Where to stay in Washington DC with family: 8 Best areas

Where to Stay in Washington DC with Family? In this post, I will help you to find the best areas to stay in Washington DC with kids and best family-friendly hotels in Washington DC for all budgets and preferences.

Washington, D.C. is a great place to visit with family! The city offers a wide range of attractions and activities that cater to people of all ages, making it an excellent destination for family vacations.

Washington, D.C. is home to numerous world-class museums, many of which are part of the Smithsonian Institution. The National Air and Space Museum, International Spy Museum and the National Children’s Museum, are just a few examples that offer educational and interactive exhibits that can be enjoyed by both kids and adults.

The Smithsonian National Zoological Park is a popular attraction for families, housing a collection of animals and provides a fun and educational experience. Additionally, there are various parks in the city where families can enjoy picnics, outdoor activities, and scenic views.

The city is famous for its iconic monuments and memorials, such as the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, and Jefferson Memorial. These landmarks offer not only historical significance but also provide an opportunity for family members to learn about the nation’s history and culture.

Beyond the museums and monuments, Washington, D.C. offers a chance to explore historical sites like Ford’s Theatre (where Abraham Lincoln was assassinated), the U.S. Capitol, and the White House Visitor Center.

Much of the city’s downtown area is pedestrian-friendly, making it easy for families to explore on foot. The National Mall, a large open space connecting many of the city’s major attractions, is ideal for leisurely walks.

Where to Stay in Washington DC with Family?

The best areas to stay in Washington DC with family are Downtown DC, Dupont Circle, Capitol Hill, Logan Circle, Foggy Bottom, Georgetown, Navy Yard, and The Wharf DC. These areas offer plenty of kid-friendly accommodations and activities for children of all ages!

Remember to consider factors like room size, available amenities (such as swimming pools, fitness centers, and on-site dining options), and proximity to public transportation when making your decision. 

Additionally, booking in advance and checking for family-friendly packages or deals can help you get the best value for your stay in Washington, D.C.

Overview of the best neighborhoods to stay in Washington DC for family

Downtown DCoffers convenient access to major attractions like the National Mall, the U.S. Capitol, and Smithsonian museums. It’s a bustling area with plenty of dining and shopping options, making it a good choice for families and first-timers interested in sightseeing and being centrally located.
Dupont CircleKnown for its cosmopolitan and vibrant atmosphere, Dupont Circle is great for those who enjoy art, culture, and a lively nightlife scene. It’s also close to various embassies and has a variety of dining options.
Capitol Hilla charming neighborhood close to the U.S. Capitol and other governmental buildings. It’s a family-friendly area with parks, markets, and a more residential feel. You’ll also find the Eastern Market, which is a popular place for shopping and dining.
Logan Circleis known for its trendy vibe, historic architecture, and boutique shops. It’s a bit quieter compared to downtown, making it a good option for families seeking a more laid-back atmosphere while still being within reach of attractions.
Foggy Bottomis home to George Washington University and is close to the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. It’s located near the National Mall, making it a convenient spot for families interested in cultural activities and museums.
Georgetownoffers a mix of historic charm and modern attractions. It has cobblestone streets, waterfront views, and a variety of shops and restaurants. Families can enjoy strolling along the canal or visiting the historic Georgetown University campus.
Navy Yardis a waterfront area with a growing number of restaurants, shops, and entertainment options. It’s a great choice for families interested in catching a baseball game at Nationals Park and exploring the revitalized waterfront.
The Wharf DCThe newly developed waterfront district offers a mix of dining, shopping, and entertainment options right along the Potomac River. It’s a lively area with a modern feel and is suitable for families looking for a unique and vibrant experience.

Map of Best neighborhoods to stay in Washington DC with kids:

Map of Best areas to stay in Washington DC with family
Map of Best areas to stay in Washington DC with family

8 Best areas to Stay in Washington DC with Family are:

1. Downtown DC 

Downtown DC is one of the best areas to stay in Washington DC for families, especially those visiting the city for the first time. It’s a central location that offers easy access to many of the city’s most popular attractions, monuments, museums, and cultural sites. 

Downtown D.C. is home to numerous iconic attractions, such as the National Mall, the Smithsonian Museums, the U.S. Capitol, the Washington Monument, and the Lincoln Memorial. Staying in this area puts you within walking distance or a short metro ride away from these sites.

The city’s efficient public transportation system, including the Metrorail and Metrobus, makes it convenient to explore other parts of the city from Downtown D.C.

Many hotels in Downtown D.C. offer family-friendly amenities, such as spacious suites, indoor swimming pools, and dining options that cater to both adults and children.

Downtown D.C. has a wide variety of dining options, ranging from casual eateries to upscale restaurants. This allows you to easily find dining choices that suit your family’s preferences.

Downtown D.C. is generally considered safe, especially in well-traveled areas frequented by tourists. But, as with any urban area, it’s important to remain aware of your surroundings and take normal safety precautions.

Staying in Downtown D.C. provides you with the convenience of being close to not only tourist attractions but also shops, grocery stores, pharmacies, and other essential services.

Downtown D.C. offers a vibrant nightlife with theaters, entertainment venues, and even evening tours of monuments that can be enjoyable for families.

While Downtown D.C. can be a great choice, keep in mind that hotel prices in this area might be higher due to its central location. It’s also a good idea to book accommodations in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons.

Best places to stay in Downtown Washington DC with family:

Luxury ($$$): JW Marriott Washington, DC, 5-star children-friendly hotel, located within walking distance from many major attractions including the White House, National Mall, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum. It has an on-site an American-style restaurant and 24-hour front desk.

Mid-range ($$): Hotel Washington, 4-star family-friendly hotels, one of the best places to stay in Washington DC with children of all ages. Children aged 18 years and above are considered adults at the hotel. It has a central location, easy access to major sights such as the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, National World War II Memorial and The National Mall.

Budget ($): Hilton Garden Inn Washington DC Downtown, 3-star kid-friendly accommodation, one of the best places to stay in DC for families on a budget, centrally located in Washington, 3 blocks from White House. It has a fitness center, indoor swimming pool, and laundry services.


2. Dupont Circle

Dupont Circle is considered one of the popular and desirable neighborhoods to stay in while visiting Washington, D.C with family. It’s known for its vibrant atmosphere, historic charm, and proximity to various attractions, restaurants, and cultural sites. 

Dupont Circle is centrally located, just north of Downtown DC, bordering with neighborhoods of Adams Morgan, Logan Circle, and Foggy Bottom, making it easy to access many of the city’s attractions and landmarks.

The neighborhood is known for its cultural diversity, art galleries, and historic sites. Additionally, There are numerous dining options, from casual cafes to upscale restaurants.

The Dupont Circle itself is a historic park with a fountain at its center, providing a pleasant space for relaxation. Additionally, nearby parks like Oaks Park, Montrose Park, and Rock Creek Park offer opportunities for outdoor activities and picnics.

Dupont Circle has a lively and vibrant nightlife, which can be appealing to both adults and children. The energy of the neighborhood can make the stay more exciting and enjoyable.

The Dupont Circle Metro station provides easy access to other parts of the city via the subway system. It’s generally considered a safe and walkable neighborhood.

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

Luxury ($$$): The Dupont Circle Hotel, 5-star hotel, a great base for families with children of all ages. It is located at the top of Dupont Circle, offering easy access to Dupont Circle Metro station and the historical landmarks of Washington, D.C.  

Mid-range ($$): Hotel Madera, 4-star family-friendly hotel, located in the heart of Washington, within walking distance from Dupont Circle and numerous restaurants. It features spacious family rooms, on-site restaurant and bar services. 

Budget ($): Canopy by Hilton Washington DC Embassy Row, 3-star hotel, welcome children of any age. Located within walking distance from three metro stations, Farragut North, Farragut West and Dupont Circle, as well as easy access to the White House and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.


3. Capitol Hill

Capitol Hill is one of the best places to stay in Washington, D.C. with children due to its historic charm, convenient location, and family-friendly attractions. But, the suitability of Capitol Hill for your family’s stay depends on your preferences and needs. 

Capitol Hill is close to many of Washington, D.C.’s iconic attractions, including the U.S. Capitol, the Library of Congress, the Supreme Court, and the National Mall. These attractions offer educational opportunities and sightseeing for the whole family.

Capitol Hill is generally considered safe, but like any urban area, it’s important to take standard safety precautions, especially if you’re traveling with children.

The neighborhood has a charming, historic feel with tree-lined streets, row houses, and local markets. It offers a unique atmosphere that can enhance your family’s experience.

The Eastern Market and Capitol South Metro station serves the area, providing easy access to other parts of the city. This can be beneficial for getting around without the hassle of driving and parking.

The nearby Smithsonian museums and the National Children’s Museum offer interactive exhibits and engaging activities for children.

Stanton Park and Lincoln Park are two green spaces in the neighborhood where your family can enjoy outdoor activities and picnics.

While Capitol Hill is centrally located, it tends to be quieter than some other parts of the city, which can be preferable for families seeking a more peaceful atmosphere.

Keep in mind that staying in the Capitol Hill area, like many central locations in cities, may come with a higher price tag for accommodations.

Best places to stay in Washington DC in Capitol Hill for family:

Mid-range ($$): Capitol Hill Hotel, 4-star family-friendly hotel, located in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, only minutes from some of Washington’s most popular sites, including National Aquarium, Capitol Building and National Mall. It is also within walking distance from the Capitol South Metro Station and Eastern Market.

Mid-range ($$): Kimpton George Hotel, an IHG Hotel, 4-star family-friendly accommodation, located just steps from Union Station, and State Capitol Building. It offers on-site dining and a flat-screen TV with cable in all rooms. 

Budget ($): Phoenix Park Hotel, 3-star historic hotel, featuring family rooms, in the heart of  Washington, ideally situated only a short distance away from Union Station and the Red Line Metro. It is also an easy walk from the Capitol building, luxury shopping and world-class restaurants.


4. Logan Circle

Logan Circle is a historic and trendy neighborhood located in the northwest quadrant of Washington, D.C. It is known for its central park, also called Logan Circle, which features a statue of Major General John A. Logan, a Civil War hero.

Logan Circle is one of the great bases in Washington DC for families due to its close proximity to downtown D.C. and other popular neighborhoods such as Dupont Circle, Shaw, and U Street Corridor.

The neighborhood is renowned for its Victorian and early 20th-century architecture. Many of the townhouses in the area are beautifully restored and well-preserved examples of this architectural style.

Over the years, Logan Circle has transformed into a cultural and social hub with a vibrant arts scene, trendy boutiques, art galleries, restaurants, cafes, and bars. It has attracted a diverse community, including young professionals, artists, and families.

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

Luxury ($$$): Viceroy Washington DC, 5-star pet-friendly accommodation in Washington, 4 minutes’ walk from Logan Circle. Featuring family rooms, an outdoor swimming pool and private parking as well as  custom-designed PUBLIC bikes for riding around town.

Mid-range ($$): The Darcy Hotel, Washington DC, 4-star children-friendly hotel, centrally located within walking distance from the White House as well as shops and restaurants. Families can have complimentary access to the Gear Shop with its bikes, strollers and scooters. There is also a  children’s backpack program for families to use to explore DC.  

Budget ($): Residence Inn by Marriott Washington, 3-star family-friendly hotel, located in central Washington, a short walk from Walter E Washington Convention Center and Mt Vernon Sq 7th St-Convention Center metro station, featuring free bikes, private parking, a fitness center and a shared lounge.  


5. Foggy Bottom

Foggy Bottom is one of the popular and well-regarded areas to stay in Washington, D.C., especially for families. It’s located in the heart of the city and offers several advantages such as proximity to attractions that make it a good choice for family travelers.

Foggy Bottom is within walking distance or a short metro ride away from many of Washington, D.C.’s major attractions, such as the National Mall, the Smithsonian museums, the White House, and the Lincoln Memorial.

Foggy Bottom is generally considered a safe and well-maintained neighborhood, making it a suitable choice for families with children.

The neighborhood is home to George Washington University and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, which adds an intellectual and cultural atmosphere to the area.

Foggy Bottom is served by the Foggy Bottom-GWU Metro station, making it easy to access other parts of the city quickly and efficiently using the public transportation system.

Best places to stay in Foggy Bottom for family with kids:

Luxury ($$$): Melrose Georgetown Hotel, 5-star family-friendly hotel, located less than 3 blocks from a Washington Metro public transport station, short distance from both the Lincoln Memorial and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

Mid-range ($$): The River Inn-A Modus Hotel, 4-star family-friendly accommodation, located just a 4-minute walk from Foggy Bottom Metro Station. Easy access The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and George Washington University. It has an on-site restaurant, an Italian trattoria.

Budget ($): Hotel Hive, 3-star and the first micro hotel in D.C., offering pet-friendly accommodation, on-site restaurant and terrace. Rooms come with air conditioning and  a flat-screen TV.


6. Georgetown

Georgetown is a popular and charming neighborhood to stay in Washington, D.C., especially for families. It is known for its historic architecture, shopping districts, waterfront views along the Potomac River, and a variety of dining options. 

Georgetown has a family-friendly vibe, with sidewalks, parks, and open spaces where kids can play. It’s generally a safe neighborhood, and you’ll find many families and students from nearby universities.

Georgetown is home to some interesting attractions that might appeal to kids, such as the historic Georgetown University campus, C&O Canal National Historical Park, and Washington Harbour area, which features a fountain that kids can play in during the warmer months.

Georgetown offers a mix of boutique shops, art galleries, and restaurants. This could be appealing to older kids and teenagers, as they might enjoy exploring the shops and trying different cuisines.

Georgetown’s walkable nature can be convenient for families, and public transportation options are available, including buses and the nearby Foggy Bottom-GWU Metro station. However, the D.C. Metro might not be as stroller-friendly as you’d hope.

While Georgetown is a charming area, it’s not right next to some of the major D.C. attractions like the National Mall and its museums and monuments. You would need to use public transportation or other means of transportation to get to these areas.

There are various accommodation options in Georgetown, ranging from boutique hotels to rental apartments. Keep in mind that D.C. can be relatively expensive when it comes to lodging.

Best places to stay in Washington DC in Georgetown for family:

Luxury ($$$): Four Seasons Washington DC, 5-star kid-friendly hotel that has an indoor swimming pool, conveniently located within walking distance from the Foggy Bottom Metro Station, offering easy access to major attractions. It boasts an award winning restaurant, the Michael Mina Bourbon Steak Restaurant and ENO Wine Bar.

Mid-range ($$): Sonder Georgetown C&O, 4-star family -friendly hotel, featuring units with a private bathroom, air conditioning, a flat-screen TV and a microwave. 

Budget ($): 2500 Penn, a Placemakr Experience, 3-star hotel, offering accommodation with a fitness center, private parking, a shared lounge and a restaurant.  


7. Navy Yard

The Navy Yard is a great place to stay in DC with children as it offers a mix of family-friendly attractions, amenities, and activities. The Navy Yard is known for its revitalized waterfront, which includes the Capitol Riverfront and The Yards Park.

The Navy Yard area offers beautiful waterfront views, parks, and green spaces where children can run and play. The Yards Park often hosts family-friendly events, outdoor movies, and concerts during the warmer months.

The nearby National Mall area provides access to iconic monuments and museums that can be educational and enjoyable for children. The National Air and Space Museum, National Museum of Natural History, and National Museum of American History are all within a reasonable distance.

Nationals Park, home to the Washington Nationals baseball team, is located in the Navy Yard area. If your family enjoys baseball, attending a game can be a fun outing.

The area has a variety of restaurants, cafes, and shops, making it convenient for families to find dining options that suit their preferences. There’s also a Whole Foods Market nearby for grocery shopping.

The Navy Yard area is well-connected to the D.C. Metro system, home to Navy Yard-Ballpark station, which makes it easier to travel around the city with children. The accessibility to public transportation can be a big advantage for families.

The neighborhood is generally considered safe, and its walkable layout makes it convenient for families to explore on foot.

The Navy Yard’s waterfront location opens up the possibility for boat tours, kayaking, and other water-related activities that can be exciting for children.

Best places to stay in Washington DC in Navy Yard with family:


8. The Wharf DC

The Wharf in Washington, D.C. has gained popularity as a family-friendly destination. It’s a waterfront development along the Potomac River that offers a mix of entertainment, dining, shopping, and recreational activities.

The Wharf offers attractions like the Capital Wheel, a Ferris wheel with great views of the city, and the District Wharf Water Taxi, which can be a fun experience for kids. 

There are also outdoor spaces for walking and playing. The International Spy Museum and the National Mall with its museums and monuments are also nearby attractions.

The Wharf’s waterfront location provides a unique ambiance, and kids might enjoy being close to the water, taking boat rides, or simply strolling along the promenade.

There are several hotels in The Wharf area, but it’s important to consider factors like room size, amenities, and pricing when choosing accommodation suitable for a family.

Best places to stay in The Wharf DC with kids:

Luxury ($$$): InterContinental – Washington D.C. – The Wharf, an IHG Hotel, 5-star children-friendly hotel,  one of the best hotels in Washington DC for families, featuring Outdoor swimming pool. Situated along the mile-long pier of The Wharf, featuring restaurants, retail and fun activities on DC’s Potomac River. Short drive by car from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and Washington Dulles International Airport.

Mid-range ($$): Canopy By Hilton Washington DC The Wharf, 4-star hotel, easy access to the National Museum of the American Indian, US Holocaust Memorial Museum and Washington Monument.  

Budget ($): Hyatt House Washington DC/The Wharf, popular budget-friendly and family-friendly hotel in Washington DC located in The Wharf, part of a mile long stretch of the Potomac River featuring restaurants, shops and recreational space. You can rent kayaks, sail, paddle-board and access the water taxi at the waterfront piers next to the hotel.


See more:

Summary – Where to Stay in Washington DC with kids?

In conclusion, Downtown DC, Dupont Circle, Capitol Hill, Logan Circle, Foggy Bottom, Georgetown, Navy Yard, and The Wharf are the best places to stay in Washington DC for family with kids. They are central safe locations, offering plenty of things to do and see for the whole family!

Overall, Downtown DC is the best area to stay in Washington DC with kids, especially those visiting the city for the first time. It has a high concentration of tourist attractions and amenities, making it a great base to explore the city on foot and by public transportation, without the need of having a car.

About Author: Linda Smith

I'm Linda Smith, the Hotel Expert, an experienced travel blogger who passionate about traveling. I'm here to share with you all my travel experiences and tips. I cover a wide range of travel topics, specializing in sharing information about the best areas, neighborhoods, and hotels in each city. I hope all these things will make your travel easier.

Leave a Comment