Washington DC’s cherry blossoms reached peak bloom on March 21, 2022.
We were lucky enough to make it there 4 days after the peak bloom announcement (Friday 3/25/22 – Saturday 3/26/22). From Brooklyn, NYC, it’s nearly a 6-hour drive straight to DC, but I thought it was absolutely worth it!
WASHINGTON DC IN BLOOM
Cherry blossoms are everywhere in Washington DC around this time of the year. On average, it’s predicted that the bloom would happen from the last week of March to the first week of April, and this year in 2022, it happened a few days earlier than predicted.
1. BEST LOCATION TO VIEW CHERRY BLOSSOMS
The best location to view the cherry blossoms at their heaviest concentration is Tidal Basin. The trees there are much bigger and older, and they line the edge of the lake with some super pretty low-hanging branches. Specifically, the area between the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial and Franklin D Roosevelt Memorial is the best, so start there or go there when the lighting is good. Ideally, the time around sunrise and sunset is the best if you want really good photos, but it is still super pretty regardless of what time of the day you’re there.
Note that there’s a restroom with plenty of space and benches to sit and enjoy right in between the two memorials.
2. HOW LONG & WHERE WE STAYED
We only spent two days and one night in DC, and we stayed at the Melrose Georgetown Hotel. Our room was clean and huge, almost as big as our Brooklyn apartment, and the staff was super friendly. From Melrose, it’s about a 40-minute walk or 10-minute drive to Tidal Basin. We got a more pretty affordable parking rate at a garage nearby, and we opted for Uber and walked instead of driving our car to see the cherry blossoms.
3. HOW LONG DO THE FLOWERS STAY OUT?
I highly recommend reading this page, this Instagram page, or this Facebook page for more information as they’re tracking the blooming progress on a day-by-day basis. Look out for the forecasts by the National Park Service and the Washington Post‘s Capital Weather Gang.
From the day that the Peak Bloom is announced, generally, the flowers will stay beautiful for at least a couple of days after that. Sometimes, they can be out for a couple of weeks. How long they remain out depends on the weather, and ideally cool, dry, and calm.
The White House
4. NATIONAL CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL
The 2022 National Cherry Blossom Festival is scheduled to run from March 20 to April 17. And there’s also the Kite Festival which happens on Saturday, March 26, 2022
5. WHAT KIND OF CHERRY BLOSSOMS ARE THEY?
About a dozen of different kinds, but mostly, they are Yoshino cherry trees.
6. PHOTO PERMIT?
No. There are tons of people who shoot engagement and family photos, so just be mindful of others and that that you’re stepping over any fences.
7. FLOWER VIEWING ETIQUETTES
Pick up after your trash.
Leash your dogs.
Do not pick the flowers or break the branches.
Be mindful when taking pictures. Step away so others can get their pictures taken for a few seconds. or don’t occupy an area for too long.
Wear comfortable shoes and bring a layer as it can get chilly during this time of the year. You can change your outfit as there are restrooms.
8. FOOD & DRINKS
Even though this was my second time in Washington DC., I still felt like I barely got to explore DC’s food scene that much. I visited a friend who owns a couple of restaurants in DC/Virginia area, so he took me to places that I could not recall.
LOGAN CIRCLE & SHAW: hip area that seems to have a younger crowd like college students and working professionals
Le Diplomate (great Frech food, but it’s hard to get in. I didn’t reserve but walked in and had to wait for nearly two hours. We walked to the White House and back, and we got a table outside.)
Founding Farmers DC (very touristy spot, food is average)
The Block Food Hall (had duck and yellow rice from Pogiboy)
Washington DC is museum heaven. I had been to a few the first time that I was there, and this time, I only stopped by the National Portrait Gallery. I highly recommend stopping by a few when you’re there since a lot of them are free. I also enjoy the architecture here very much. Compared to New York, Washington DC is not much of a walking city as places are quite far apart, but there is public transportation including trains and tons of Uber/Lyft available.
MORE TRAVEL IDEAS: