Summer Checklist in Washington, DC: Things You Must Do

Summer Checklist in Washington, DC: Things You Must Do

Summer is one of the best times of the year to enjoy Washington, DC's dazzling array of options, from outdoor activities to staying inside an ice cream shop. As the season begins to heat up, here are some local tips on what you should do in DC this summer.

Explore the National Mall

The National Mall is a little lighter on traffic during the summer, making it the perfect time to explore some of the city's most famous monuments, museums, and memorials. Start your summer adventure by experiencing the Lincoln Memorial's summertime outdoor concert series, grab a picnic blanket and a book, and enjoy the city's best outdoor reading room. 

Make sure to step away from the crowds and explore the mall's lesser-known attractions and hidden gems—from the stunning artistry of the Hirshhorn's outdoor sculpture garden to the awe-inspiring views of the Jefferson Memorial.

Enjoy the Outdoors

The summer months are the perfect time of year to enjoy what DC's coolest outdoor spaces offer. Hike through the Washington Monument's indoor exhibit, marvel at the grandeur of the National Gallery of Art's outdoor Sculpture Garden, and party on the roof of DC's Aquarium. Look for the perfect outdoor space to enjoy a picnic and a book.

Explore Local Parks

DC has some of the country's most beautiful urban parks and gardens. Join locals for a picnic in some of their favorite parks, including East Potomac Park, the National Arboretum, and the National Zoological Park. Don't pass up the opportunity to explore these places! 

Check Out the DC's Best Museums

The nation's capital is home to some of the world's most prestigious art, history, and science museums. With the summer months as the perfect opportunity to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life, now is the perfect time to visit some of the country's most renowned museums. 

From the nation's best-loved Smithsonian to history-changing experiences at the National Civil War Museum, there's no shortage of inspiration when it comes to the city's fascinating museums.

Eat at a Local Ice Cream Shop

Looking to cool off with a sweet treat in the summer heat? Nothing satisfies quite like a classic, old-fashioned ice cream shop. From the sweet treats of Southwest Soda Pop to Ice Cream Jubilee, DC has some of the best ice cream shops in the country. Grab a cone or a cup and enjoy the sweet summer treat at any of the city's most delicious ice cream shops.

Explore Local Wineries

Experience wine country without leaving the city this summer. Venture out to local vineyards and explore wines crafted just outside the town, or celebrate a special occasion by hosting your summer soiree at one of the city's best wine bars. With a rich winemaking history, DC has some of the country's most exciting local vineyards and wineries.


Summer is here, and there's no better time to hit the road with your family and explore. With so much to see and do in DC, you'll want to make sure to include saving time for yourself in your summer travel plans. 

From picnics to museum hopping, exploring the National Mall, and more, you're sure to find an adventurous activity for you and your family this summer. Pack your bags and prepare for an unforgettable summer adventure in Washington, DC!

Looking for a hassle-free way to explore Washington, DC? DC Tours offers personalized guided tours for individuals, families, and groups of friends. From day trips to night tours, we can take care of all the details. Contact us for your DC guided tours at 202-349-9637 to learn more.