Share this travel adventure!

Washington, D.C.

Things to Do

As the capital of the United States, Washington, DC is many things, but balmy and bright are not always amongst them. Famed for its gray skies and inevitable rainfall, it doesn’t always offer the best weather for sightseeing, so it’s lucky there are so many indoor things to do in Washington to keep visitors occupied.

The perfect place to spend a wet and windy day, the city is filled to the brim with a host of all-weather activities, from museums to theaters to art galleries galore. So, want to know where to go when the heavens open? Then here are four ideas to add to your itinerary!

Visit the National Cathedral

National Cathedral in Washington, DC. Reused from Pixabay with a CC0 license.

National Cathedral in Washington, DC. Reused from Pixabay with a CC0 license.

As one of Washington’s foremost religious monuments, the National Cathedral is expectedly impressive. Featuring soaring gothic architecture, it has a whole host of beautiful details to admire, from its intricate wood carvings to its gruesome gargoyles and detailed mosaics.

The most decadent and ostentatious of them all are its 200 stained glass windows, with each panel featuring the most exquisite imagery. A true feast for the eyes, the cathedral can be explored in a number of ways, from partaking in a guided tour to discovering its delights at your own pace. Should you opt for the former, Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the best days to go, with a combined tea and tour available to any who are interested.

Stop at the National Air and Space Museum

Exhibit in the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC.

Exhibit in the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC. Photo by Linda Aksomitis.

As the capital of the United States, Washington prides itself on being a cultural centre, so it’s little surprise that its streets are lined with dozens of world-class museums, including one of the most popular in the world: The National Air and Space Museum.

A wonderland of aeronautic delights, the museum features an enormous collection of historic air and space crafts, with everything from World War I era planes all the way through to pieces associated with the first moon landing. Arranged so that they take you on the most exciting adventure through history, its fantastic exhibitions and fascinating artifacts will keep you occupied for hours.

Explore the Mansion on O Street

Mansion on O Street in Washington, DC

Mansion on O Street in Washington, DC. By BobIsTraveling. Reused from Flickr with a CC by 2.0 license.

Looking for something a little different to do? Then the Mansion on O Street is ideal. Built in 1892 by the architect of the Capitol, Edward Clark, it today functions as a luxury boutique hotel – one which you’re welcome to explore.

Noted for its eccentric interior styling, its brilliant design incorporates everything from hidden doors (70 in total) to secret passages and chambers in which all of the fixtures and fitting are up for sale. In amongst its maze-like marvels and 100 plus rooms, you’ll find the most incredible artwork interspersed, making it a true treat for the cultured and the quirky alike.

Take a Trip to Madame Tussauds

Madame Tussauds in Washington, DC.

Madame Tussauds in Washington, DC. Photo by Linda Aksomitis.

Last but not least, why not incorporate a trip to Madame Tussauds into your already overflowing itinerary? Offering a fascinating look back through history, this unique waxwork museum gives visitors the chance to see a whole host of famous faces – dead and alive – up close and personal.

Visit it to meet all 44 of the US presidents to date, from Lincoln to Bush to Obama, before rubbing elbows with everyone from Kim Kardashian through to cultural icons like Madonna and Elvis. A delight for kids and adults alike, this is a once in a lifetime experience you won’t want to miss out on.

The only question remaining is this: where will you choose to go first? 

Visit these Things to Do in Washington

You’ll find all of these attractions on the Google Map below to help you with planning your itinerary.

 

This article was written by Rachel Bell. Many of the photos and all of the pins for Pinterest were by Linda Aksomitis, as noted.

More Things to do in Washington, Virginia, & Maryland

How to Soak Up the Sights on a Rainy Day in Washington, DC

Check out these four great things to do in Washington, D.C., whether the gray skies are full of rain or snow on your visit to one of the most interesting cities in the United States.

Hampton, Virginia–One of the Best Holiday Destinations for Boat & Ship Lovers

Ahead, the highway seemed to disappear right into the ocean as Interstate 64 dropped into the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel, a 3.5 mile four-lane construction of tunnels, bridges, and tressles. It was certainly our first experience with an immersed tube as a roadway!...

10 Things You Must See & Do in New York State’s Hudson Valley

There are many attractions to visit and enjoy in New York's Hudson Valley. From history to geography to culture, you'll find the Hudson Valley a great destination rich in things to do see and do. Running north to south, the Hudson River flows down the eastern edge of...

A Proper Visit to Niagara Falls

The second largest falls in the world, Niagara Falls (comprised of 3 falls), has 600,000 gallons of water roaring over the Horseshoe Falls every minute! Take the Maid of the Mist boat ride right under them for an unforgettable experience.

What Famous Writer Bought out his Enlisted Term at Fort Monroe in 1829?

Fort Monroe, Virginia, is the largest stone fort ever built in America. It was constructed between 1819 and 1836, with the final phase directed by Robert E. Lee. The hexagonal brick and stone fort, which also had a moat, covers 63 acres and cost over $2 million to...

Best Halloween Event for Grown-Ups–Where else but in Sleepy Hollow, New York?

The legend of Sleepy Hollow, with the image of the headless horseman galloping through the night, has the ability to give us all a bit of a shiver at Halloween--even when we're grown ups. I'll admit, as will most folks I know, that things that go bump in the night can...

Poughkeepsie’s Walkway Over the Hudson–Some of the Best 2013 Fall Foliage

The best way to see fall foliage is from a walkway above the oranges, reds, golds and greens--particularly if that walkway is Poughkeepsie's Walkway Over the Hudson River. Our 6000 mile return trip (from Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan) down the U.S. east coast in search of...

South Street Seaport – New York City

Whether you visit for the Statue of Liberty or to see the tall ships of long-past centuries, there’s lots to do on the Hudson River at the South Street Seaport in New York city.

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow — October Foliage Tour of Sunnyside — Washington Irving’s Home

Halloween today wouldn't be complete without The Legend of Sleepy Hollow--a story Washington Irving first published back in 1820. This year, when we were planning our fall foliage tour down the U.S. east coast, I was thrilled to be able to add in a stop to visit the...

Washington Court Hotel–Perfect for Exploring Washington DC Capitol Hill Attractions

Washington, DC, is one of the must-see cities on everyone's driving vacation along the United States east coast. Capitol Hill. The White House. The Smithsonian museums. There's just so much to pack into a weekend! And it was a special weekend for us, as we were also...

About the Photo

The photo of the United States Capitol Building, in the header above, was taken by Linda Aksomitis, on a beautiful sunny fall day in Washington, DC, USA.

Pin Me!

Old Post Office National Historic Building in Washington, DC

United States Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. Photo by Linda Aksomitis at guide2travel.ca

Smithsonian Air & Space Museum in Washington, D.C. Photo by Linda Aksomitis at guide2travel.ca

Search Categories

Follow us on social media!