
Independence Ave. at 6th St. S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20560
Always a favorite with the kiddies, Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum features planes and space vehicles for visitors year-round. For those who want to delve further into the history of space travel, a current exhibit “Apollo to the Moon” features the story of the space race and displays artifacts ranging from a huge F-1 rocket engine to a scale model of the Saturn V to personal items astronauts took into space. Regular hours are 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Admission is free.
14th St. & Constitution Ave. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20013
A standard stop for school groups throughout the year, the National Museum of American History holds such important items as the flag that inspired the Star-Spangled Banner, Dorothy’s slippers from “The Wizard of Oz” and Fonzie’s jacket. On July 1, the Spark!lab exhibit will open. This particular exhibit encourages children ages 6-12 to create, collaborate and invent by combining science, art and creativity. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. and admission is free.
3001 Connecticut Ave. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008
Children always love checking out the animals housed at the National Zoo (especially the pandas!) but one of the best interactive exhibitions for younger kids is the Kids’ Farm. Geared for children ages 3-8, the Kids’ Farm is home to various farm animals, including some rare breeds such as San Clemente Island goats and Ossabaw Island hogs. Under the supervision of zoo keepers, children can help groom animals and are also able to touch certain animals. The grounds of the National Zoo are open from 6 a.m.-8 p.m. in the summer. Admission is free.
1145 17th St. NW
Washington, D.C. 20036
Housed next to the National Geographic offices in D.C., the National Geographic Museum host varied and interesting exhibits year-round. If you have older children who are also into movies, there is currently an exhibit entitled “Indiana Jones and the Adventure of Archaeology.” The exhibit combines the best of both worlds, containing real archaeological artifacts in addition to film items for the Indiana Jones series. There is also an opportunity to uncover your own archaeological mysteries. Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for students and $10 for children ages 5-12. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.