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Home Blog 100 Days of Summer Spend the day on the National Mall— Summer Fun

Spend the day on the National Mall— Summer Fun

100 Days of Summer— Day 42

Take your kids to see some of the most iconic sites in America.

Strolling along the mall is a pleasant way to spend a nice day, and whether it’s your first visit or your fiftieth, the views never get old.

With so much to do at the National Mall, it’s easy to create a full day of site seeing and still have more places to see for another visit.

Memorials & Monuments

Gear up with your walking shoes and pack some snacks for a great tour of the monuments and memorials that dot the National Mall. The many walking paths allow you to connect easily across the mall so exploring is a snap.

To see as many as possible, try this loop of walking paths. Starting at the Lincoln Memorial, you can head south towards the Korean War Memorial and then cross Independence Ave SW to arrive at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial. As you continue south, you can walk through the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial and circle around the Tidal Basin to see the George Mason Memorial and Thomas Jefferson Memorial. Continue around the basin north towards the Washington Monument. Finish the walking tour by heading west to the World War II Memorial and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

If you want to see just a few, spend the morning taking the kids to the Lincoln Memorial, National World War II Memorial and the other monuments that surround the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool. This is a great loop for those little legs.

Museums Galleries and Gardens

History and culture are all around the National Mall in the many museums, galleries and gardens.

The Smithsonian Museums are nearby for indoor, fun learning. Also, if its a hot day, they provide relief as the buildings are air-conditioned.

Great museum along the National Mall include the National Museum of American History, National Museum of Natural History and National Museum of African American History and Culture. Don’t forget to also explore the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the National Museum of the American Indian and the National Air and Space Museum. Admission to any museums of the Smithsonian is free.

Admire the beautiful artwork at the galleries and sculpture gardens around the mall. The Art Museum of the Americas, The National Gallery of Art and the S. Dillon Ripley Center are a few places to see artwork inside. You can also walk the family through the flower and sculpture gardens around the National Mall to enjoy the beauty outside.

Other Activities around the National Mall

Though tours may not be available, the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center and the White House building are great to see.

Other outdoor activities include renting paddleboats on the Tidal Basin for spectacular views of the Jefferson Memorial and picnicking on the mall. Also, the National Mall hosts many events that might be great for your family.

For more about taking a day trip to the capital, check out our insider’s guide to a day trip in D.C.

For a daily dose of summer fun, explore our 100 Days of Summer page or search our daily calendar of events.

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