Motherhood

Spring Break Staycation in Washington D.C. — Educational Things to Do

Spring Break! These two words have such a different meaning now that I have children and I’m planning for more than just myself. 

While the kids and Bini get excited about Spring Break, all I can think of is the planning, packing, unpacking-then packing again, moving schedules around and the overall stress that goes with every trip we plan as a family. Oh, the joys of being a mother!

Spring Break 2016- Universal Studios- Harry Porter Ride! That LINE though!

This year, we decided that we were going to stay local, especially since we just spent the holidays in Eritrea. So picture this… it’s past 11pm on a work night, and I’m up trying to find things to do in our area during the kids break. I want to do things with them that will not only be fun and memorable but will also teach them something. You know me: I’m all about good teaching experiences. I looked up reviews, emailed other moms from our school, hit up some friends of mine that have school-age children, asked my family and Bini’s family and most people are either going out of town or hitting up the local amusement parks.

Amusement Parks- Perfect Idea

Going with my educational theme for Spring Break, I decided we would go to Bush Gardens this year since its located in Williamsburg, VA, and is rich with American history.  Water Country USA is also located in Williamsburg, and they are offering amazing deals from now until April 30, 2018. Pay $105.00 per person and get unlimited admission to both parks All SPRING AND SUMMER LONG (operating days vary so check their schedule)! Williamsburg also offers a wide variety of Colonial America Museums and historic neighborhoods. It’s perfect for your school-aged children as they have probably covered this subject in their social studies/history classes. The Washington Metropolitan area offers multiple amusement parks that often offer discounts and special rates for different reasons. 

If amusement parks aren’t your thing, check out my favorite spots for family fun in Washington D.C. All 10 locations below are educational and fun for the children and more then half include free admission. The list isn’t in any particular order. 

1. Artechouse 

Really cool! Washington DC’s first interactive digital art gallery. I highly recommend purchasing tickets online before going. They offer four different admission types and prices vary from $15.00-$85.00(higher level includes food and drinks) for adults and $8.00 for children. 

2. Lincoln Memorial 

This whole area is amazing with lots to see. Make sure the weather is nice! Our usual routine is below and is perfect for walking around (hit every spot in the order of direction):

  • ‍Lincoln Memorial
  • World War II Memorial
  • Martin Luther King Memorial
  • Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial
  • Washington Monument

My favorite spot in the city!

World War II Memorial

Washington Monument

3. Bible Museum 

D.C’s newest museum offers its visitors an immersive and personalized experience with the Bible. Children love the interactive rooms and walking through the stories of the Hebrew Bible while parents can enjoy various biblical exhibits from all over the world. The museum includes free admission but suggests donations.

Almost forgot to mention the best part- They have virtual reality rides showing different sights in Washington D.C. that showcase Bible scriptures; costs extra though. 

How cool is this entrance?!

4. National Museum of African American History and Culture 

The only museum devoted solely to the documentation of African American history, life and culture is beyond fascinating. What got my attention from the beginning was the building’s design and structure from the outside. Once inside, I loved how each floor signified a different timeline in African American history. They have various activities for children that will teach them topics of history and culture. Like most Smithsonian museums, the African American museum has free admission but asks that all visitors obtain timed entry passes online way in advance. 

5. National Air and Space Museum

Lorenzo’s favorite museum! He loves the Public Observatory, virtual reality and simulators, talking to the experts on space, and the discovery stations that show different science demonstrations. I love the IMAX Theater and their Planetarium and I’m not even a science lover LOL! Free Admission.

6. National Museum of Natural History 

When Bella was a baby, we used to spend our days here learning about all the different animals and artifacts. My favorite room is the HOPE Diamond exhibit where you get to see different gems and minerals. We also love the African Elephant and Lions exhibits. What fascinates me about this place is how real everything looks. A TRUE MUST SEE! Free Admission. 

7. Mount Vernon

Beloved home to our first President- George Washington. Purchase your tickets online for exclusive discounts. Adult price is $18.00 and children (6-11) pay $11.00.  They have working farms and historical interpreters for the children, which I love because we get the feeling that we are back in the 18th century and see how life was lived back then. After watching Hamilton a couple of weeks ago, Bella has been on a history kick and wants to learn more about the founding fathers. Mount Vernon gets her one step closer to the history. 

8. National Zoo

One of D.C’s most popular tourist destination the National Zoo is a family favorite for many reasons! The children love seeing all the animals (especially the Pandas) and I love the exercise I get from pushing Novena’s stroller up and down those hills. The weather has to be nice to enjoy all the exhibits.

While you are around the area, please check out Woodley Café for brunch. A family-owned small restaurant that has fantastic food (their pancakes are amazing)! Tell them Luwam sent you.

Novena's First Zoo Trip

Can't visit DC without eating at our favorite brunch spot- Woodley Cafe

9. Madame Tussauds

This isn’t just any old wax museum… Their characters look and feel so real. What I love about this place is the mixture of exhibits they offer. We learn about all the presidents and first ladies, and we get to see cultural icons from singers and movie actresses to visionary leaders.

Purchase your tickets online for a special discount of $17.60 for teenagers/adults and $14.00 for children from ages 2-12. 

10. Escape Lounge DC

Lorenzo and I recently discovered this place and loved it. Great family fun and had us thinking hard for clues. Our host was excellent too and spent her time with us. Parking was an issue so go early. Prices vary from $15-$25.00 depending on the room you chose.

Hope this helps you or someone you know. As always, I’d love to hear from you. Try one of the above places out and let me know what you think. Also, what will you be doing for Spring Break this year?

Yours,

about me

Luwam
A program analyst by day and a blogger by night; my love of fitness, healthy living, and empowering other women started...

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