Best Nighttime Strolls in Washington, D.C.

September 8, 2016 2:00 PM

Photo Credit: Thinkstock

Summer is coming to an end. What better way to get out there and enjoy the warm weather while it lasts than with a relaxing evening stroll? Some of the most beautiful monuments and statues that memorialize the important stewards of this country are located in Washington. One of the best ways to experience these great engineering marvels is by observing them at night. Here are several places in DC where you can take a night time excursion and see the sights illuminated in all their glory. 
National Mall
900 Ohio Drive, S.W.
Washington, DC 20024
(202) 426-6841
www.nps.gov

The National Mall is an enormous pathway with trees, grass and a grand reflecting pool lined by the Nation’s museums and monuments. A gravel path runs the length of the Mall from the U.S. Capitol to the Washington Monument and is a favorite for runners and walkers. If you’re ambitious, you can start at the 555-foot tall Washington Monument and make your way across the mall and finish by walking the steps of the illuminated U.S. Capitol. Bring your camera to capture snaps of the lighted memorials and night time views of the reflecting pool.

The Yards Park
355 Water St. S.E.
Washington, DC 20003
(202) 465-7080
www.theyardspark.org

The Yards Park is an outdoor maze of rock and metal located near Nationals Park in Navvy Yard. The waterfront park features modern architecture, grassy gardens and relaxing water features. Walk along the boardwalk, explore the outdoor rooms and stroll across the illuminated overlook bridge. In warmer weather the park hosts outdoor concerts, fitness classes and a variety of festivals. The park has plenty of seating and areas suitable for a sunset picnic.

Theodore Roosevelt Island
Washington, DC
(703) 289-2500
www.nps.gov

Theodore Roosevelt Island is DC’s own forest island sanctuary. The small island was converted from farmland to create a living memorial to the nation’s 26th President, Theodore Roosevelt. It is one of the few recreation areas that is open late (until 10 p.m.), every day of the year. Explore two and a half miles of trails, monuments and the 17-foot statue of the former president. Getting to the park is a little tricky, via pedestrian footbridges by the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge and the Mt. Vernon Trail.

Related: Best Observation Decks In Washington, D.C.

Tidal Basin
West Potomac Park
West Basin Drive S.W.
Washington, DC 20024
www.tidalbasinpaddleboats.com

Most commonly known for its assemblage of cherry blossom trees, the Tidal Basin is a man-made basin created to corral water from the Washington Channel. The basin is part of the of West Potomac Park and offers great night time views of the Jefferson Memorial, the Washington monument, Martin Luther King Jr. memorial and the George Mason memorial. From March though October guests can rent paddle boats and explore the basin during daylight hours.

Lafayette Square 
16th St. & Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20006
www.nps.gov

The Lafayette Square park is a public park located directly across from the White House. Named for General Lafayette of France for his contributions in the American Revolutionary War, the seven acre park features several statues including a cavalry statuary of Andrew Jackson. The park is flanked by several historical buildings including the Department of the Treasury, Blair-Lee House, Renwick Gallery and St. John’s Episcopal Church. The area is also home to the renown Hay-Adams Hotel, the perfect spot to enjoy an evening nightcap. 

Related: Best Hangout Spots After Bars Close In Washington, D.C.

Christa Emmer is a graduate of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in broadcast journalism. She has experience as a news writer, editor and producer in television news. Follow her on twitter @ChristaEmmer. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.