National memorials, more than 1,600 Japanese cherry trees and the beautiful Constitution Gardens make West Potomac Park a great place to explore when visiting Washington, D.C. It’s a rarity as a national park, because although it has a national history theme, it is located smack dab in the center of a major city.
Servicemen and -women are commemorated at the Vietnam, Korean War Veterans and the World War II memorials; Presidents Roosevelt and Jefferson are celebrated in monuments; and important historical figures are remembered at the George Mason and Martin Luther King, Jr. memorials. There are various other statues and monuments found throughout the park, too, but nothing is more recognizable than the iconic view between two presidential memorials: from the Washington Monument across the reflecting pond to the Lincoln Memorial.
With 1,628 Japanese cherry trees, the spring bloom is quite the sight, and thousands of visitors come to West Potomac Park to photograph the sea of pink and white cherry blossoms during the annual spring Cherry Blossom Festival.
Constitution Gardens offer a large green space with cobbled pathways and a duck pond that make it easy to forget that the park is within walking distance of the White House. Tidal Basin is just steps away as well, across the National Mall, and offers families the chance to get out on the water in both paddle and row boats.
West Potomac State Park is located between Independence and Constitution avenues. It’s easily accessible from the Smithsonian and Federal Triangle metro stations.