Looking for what to do in DC during the government shut down?
While some sites will be closed, you can still visit DC during government shutdown! WE’RE STILL OPEN! The city doesn’t shut and in fact, there are often special events and discounts accommodate all the visitors locked out of museums.
THIS PAGE WILL BE UPDATED AS MORE INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE! – updated Jan 14, 2019
Think of this as a way to see the lesser known side of DC and sites that are often, sadly, skipped over. Some of the best places in DC are the smaller historic house museums.
Have a school/youth group visiting? Contact us for discounted private tours if the government shut downs so your group can still enjoy their trip.
If you’re visiting any of our other cities, see more below about what is closed/open in Philadelphia, New York, New Orleans, Chicago, Boston, Charleston and San Francisco below.
ALL of our tours will run as normal with little to no affect whatsoever.
WHAT WILL BE CLOSED DURING THE GOVERNMENT SHUT DOWN
Since this is a partial shutdown, some federal buildings remain open. The sites below are open and admission is FREE. You’ll find a number of other recommended attractions, museums and historic sites listed farther below that have admission prices (but we think they are worth it!)
Memorials on the National Mall
Despite shutdown, sidewalks maintained by the NPS will be treated and shoveled during snow storms.
Some restrooms, ranger stations, gift shops and museums will be closed but you’ll still be able to visit the memorials as normal.
There are some open restrooms located at:
Arlington National Cemetery
Arlington National Cemetery will remain open and our Arlington Cemetery walking tours were still able to operate.
The below locations remain open during the shutdown as they are privately funded. There is an admission cost but we think its worth it!
Mount Vernon, George Washington’s home, is a private institution and is unaffected by the shutdown!
Washington National Cathedral
Washington National Cathedral is always worth a visit and will remain open. Though it has the word National in its name, it is not government funded.
You can also visit the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception and Saint John Paul II National Shrine.
Private Museums and Historic Homes
Private museums and historic homes that require tickets will be open as normal as they are not government funded like the Smithsonians.
A lot of folks here in DC work for the government, so if it’s shutdown, they are at home so restaurants and bars often open early and have special discounts.