Exploring Washington DC’s Neighbourhoods
Updated: Jul 28, 2022
Washington DC is naturally associated with historical field trips and family holidays, thanks to its collection of free Smithsonian Museums, incredible memorials, and tours of the Capitol and the White House. But beyond the National Mall are some great corners of the city that need to be on your DC itinerary. We’ve rounded up some of our favourites below.
Over the last few years, the DC’s Southwest waterfront has been completely transformed into a waterside destination. The mile long stretch along the Potomac River has independent restaurants and boutiques, live music venues, and chances to get out on the water. It’s also very accessible by rail and road (there are Metro shuttles) or the water taxi from Northern Virginia.
Technically DuPont Circle is a traffic circle with a fountain and small urban park, but the surrounding neighbourhood is one of the most vibrant in the city. With independent boutiques, including Two Passports favourite Kramer Books, and excellent bars and restaurants the neighbourhood is perfect for an afternoon’s adventures. There is also a historic and thriving LGBT+ community of businesses operating on 17th Street.
Logan Circle / 14th Street
Still in Northwest DC and just a few blocks from DuPont Circle, is Logan Circle. Though on first glance, you might feel underwhelmed, follow 14th Street north for an excellent food and happy hour crawl. This street is packed with some great gems – whether you’re looking for something fun like Doi Moi for Vietnamese street food, French fare at Le Diplomate, or rustic wine bar Barcelona Wine Bar.
If you continue north, you’ll find yourself on U Street – a must for exploring DC’s Black history from the iconic Ben’s Chilli Bowl to the African American Civil War Museum.
Classic, historic, sophisticated – these are all things that come to mind to describe Georgetown. The side residential streets are backed with beautiful, multi-story brownstones. You’ll get a full retail experience in Georgetown with independent names and high street favourites. Head down to the waterfront to enjoy the wide selection of riverside eateries for a glass of wine and a beautiful view of the Potomac River.
Read our Travel Guide to Washington DC here!