Monday – Visit the Washington National Cathedral, one of DC’s most iconic attractions. Both guided and self-guided tours are available, and there are lots of features like stained glass, gargoyles, and wrought iron animals that children will find especially interesting. The observation gallery on the seventh floor also showcases interesting architectural designs and stunning birds-eye views of DC. Stroll the beautiful grounds outside, and head to the Beauvoir playground, which should be open to the public since school isn’t back in session until Tuesday. The National Cathedral is open 10am – 5:30pm. Admission is $10/adult, $6/child.
Tuesday – Enjoy free admission for kids to the Newseum while you can! The Summer Fun Deal, which ends after Labor Day, waives the entrance fee for youth with one paid adult admission. The deal benefits kids ages 7 and up most, since children 6 and under always get in free, and much of the Newseum’s collection will be better appreciated by older children. Adult tickets are $22.95, but you can get a $16 deal on entry here. For a museum outing with littler ones, head to National Geographic, where the Monster Fish exhibit will fascinate with big sculptures of river creatures and fun interactives. The Indiana Jones and the Adventure of Archaeology exhibit is also great, but suited for kids ages 8 and up. Hours there are 10am – 6pm. Admission is $15/adult, $10/child, and you can find a discount here.
Wednesday – Take advantage of a summer staple and jump in at an outdoor pool before they close for the season. Check out the Summer in DC guide for info and links to public pools around the area. Hours vary by location, so be sure to check schedule. Admission to most is free (or a small fee if you’re not a resident of the District or county where it’s located).
Thursday – Walk amid a garden of butterflies at Brookside Garden’s amazing Wings of Fancy exhibit. The seasonal display featuring live butterflies and caterpillars from all over the world is sure to delight! Hours are 10am – 4pm. Admission is $8/ages 13 and up, $5/3-12, free ages 0-2 (admission to the rest of Brookside is free). Read about a KFDC experience at the exhibit.
Friday – Hang out at National Harbor. Treat kids finishing up summer break to a spin on the Capital Wheel ($15/adult, $11/25/child), let little ones ride the carousel ($7 for unlimited rides), paddle or pedal the Potomac (rates vary by boat), and more. A fun way to get there is by water taxi from Old Town Alexandria; the Potomac Riverboat Company operates daily between the two destinations at various times throughout the day — see the schedule and rates here.