4.5 395 Reviews

Add your review

  • Hours: Open 24 hours a day
  • Admission: Free

From its source in West Virginia to where it empties out in Chesapeake Bay, the Potomac River is an area rich in American history, so much that’s often called "the Nation’s River." George Washington, the first President of the United States, was born along the river, and all of Washington, D.C., the nation's capital city, lies within the watershed.

In Washington D.C., the West and East Potomac parks, both downtown and divided by the Tidal Basin, are pleasant, green, cherry-blossomed lined spaces, lovely for walking, picnics, and fishing. West Potomac Park is home to the Constitution Gardens; the Vietnam, Korean, Lincoln, Jefferson, World War II, and FDR memorials; a small island where ducks live; and the Reflecting Pool.

East Potomac Park is more of recreational spot, with picnic grounds, tennis courts, three golf courses, a large swimming pool, and biking and hiking paths. Across the river is Arlington National Cemetery.

Upriver, the Potomac flows through the National Zoological Park; Mount Vernon, the country home of George Washington; and the Great Falls, where the normally placid Potomac cascades 77 feet(24 meters) down a series of beautiful rapids. Parks line both sides of the river.

Practical Info

The park has many access points along its route. All those outside Washington D.C. are best accessed by car. In downtown D.C., the West and East Potomac parks are behind the National Mall, and are easily accessed on foot or car; there is no convenient metro stop near here. Ferries also ply the waters around here, most of which can be found docked on the downtown piers.

Tours & Tickets

See all

Viator VIP: Best of DC Including US Capitol and National Archives Reserved Access, the White House and Lincoln Memorial

4.5 star rating: Recommended 41 Reviews

Experience Washington DC’s most sought-after attractions like a true VIP insider. Beat the long entrance lines and enjoy reserved entry to the US Capitol ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $125.00

Washington DC Monuments by Moonlight Cruise

3.5 star rating: Worth doing 5 Reviews

See Washington DC like never before on a mesmerizing nighttime cruise along the Potomac River. Admire DC’s most famous monuments and landmarks including the ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: 60 minutes (approx.)

From USD $26.00

Washington DC Dinner Cruise

4.5 star rating: Recommended 37 Reviews

Come aboard Washington's premier dining ship! This 3-hour dinner cruise takes you along the Potomac River for panoramic views of the nation's greatest ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $132.87

Washington DC Duck Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 103 Reviews

See Washington DC from the land and water on a unique duck tour! Traveling in an original WWII amphibious vehicle, this 90-minute tour takes you to the famous ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: 90 minutes (approx.)

From USD $39.00

Washington DC Sunset Dinner Cruise with Buffet

4 star rating: Recommended 23 Reviews

Experience the Potomac River on a sunset dinner, dancing and sightseeing cruise, where you'll see Washington DC’s famous skyline from a luxury boat. As your ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $62.11
$110.37 Save $48.26

In the Footsteps of George Washington: Day Cruise to Mount Vernon

4.5 star rating: Recommended 124 Reviews

Seeking an activity in Washington DC that offers culture, history, sightseeing and a lot of fun, all in one package? This round-trip cruise from Washington DC ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: 6 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $49.79

Washington DC Scenic Lunch Cruise

4.5 star rating: Recommended 22 Reviews

Experience the nation's capital on a scenic lunch cruise! On this Washington DC cruise, not only will you indulge in an all-you-can-eat buffet, but there will ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: 2 hours (approx.)

From USD $58.37

Washington DC Monuments and Memorials Cruise on the Potomac

Admire Washington DC's spectacular monuments and memorials from this boat cruise along the Potomac River. See the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, John F ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: 90 minutes (approx.)

From USD $25.99

Washington DC Brunch Cruise

4.5 star rating: Recommended 15 Reviews

Join a cruise around the capital and admire the cities skyline while on board this wonderful 2-hour brunch cruise. Admire unmatched skyline views from a unique ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: 2 hours (approx.)

From USD $84.99

Mt Vernon Independent Bike Tour with Optional Potomac River Cruise

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 6 Reviews

On this independent bike tour from Old Town Alexandria, enjoy views of the Potomac River as you cycle along the scenic Mt Vernon Trail to historic Mt Vernon ...  Read more

Location: Washington D.C., District of Columbia
Duration: Varies

From USD $48.00

See all Potomac River Tours & Tickets

Viator uses cookies to improve your experience on our website. Learn more about how we use cookies and how to change your cookie settings | Close message