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How to Experience Cherry Blossom Season in Washington DC

How to Experience Cherry Blossom Season in Washington DC

Thanks to a gift from the mayor of Tokyo in 1912, Washington DC has been home to thousands of cherry trees for more than 100 years. The blooming season comes at the perfect time, when Washington's air starts to warm for spring but the real heat and humidity haven't yet set in. Read on for the best ways to see the US capital in full bloom.

When to Go

The National Cherry Blossom Festival is celebrated from mid-March to mid-April each year in West Potomac Park—with a parade, kite-flying competition, fireworks, and more. While the city's exact peak bloom dates vary each year, they usually fall during the festival.

Where to Go

The most famous places to see blossoms are West Potomac Park, East Potomac Park, and the grounds of the Washington Monument, but the blooms don't end there. For a slightly less crowded spot, visit the National Arboretum and look for the special Okami cherry tree, which blooms early in the season and has a dark, rich color. You can also find the fleeting cherry blossoms in Foxhall Village near Georgetown and in Anacostia Park.

How to Go

Since many of the cherry blossom trees are by the water at Tidal Basin, a Potomac River cruise is a great way to see lots of pink petals in a short amount of time. Or, if you're focused on getting the best photo ops, try a walking tour guided by a professional photographer. See below for even more options.

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2 Tours and Activities

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Big Bus Washington DC Open Top Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

Big Bus Washington DC Open Top Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

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2117
Discover the most popular sights in Washington, DC on this relaxing hop-on hop-off bus tour. Drive past many of the top attractions in the nation’s capital — including the White House, the Washington Monument, the National Mall, historic Georgetown, and Arlington National Cemetery, and choose where you want to get off and explore in more detail. Select a 1- or 2-day pass, then hop on at any of the stops on two different routes and get to know the city with an audio commentary. The 2-day Deluxe option includes a Night Tour.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$48.60
From
$48.60

Blossoming Friendship: A Self-Guided Audio Tour of Washington D.C.’s Tidal Basin

Blossoming Friendship: A Self-Guided Audio Tour of Washington D.C.’s Tidal Basin

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1
Take a stroll around the picturesque Tidal Basin, among the famous Japanese cherry trees located in Washington, DC., given as a token of friendship from Japan. On this self-guided audio tour, you'll hear the history behind the trees, what they represent, and learn about the National Cherry Blossom Festival. Along the way, you'll walk through four national memorials and the hear about the men memorialized. There are plenty of great photo opportunities on this stroll regardless of the time of year, so bring your camera. This walk is a must-do for any visitor to the capital city. Download the tour through the VoiceMap app on your phone while in a wifi zone to enjoy full offline accessibility. The tour is ready when you are, simply arrive at the start location and hit the Start Tour button when you're ready.
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  • 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes
From
$5.99
From
$5.99