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A popular outdoor destination for children, college students and nature lovers, this park lies north of Georgetown. Woodlands surround a recreation area with tennis courts, picnic tables and a playground. Special features include a boxwood maze and Lovers Lane, a cobblestone walkway on the west side of the park. To explore more elaborately designed grounds and an elegant estate, visit Dumbarton Oaks next door. Admission is free.
The Rock Creek Park contains a beautiful wild forest and serves as an oasis for city residents and tourists. Attractions include picnic areas, winding trails and bike paths, a nature center, a public golf course, tennis courts and stables. The centerpiece is a working gristmill, complete with a turning water wheel. Rock Creek Parkway runs alongside the meandering creek. Parts of the road are closed to traffic on weekends and turned over to cyclists and roller bladers. Although the Metro is nearby, a car is required to visit many of the key sites in a single trip. The park is also a popular spot in the winter for sledding, snowballs and other outdoor merriment.
The monumental Oak Hill Cemetery is an ancient cemetery site that dates back to 1848. This cemetery mostly has graves that are from the Civil War era and owing to its historical significance it was incorporated in the National Register of Historic Places.
This predominantly African-American congregation has been worshipping here for over 100 years. Mount Zion United Methodist Church has a strong presence in the community through ministry and spiritual outreach programs that include all ages and cultures. The historic church building and cemetery served as a stop on the Underground Railroad and were featured in the best-selling novel, River Cross My Heart by Breene Clarke.
Georgetown Waterfront was an industrial area bustling with lumber and cement factories. However, due to the efforts and suggestions of National Capital Planning Commission Georgetown Waterfront Park has now been developed. The grassy place offers panoramic views of the Kennedy Center and the Key Bridge against the back-drop of the enormous skyline. Visitors to the park can spend their time biking or walking around the park or simply gazing at the spectacular views.
Heralded as "a garden for the ages," the Washington National Cathedral Gardens and Close were born out of a collaboration between architect Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. and Florence Brown Bratenahl, wife of the dean of the Washington National Cathedral. Together, Bratenahl and Olmsted filled the cathedral's gardens with native plants, plants that figure in Christian legends, and historically-interesting plants - such as the boxwood cuts that were taken from George Washington's Hayfield Manor. The gardens were added to and expanded in the 1920s and 1930s. Visitors today can enjoy this beautiful pocket of nature while they wander the Bishop's Gardens and admire the old growth forest of Olmsted Forest on the Close.
Best known for hosting the Rosslyn Jazz Festival, the Gateway Park provides both relaxing and recreational opportunities for adults and children. It provides stellar views of the Fourth of July fireworks, while the skywalk offers pleasing views of Georgetown. Picnicking, biking or taking a simple stroll during dusk while kids play in the resident sandbox are few of the activities one may indulge in here.
This Potomac River island is an apt memorial to the conservation-minded Teddy Roosevelt, the nation's 26th president. The 88-acre wildlife refuge can be explored along winding footpaths. In a clearing at the island's center stands a 22-foot bronze statue of Roosevelt, accompanied by inscriptions of his eloquent thoughts on nature and conservation. Access the island from Virginia via George Washington Memorial Parkway. A pedestrian bridge connects the island to a parking lot on the Virginia shoreline.