After long winter, we are all awaiting our favorite season, which is Spring! And with that comes the best time ever which is Cherry Blossoms in Washington DC. Below guide will share some tips on how to navigate one of the busiest times in DC, along with what else there is to do outside of the Cherry Blossoms. This year, according to National Park Service, Cherry Blossoms are scheduled to hit their peak between March 22-25, so make sure to get out there asap!
When is Peak Bloom?
Every year the peak bloom falls between late March and early April. With how weather has been changing in last couple years, the peak can get delayed. Even a minor drop in temperature or heavy rain, will interfere with the actual date. Peak Bloom is defined by the day when 70% of the Yoshino Cherry blossoms are open. In the last couple years, they bloomed in the last week of March. The bloom lasts for several days, if the weather is steady and cool. A windy rain can abruptly end their cycle, while a drop in temperature may not let them peak at all! In the end, all is in mother nature's hands.
Best places to see Cherry Blossoms
1. Tidal Basin
Monuments like Thomas Jefferson and Washington Monument provide the best backdrops for more than 3700 cherry blossom trees in the basin. This is one of the best and also most crowded places to see these gorgeous trees. If the weather is cooperating, we recommend getting a paddle boat, so that you can escape the crowds, and get some unique shots from the middle of the basin.
2. Garden of Dumbarton Oaks
If you plan to visit here, make sure you plan ahead. The gardens here are only open 2-6pm Tuesday through Sunday and you have to purchase a ticket prior. However, once you visit here, you will not be disappointed, and there will be plenty of Instagram worthy shots. Make sure to visit Cherry Hill for the best cherry blossom galore.
3. Congressional Cemetery
Here, Cherry Blossoms line up this historical cemetery. If you are looking for a more quiet atmosphere with not many people around, certainly take a walk through this cemetery.
4. U.S. National Arboretum
Open everyday with over 400 acres of green space in National Arboretum. Certainly one place to escape the crowds, however not as many cherry blossom trees. Many visit the National Capitol Columns which certainly are picture worthy considering they are in the middle of the field that gives off an odd and unique feel.
5. Hains Point Loop Trail
If you are visiting the Tidal Basin, some of you will end up parking close to this trail. Grab a bike or go for a stroll between hundreds of these gorgeous trees. It is less crowded than the basin, and you won't have to fight for a photo opp with hundreds of other people.
Cherry Blossom Festival Events
March 25: Opening Ceremony co-presented with the Japan Foundation
March 25: Blossom Kite Festival
April 8: Petalpalooza presented by Chase
April 15: National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade
April 15-16: Sakura Matsuri- Hapanese Street Festival
Things to do in DC outside of Cherry Blossoms
1. Take a stroll around the U.S. Capitol
You cannot possibly visit DC and not take a walk around this building. The Capitol building is located very close to all the museums, so it makes for the perfect setting to check out.
2. Check out Call Your Mother Deli
Extremely popular spot to get some amazing bagel sandwiches. They get quite busy, but the workers do an amazing job of having the line constantly moving. Try their Mountain View sandwich and you won't be disappointed!.
3. Grab a drink at Right Proper Brewing Company
If you love breweries and delicious Southern influenced American food, certainly come here for lunch or dinner! The food was beyond our expectations. Make sure to grab their Brussel Sprouts! We still talk about how amazing they were.
4. Educate yourself by visiting Smithsonian Museums
Who would have thought that all Smithsonian Museums are free! If you are exploring the city on the budget, it's certainly nice to not worry about spending money :) There are 17 of them in DC, so plenty to explore.
5. Visit Washington National Cathedral
I am a sucker for amazing architecture that makes for a great photo. This gorgeous Cathedral is certainly worth a visit. MLK actually held his final sermon here, couple days before his assassination.
Whether you are in DC for the Cherry Blossom Festival or just to explore the city, there is so much to do here! Don't take it for granted and enjoy your time here!
Adri & Kam