DC Circulator National Mall (Red Line) Information


Intro to DC Circulator National Mall (Red Line) Information

It’s Tyler here from TheTravelingToddler.com.  If you’ve been following along, you know that I just returned from a trip to Washington D.C.  It was my first trip to our nation’s capitol and there were so many sights and attractions to see.  In today’s article, I’m going to talk about one of your main transportation options for getting around the National Mall, the DC Circulator (http://www.dccirculator.com).


As you probably know, the National Mall is the main tourist area of Washington DC.  The most famous attractions in DC, like the White House, US Capitol, Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, and most museums are situated around the National Mall. 

The only problem is that it’s about 2.5 miles from one end of the mall to the other, so it makes for quite a walk.  That’s when the DC Circulator springs into action.

Tyler and Dad on the DC Circulator
Tyler and Dad on the DC Circulator


While there are a few DC Circulator routes, the one of interest to tourists will be the DC Circulator National Mall route.  The busses on this route are bright red and have DC Circulator printed them!  They are impossible to miss.

The National Mall busses go from Union Station to the Jefferson Memorial, and back, and make about a dozen stops in total.  A round trip on the Circulator will take about an hour.  You can generally expect a bus every 10 minutes.


Hours of Operation

Currently the DC Circulator Red Line is operating with Winter hours. On weekdays the busses run 7am to 7pm.  On weekends the busses run 9am to 7pm.  

During the summer (April through September), the DC Circulator runs until 8pm.


The fare for adults is $1 each time you board.  However, as an incentive for using a Metro card, you can get 2 hours of hop-on and hop-off privileges.  Kids under 5 ride for free.

Passes are also available for one, three, or seven days.  They cost $3, $7, $11 respectively.


The DC Circulator is stroller friendly!  In fact, you can usually leave your child in the stroller although that is at the discretion of the bus driver.

The busses also kneel if needed to help you get your stroller onto the bus.

In fact, if there are no elderly or disabled persons using the priority seating area, you can put your stroller there.

Union Station the Terminus of the DC Circulator National Mall Route
Union Station the Terminus of the DC Circulator National Mall Route


The DC Circulator is an excellent way to get around the Mall should walking not be an option.  Even if you arrive at the Mall on the Metro or your personal vehicle, the Circulator will be your best option for traveling amongst the various attractions on the National Mall.

Related Content

If you’re planning a trip to DC, then you can’t miss this FREE Amazon Kindle book titled Let’s Visit Washington DC.  It’s written for elementary school age kids and is provides great information about all the DC area attractions.

Click here to download the Kindle reader at Amazon.com to Read eBooks using the FREE Kindle Reading App on Most Devices.

As an aside, if you’re going around the National Mall, you’ll probably be collecting numerous National Park Passport Stamps.  Click here for my article about this fun family activity.

Thanks for reading.

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Have you ever ridden the DC Circulator?  Do you have any advice for our readers?  Leave your comments below.

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