There’s more to see in Washington DC than cherry blossoms and monuments.
Catch some colorful events and new exhibits at DC’s museums. Now, really is the perfect time to rendezvous with that masterpiece you’ve been meaning to see.
- The US National Arboretum – This living museum, encompassing 446-acres of gardens, forests, herbs and shrubs, is at it’s most stunning when the azaleas bloom in early May. Stroll the hillside trails amid the brilliant spring display and don’t miss the renowned bonsai exhibit while you’re there. (free)
- National Gallery of Art East Wing – This dramatic structure contains work by every famous name in 20th century art: Rothko, Picasso, Pollock, Mondrain, Lichtenstein, Miro, O’Keefe, Gauguin, Warhol and more. The East Building is set to close for massive renovations in late 2013 for two years. (free)
- Sewall-Belmont House & Museum – Celebrate the 100th anniversary of Women’s Suffrage by visiting this historic mansion, steps from The Capitol. The exhibits demonstrate strategies used by women activists fighting for voting rights and social justice. ($8, under 6 yrs. free)
- Newseum – “JFK” opened this spring marking the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. On display are rarely seen artifacts and photos, and an original documentary chronicling Kennedy’s presidency and family history. ($20 adult admission includes 4 children free)
- Dumbarton Oaks – This museum and 53-acre garden feature a wide array of blossoming plants—hanging wisteria vines, weeping cherry trees, heirloom roses, and a riot of peonies. ($8 adults, $5 students, seniors and children)
- The Renwick Gallery – Across from the White House, the Renwick features a compact, whimsical collection of craft and decorative arts from 19th century to the present. The Renwick is set for improvements beginning in 2014, and will close for two years. (free)
- Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens – Tour this water wonderland, where bald eagles fly overheard, and lilies turn their blossoms toward the sun. Stroll the boardwalk over the Anacostia River wetlands to behold the fronds, lilies and lotus. (free)
- Washington National Cathedral – Tour the gardens and grounds of this historic landmark. Take Tea in the Tower, or go bird watching in Olmstead Woods adorned with iris, peonies and blooming shrubs. (free)
- Museum of Crime & Punishment – Enjoy exhibits exploring the history and consequences of criminal acts. This modern, interactive museum includes weapons, torture, serial killers and CSI-style forensics. It’s also the site for the television show America’s Most Wanted.