DC National Gallery of Art | Washington.org | Free Things to Do in D.C.
Washington, D.C.

Our nation’s capital has something for everyone and, luckily for visitors and residents alike, there are plenty of free and low-cost things to see and do! If you’re planning a fun-filled trip to Washington, D.C., be sure to check out these links, carefully curated by some of D.C.’s most popular websites and blogs. And when you stay at Loews Madison Hotel, you’ll have easy access to all that D.C. has to offer.

National Archives - Madison

The National Archives houses historical documents and stunning artwork.

Destination D.C.

Washington, D.C. is often called the “capital of free” because there are so many museums and attractions that cost little or nothing. Destination DC offers tips on the very best free things to do in the city, whether you’re looking to explore on your own or need more family-friendly options. You can check out this link for a list of 100 free things to do that celebrate our country’s history and heritage.

If you’re a history buff, a visit to the National Archives is a must, to see the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Then be sure to hit the Library of Congress. It’s the largest library in the world, with more than 162 million items on approximately 838 miles of bookshelves!

Panda - Madison

Bei Bei the Giant Panda enjoys a snack.

Traveling with kids? Be sure to check out this list of 100 free family things to do. Visit the Giant Pandas and other furry friends at the National Zoo, take a trip through the galaxy at the National Air and Space Museum, and see how money is made at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.

Music to our Ears

Prefer a more laid back time, relaxing with your friends or enjoying a date night? About.com’s D.C. travel expert Rachel Cooper has put together a list of free concerts in DC that will keep you busy all summer long.

US NAvy Band - Madison

U.S. Navy photo by Musician 1st Class Jonathan Barnes/Released.

Did you know that the U.S. Navy Band performs on the Navy Memorial Plaza at 8:00 PM every Tuesday between Memorial Day and Labor Day? If you’re more of a jazz lover, the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden has Jazz in the Garden every Friday evening. For fans who like a variety of music — ranging from reggae to 80s to R&B — check out Capitol Riverfront’s free outdoor concerts at the Yards Park on Friday evenings throughout the summer.

You Gotta Eat

Brunch DC - Madison

Brunch at the El Camino.

While there’s still no such thing as a free lunch, you will find several lists of the best low-cost options to fuel you up while visiting. The Washington Post Going Out Guide offers a definitive guide to the best cheap-eats destinations in the D.C. area, with a focus on lots of international cuisine hereThe Washingtonian has compiled a list of the 100 Best Cheap Restaurants in Washington, D.C. They even highlighted their top 25 which they noted were the “most thrilling meals they’ve had all year” — at any price. If you’re looking in the under $10 price range, DC Eater has your list of 20 new affordable eats worth checking out right here. Your belly and your wallet will both be full!

Lisa