Today, The Smithsonian is one of the world’s great museums of cultural history and should be the centerpiece of any
visit you and your grandchildren make to the National Mall
in Washington, D.C.
In fact, The Smithsonian is a collection of 19 museums
and galleries, plus the National Zoo (see following). Start
your tour at The Castle, which houses an information center
to help you plan your adventure. Perhaps the most popular
facility for wide-eyed kids of all ages is the nearby National
Air and Space Museum, home to historic aircraft like the
1903 Wright Brothers Flyer, Charles Lindberg’s Spirit of St.
Louis and the command module Columbia from the Apollo
11 moon mission. In addition to thrilling shows on the five-story-high IMAX theater screen, there are daily science demonstrations, flight simulators and other hands-on activities
designed to delight and inspire.
The National Museum of Natural History has its own
IMAX theater where dinosaurs come to life, plus exhibits
that range from the Butterfly Pavilion to interactive Discovery Stations to the awesome Sant Ocean Hall. The National
Museum of American History includes historic and cultural
exhibits that bring the story of our country’s heritage alive.
The American Indian Museum highlights the culture of our
continent’s original inhabitants and there are several Smithsonian art museums and galleries on the Mall with original
works and interpretive exhibitions to help you and the grands
appreciate that important part of our American experience.
Admission to most of The Smithsonian museums and galleries is free, but parking is very limited, so you’ll probably
want to use the D.C. Metro to get there. Comfortable clothing and walking shoes are recommended because you’ve got
a lot of ground to cover. For current exhibitions and special
events, go to SI.edu.
Grand Vacations in
A Destination Guide for Traveling with Grandchildren
By JG Walker
As a grandparent, wouldn’t it be great to create lasting memories with your grandchildren? Now that you have more time to travel, it’s a great opportunity to share some special moments with your loved ones. In each is- sue of ideal-LIVING magazine, we’ll provide you with some great destinations to share with your children and