Washington DC Parks and Outdoor Spaces

Quarantining during the COVID-19 crisis can pose its many shares of frustrations and challenges. The majority if not all of the museums and exhibits in Washington D.C. have been closed. Restaurants can only do carry out, etc. That is why we decided to put together a list of the top green spaces and parks that have not been affected too badly by the Coronavirus. Apart from the closure of all museums, these parks should still be on your list if you are coming to the city once things return to normal. For those still visiting D.C. during the pandemic, we hope this list will help you navigate the city during a time like none other.

Meridian Hill Park

Located directly north of the White House and just off of 16th street, Meridian Hill Park is a fantastic place to visit to get breathtaking views of our nation’s capital. The geography of D.C. tends to elevate as you head into the northwestern quadrant. Meridian Hill Park lies in this quadrant so one can imagine the elevation difference and the views you can get. Furthermore, the history of Meridian Hill Park is quite interesting and has connections to America’s 6th President. Before becoming a park, this site was the home to John Quincy Adams after he left the White House. However, several years later, amidst Washington D.C.’s population spike, this mansion would endure a fire. During the Civil War, this site was a camp site for Union troops. It was not until 1910 that the U.S. Government purchased this plot of land with the intentions of turning it into an elaborate and European style park open free of charge to the public. For more information on visiting this park please click here.

Some notable features to Meridian Hill Park include the following:

-Joan of Arc statue

-James Buchanan Memorial

-Thirteen Basin cascading fountain

Theodore Roosevelt Island Park

This park used to be an important trading ground for indigenous Indians who inhabited the island. In 1724, the island was acquired by George Mason III – famous Virginia statesman, businessman, and farmer. Over the course of the 18th and 19th century this land passed hands many times. During the Civil War, it was the site of the training grounds for 1st United States Colored Infantry. It would not be until roughly 60 years later that this plot of land would be purchased by the Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Association with the intentions of having the island be a park honoring Roosevelt. Roosevelt himself was a huge outdoor enthusiast, and it is largely due to his efforts that many national parks exist in the United States. Funding for this park was passed by Congress in 1960, and the fountains, design, monument would be completed approximately seven years later in 1967. For running and outdoor enthusiasts, TRI Park is the perfect D.C. escape for you! For those wishing to visit during COVID-19, please note that public restrooms along with the parking lot are temporarily closed. Other than that, the normal park hours are still in effect.

The National Mall

The iconic green space that features the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, WWI Memorial, and countless other memorials is still open to the public. However, please note that all public restrooms around the National Mall are closed. Tours to go to the top of the Washington Monument are also closed until further notice. Please note that all parking south of Independence Avenue SW, including Parking Lots A, B, and C on Ohio Drive SW, the Tidal Basin Parking Lot, and street parking on Ohio Drive in East Potomac Park is also closed.

Lodging While in Washington D.C.

We hope to have been able to help in planning part of your Washington D.C. itinerary. Additionally, we hope to see you here with us at American Guest House, a bed and breakfast in Washington D.C. conveniently located a 20-30 minute walk to all of the above mentioned parks. Furthermore, our DC inn is located in the heart of DuPont Circle and Adams Morgan. As we all continue to navigate a world affected by COVID-19, we hope you stay safe and healthy during these challenging times. See you soon!