If you are gearing up to visit our nation’s capital, you likely wonder which times are the best times to visit Washington, DC. While there is something to do and plenty to see in DC regardless of the season, it’s true that there are times of the year that are better than others for certain visitors. Simply put, the best times to visit Washington, DC, depend largely on what you want to get from your experience.
Let’s take a month-by-month look at what’s going on in DC that might pique the interest of your family or group:
Every four years, Washington, DC, becomes a hot spot — when the nation inaugurates the president. Outside those years, January is fairly calm and quiet in Washington, DC. The weather is a hodgepodge of frigid and crisp and clear, and snowy days are not out of the question, which can bring DC to a grinding halt.
February can be one of the best times to visit Washington, DC, if you are a fashionista. That’s when DC Fashion Week is in town! President’s Day also tends to bring the crowds, too. Take advantage of the lack of crowds to flex your ice-skating skills at the Sculpture Garden — part of the National Gallery of Art — or get in on some of the many Chinese New Year celebrations around DC.
If one of the sights you most want to see in DC is the vibrant show of color provided by the city’s infamous cherry blossoms, then mark your calendars for March and head out to the National Cherry Blossom Festival.
Cherry blossom chasers can still appreciate the peak bloom of these world-renowned beauties, with April 2nd typically being the cherry blossoms’ apex. If you time your visit around Easter, you might get in on the White House Easter Egg Roll. FilmFest DC also happens in April.
May is definitely one of the best times to visit Washington, DC. The weather is comfortable, and there’s so much to do, including activities for DC Black Pride, the Washington DC Dragon Boat Festival, and Passport DC.
All the school kiddies are gone for summer break, which thins out the crowds and makes June one of the best times to visit Washington, DC. Plus, hotel prices are much more affordable than during peak season. DC Jazz Fest, the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, and the National Capital Barbecue Battle are all popular in DC in June.
Hot and humid is the norm for the area in July, so if that’s a deal-breaker for your trip, then cross June off your list of best times to visit Washington, DC. If you are brave enough to battle the rising mercury, then there’s no place like our nation’s capital to enjoy the fireworks for Independence Day.
Although it’s still hot, DC offers a lot to do in August. This includes the Around the World Cultural Food Festival and the Washington DC Water Lantern Festival.
Festivals abound in September, making this month among the best times to visit Washington, DC. On the festival rotation this month? The DC International Beer Wine and Food Festival and the National Book Festival.
A High Heel Drag Race and the Marine Corps Marathon, along with Taste of DC, are all good reasons to visit DC in October. Daytime temps hovering in the lower 70s helps too.
November is fairly quiet around DC, but December brings more to do, with events such as historic home tours by candlelight, Christmas concerts, and the holiday crème-de-la-crème: the lighting of the National Christmas Tree & Menorah.
Families, business travelers, history enthusiasts, school groups, and travel lovers alike have a place in Washington, DC’s vibrant lineup of attractions, street festivals, and other activities all year round. For more information about what is open in DC or are guided small group tours of the National Mall, turn to See DC Today!