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Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens
Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens

Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens

Free admission

The only US national park devoted to aquatic plants, Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens are overflowing with colorful water-loving plants, ranging from lotus and water lilies to bamboo thickets. Set along the banks of the Anacostia River, the 700-acre (283-hectare) park is a haven within the greater Anacostia Park.

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1550 Anacostia Ave NE, Washington DC, 20019

The Basics

Visitors to Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens pass the time strolling raised boardwalks, enjoying nature trails, and marveling at massive lily pads. You can explore the expansive park on your own or join a guided walking tour. Those interested in participating in axa0 tour can choose from birding-focused walks or garden tours and learn about the park’s flora and fauna from a ranger along the way.

Alternatively, an independent excursion lets you take in the park at your own pace and grants you ample opportunities to relax on a garden bench or watch the wildlife. A stop at the visitor center gives you the chance to learn more about the history, ecology, and conservation efforts of the park.

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Things to Know Before You Go

  • The park draws in birders and nature lovers.
  • Visitors are encouraged to bring cameras and binoculars.
  • The park is free to enter and open year-round.
  • The bookstore and visitor center are wheelchair accessible but paths around the park can be uneven and muddy.
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Trip ideas

How to Get There

Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens are located in northeast Washington DC. You can drive to the park (located just south of Route 50) or take the Metrorail. To reach the Aquatic Gardens by Metro, take the Orange Line to the Deanwood Stop.

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When to Get There

While the park is open all year, if you want to see the aquatic flowers at their peak, visit in the summer. Water lilies begin blooming in May, while lotus blooms late June through July. Both flowers open and close daily based on the temperature and can be expected to close before 2pm. Visit early if you want to watch the flowers open.

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Visiting Anacostia Park

Set across the river from Washington DC, Anacostia Park is a hub for recreation activities and wildlife. In addition to nature trails along the river, canoe routes, and boardwalks above the marshes, the park is also home to numerous recreation facilities. Visitors can make use of sports fields, a skating rink, fitness station, picnic area, playground, and more.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What are the nearest attractions to Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens?
What else should I know about attractions in Washington DC?
As well as visiting the Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens, check out these trip ideas to make the most of your visit: