Southwest Waterfront-- Home to the Arts and “Liveaboards”

southwest waterfront - washington dc

Home to the arts, “liveaboards” and more, the Southwest Waterfront is developing into one of DC’s most sought after destinations. Southwest and The Wharf enjoys incredible views, countless opportunities for outdoor recreation and convenient access to some of DC’s most favored sites and attractions.

The eclectic area is where you’ll find a range of architectural styles, from 18th century Federal-style buildings to Mid-Century Moderns. Afterall, the area is home to Culture House, a former Baptist Church turned events venue, as well as some inspirational restaurants and bars.

It’s also home to one of the oldest open-air fish markets in the nation. It’s really no surprise as hundreds of years ago the neighborhood was a busy industrial shipyard where fishermen once sold their fresh catch of the day.

The love of the waterfront has been one that’s stayed with area residents over the years and decades since. These days, the vibrant Southwest Waterfront is where you’ll find the largest population of liveaboards on the entire East Coast.

Liveaboards are people who live on their boats all year long, and many in DC dock at Gangplank Marina. Dozens of boats and more than 100 people make up this laid-back community.

However, not everyone can simply just move in. The easiest way to gain a spot is to purchase a boat that’s already docked at the marina, then have its owner transfer over liveaboard rights.

Those who do so find living on the boats a more affordable option than homes or condos in the DC area. This type of housing alternative also puts its residents close to countless restaurants, recreational and entertainment offerings.

During warmer months of the year people come down to the waterfront for yoga and outdoor movies, while illuminated boats light up the sky during the holiday season with the annual holiday boat parade.

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