Press pause on screen time and take in a show on the world’s biggest canvas; the evening sky. Whether you’re in DC, VA or MD, when the sun melts across the sky, here are the best places to catch nature’s most beautiful sunsets.MoreLess
Photographers know the best vantage point for capturing beauty, and the sun setting over Washington, DC is no exception. From the steps of the U.S Capitol you can watch the sun spread across the sky behind the Washington Monument in a breathtaking display of color. This is probably one of the most photographed sunset views in the world.
From this site on the southern end of the National Mall you can sit on a park bench at any season of the year and watch a gorgeous sunset. From the northern side, close to the Washington Monument, you’ll see the white-domed granite of the Jefferson Memorial, which turns all shades of breathtaking pink as the sun sets behind it. This, coupled with a picture-perfect reflection in the still waters of the Tidal Basin makes for an unforgettable sunset view.
This 10-acre park located directly across the river from Roosevelt Island, curves along the Potomac River shoreline from 30th to 34th Street NW and features views of the Key Bridge, Kennedy Center and Memorial Bridge. In the summer, kids can splash in spray fountains while you watch shore birds and row boats on the river. It’s the perfect setting for a pastel sunset sky.
If there’s a place where seeing the sunset could change your entire world view, it might just be from The Point Overlook in Shenandoah National Park. This west-facing spot at mile 55.5 on Skyline Drive is located just a few miles south of Big Meadows Lodge. From the overlook, hike a short trail down about 100 feet to a rocky area and from here you’ll see the magic happen.
River shores, open spaces and a clear view of the wide sky, Fort Hunt Park offers everything you need for a stunning sunset view. The park is located just two miles from Mount Vernon and serves as a local favorite for picnics and recreation. In the summer months, you can enjoy live music on Sunday evenings at Pavilion A. A dinner picnic, evening concert and summer sunset makes for a perfect evening.
Even without a sunset, the National Harbor Waterfront offers a beautiful setting and year-round line-up of amazing attractions. Add the colorful sun setting across the sky and you have a view worthy of Monet or Van Gogh. In the summer months, you can take advantage of sunset swims in the river. Throw in an ice skating show at Gaylord, or a spin on the Capitol Ferris Wheel where you’ll soar 180 feet above the Potomac River for incomparable views.
This award-winning 276-acre nature park has a 3-mile walking trail that winds you through wildflower meadows, wetlands, tidal ponds, woodlands and sandy beaches where you’ll have unique opportunities to see a variety of waterfowl and wildlife. Park yourself somewhere along the beachfront boardwalk for a spectacular view of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge beneath a sky on fire with the setting sun.
The restaurant and bar at the top of the Watergate Hotel offers one of the best views in the city. Watch the boats glide down the Potomac River and the lights begin to shine in Georgetown as you sip mocktails by the fire pits. Be sure to check out this hot spot in the winter when they feature a kid-friendly roof top ice rink.