Things to Do

5 Ways to Enjoy the Longest Day of the Year Around DC

Celebrate the official start of summer with a solstice event, rooftop drink, and more.

Photograph by Alan Karchmer/NMAAHC.

Today is the summer solstice, marking the official start of summer and the longest day of the year. The sun will be out for around 15 hours today, leaving ample opportunity to have some fun after work. Here are five ideas for how to spend those extra hours of daylight, even if it’s raining outside.


Attend a summer solstice event

Some places are celebrating the longest day of the year with a special event. Stop by Dew Drop Inn for a Witchy Summer Solstice Party in Edgewood featuring tarot readings and mystical drink specials. To celebrate the occasion with some music, head to the Seventh Day Adventist. Church in Takoma Park for a free hour-long concert. Later this week, the Smithsonian is keeping museums open late on Saturday, June 24 for a variety of summer-themed parties and performances. 


Grab a drink on a rooftop

Head to a rooftop bar with an indoor and outdoor area so you can stay dry while enjoying the latest sunset of the year. Ciel Social Club in Mount Vernon Triangle offers nearly 360-degree views and summery spritzes. Lady Bird, the Dupont Circle lounge atop the Kimpton Banneker hotel, has moveable glass walls. Peer out at the view with a drink in hand or lounge on the terrace chairs if it stops drizzling.


Go for a walk

More daylight in the evening means more time to grab an umbrella and take a stroll. The DC Preservation League publishes self-guided walking tours on its website, covering topics such as Asian-American history, mid-century modern architecture, and local theaters. Tours move throughout the city, so you can stick to paved pathways rather than trekking on muddy trails.


Take your dog on a night out

Pets should be able to enjoy the solstice, too. Take your puppy to a covered, dog-friendly patio such as North Bethesda dog park/beer garden Bark Social. In Alexandria, Brewski’s Barkhaus in Alexandria, which has indoor and outdoor play areas for dogs and “yappy hour” specials for humans.


Play a round of mini golf

Use the extra hours of daylight to partake in some friendly competition. Perch Putt in Tysons is an outdoor mini golf course with eighteen holes, plus food trucks serving Caribbean and Mexican cuisine. If the rain continues into the evening, you can still use the solstice as an excuse to play all night long, even if it is indoors. Mini golf bar Swingers has locations in Dupont Circle and Navy Yard with eclectic courses and fun cocktails.

Essence Wiley
Editorial Fellow