Best DC Neighborhoods for Viewing Holiday Lights

Photo: Mr.TinMD

Washington DC is a fantastic place to be any time of the year, but it’s truly something special around the holiday season. It’s not just the historic sites and monuments that make DC unique, it’s also the festivity this time of year. If you’re hoping to see and enjoy some of the holiday cheer yourself, you’ll want to head to one of DC’s best neighborhoods for viewing holiday lights.


The downtown area is alive with the magic of the holiday season. This is where you can go to see the National Christmas Tree, plus some state and territory trees and the US Capitol tree. Take some time to stroll by and visit the holiday-themed décor of area shops and restaurants too, plus make a stop at the Downtown Holiday Market.

Southwest Waterfront

DC’s Southwest Waterfront has a Christmas tree and an ice-skating rink that stretches out over the water at The Wharf. You’ll find some of the boats are decorated for the holidays too, plus there’s traditionally a holiday boat parade in early December to mark the season. 


Georgetown businesses go head-to-head during the holidays for a window decorating contest. Another option is Georgetown GLOW, which is an annual event that lights up the neighborhood for eight weeks in the commercial district. Georgetown also has an ice-skating rink.

Dupont Circle

The row homes and storefronts of Dupont Circle are oftentimes lit up with holiday cheer this time of year, too. Be sure to take a stroll around the neighborhood to take in the, sometimes over the top, holiday décor of Dupont Circle.

Old Town Alexandria

It’s not technically a DC neighborhood, but we wouldn’t want to leave Old Town Alexandria off the list. Almost like a Christmas-themed movie set, this picture-perfect area really comes alive during the holiday season.

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