Let’s face it, whether you’re trying to keep the kids entertained or you’re looking for a new attraction or somewhere new to visit, the summer vacation can soon mount up to be a costly couple of months. However not all activities need to cost a fortune, no matter where you go.
There are loads of great things to do and see in Washington, D.C that won’t even cost you a dime. Here are just a few of the fun and free things you can take advantage of this summer:
National Museum of the American Indian
Quite often when you think of the museums that D.C. has to offer, the Natural Museum of American History are usually given more pride of place and visited more frequently than the National Museum of the American Indian. However, this museum which is still part of the Smithsonian Institution is equally free and offers the opportunity to uncover culture and history you may not have seen before. Plus even food has its place here in this mixture of permanent and temporary exhibitions. Learn about natives and try their choice cuisine in the Mitsitam Native Foods Café for the full on experience.
Head to the White House
The most well-known address in the country can actually be free to visit and tour, however this one takes careful planning. To visit 1,600 Pennsylvania Avenue you’ll need to get in touch with your Member of Congress in advance in order to request tickets. You can’t request more than 6 months in advance but you’ll need to get in touch at least 3 weeks before you want to visit. Then you can embark on a self-guided tour on the date and time slot you’ve been approved for.
This top attraction has been closed for the last 4 years due to damage from a hurricane but the great news for visitors in summer 2015 is that it’s back open for business. This means you can enjoy a stellar view of the city if you’re willing to get up early enough to get your hands on free tickets. The tickets to the monument are handed out daily from the Washington Monument Lodge at 15th Street, which is pretty much next to the monument. You’ll need to be there before 8.30am which is when the tickets for the day are given out on a first come first served basis.
Did you know you can visit the National Archives for free? Go and explore some fantastic original manuscripts such as the Bill of Rights and the U.S. Constitution in person along at 700 Pennsylvania Avenue. There’s plenty more besides this to explore within the rotunda, which is a must visit for history buffs on a budget.