If you’re hoping to take a family trip to Alexandria, Virginia in the coming months, we’ve got it all mapped out for you!
Create the ultimate family trip with our handpicked selection of experiences, restaurants, and hotels that will help to make your time here even more memorable.
Located 15 minutes from Washington DC, there’s an abundance of activities and scenery to enjoy during your time here. But we’ve narrowed it down to the very best! Alexandria is the perfect place to enjoy great food, explore cute and cozy shops, and immerse yourself in history. Plus, time it with the 4th of July and you’ll have an incredible firework show at your fingertips!
Here are the best things to do during your family trip to Alexandria, Virginia.
Plan the ultimate family trip to Alexandria
The Smithsonian Institution is the largest museum in the world and a wonderful place to explore and learn from as a family.
Before you visit this enormous set of museums, be sure to wear sneakers and some major hydration! Oh and if you have littles like I do, bring snacks. They do a bag check, so try to keep those easily accessible.
Within the complex, you’ll find lots of different days out! Including:
- The Air and Space Museum – Temporarily Closed, Reopening July 30th
- Smithsonian’s National Zoo – Currently Open (Check their guidelines for entry)
- The National Museum of African-American History and Culture – Currently Open (Check their guidelines for entry)
And so much more!
This Air and Space Museum in DC remains temporarily closed and will reopen on Friday, July 30. Click this link to plan your trip.
With Washington DC being a short 15-minute drive from Alexandria, the Lincoln Memorial is definitely worth a visit. The site is a wonderful place to learn about the history of the memorial as well as Lincoln himself and all of the wonderful things that he did for America.
A great history lesson and fun family day rolled into one!
*Currently Open – Plan Your Trip Here
The Alexandria waterfront is full of live entertainment, culture and music. As a family, you can spend lots of time here! Drink or eat at the waterfront, shop around the little boutiques, and enjoy a various array of musical talent.
Don’t forget to visit the Alexandria waterfront for the Fourth of July — the firework show is amazing!
To learn more about what you can do at the waterfront, click Alexandria Waterfront
No visit to Alexandria would be complete without a creepy tour through Old Town Alexandria. A fantastic experience for kids, you’ll follow a colonial-costumed guide lighting the way through charming streets and graveyards with a lantern.
During the 60-minute tour, you’ll hear stories of ghosts, romance, and unsolved mysteries that will bring these quiet streets back to life!
You can go ahead and schedule your tour by clicking SCHEDULE A GHOST TOUR
The King Street Trolley is a completely free and environmentally friendly and fun way to visit all of the shops, restaurants, and attractions on Alexandria’s main street.
The trolley normally operates year ’round and comes along every 10-15 minutes. Their operation schedule is Sunday – Wednesday 11:00AM to 10:30PM and Thursday – Saturday 10:30AM to 12:00AM.
The trolley is currently discontinued until further notice – but we hope to see it up and running again this year!
Click here to learn more about their current status.
Mount Vernon is one of the most historic places in America and is where you’ll find George Washington’s beloved home. You can visit this historic home year-round! On the grounds, you’ll find a farm, tomb, trails, and beautiful gardens just waiting to be explored.
While in Mount Vernon, be sure to check out:
- Huntley Meadows Park
- The Arcadia Center for Sustainable Food and Agriculture
Mount Vernon is a truly picturesque place where you can take your family to appreciate natural beauty and escape the hustle and bustle of city life. It’s the perfect day out for families who are interested in the arts, culture, and outdoor activities.
Upcoming Events: Meet George Washington on July 4, 2021 Buy Tickets Here
The best places to eat in Alexandria, Virginia
Southside 815 is an affordable restaurant serving high-quality food that’s just perfect for a family dinner or date night (if you get the chance!).
Be sure to try the Southside Nachos or the Chesapeake Strip Steak. You can check out their menu HERE for other goodies they offer.
A beautiful restaurant that offers water-front dining on The Potomac with panoramic views of the river.
Though this is an ideal spot for large families, it is on the more expensive side. With that said, they do have some delicious food items to choose from and kids will love their hot chocolate lava cake for dessert.
You can check out their menu and make reservations by clicking HERE
This is a must visit, especially with the kiddos! If you and your children love pancakes, then you will all fall in love with their crepes.
Eating here will make you feel like a local. If you’re into eating fresh, eating local, and organic ingredients, then this place is for you.
This restaurant is 100% organic and they get all of their baked goods and vegetables from local sources.
Because their menu items are cooked to order, they are able to offer more than just crepes. Plus they offer a wide variety of craft beers and great wines. Take a look at their menu HERE
If you’re not sure what to order and you are there for dinner, I recommend trying the Parisienne for dinner and the Late Nighter for dessert. Your mouth will thank you!
Note* This restaurant is on the smaller side so it’s Not stroller-friendly!
The best hotels for a family trip in Alexandria, Virginia
The Kimpton Lorien is a dog-friendly hotel & spa situated on King Street.
They offer valet and self parking – for a fee. They offer free bicycle rentals and free wi-fi, too. Their breakfast is not free, but it is delicious. The best part is that they are located right on King Street, so you’re no more than a stones throw away from local eateries, gift shops, and dog parks.
Situated in Alexandria Old Town, this hotel is perfect for larger families – I have a family of six, so this hotel was perfect for us.
Breakfast is free! There’s no valet parking, but there is self parking for a daily rate. They offer pet friendly rooms and there’s an indoor pool to keep the kids busy on bad weather days.
We can’t wait for you to visit Alexandria and fall in love with it like we have!
Have you visited Alexandria before? What’s on your must-see list?
Please note that some businesses continue to impose capacity restrictions and/or require masks for all guests, regardless of vaccination status.