The National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland is one of the DC area’s premier destinations. The 300 acre waterfront development has over 150 stores, 30 restaurants, 1 Pirate cruise, water activities, and lots of entertainment options.
The national harbor has become a premier destination for meeting and convention planners.
As part of our “Get out this spring” series in which we encourage members of our local Montgomery County, MD community to get allergy relief so they can get about the business of enjoying the most beautiful time of the year.
In that spirit, here are 10 Things To Do At The National Harbor In Maryland this spring, if you have a family to entertain.
The Capital Wheel – Catch the sights of Washington DC from one of 42 climate-controlled gondolas that rise 180 feet above the Potomac River waterfront.
Since it opened in May 2014, the Capital wheel has quickly become one of the most loved attractions at the harbor.
Toddlers, young children and parents can all enjoy this entertainment centerpiece. How many carousels in the area can boast fabulous views of the Potomac in the background? The area that contains the carousel also contains a newly built playground area, a toddler play area, and picnic tables for families to sit down and relax around.
Movies On The Potomac
Starting in late spring (the month of May) through the summer, enjoy outdoor movies right on the banks of the Potomac.
“Date Night” movies are scheduled on Thursday evenings at 7pm, and “Family Movies On The Potomac” are scheduled for Sundays, at 6pm.
At the national harbor, you have lots of options for getting on the water and having yourself some fun. Options include kayak rentals, pedal boating and paddleboarding. You can also enjoy a ride on the water taxis either to and from the Alexandria waterfront, or to the National Mall.
Board the Pirate ship in the National Harbor. Learn to dress, talk, and play games “like a true pirate”. Kids and family are sure to have fun on their pirate adventure.
The boats sail out between the months of April and October. There are “Family cruises” and Adult Only tours available.
The iconic sculpture by J. Seward Johnson spent 27 years at Hain’s Point. It consists of 5 cast-aluminum pieces arranged as to give the impression of a giant struggling to emerge from the ground. Installed right on the harbor waterfront, it has become a favorite place for children to play and for taking pictures.
There are over 30 restaurants in the national harbor development, including those at the Gaylord Resort and Convention Center. Options range from steakhouses to coffee houses, casual dining and popular fast food chains. Make a reservation at one of the fine dining destinations, enjoy waterfront dining, or make a quick pit stop at one of the fast food options.
There are more than 150 retailers providing shopping options at The National Harbor, with over 85 of them located at Tanger Outlets. Grab outlet deals from stores like The Nike Factory Store, Polo Ralph Lauren, Maryland’s own Under Armour, Michael Kors, H & M, Samsonite, Diane Von Furstenberg, and many more.
From April through October, you can buy a wide variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, flowers, house plants, and baked goods, every Saturday and Sunday. Hours are from 10 am to 5 pm.
The farmer’s market is located on American Way, by the fountain.
Consider a full weekend of fun at the National Harbor. With 6 hotels on-site that offer a range of accomodations and prices, there’s an option for everyone. If you choose this option, plan ahead to make sure you can get a room. Holiday weekends should be planned well in advance. The hotels are The Gaylord, The Westin, Hampton Inn & Suites, Residence Inn by Marriott, AC Hotel, and Wyndham Vacation Resorts.
This page is sponsored by Alpha Allergy & Asthma Associates in Silver Spring, one of the best DC area doctors specializing in treating allergic, asthmatic, and immunologic conditions. This resource is created as part of the “Step Out This Spring” community education and outreach campaign.
National harbor skyview (top image) by Forsaken Fotos, CC BY 2.0. | The capital wheel by Mama Geek – Own Work, CC BY-SA 4.0 | Carousel Photo taken by Muu-karhu – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0 | National Harbor Skyline by Forsaken Fotos, License: CC BY 2.0 | Outdoor movie night by Deb Nystrom – License CC BY-SA 2.0 | Water taxi by Ron Cogswell – License: CC BY-SA 2.0 | Urban Pirates Boat by Carlos Pacheco – License: CC BY-SA 2.0 | The Awakening Statue by Joe Loong – License: CC BY-SA 2.0 | Tanger Outlets National Harbor by – Ryan Mcknight License: CC BY-SA 2.0 | Farmer’s Market “peaches” by Alby Headrick – License: CC BY-SA 2.0 | Hotels and Marina photo by Joseph – License: CC BY-SA 2.0