As someone who loves museums, I consider myself to be very, very lucky. I live within walking distance of a Metro that will zip me to downtown D.C. in 45min. From there I can easily walk to dozens of museums, many of which are free. It makes a really wonderful day trip for my family and of course any guests that come to visit!
Now that I take these trips with a 1 year old in tow, my thinking about visiting museums has changed. I really want my son to love them as much as I do, so I’ve gotten creative thinking about how HE can use them also.
My new post on the National Museum of American History Museum’s blog “O Say Can You See?” goes into a few ways that you can make museums even more exciting for young kids and hopefully makes it easy for you to take suggestions and adapt them for your family. I’d love to hear your comments and suggestions for things that work for you!
Of course, getting there can feel like half the battle. For us, since we take public transportation, I just try to make the “journey” part of the excitement! I mentally build it in to my planning as part of the day so I don’t feel like the time is “lost.” That may seem like a useless mind trick, but it can help me remember to think of the day as a whole instead of feeling bummed when we end up with only an hour downtown before he needs food and a nap. I also bring fun books and other treats for the ride and plan our trip to avoid the major crush of commuters. I have a bit of an advantage since my son is currently obsessed with all forms of transportation and goes bananas at the chance to take the train!
If you aren’t familiar with traveling in and around D.C., take a look at my blog “Your Family Adventures in Washington, D.C.” It has travel tips, info on museums, good places to nurse/change your baby and more. It is evolving slowly but surely so bookmark it and check back often!