Looking for something to do on New Year's Day in Washington, DC? Many businesses are closed, but there are still a lot of great ways to spend your day on January 1st.
Yes, the Smithsonian museums are open on New Year's Day. Explore the world class museums and you'll see a variety of exhibits ranging from art to space exploration. This is probably a great day to visit the most popular Washington, DC museums because many people sleep in after a big night of celebration.
New Years Day is a good time to see the monuments and memorials in Washington, DC and Northern Virginia. Parking should be easier than other days of the year and the crowds should be thin, especially if you get an early start.
The estate is open every day of the year. During the Holidays at Mount Vernon visitors get a glimpse of an early-American Christmas. Exclusively during this time, the rarely-seen third floor is open to the public. An elaborately re-created dessert course is displayed in the large dining room with the Washingtons' famed "Great Cake" as the centerpiece of the feast.
The National Archives is offering a special viewing of the original document along with special family friendly activities including dramatic readings and storytelling. The original Emancipation Proclamation is displayed only for a limited time each year because of its fragility and the need to preserve it for future generations.
If you've got lots of energy, the National Zoo is open and makes a great excursion on New Years Day. Washington DC's 163-acre zoological park features more than 400 different species of animals. Be sure to dress warm enough and wear comfortable shoes.
The Botanic Garden is open every day of the year. This great holiday exhibit features unique model trains and incredible replicas of Washington, DC's most famous buildings and monuments.
More than 250,000 American servicemen as well as many famous Americans are buried at the 612 acre national cemetery. Among the notable Americans buried here are Presidents William Howard Taft and John F. Kennedy, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and Robert Kennedy.
The museum is open on New Year’s Day from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Visitors can explore the exhibition, Cityscapes Revealed
which highlights the building materials, architectural styles, and construction practices that defined urban America from the end of the 19th through the first half of the 20th centuries. PLAY WORK BUILD
takes children and adults through an exploration of play with a hands-on display featuring molded foam blocks of all shapes and sizes and an original virtual block play experience.
Go to a Movie
Movie theaters are open and a selection of good movies usually come out in time for the holiday season. Here’s a guide to local cinemas:
Take a Hike in a Local Park
If the weather is clear, this is a nice day to take a quiet stroll through a park. Please note that some parks may close their entrance gates, so you may want to call ahead to find out about accessibility. See a guide to the local parks:
Washington's premier performance venue offers performances on New Year's Day each year. Check the official site for this year's schedule of events.