Alexandria, VA

Parks in NoVA to visit this Spring

Caroline Cunningham

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Spring is around the corner and I know I’m not the only one longing for sunshine, bright green grass, vibrant flowers, and a pleasant breeze. Because this Winter has felt extra isolated with COVID-restrictions still in place, I’m ready to soak in the weather as soon as Spring hits. 

Living in Northern Virginia, here’s where I plan to get outdoors for some socially distant activities:

1. Meadowlark Botanical Gardens

In any season, this park is a must-visit for a peaceful walk around the pond and through Korean pavilions. But during the Spring when it is decorated with blooming cherry blossoms and tulips, it is extra special. 

Meadowlark Park is the perfect place for someone looking for a peaceful walk, to observe nature, read on the hill or even mediate on quieter days. The property also hosts various events like concerts, check out their page if you’re interested.

Note that no food or drink is allowed on the property and the admission fee is $6 for adults and $3 for children.

2. Huntley Meadows Park in Alexandria

Known for its wetlands and fantastic wildlife sightings, Huntley Meadows is a beautiful park full of life. Here you can walk across the picturesque boardwalk, spot birds such as ducks, even bald eagles and owls, have a picnic, or walk through the forest. 

During the Spring you won’t want to miss all the nature coming back to life after a cold winter, and the pleasant weather on the wetlands before the humid summer.

Learn more about the park on their website.

3. Gravelly Point Park in Arlington

If you’re looking for the perfect picnic spot, this is it! The park is simple, an open field near the Potomac River but the most unique factor is the airplanes landing and taking off right above you!

It’s hard to beat a sunny Spring day on the Gravelly Point Park field with a charcuterie board and a glass of white wine and airplanes flying above you - so start planning a day trip here now.

Note that the park is free but parking is limited especially on a nice day. You can bike here though from the Mount Vernon Trail.

4. Burke Lake Park in Fairfax

Whatever activity you’re trying to do outside, you can probably do at Burke Lake Park. It’s the perfect place for a picnic, reading underneath a tree, sunbathing on the field, fishing in the lake, taking a walk or jog along a trail, playing volleyball, taking your kids to a playground, or even playing golf.

During the Spring, Burke Lake park is so refreshing and even on a warmer day, you can cool off at their ice cream parlor - my favorite place!

5. Great Falls Park in McLean Virginia

For a more dramatic environment and more epic hikes along rocks and the Potomac River, head to Great Falls Park. My favorite trail for some rock scramble and stunning views of the falls is the River, Ridge, CCT and Swamp Trail.

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Which park will you visit this Spring?

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My aim is to inspire adventure and empower people with the tools to travel. You can expect articles about solo female travel, budget travel tips, destination guides, and authentic storytelling.

Fairfax, VA
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