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Best Places to Watch Fireworks in Washington D.C.

We've staked out the best places to watch Fourth of July Fireworks in D.C.

By Livability.com on June 28, 2017

Washington, D.C. is mere minutes from Bethesda, MD
Bethesda / Washington.org

There’s no place to celebrate the Fourth of July than in the capital of the United States – beautiful Washington D.C. There’s something profoundly American about sitting on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial while red, white and blue fireworks burst in the sky. We wrote about some of the greatest July Fourth fireworks across the country, and of course, D.C. made the list.

If you are celebrating Independence Day in the nation’s capital, check out these patriotic picnic spots for this year’s fireworks display.

National Mall

Stake out a picnic spot on the Mall to listen to the National Symphony Orchestra as they play July Fourth classics. The fireworks are launched from the Reflecting Pool, so this is a popular haunt – plan to arrive early in the day! Aim for the Lincoln Memorial, the Tidal Basin or anywhere you can catch a good waterfront view; the fireworks reflecting off the water’s surface are breathtaking!

Nearest Metrorail Stations: Federal Triangle, Archives, Smithsonian, Federal Center, L’Enfant Plaza

East Potomac Park

For a spot on the Washington Channel, Hains Point in East Potomac Park is a good bet. Take the family out for a full day of fishing, bicycling, and playgrounds on Hains Point! There is space for everyone to sprawl out in the grass. If you’re planning for a big day, fireworks on Hains Point are an excellent way to top off your Fourth of July evening.

Nearest Metrorail Station: Smithsonian

McKinley Tech High School

Whispered as one of D.C.’s best open secrets, McKinley Tech on Clifton Street is a great local spot to catch the fireworks shows. The whole area is a great vantage point, and since it’s so distant from the Mall, you can avoid the crowds and still enjoy the fireworks from afar. Take public transportation where you can, since street parking will be impossible on the Fourth!

Nearest Metrorail Stations: Shaw, Shaw-Howard U

Gravelly Point Park

Cloture Club once declared Gravelly Point one of D.C.’s top ten hidden gems, and it’s easy to see why. Located off the George Washington Memorial Parkway, this patch of parkland sits just under Reagan National Airport, and it’s a prime location for airplane watching and fireworks! Be prepared to hike to Gravelly Point though, since there aren’t many parking spaces available.

Nearest Metrorail Stations: Rosslyn, Reagan National Airport

Supreme Court

One of the great things about D.C.’s relatively flat skyline is that you have a lot more options for fireworks on Independence Day! Make your way over to the home of the SCOTUS and sit down on the steps to watch the show. Not many people think to sit here, so you may have a better shot of finding a seat while staying close downtown to the fireworks.

Nearest Metrorail Stations: Capitol South, Union Station

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