I put this list together recently for someone who asked for ideas on fun things to do in and around the DC area, so I thought I would share. This is just a start – if you have any ideas please let me know and I will update the list.

1. Visit vineyards – there are several vineyards in Virginia (about an hour drive). The views are fabulous, you can do wine tastings and have a wonderful picnic – lots of these vineyards have great springtime events. There are also companies that do local vineyard tours for a very resonable price. Visit the vineyards in the Northern Region: http://virginiawines.org/wineries/r-northern.html – here is a link to a great local wine blog where there is a wealth of information: http://vinespot.blogspot.com/; and here is a link to a company that does tours: http://www.vawineadventures.com/
 
2. Visit Hillwood Museum & Gardens – right in the heart of DC – http://www.hillwoodmuseum.org/ – the estate once owned by Marjorie Merriweather Post. This includes a wonderful home/museum and magical gardens. You can even have afternoon tea there!
 
3. Visit the National Arboretum: http://www.usna.usda.gov/ – I lived in DC for 20 years before I discovered this place, and I can’t believe I waited so long!
 
4. Take a haunted history tour of Old Town Alexandria: http://www.alexcolonialtours.com/graveyard.html – a lot of fun, especially after happy hour 🙂
 
5. Visit Mount Vernon: http://www.mountvernon.org – VERY important to honor our founding fathers. Mount Vernon was the home of George Washington, it is a remarkable place.
 
6. On that note, If you want to drive 2 hours – go see Monticello, the estate of Thomas Jefferson: http://www.monticello.org – this is also a must-see
 
7. Go to the Baltimore Aquariumhttp://www.aqua.org/ – less than an hour from DC
 
8. Have brunch at a restaurant at Eastern Market in DC – then shop the open market as well
 
9. Walk around Georgetown, visit the university and go to Dumbarton Oaks Gardens http://www.doaks.org/Gardens.html
 
10. Have a picnic on the mall. Check out the Smithsonian museums, etc
 
11. Go to the National Zoo (it’s owned by the Smithsonian and it’s free!)
 
12. Take the Metro (we have the best subway in the country – and it is sure to imporess)
 
13. Go to Happy Hour or dinner somewhere in Adams Morgan

14. Visit the LIncoln and Jefferson memorials