You can’t go wrong with a visit to a local museum when you’re planning a fun day with the family. Whether you want to explore history, aviation, farming, or anything in between, the area around Woodbridge offers an exciting array of museums ready to take your next family outing to the next level.
Families in our area are lucky to have the many museums of Washington, D.C., just a hop, skip, and jump away from our front doors, but you don’t even have to visit the big city to see an exciting and educational museum. Let Crème de la Crème of Woodbridge show you some of our favorite museums to explore close to our hometown.
Loudoun Heritage Farm Museum
Image by Kelli McClintock is licensed with Unsplash License
Head over to nearby Sterling for a day sure to delight both the kids and adults in your family. Loudoun Heritage Farm Museum is the place to go to learn about Loudoun County’s rich agricultural history, so you can expect a range of interactive and educational exhibits and activities to fill your time there. Travel through time to meet 10 generations of Loudoun residents, then let your kiddo be a “farmer for a day” at the interactive children’s farm.
You can also register for a wide range of activities throughout the year, taking in historic demonstrations, getting up close and personal with animals and soil, and so much more. In other words, you’ll never run out of reasons to visit this museum close to Woodbridge. Entry costs $5 for adults and $3 for children ages 2 to 12. Seniors and active military pay $4, while kids under 2 can enter for free. Certain events require a separate fee.
- Location: 21668 Heritage Farm Lane, Sterling.
- Tuesday through Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- Sunday 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- Closed Mondays.
Located a short drive from Woodbridge in Leesburg, the Loudoun Museum is the perfect place to visit if you have history buffs in your family. This local museum strives to serve the community as the official repository of Loudoun County’s history. While conserving the full history of the area, the museum interprets and shares knowledge of the county’s cultural, historical, and national treasures so you and your children can learn about the place you call home.
A variety of exhibitions means there’s always something new to discover. Better yet, the museum offers free admission, so you can visit any time the mood for a deep dive into local history strikes. Civil war history, an interactive map, and historical letters are just the start. Put this museum on your list of places to check out and see for yourself.
- Location: 16 Loudoun Street SW, Leesburg.
- Hours: Friday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
Whether your kids are budding aviation enthusiasts or you’re looking for something just a bit closer to home than the main Air and Space Museum facility in Washington, D.C., you’ll want to make time to explore the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. This piece of the Air and Space Museum is located practically around the corner from Ashburn in Chantilly. You’ll find galleries exploring the story of aviation and space exploration and over 3,000 aviation and space artifacts on display here. You can’t beat this local spot if your kids are into flying or space.
Artifacts include the Space Shuttle Discovery, a Blackbird SR-71, and a Concorde, which you can visit while exploring the two large hangars. Learn about human spaceflight, World War II aviation, and vertical flight, see an IMAX film, and watch as specialists in the restoration hangar reconstruct, repair, and preserve rare artifacts. You can also get interactive in a simulator, watch airplanes take off and land from the observation tower, or treat your little ones to an air and space-themed story time on a Tuesday or Thursday. This is a Smithsonian facility, and admission is always free.
- Location: 14390 Air and Space Museum Parkway, Chantilly.
- Hours: Open 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. every day except December 25.
Morven Park Mansion
Leesburg’s Morven Park is home to a few top attractions in the area, including the Davis Mansion. Morven Park’s mansion lets you explore a history that spans 240 years, starting when the building was a modest fieldstone house. You’ll learn about how this historical site transformed into an impressive Greek Revival structure, all while getting to check out historical artifacts and hearing stories about the civic and social lives of former Virginia Governor Westmoreland Davis and his wife, Marguerite, who lived here during the first half of the 20th century.
The Davis furnishings are a top highlight of a visit to the mansion. You’ll see 16th-century Belgian tapestries and Spanish cassones, Hudson River Valley paintings and treasures from Asia, not to mention hundreds of silver pieces on display throughout the mansion. Give yourself about 45 minutes to enjoy the guided tour.
- Location: 17195 Southern Planter Lane, Leesburg.
- Hours: Visitors Center open Friday to Monday with Davis Mansion tours offered at 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m., and 3 p.m.
Museum of Hounds and Hunting
While you’re at Morven Park, you can also check out the Museum of Hounds and Hunting. You’ll have the chance to see fox hunting art, artifacts, and memorabilia at the Davis Mansion. Located in the mansion’s north wing, the museum was started by a small group of sporting enthusiasts to preserve the history and objects related to the North American heritage of hunting with hounds. The museum lets visitors see valuable artifacts and educates the public on the rich history of fox hunting.
Tickets cost $10 for adults, $6 for seniors, and $3 for children ages 3 to 6. Children under 6 and members get free admission.
- Location: 17195 Southern Planter Lane, Leesburg.
- Hours: Friday to Monday, noon to 4 p.m.
There you have it. Crème de la Crème of Woodbridge, Virginia, just gave you five fun museums a short drive from Woodbridge to visit the next time you’re planning an educational outing for your family. Do you have another museum close to Ashburn that we missed? Drop us a line so we can explore more recommendations.