Dating in D.C. – Top 10 Guide to Dates in Washington, D.C.

by D.C. Local Annie Glenn

Dating in D.C. - Top 10 Guide to Dates in Washington, D.C.

As our nation’s capital and political epicenter, Washington, D.C. (aka “DC” or “the District”) is a city of power and persuasion. After one of these ten power date options, you may just be persuaded to try the other nine.

1. Make Your Washington Date Memorable at a Memorial

Washington’s memorials offer a breathtaking backdrop for a romantic scene. From the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, the view of the U.S. Capital building across the Reflecting Pool could inspire you and your date to share your dreams in the same location Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963.

Rent a paddleboat and glide along the Tidal Basin as you combine action with conversation and cruise in the shadow of the Jefferson Memorial. The Japanese cherry trees provide the perfect frame for your snapshots as the Washington monument stands tall in the background.

2. Dating in Washington: Make Progress As You Dine

Create your own progressive dinner in the capital city as you enjoy unique culinary treats:

Start off the evening on a magical note by sipping a Magic Mojito with a white cotton candy garnish at Café Atlantico.

The elegant Oceanaire Seafood Room offers delicious starters such as spicy hash browns served in a cast-iron skillet and the jumbo shrimp cocktail with freshly-grated horseradish.

For the main course, try Matchbox’s signature “3.6.9 mini-burgers” piled high with addictive shoestring onions.

Top it all off with a trip to Krispy Kreme that simply demands you devour a melt-in-your-mouth glazed donut served hot-off-the-press.  Mmmmm!

3.  Dating in Washington: Discover a New Point of View and Take in the Sunset

In a city known for its acronyms, P.O.V. at the chic W Hotel in D.C. is one acronym worth deciphering. Aptly-named P.O.V. for the spectacular views you’ll see, this cozy bar is the ideal place to take in a D.C. sunset. Luxurious couches on the rooftop balcony provide spectacular panoramic city views. Two blocks away, snipers judiciously stand guard atop the White House. Who’s watching whom?

4.  Dating in Washington: Get Around Georgetown

Tucked away behind the multitude of cafes and designer boutiques in D.C.’s Georgetown neighborhood, take a ride on one of the two reproduction canal boats in the C&O Canal Towpath and get a sense of Georgetown’s beginnings in the early 1800s.

Just blocks away, you can dine alongside the Potomac at Washington Harbor’s waterfront, where you can hear row team captains barking orders to their obedient crews.

After dinner, a short water taxi ride gets you to historic Old Town Alexandria, where you can walk along the lively boardwalk and browse the Torpedo Factory Art Center – home to more than 80 art studios brimming with artists eager to chat about their creations.

When you return to Washington Harbor, have a hot cup of tea at the serene Chinese teahouse Ching Ching Cha and relax along the pillow-lined floor.

5.  Dating in Washington: Set the Scene at the U Street Corridor

In D.C., even the restaurants are steeped in history! Ben’s Chili Bowl got its start over 50 years ago in a location that used to be a silent movie house. Regulars often order a Bill Cosby’s Original Chili Half-Smoke and chili-cheese fries, find a booth and play R&B from the jukebox.

The neighborhood around Ben’s is the hip U Street Corridor, where you can browse funky boutiques and hear Utopia Bar’s gifted jazz artists from the street. Ben’s Chili Bowl is open until four a.m. on Saturday nights, so you can stop in for a bite after quenching your thirst in the thriving U Street bar scene.

6.  Dating in Washington: Go Green

Ride a bike – Loads of new bike lines are transforming DC into a bike-friendly city.  Rent two shiny red bikes at a Capital Bikeshare kiosk, and drop them off at any of the other 99-plus kiosks around town.  Ninety minutes of biking costs less than five dollars per person. Near the Capital Bikeshare stop in the lively Dupont Circle neighborhood, environmentally-conscious Sweet Greens offers healthy salads, wraps and yogurt as you sit on benches made from old bowling alley wood.

Take a hike – Few major metropolitan areas have abundant parks and hiking trails like the District. The full moon hike at the National Arboretum is a stargazer’s delight, and you can share a romantic stop at the moonlit columns that once graced the Capital and now reach up to the heavens. If you take hike number four in Easy Hikes Close to Home: Washington, DC (P. Elliott), you and your date can trek the rolling woodlands along a mostly-shady 4.5 mile loop. You can bring your four-legged furry friends too, as long as you have them on leashes.

7.  Dating in Washington: Do the Zoo and a Brew

The National Zoo offers a walk on the wild side, complete with cheetah cubs, roaring lions and acrobatic orangutans in the hilly parkland terrain.  The Zoo Bar, a local watering hole near the main entrance, welcomes beer aficionados. Or, build your own sundaes at the FroZenYo instead. The birthday cake flavor ranks high among the locals.

8.  Dating in Washington: Have a Skate Date

Nestled among the Smithsonian museums, the music broadcast throughout the National Gallery Sculpture Garden serenades skaters – and their spectators who peer through the glass-front café while sipping hot chocolate. The ice rink, which is transformed into a magnificent fountain in the summer, sits in the center of a circular path lined with larger-than-life sculptures. 

 9.  Dating in Washington: Count the Angels at the National Cathedral

Visit the National Cathedral, where sunlight streams through enormous panels of stained glass into the cathedral 288 angels call home. Sit on the grassy Cathedral Close afterward for some quality time together.

10.  Dating in Washington: Head Uptown for Date Night

Exit the red subway line at Cleveland Park for a date night to remember.  Savor tasty Thai cuisine at Siam House in a romantic, candlelit atmosphere. Note: the chili pepper icon on the menu next to spicy items should be taken seriously!  Cleveland Park’s charming Uptown Theater has balcony seating for an ideal vantage point to view the shows. While the popcorn aroma may be tempting, remember to save room for a chocolate tasting adventure afterward at neighboring Cacao, a bistro specializing in chocolate, French desserts and cappuccino.  Oh la la!

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