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D.C. for Spy-Obsessed Kids

International Spy Museum, the Mall and Dupont Circle

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Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Moderate
Length: 1.3 miles
Duration: Unknown
Family Friendly

Overview :  Visiting Washington, D.C., can feel like the school trip from hell: No matter who you are, no matter what you're interested in, you're... more »

Tips:  The 19 museums in the Smithsonian system and the National Zoo offer free admission.

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Points of Interest

A must-visit for both wannabe spy kids and their John le Carré-reading parents, this terrific interactive museum gives you the chance to try your hand at espionage. Visitors compete against each other in elaborate scavenger hunts, decoding messages, solving problems and rendezvousing with other spies. Those who participate in Operation Spy can... More

Continue your global tour down the street at the Freer and Sackler galleries, exhibiting amazing Asian art. In addition to Chinese, Japanese and Korean art, the galleries also features exhibitions of American, Ancient Egyptian and other works.
Freer Gallery of Art
Jefferson Drive at 12th St SW

Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
1050 Independence Ave ... More

The National Museum of African Art is the finest collection of its kind in the United States. Works include musical instruments, costumes, painting, printmaking, sculpture and other media. There is also a museum store onsite and online.
950 Independence Ave. SW
Admission Free
Hours 10am-5:30pm
Closed Dec. 25

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum is as grim as the Spy Museum is whimsical. Although its concentration-camp footage and photos of victims are not for children younger than 12, they're required viewing for older ones and will likely spark more discussion than anything else you do in D.C.
Holocaust Museum
100 Raoul Wallenberg Pl. SW
... More

The Hilton Washington is dubbed the Hinckley Hilton because it's where John Hinckley tried to assassinate President Reagan in 1981.

In addition to its notorious place in history, the hotel is also a kids' Shangri-La. It has a glorious outdoor pool (with a separate toddler pool) and an alfresco café where you can load up on fries. Don't worry... More

Adams Morgan and the adjacent U Street Corridor are D.C.'s most cosmopolitan neighborhoods. Eat at one of the many Ethiopian restaurants, such as Dukem or Meskerem (see last POI). The stews are delicious, but be prepared to use your hands: the spongy injera bread is both plate and fork.
1114-1118 U St. NW
Cost: Dinner... More

For dessert, try America's contribution to the world's waistline: the cupcake. Treat yourselves to the butter cream beauties at Love Café.
Love Cafe
1501 U St. NW
Ph: 202-265-9800
Monday-Tuesday 11am-9pm
Wednesday-Thursday 9am-9pm
Friday-Saturday 9am-10:30pm
Sunday 9am-9pm

2434 18th St. NW
Ph: 202-462-4100
Dinner for four from $75
Monday-Thursday 11am-midnight
Friday-Sunday 11am-2am