Lauren Stewart’s Top Tips for Things to Do in DC With Kids

Gearing up for a trip to our nation’s capital with the kids? Local mom and social media influencer Lauren Stewart offers her best insider travel tips.
save article
profile picture of Lauren Stewart
By Lauren Stewart, Host of the 'I’m Not Crazy, I’m Exhausted' podcast
Published September 12, 2019
lincoln memorial in washington dc with illustration overlays

The Bump presents Where In the World Is The Bump, a series of summer travel guides featuring tips, favorite picks and insider know-how from local moms for families looking to visit their cities this season. From the best baby-friendly restaurants to preschooler-approved playgrounds, savvy packing lists and more, you’ll get all the honest, parent-proven advice you need to plan your trip.

Hey friends! Lauren Stewart, here. My family and I moved onto Capitol Hill when I was pregnant with our second child, Lilah. I was nine weeks along when we drove cross-country from Utah to settle in DC for work. Since then, I’ve figured out a few tricks to navigating this city.

We love our city and we love to explore. It can be tricky to travel with kids and their tiny little legs and short attention spans, but if you’re prepared and are ready to go with the flow, it’s fun and easy. Sit back and get ready to get all the tips for traveling to Washington DC with small kids, from where to park to where to eat and where to head to get the best iconic DC photos.

Image: Lauren Stewart

Navigating DC with Kids

Navigating the city with kids is much easier than you might think! I’m going to share my favorite spot where you can always find parking. Check out the photo of us above, in front of the Capitol—that’s taken on East Capitol Street. It runs right between the Supreme Court and The Library of Congress. The reason it’s the perfect spot? There’s always parking between the neighborhoods and the government buildings. Snagging a spot here makes it easy to walk to some of the main sights in DC. We park and walk right up East Capitol, where you can get your iconic Capitol shot. There happens to be a roadblock up quite often so it makes for a great little spot to snap a photo.

One of the best things about DC is its walkability. You can get to parks, restaurants and historical landmarks all on foot. Head up Constitution Avenue to see the Capitol and head down Pennsylvania Avenue to get to all the food you could possibly want. DC is amazing because there is so much packed into such a small space. DC is amazing year-round, but if you’re planning on walking I prefer late September and October to be outside.

Touring DC with Kids

Heading to DC and dying to fit everything into your tight schedule? Here’s my top tip for touring around the city with your family: You can maximize your time by calling your local representative’s office. Your congressperson’s office can schedule tours for your family while you’re in town. It’s free, private and personal. You’ll have your own staffer to walk you through the tunnels of the buildings and be able to see all the things.

Bonus tip: The Library of Congress has a children’s library in it! So when the tour is done, you can finish up in the children’s section, where your kiddos get to participate in activities and have a bit more freedom to roam and touch things. That’s a win for everyone.

Check out DC events on Google to see what might be going on while you are in town. There is no shortage of art shows and pop-up stores, and it’s so neat to take in a one-time event while you’re in town.

What to Pack

Bring your stroller! But keep in mind that some places may not allow you to bring it in, so also bring a sling. I’ve found that they’re so much easier to bring around than a full baby carrier.

Lauren Stewart is a blogger, vlogger and host of the “I’m Not Crazy, I’m Exhausted” podcast. As a mom of three, balancing life, motherhood and business is, as she says, no joke, but she likes to keep it light. Follow her on Instagram at @lauren.stewart_dc.

save article

Next on Your Reading List

Best Travel Stroller-hero
The 9 Best Travel Strollers for Stress-Free Trips
By Emma O'Regan-Reidy
mother traveling with baby in airport
30 Tips to Keep in Mind When Traveling With an Infant
Medically Reviewed by Dina DiMaggio Walters, MD
kelly osbourne and baby in airport
Kelly Osbourne Shares Her Toddler's Relatable In-Flight Uh-Oh
By Wyndi Kappes
Best Toddler Travel Toys-hero
The Top Airplane and Car Toys for Toddlers on the Go
By Emma O'Regan-Reidy
world's most well-traveled baby in paris with mom and dad
Globe-Trotting Baby Visits 23 Countries Before His First Birthday
By Wyndi Kappes
The 8 Best Family-Friendly Vacations for Toddlers and Infants
By Emma O'Regan-Reidy
ashley tisdale and 2 year old daughter on vacation
Ashley Tisdale Shares Her Secrets for Traveling With a 2-Year-Old
By Wyndi Kappes
FamVeld | Shutterstock
The Best Babymoon Destinations (According to Real Parents)
By Martina Garvey
fridababy PTO giveaway for parents
Frida Baby Is Giving Away $13,000+ in Childcare for Kid-Free Getaways
By Wyndi Kappes
mother holding baby while sitting on airplane
Do Babies Need Passports to Travel Internationally?
By Natalie Gontcharova
mother cleaning up after toddler on airplane
Viral Tweet Sparks Debate: Who Should Clean Up After Kids on Planes?
By Wyndi Kappes
toddler and mom on airplane watching TV
Carter’s Airplane Apology Agreement Offers Cash to Pacify Passengers
By Wyndi Kappes
family on vacation laughing in front of new york city skyline
These Are 2023's Best Cities for Kid-Friendly Vacations
By Wyndi Kappes
mother and father traveling with baby in the mountains
These Are America’s Top 10 Baby-Friendly Travel Destinations
By Wyndi Kappes
mother kissing baby's head while sitting on airplane
This TikTok About Flying With a Crying Baby Is Going Viral
By Wyndi Kappes
What Are Some Tips for Taking Car Trips With My Toddler?
What Are Some Tips for Taking Car Trips With My Toddler?
By The Bump Editors
taking photos with your kids on vacation in san diego
The Foolproof Way to (Finally!) Get in Photos With Your Kids
By Emily Platt
Travel tips Baby in pack with father while traveling by the sea
13 Essentials for Traveling With Baby, Tried and Tested by a Dad of Twins
By Tyler Lund
jessica alba with her family
Jessica Alba’s Top Tips for Traveling With Kids
By Lauren Kay
dad holding his baby who is dressed in a holiday outfit
Traveling With Baby Like a Pro This Holiday
By Anisa Arsenault
Article removed.
Article removed.
Name added. View Your List