We are so lucky to live in a city full of fun kid friendly things to do. Any day of the week I can pull up dozens of activities and events going on in DC and most of them are free. Museums, monuments, gardens, theaters, playgrounds, farms… we’ve got it all just a short drive away.
On my list of Washington DC attractions was the U.S. Botanic Garden. We headed there this week to see their Season’s Greetings Pollination Station exhibit. Walking up you immediately have a beautiful view of the Capitol building. At the building entry there is a large sculpture and beautiful, enormous wreaths hanging along the side. Stepping inside your are immediately greeted by a world of colorful plants and blooms, pretty poinsettias and tropical flowers abound along with beautifully decorated trees. Most stunning are the DC landmarks, the Capitol, Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument, all made of plants. They are so detailed and precise, it’s truly amazing.
This years holiday theme, Pollination Station, featured a world of butterflies, bees, blooms and bustling trains. Of course my little guy was most excited about the trains. He was fascinated by the trains that ran through an intricate wonderland up high and down low. We watched Thomas the Train hurry along the tracks through a tunnel of hanging bats, around a bend with giant butterflies and flowers.
We wondered through the other rooms, each full of interesting plant life and botanical life. The lawn terrace houses a giant Christmas tree, beautifully decorated with a large train track whistling around the bottom. The kids had the best time chasing after James as he steamed around the bend.
The canopy walk gives you a bird’s eye glimpse of the gardens, a jungle of tropical plants in a steamy natural setting. There’s a children’s garden that is closed for the season, but I’ve heard wonderful things about it from friends who frequently visit.
Our visit to the Botanic Gardens was a fun afternoon celebrating the holiday season and learning a little about natural environments and plant life. The kids were definitely entertained and loved all the sights and wonders, from the trains to the plant sculptures.
Visiting the US Botanic Gardens- Helpful Info
- Street parking is available across from the Gardens, meter pay with coins or credit card
- The museum is free
- Open everyday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM
- There are no dining options, no food or drink for sale on site. There are several restaurants and places to grab a bite to eat near the Botanic Gardens on Third Street SW (10 minutes walking distance) or at the National Museum of the American Indian across the street.
- Strollers are permitted
- There is no gift shop
- Closest Metro station is Federal Center SW
Kid Friendly DC
Our recommendations near the US Botanic Gardens
- Washington DC Kid Friendly Hotels– Hilton Garden Inn | Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill
- Kid Friendly Restaurants in DC- Ted’s Bulletin | Matchbox Capitol Hill
- Kid Friendly Museums in DC- The National Museum of the American Indian