Museums for All Ages in Northern Virginia

Whether centered on art, history, science, or social studies, there is a museum that will appeal to everyone at any age!

Choose a different area:
Maryland | Washington, DC

Alexandria Archaeology Museum | Alexandria, VA
Learn how Alexandria’s archeologists, volunteers, and students study and manage archeological resources important to the community’s history. The main exhibit is from the Lee Street site and displays findings from the city’s founding in 1749 through the 20th century. The public laboratory lets visitors see artifacts from the latest digs being preserved and cataloged. There are also several hands-on activities available for children and adults alike.

Children’s Museum of Richmond | Multiple Locations
Worth the drive, the Children’s Museum of Richmond (CMoR) boasts amazing exhibits and activities that facilitate learning through play. These kid-centric, touch-and-play exhibits allow children to get away from the museum notion of look but don’t touch. Touching and playing is totally encouraged here! The museum has 4 locations: CMoR Central, CMoR Chesterfield, CMoR Fredericksburg, and CMoR Short Pump. Click here to connect with each and view their exhibits.

Children’s Science Center | Fairfax, VA
The Children’s Science Center, located in Fair Oaks Mall, invites visitors of all ages to enjoy STEM-focused fun! At a variety of centers and zones, as well as a hands-on experiment bar, kids will learn science, technology, engineering, and math concepts through touch, feel and play! // Updated Dec 2019

Freedom Museum | Manassas, VA
Located on the grounds of the Manassas Airport, the Freedom Museum complex offers visitors an interactive historical experience. The museum exhibits feature stories of ordinary Americans turned heroes by protecting our nation’s freedom both on the battlefront and on the home front. Tours are self-guided unless advanced registration is arranged with one of the veterans on staff.

George Washington’s Mount Vernon | Mt. Vernon, VA
Did you know George Washington’s Mount Vernon is open 365 days a year? Open to the public since 1860, Mount Vernon is the former plantation estate and burial location of George Washington, an American political leader, military general, statesman, and Founding Father who served as the first President of the United States from 1789 to 1797.

In addition to a 1735 mansion and the tomb of George and Martha Washington, the property includes a memorial dedicated to the enslaved people who lived and worked on the estate. Mount Vernon also has many interpretive spaces, such as the Pioneer Farm and Washington’s Gristmill & Distillery — all to better understand our first President’s ambitious and profitable business ventures.

Enjoy guided and self-guided tours, seasonal and special events, and more. Visit Mount Vernon online today to plan your visit. // Updated Dec 2019

Loudoun Heritage Farm Museum | Sterling, VA
Take a step back in time and visit Loudoun’s agricultural museum in Sterling! You’ll have the opportunity to explore exhibits (some featuring hands-on activities) that support and promote the farming history of Loudoun County. Your children will also enjoy some educational playtime on Claude Moore Children’s Farm, an area designed for kids to touch and play with props. In this interactive exhibit area for families, children can milk a life-like cow, collect eggs from the play chickens, and ride the faux Equi-ponies. The Loudoun Heritage Farm Museum is a place to literally get your hands on some history!

Museum of the Shenandoah Valley | Winchester, VA
The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley offers a variety of educational opportunities and fun events for the family! The museum boasts four gallery spaces and six-acres of gardens surrounding the historic Glen Burnie House, and two historic home sites. The museum’s gardens are intimate and invite discovery for all ages from April to October. The museum also hosts a variety of events that include free admission days, events designed especially for children, summer concerts, and more. Be sure to check out their event calendar for more information.

National Air & Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center | Chantilly, VA
The Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, also called the Udvar-Hazy Center, is the second location of the National Air and Space Museum located on the National Mall in Washington, DC. Also part of the Smithsonian family, not only is this destination a great place for aerial enthusiasts, but anything that has to do with air and space! Like it’s sister museum, the Udvar-Hazy Center showcases the history and science of aviation and spaceflight, as well as planetary science and terrestrial geology/geophysics.

Its two huge hangars display thousands of aviation and space artifacts, including a Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird, a Concorde, and the Space Shuttle Discovery! The museum also boasts an IMAX Theater, as well as an observation tower that gives visitors a 360-degree bird’s-eye view of Dulles International Airport and the surrounding area. // Updated Jan 2020

National Museum of the Marine Corps | Triangle, VA
Experience more than 237-years of American history through the eyes of a Marine. Visitors can follow a Marine’s footsteps through the recruiting process and battles fought in times of conflict and war. The museum’s calendar of events details ongoing exhibits and events, including family days. Plus, there are educational activities and handouts relating to the month’s theme. Guided tours happen daily and are based on availability.

National Sporting Library & Museum | Middleburg, VA
Visit the National Sporting Library & Museum’s beautiful 6-acre campus in Middleburg, VA! With a focus on preserving and promoting the history and love of horse and field sports, the museum was founded in 1954. Visitors can explore country recreations such as angling, horsemanship, and foxhunting! Take a peek into the museum’s extensive art and library collections showcasing works and literature related to a variety of field sports, enjoy one of the exhibits on display, or watch a polo match!

Science Museum of Virginia | Richmond, VA
The Science Museum of Virginia offers a day full of wonder and learning for both kids and adults alike. With historic architecture as its backdrop, this museum is full of innovative and cutting-edge exhibits and activities. The exhibits are intentionally designed to provoke creativity and expand your mind, all while learning about life around us — from animals and planets to bioethics and gravity. Don’t miss out on the 360-degree movie experience in “The Dome” or any of their Live Science presentations, which have been known to include cow eye dissection and even rat basketball!

Shenandoah Valley Discovery Museum | Winchester, VA
Located in the heart of historic Winchester, VA, the Shenandoah Valley Discovery Museum is worth the drive for Northern Virginia families! This kid-focused destination features 4-stories of exhibits, each boasting loads of touch-and-play areas that encourage problem-solving, creative thinking, and collaboration. Best of all, the kids don’t know they’re learning — they just think they’re having a great time! // Updated Dec 2020

Torpedo Factory Art Center | Alexandria, VA
The Torpedo Factory boasts the largest number of publicly accessible working artist studios in the United States. Watch and interact with a variety of resident artists within seven galleries and 82 working artist studios. Visitors will learn about painting, ceramics, photography, jewelry, stained glass, fiber, printmaking, and sculptures, and more from the artists themselves.

Virginia Air & Space Center | Hampton, VA
Virginia Air and Space Center in Hampton offers a variety of exhibits great for all ages. The whole family will enjoy learning about Aircraft, Spacecraft, Adventures in Flight, and more. Check out the Space Quest exhibit that is an interactive exhibit focusing on NASA’s role in going to the Moon and Mars. For the youngest members of the family, be sure to visit the new Space Racers interactive exhibit specially designed for children ages 3-6. Virginia Air and Space Center also features an IMAX theater offering a variety of shows and showtimes. Click here to connect with their exhibits.

Disclaimer/Terms: These opportunities are subject to last minute cancellations and changes that might not be reflected in this post. Please, always confirm by calling/clicking.

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