Where to stay in Washington DC for families with kids: 6 Best areas

Hi guys, on my website, I already wrote an article about Washington DC without a car (I will put the link to it at the end of this article). In today’s article, I will help you to find the best places to stay in Washington DC for families with kids.

I will share with you what I believe are the best areas to stay in Washington DC for families, along with a helpful map. I’ll also share where I stayed in Washington DC and recommend some of the best family-friendly hotels in Washington DC for visitors with various budgets.

Washington, D.C. is the capital of the United States, located on the east coast of the country along the Potomac River. The city is the seat of the U.S. federal government where you can find the White House, U.S. Capitol, and Supreme Court of the United States.

The city is a major tourist destination, attracting visitors from around the world who come to explore its historic sites, museums, and cultural attractions.

Some of the popular cultural attractions in the city are the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Jefferson Memorial, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, and the National World War II Memorial.

The city has a rich cultural scene, with world-class museums and galleries, many of which are part of the Smithsonian Institution, such as the National Air and Space Museum, the National Museum of American History, and the National Museum of Natural History.

In terms of public transportation, the city has a well-developed subway system known as the Washington Metro, and is served by several major airports, including Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and Dulles International Airport.

Is Washington DC a good place to visit with family?

Yes, Washington DC is an excellent family-friendly destination as it has many iconic landmarks and museums that appeal to all ages, including the Smithsonian museums, National Zoo, and the National Mall. 

The city’s rich history offers educational opportunities, while the vibrant cultural scene, parks, and festivals provide entertainment. The diverse culinary options cater to various tastes, and the city’s walkability makes it accessible for families. 

Where to stay in Washington DC for families with kids?

The best areas to stay in Washington DC for families with kids are Downtown DC, Capitol Hill, Dupont Circle, Logan Circle, Foggy Bottom, and Georgetown. Each of the neighborhoods has its own unique characteristics and attractions.

I recommend staying in Downtown D.C. if your family wants to be in the heart of the action and close to many of the city’s major attractions, including the National Mall, Smithsonian museums, and the U.S. Capitol. But, it can be busy and less residential.

If your family (with young kids) wants a relatively quieter atmosphere and proximity to attractions, Capitol Hill, Foggy Bottom, and Georgetown are good choices. They offer more residential feel compared to downtown but are still centrally located. 

Dupont Circle and Logan Circle are also centrally located next to Downtown. They are great places for your family (with older kids) to book hotels if you enjoy the vibrant dining scene and nightlife.

Georgetown is a charming, historic neighborhood with cobblestone streets, boutique shops, and waterfront views. While it’s not as centrally located as some other options, it has a family-friendly atmosphere with parks, dining, and shopping.

During my trip to Washington DC, I stayed in the Downtown area at Embassy Suites by Hilton. It is a great hotel in a central location, within walking distance/ short ride from the city’s most popular landmarks. Also lots of nice restaurants nearby.

Below is a map of the popular areas in Washington DC for families. You can scroll down to view the live map.

Map of the best areas to stay in Washington DC for families with kids
Map of the best areas to stay in Washington DC for families with kids

Let’s get into the details of the recommended areas to stay in Washington DC, especially for families. I’ll provide you with some suggestions for the best places to stay in each area, catering to every budget. 

All hotels in Washington DC have been carefully selected by me, with guest review scores of at least 8.0 or higher at the time I chose them. If you don’t like my suggestions (perhaps they don’t suit your budget or preferences), you can click the “MORE HOTEL DEALS” button where you can choose your own hotel.

6 Best areas to stay in Washington DC with family:

1. Downtown Washington DC

Downtown D.C. is one of the most popular areas to stay in Washington DC for families who want to be at the center of the action and have easy access to famous landmarks and cultural attractions. 

If you stay in Downtown, you will be located within walking distance or a short metro ride away from iconic sites such as the National Mall, the Smithsonian Museums, the U.S. Capitol, the White House, and the Washington Monument. 

Several world-class museums are located along or near the National Mall, including the National Air and Space Museum, National Museum of Natural History, and the National Museum of American History. Many of these museums are family-friendly and offer interactive exhibits.

Downtown D.C. is a pedestrian-friendly area with well-maintained sidewalks and crosswalks, making it easy to explore on foot. This can be especially convenient for families with strollers or young children.

Additionally, it is well-connected by the D.C. Metro system, which makes it easy for families to get around the city without the hassle of driving and parking. The Metro can take you to family attractions like the National Zoo or the United States Botanic Garden.

Downtown D.C. boasts a diverse array of restaurants and eateries, catering to a variety of tastes and dietary preferences. This is particularly helpful for families with picky eaters or dietary restrictions, ensuring that everyone can find something they enjoy.

Downtown D.C. frequently hosts events, festivals, and performances that families can enjoy. These can include parades, outdoor concerts, and seasonal celebrations like the National Cherry Blossom Festival.

The area also offers a range of family-friendly accommodations with amenities like swimming pools and family suites, providing a comfortable and convenient stay.

Best places to stay in Downtown DC for families with kids:

  • Luxury ($$$): Riggs Washington DC, 5-star family-friendly hotel, located within easy access to Downtown DC, in the former home of Riggs National Bank, a short walk from the Gallery Place – Chinatown Metro Station. It has a central location close to the city’s major attractions.
  • Mid-range ($$): AKA White House , 4-star kid-friendly hotels with Family rooms, centrally located within walking distance/ Short Uber ride from The National Mall, Washington Monument and Lincoln Memorial.
  • Budget ($): Embassy Suites by Hilton Washington DC Convention Center, this 3-star hotel in Downtown DC has spacious family rooms, welcome children of all ages and children 18 years and above will be charged as adults.

2. Capitol Hill/ Navy Yard

Capitol Hill/ Navy Yard are popular areas located just south of Downtown DC. They are great options for families who prefer a quieter atmosphere and convenient access to both the National Mall and Capitol Building. 

The U.S. Capitol Building is the centerpiece of Capitol Hill. While tours of the Capitol are available, they often require advance reservations. 

Located adjacent to the Capitol, the Library of Congress is the largest library in the world and offers guided tours that can be educational for older kids.

Your family can visit the Eastern Market, a historic market that is a local favorite and offers fresh produce, artisanal goods, and flea markets on weekends.

There are numerous parks and green spaces in the area for families to play and enjoy including Lincoln Park, Nationals Park (home stadium of the Washington Nationals), and Yards Park.

Capitol Hill has a diverse range of dining options, from casual cafes to fine dining. There are also some family-friendly restaurants in the area. Barracks Row, in particular, is known for its restaurant scene.

Just a short walk from Navy Yard, The Wharf offers a variety of dining options, shops, and entertainment venues. There’s often live music and events happening here.

Both Capitol Hill and Navy Yard are accessible by the D.C. Metro, which makes it easy to explore other parts of the city. There are numerous metro stations in the area such as Eastern Market, Capitol South Station, and Navy Yard-Ballpark. 

Maybe consider book hotels around metro stations, for easy access to major attractions if you don’t drive.

Best places to stay in Washington DC in Capitol Hill with kids:

  • Mid-range ($$): Capitol Hill Hotel, 4-star family-friendly hotel, located in Capitol Hill, conveniently base for sightseeing as it is within walking distance from the United States Capitol, National Aquarium, Capitol Building and the National Mall.
  • Mid-range ($$): Thompson Washington DC, part of Hyatt, 4-star accommodation, featuring family rooms, located in the Capitol Hill/ Navy Yard area. Easy access to major landmarks and metro stations.
  • Budget ($): Residence Inn Washington Capitol Hill/Navy Yard, 3-star children-friendly hotel, located close to numeros restaurants, shops, and subway station, offering easy access to the city’s iconic landmarks.

3. Dupont Circle

Dupont Circle is a vibrant and historic neighborhood located just north of Downtown DC, making it a great base to go sightseeing. It’s known for its cosmopolitan atmosphere, tree-lined streets, and diverse dining and cultural offerings. 

Dupont Circle is a good choice for families with older kids who are interested in exploring art, culture, and diverse cuisine.

The central feature of the neighborhood, Dupont Circle Fountain is a popular gathering spot and a great place for kids to play on a warm day.

Dupont Circle is home to Embassy Row with numerous foreign embassies, and your family can take a leisurely stroll to admire the impressive architecture and international flags.

You can also visit the Phillips Collection art museum to view its extensive collection of European and American art. It often hosts family-friendly programs and activities.

Dupont Circle offers a wide array of dining options, from trendy restaurants to international cuisine. There are also boutiques and shops for those interested in shopping.

The Dupont Circle is served by the Dupont Circle Metro station, making it easy to access other parts of the city via public transportation.

Best places to stay in Washington DC in Dupont Circle with children:

  • Luxury ($$$): The Dupont Circle Hotel, 5 star kid-friendly hotel, located in Dupont Circle, short walk from Dupont Circle Metro station, easy access to the city’s top landmarks.
  • Mid-range ($$): The St Gregory Hotel Dupont Circle Georgetown, 4-star accommodation, featuring family rooms, within walking distance from the Dupont Circle and Foggy Bottom metro station, as well as major sights and Georgetown neighborhood.
  • Mid-range ($$): Hotel Madera, 4-star family-friendly hotel, located in the heart of Washington Dc, easy walk Dupont Circle, lots of restaurants nearby. The hotel welcomes children of all ages, Children 13 years and above will be charged as adults.

4. Logan Circle

Logan Circle is a trendy and vibrant neighborhood located right next to Downtown DC and Dupont Circle. It is an interesting place to stay for families with older children or teenagers who appreciate a more upscale and urban environment. 

You and your kids can take a leisure stroll around Logan Circle Park, the neighborhood’s namesake park. It is a pleasant green space with walking paths and a central fountain.  

Logan Circle has a thriving arts scene, with several galleries showcasing contemporary art. Some galleries may have family-friendly exhibits.

The area is known for its diverse dining scene, with numerous trendy restaurants and cafes offering a variety of cuisines.

Best places to stay in Washington DC in Logan Circle with family:

  • Luxury ($$$): Viceroy Washington DC, 5-star family-friendly and pet-friendly hotel located within easy walk from Logan Circle. It has an on-site restaurant and private parking.
  • Mid-range ($$): Washington Plaza Hotel, 4-star children-friendly hotel, features family rooms, centrally located within easy reach of the Metro Center station.
  • Budget ($):  The Eldon Luxury Suites, 3-star accommodation, conveniently located close to  Mount Vernon Square Metro Station, offering easy access to the White House, US Capitol, and the Smithsonian.

5. Foggy Bottom

Foggy Bottom is a historic and central area located just east of the White House. It’s a relatively quiet and residential neighborhood known for its proximity to major landmarks, universities, and cultural institutions.

In the area, you can find The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, one of the country’s premier cultural venues. It offers family-friendly performances and often has free events and concerts on its terrace.

Foggy Bottom is home to George Washington University, and you can explore parts of its campus and take a stroll around the area.

While staying in Foggy Bottom, you can visit the nearby Rock Creek Park with numerous hiking trails, picnic areas, and nature exploration opportunities for families.

Foggy Bottom has a mix of restaurants, cafes, and shops, including some family-friendly dining options. The nearby Georgetown neighborhood also offers additional dining and shopping choices.

Foggy Bottom is well-connected by public transportation, with the Foggy Bottom-GWU Metro station serving the neighborhood. It’s also within walking distance of many attractions and the National Mall.

Best places to stay in Washington DC in Foggy Bottom with children:

  • Luxury ($$$): Melrose Georgetown Hotel, 5-star hotels located close to both Georgetown and Foggy Bottom. Its location offers easy access to Washington Metro public transport station, the Lincoln Memorial and Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
  • Mid-range ($$): The River Inn-A Modus Hotel, popular 4-star hotel located only a few mins from Foggy Bottom Metro Station, with services to major landmarks in the city. Also close to The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and George Washington University.
  • Mid-range ($$):  State Plaza Hotel, 4-star kid-friendly hotel, short distance from George Washington University, World Bank, Foggy Bottom – GWU Metro station, and Lincoln Memorial.

6. Georgetown

Georgetown is a charming neighborhood located along the Potomac river and next to Foggy Bottom. It’s known for its cobblestone streets, waterfront views, upscale shops, and a lively dining scene. 

While Georgetown may not be in the immediate vicinity of the city’s major museums and government buildings, it offers a unique and family-friendly experience with a distinctive character. 

Georgetown Waterfront Park offers walking paths, green spaces, and beautiful views. It’s a great place for a leisurely stroll with your family.

The Chesapeake & Ohio Canal is another lovely spot for walking and biking. It’s especially picturesque during the fall foliage season.

Georgetown is famous for its upscale shopping district, M Street, where you’ll find a wide range of shops and boutiques, including some that cater to children’s clothing and toys.

While Georgetown doesn’t have a Metro station, it’s accessible by bus and taxi services. It’s also a walkable neighborhood, and you can easily explore it on foot.

Georgetown is an excellent choice for families who appreciate a more relaxed and upscale atmosphere and want to experience a different side of Washington, D.C. 

Best places to stay in Washington DC in Georgetown with kids:

  • Luxury ($$$): The Ritz-Carlton Georgetown, Washington, D.C., 5-star family-friendly hotel, located within walking distance from Foggy Bottom Metro Station, as well as many restaurants, bars, and shops.
  • Luxury ($$$): Four Seasons Washington DC, 5-star hotel, great location in Georgetown, easy access to Foggy Bottom Metro Station.
  • Mid-range ($$): The Graham Georgetown, 3-star kid-friendly accommodation, located on Thomas Jefferson Street, short distance from The Shops at Georgetown Park and Georgetown Waterfront Park.

In conclusion, Downtown DC, Capitol Hill, Dupont Circle, Logan Circle, Foggy Bottom, and Georgetown are the best places to stay in Washington DC for families with kids. These are popular tourist neighborhoods in DC, offering a wide range of attractions and accommodations for all families.

If your family doesn’t plan to hire a car, you can check this article: Best areas to stay in Washington DC without a car. I also recommend reading this article: 8 safe areas to stay in Washington DC for first time.

There you have it, my recommendations for the popular areas and neighborhoods that you can stay during your family trip to Washington DC. I hope you found my article helpful and enjoy your holiday!

About Author: Ocean Cameron

I'm Ocean, founder and main editor of travelhotelexpert.com. I’m a passionate traveler who specializes in uncovering the best hotels and locations in every city, especially for first-timers, all without the need for a car.

Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links. This means that, at absolutely no additional cost to you, I'll earn a small commission if you click through and purchase something I've recommended. I only recommend products that I use myself or firmly believe in. Thank you!

Leave a Comment