Spending A Summer Day In DC

David Hatef

Summer is an incredible time of year to live in the Washington, DC area. The sun is shining, the weather is beautiful, and the summer season is filled with adventures around the city. Whether you’re staying local, or looking for a day trip, the must-sees of The District will not disappoint. 

1. OUTDOOR ATTRACTIONS.

Now that summer is here, it’s time to visit all the local outdoor highlights while basking in the sun’s rays. Don’t miss these three perennially popular attractions.

SMITHSONIAN ZOO
Washington’s well-known zoo is one of the most popular in the country for good reason. Discover exotic species while visiting the well-known animals such as the Giant Pandas, tigers, and cheetahs - with over 300 animals, exploring is endless.

THE MONUMENTS

Washington, DC’s numerous outdoor monuments honor Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, Franklin Roosevelt, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, and more. Stroll through them all during the day, or wait until after dark to see them beautifully lit up.

KENILWORTH PARK AND AQUATIC GARDENS
The national park is at its most stunning during the summer season. Visit for a treat of rare species of water lilies, as well as unique native fauna, flora, and birds.

2.  SUMMER FESTIVALS AND EVENTS

The summer season in Washington DC  is filled with special events. These four are among the city’s most popular.

FOURTH OF JULY
The nation’s capital knows how to celebrate Independence Day in style. The festivities start out with the Independence Parade, followed by a patriotic concert, and conclude with awe-inspiring fireworks over the Potomac River.

DC JAZZ FESTIVAL
Every June, over 300 jazz musicians take over the city for over a week. Be sure to catch at least some of the 125 performances, ranging from established performers to new artists.

COMCAST XFINITY OUTDOOR FILM FESTIVAL
In August, take advantage of the perfect weather and watch four family friendly movies outside on the lawn in Strathmore/North Bethesda. The event raises awareness for the National Institutes of Health Children’s Charities.

SMITHSONIAN FOLKLIFE FESTIVAL

Taking place over two weekends in June and July, this Smithsonian sponsored event celebrates contemporary cultures around the world with live music, activities, and authentic artisanal crafts.

3. DAY TRIPS

If you’re looking to spend the day outside of DC, there are a number of great choices within a 90 minute drive of the city. Here are two of our favorite city and country day trip options.

​​​​​​​CITY BREAK: BALTIMORE

Just an hour north of the District, Baltimore’s attractive waterfront is filled with American history. Popular sites include the National Aquarium and Fort McHenry, the site of the battle that inspired Federalist lawyer and Georgetown resident Francis Scott Key to pen a poem which became The Star Spangled Banner.

NATURE DAY TRIP: SHENANDOAH NATIONAL PARK
​​​​​​​This stunning national park is only 75 miles from Washington, however it is the perfect city escape. Rolling mountains, multiple waterfalls, and tranquility await those looking for a day of hiking, watching wildlife, and picnicking.

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