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9 Exciting Things to See & Do Along the Georgetown Waterfront

Standup paddling on the Potomac River in Georgetown - Things to do on the Georgetown Waterfront in Washington, DC

DC’s oldest neighborhood offers a wide range of on- or near-the-water fun.

While Georgetown’s cobblestone streets, cupcake stores, historic bars and stylish boutiques account for many of its charms, Washington, DC’s oldest neighborhood also sports a bevy of waterfront recreation that any visitor can thoroughly enjoy. From on-the-water revelry to dining accompanied by spectacular scenery to highly anticipated annual events, the Georgetown waterfront presents an array of activities for you to explore. And while you're there, discover the rest of the best things to see and do in Georgetown.

1 Paddle the Potomac

Boating on the Potomac River by the Key Bridge Boathouse - Outdoor activities on the Georgetown Waterfront in Washington, DC

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a better afternoon on the water. Key Bridge Boathouse is the place to go to rent kayaks, canoes or to take a paddling lesson. You’ll enjoy incredible panoramas of the Potomac River and the DC and Virginia skylines while also getting a great workout. For the adventurous fitness fanatics, try the stand-up paddleboard yoga or fitness classes.

2 Hang out at The Washington Harbour

Patrons at Tony and Joe's on The Washington Harbour - Things to do on the Georgetown Waterfront in Washington, DC

Georgetown’s river waterfront is home to tons of great restaurants – many, including Sequoia, Tony and Joe's Seafood Place and Farmers Fishers Bakers, offer patio seating in warm weather – and plenty of outdoor activities. In summer, children (and adults, too) can splash in the sprinkler-style water fountain, watch the boats and feed the ducks. Before or after, get your shopping on in the historic neighborhood.

Waterfronts in and around Washington, DC - Riverside attractions, restaurants, boat cruises, tours and more things to do

3 Savor summer nights

Sunset cinema outdoor summer movie on the Georgetown Waterfront - The best summer activities in Georgetown Washington, DC

Georgetown Waterfront Park beckons on a summer night, just as the sun’s going down, with a view of the Kennedy Center to the left and the Key Bridge to the right. Beyond its stunning views and ample space for recreation, the park also offers event options during the summertime. Georgetown Sunset Fitness in the Park is a free series of outdoor fitness classes, running June through August. If you’re more into relaxing than exercising, check out Georgetown Sunset Cinema, a free movie series that runs in July and August.

4 Bike, hike or run next to the river

Biking along Georgetown Waterfront Park - The best outdoor things to do in Washington, DC's Georgetown neighborhood

Georgetown also presents miles of trails for walking, biking or running alongside the Potomac River and the C&O Canal. The gorgeous C&O Canal Towpath and Capital Crescent Trail are two of the most popular trails in the region, with each presenting eye-popping vistas of water. Cyclists will also especially appreciate the nearly 50 public bike racks located throughout the neighborhood, as well as eight Capital Bikeshare stations and a bike fixit repair station on K/Water Street.

5 Wander a waterfront district

Man walking dog in Georgetown Waterfront Park - Outdoor things to do in Washington, DC

The C&O Canal and the Potomac River are located just south of M Street, and in between the two bodies of water are plenty of nooks and crannies to explore. You’ll find an array of bakeries, coffee shops and boutiques in this waterfront district, as well as architectural marvels and remnants of Georgetown’s industrial past.

6 Eat, drink and play all day during Taste of Georgetown

Patrons at the Taste of Georgetown food event near the Georgetown Waterfront in  Washington, DC

One of Georgetown’s signature events takes place right near the water. Taste of Georgetown is an annual fall celebration of food, wine, and music that has been one of Washington, DC’s premier neighborhood events for more than 20 years. More than 60 signature dishes from over 30 of the restaurants are available for sampling, and you can also savor wine and craft beer pairings and family-friendly activities.

7 Skate on the largest ice rink in the District

Ice Skating on Georgetown Waterfront - Washington Harbour - Washington, DC

From mid-November through March, Washington Harbour’s dancing fountain turns into prime ice skating real estate. Nighttime means magic, as dozens of twinkling snowflakes light up the rink right next to the Potomac River.

8 Get your GLOW on

@miyosmmm - Woman in front of Georgetown GLOW light installation - Holiday events and things to do in Washington, DC

Throughout December of each year, visitors can experience the sparkle of the season during Georgetown GLOW, the region’s only curated exhibition of outdoor public light art installations. Established in 2014, the innovative exhibition has quickly become one of the city’s most anticipated holiday spectacles.

9 Turn your boat ride into a booze cruise

Guests on the Potomac Paddle Pub boat in Georgetown - Things to do on the Georgetown waterfront in DC

Potomac Paddle Pub is rain-or-shine pedal boat that accommodates up to 16 people and has 10 pedal stations for its hour-and-a-half voyages. Good to know: You can turn your aquatic spin class into a booze cruise with the BYOB policy – the vessel provides ice, coolers and cup holders. There is also a motor on board in case your legs grow too tired as you cruise down the Potomac. Individual seats can only be purchased Monday through Thursday, and group trips can be purchased on Fridays through Sundays. Once you book your trip, you can embark on your journey from the Georgetown Docks near The Washington Harbour.

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