News & Politics

3 Places Where You Can Go for a Walk Along the Water

Stunning views and cool breezes.

Jones Point Park. Photograph by Angela B. Pan.
Our Favorite Parks

About Our Favorite Parks

This article is a part of Washingtonian’s feature: Our Favorite Parks. Our editors and staff pulled together the best regional parks where you can take a walk, have a picnic, play with the kids, and enjoy the great outdoors.

Jones Point Park

This lush 40-acre park hugs the Potomac River at Alexandria’s southeastern tip. While it’s beloved by joggers, bikers, and fishermen, the real attraction is its lighthouse, first lit in 1856. The white clapboard building (you can’t go inside) is one of the oldest remaining river lighthouses in the country and is a popular spot for photographs—particularly at sunrise.

Lake Artemesia Natural Area

This 38-acre manmade lake in Prince George’s County was created between 1989 and 1993 when Metro needed sand and gravel to elevate portions of the rail line. The lake has blossomed into a habitat for orioles, geese, turtles, trout, and other wildlife. A 1.4-mile paved loop trail includes gazebos and benches to stop and gaze out onto the tranquility of the wetlands and reflections on the water. If there were ever a place to hold hands when walking and stop for a kiss, this is it.

Mason Neck State Park

Adjacent to the country’s first federal sanctuary for bald eagles, this state park boasts a mix of forest, ponds, and fields that make it great for walking and viewing wildlife. Take the one-mile trail that runs along the shore of Belmont Bay and crosses the wetlands on a series of boardwalks. Overlooks offer panoramic views of some of the region’s most gorgeous scenery, along with chances to spot bald eagles, swans, herons, frogs, turtles, and aquatic creatures.

This article appears in the May 2019 issue of Washingtonian.

Kim Olsen

Kim Olsen ([email protected]) is a freelance writer in Alexandria.