The air has finally warmed up after another chilly winter in Washington, DC, and the city is without a doubt blooming. Travelers are flocking to the National Mall and the Tidal Basin to see the cherry blossom trees, and after that, they’re looking for more outdoor splendor to enjoy in this classic American city.
A favorite destination for dining, shopping, and visiting cultural institutions, Northwest DC is also a great spot to get back into nature, home to several lush parks. These are our favorite outdoor hangouts in Northwest DC.
Rock Creek Park
Rock Creek Park is a sprawling, 2,000-acre urban park created by an Act of Congress in 1890. It’s a lovely place to have a walk or run, and spend some time outside. There are lengthy trails for travelers to explore and exercise on, horseback riding opportunities, live music and sporting events, the National Zoo, and so much more here.
Meridian Hill Park
Meridian Hill Park is a large, twelve-acre park well known for a hillside fountain that cascades water stone terraces. Every day is a good day to come take a stroll through this well-known park in Northwest DC, but Sundays are especially fun, as the park plays host to a weekly drum circle.
Mitchell Park is a smaller neighborhood park frequented by locals and travelers looking to enjoy some quiet and exercise. You can come here to take a stroll through the many gardens and walking paths, or you can head out to the open green fields and sport courts for a little physical activity.
Calling all dog lovers: Bundy Dog Park is a fenced-in dog park where people take their canines to frolic with one another. While people-watching is a fun activity when staying in Washington, DC, dog watching might have it beat.
Rabaut Park is an outdoor hangout in Northwest DC that’s named after famed U.S. politician Louis C. Rabaut. It’s known for a stone-paved sanctuary where visitors can sit and enjoy a sunny Washington, DC afternoon. You can also find pretty flowers, benches and green spaces here.
Turtle Park is one of the more unique parks in Northwest Washington, DC. Also known as Friendship Park, it’s known for a series of five turtle statues that stand in an open, childrens’ play area of the park. It also is home to a series of basketball and tennis courts, as well as baseball and softball fields.
Fort Reno Park
Fort Reno Park is located in the Northwest DC neighborhood of Tenleytown, and it contains the highest natural point in all of the District of Columbia. Come here to enjoy elevated views of the city and district, and take income history. Fort Reno was a location of the only Civil War battle to take place in the District of Columbia.
Battery Kemble Park
Battery Kemble Park is another historic outdoor destination in Washington DC’s Northwest quadrant. The former Union Army defensive site features exhibits and sprawling green fields surrounded by dense woods.
Located closer to Downtown, Franklin Square offers a more urban experience for a park in Northwest Washington, DC. The park is best known for its statue of Commodore John Barry on the west side of the space, dedicated to him in the early 1900’s.
Crispus Attucks Park
Crispus Attucks Park is a refreshing getaway in Northwest DC that feels totally secluded from the city. There’s ample green space here, as well as a number of scenic walking trails and benches throughout.
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