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Parks and nature in Washington

Top nature recommendations from locals

Plaza
“Transportation to the National mall is easiest via Metro (take the Green/Yellow line to the Archives-Navy Memorial-Penn Quarter stop) or via Bus (take any of the S buses south toward downtown and ask the driver to recommend the closest stop).”
  • 322 locals recommend
Zoo
“The zoo is a great place to visit and bring the kids if you want. Admission is free, but be forewarned it costs $20 to park there (when there is space) and there are no in/out parking privileges for vehicles. We like to see the pandas. My favorite time of the year is when they have the zoo lit up with Christmas lights. It is also located in one of the older neighborhoods in the city so you can walk by to see some great architecture in the neighborhood.”
  • 245 locals recommend
Waterfront
“Old town, VA has everything from a water front to shopping, bars, restaurants and tons of local historic scenes that are a must see. ”
  • 152 locals recommend
Tennis Court
“This is one of the best places to hike and bike in the Washington, DC area. Visitors can picnic, hike, bike, roller blade, play tennis, fish, horseback ride, listen to a concert, or attend programs with a park ranger. All year around.”
  • 220 locals recommend
Park
“The Georgetown Waterfront Park is a national park completed in Washington, DC in the fall of 2011. It offers visitors a place to enjoy river views in a lush green setting at the edge of a bustling historic urban neighborhood. The 10-acre park curves along the Potomac River shoreline extending from 30th Street to 34th Street, N.W. The park is located directly across the river from Roosevelt Island, with views west towards Key Bridge and east towards the Kennedy Center and Memorial Bridge.”
  • 96 locals recommend
Park
“Such a chill vibe here. Bring some wine and a picnic from Trader Joe’s. On Sundays from 5-8 there is a great drum circle— you can’t miss it. ”
  • 247 locals recommend
Monument / Landmark
“I had to put this in under "Washington Monument" But this is for ALL OF DC'S MONUMENTS. They are all better at night!!! As long as the weather is nice trust me when i say visiting these sites at night is a truely beautiful site to behold. ”
  • 115 locals recommend
Park
“The collection of bonsai trees were gifts from Japan in 1976, to commemorate the United States Bicentennial. Over the years, the collection has grown and with newer additions from North America bonsai masters and penjing collection from China. Many of the trees are living sculptures of bonsai and penjing that are inspired by natural scenes and changes with the season. The museum’s gardens have more to offer than a beautiful lush bonsai and is surrounded by finest selections of flowers and foliage. Birng the family, friends, co-workers to spend the day in the beautiful gardens. Getting married soon, the grounds are beautiful for photography. Whatever you do, visit often to experience the bonsai and gardens change from season to season. Hours are 10:00am - 4:00pm; closed November – February during federal holidays.”
  • 146 locals recommend
Monument / Landmark
“I recommend seeing this place at night. All the monuments are beautifully lit up, relatively walkable between each other, and it is so much less crowded and cool at night than during the day. Either side of the statue has his Inauguration Speech and his Gettysburg Address which are emotional and somehow never becomes irrelevant to current events. Across the reflecting pool from the Washington Monument and the US Capitol building, it's a stop along the National Mall that you have to see. ”
  • 103 locals recommend
Botanical Garden
“A real treat for humans... not just horticulturists. Go ahead and smell the flowers!”
  • 101 locals recommend
Memorial Site
“Famous Statue of Marines raising the American Flag on Iwo Jima during WW2. Marine Parades during the summer.”
  • 28 locals recommend
Basketball Court
“The arboretum is one of the most beautiful spots in the city. It's free and has so much to see! It's really kid friendly too. I absolutely love the bonsai exhibition. You can ride bikes or talk a long walk through the stunning grounds!”
  • 111 locals recommend
Art Museum
“The Hirshhorn Museum is known for its extensive collection of modern and contemporary art from around the world, including significant works by Pablo Picasso, Henry Moore and Yayoi Kusama. The sculpture garden is a must-see, as it includes the famous Wish Tree by Yoko Ono.”
  • 84 locals recommend
Harbor / Marina
“Rent a kayak and paddle on the Potomac along the sights of the National Mall”
  • 48 locals recommend
Park
“Gravelly Point is more of a locals thing but its worth a mention. Its a park right along the Potomac River just north of Reagan National Airport. Its a fun place to have a watch the planes take off and land. Folks usually bring a blanket (and maybe a picnic) and watch as the planes fly a few hundred feet directly overhead. ”
  • 44 locals recommend
Dog Run
$$
“If you want to grab a casual pizza and beer, Red Rocks at the corner of 11th and Park is hard to beat!”
  • 88 locals recommend