As the weather starts to heat up in America’s capital so does the extensive list of latest offerings. From the world’s most celebrated monuments and museums to exciting exhibitions and new hotel openings, Washington DC is bursting at the seams with all the colour and excitement to get travellers exploring again. Here’s just a few highlights:
The Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial was designed by Frank Gehry- in honor of the nation’s 34th president and Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe during World War II. The space became a spectacular addition to DC’s lineup of monuments in late 2020. Located at 540 Independence Avenue SW, the site honors Eisenhower’s legacy in a four-acre urban park and features a variety of symbolic pieces. https://washington.org/meetings/find-dc-listings/dwight-d-eisenhower-memorial
DC’s Mayor Muriel Bowser and the District Department of Transportation opened the permanent Black Lives Matter Plaza monument at 16th Street between K Street and H Street NW in October 2021. The centerpiece is a 48-foot-wide Black Lives Matter mural, and in time, an additional USD$3 million investment will create a more cohesive public space, installing commemorative works, benches, lighting, signage and street trees. https://washington.org/visit-dc/black-lives-matter-plaza
The National Park Service and the Korean War Veterans Memorial Foundation are nearing completion of the construction on the Wall of Remembrance and overall rehabilitation of the Korean War Veterans Memorial. The memorial remains open during the 18-month project, which is expected to be completed this mid-2022. https://washington.org/find-dc-listings/korean-war-veterans-memorial
DC’s newest free (and the world’s first voice-activated) museum, Planet Word is housed inside a historic building in the Downtown precinct. Immersive displays are designed to increase excitement for language and its ability to connect people from all over the world. https://washington.org/find-dc-listings/planet-word-museum
Joining the ranks of DC’s top kid-friendly stops in January 2020, the National Children’s Museum welcomes visitors with its Dream Machine, a three-level jungle gym with climbing areas and huge slides, plus large-scale, cloud-like balls lit with colorful LEDs. https://washington.org/find-dc-listings/national-childrens-museum
The National World War I Memorial commemorates the 100th anniversary of the war’s end and honors the 4.7 million servicemen and women. The memorial’s 58.5-foot (about 17.8 meters) bronze sculpture will be the highest free-standing bronze sculpture in the Western hemisphere and is expected to be complete in 2023. https://washington.org/find-dc-listings/national-wwi-memorial
Preston Singletary presents Raven and the Box of Daylight at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian. The exhibit tells the story of Raven, the creator of the world and giver of the stars, moon and sun. The multi-sensory experience includes storytelling, music, soundscapes and projected images and will be open until January 2023. https://americanindian.si.edu/explore/exhibitions/item?id=976
The Hirshhorn has been collecting the prolific work of Yayoi Kusama since 1996. Now, five of Kusama’s works from the museum’s permanent collection, including two of the artist’s transcendent Infinity Mirror Rooms will feature a dedicated exhibition One With Eternity: Yayoi Kusama in The Hirshhorn Collection from 1 April to 27 November 2022. https://washington.org/node/18675
The Afro-Atlantic Histories exhibit at the National Gallery of Art explores and highlights the historical experiences and cultural formations of Black and African people since the 17thcentury. The exhibit features 130+ powerful works of art, including paintings, sculpture, photographs, and time-based media by artists from Africa, Europe, the Americas and the Caribbean. It runs from 10 April to 17 July 2022. https://www.nga.gov/exhibitions/2022/afro-atlantic-histories.html
To mark the 50th anniversary of The Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery, the museum will feature This Present Moment: Crafting a Better World from 13 May 2022 to 2 April 2023. The show highlights often overlooked histories and contributions of women, people of colour and other marginalised communities. https://americanart.si.edu/exhibitions/this-present-moment
The first phase of The Wharf opened in October 2017 along the Southwest Waterfront. Exactly five years later and a USD$10.3 billion investment, Phase two will open in October of this year. Visitors will be able to experience the new Pendry Hotel, more shopping, public parks and restaurants. https://washington.org/meetings/find-dc-listings/wharf
The 190-year-old historic Franklin Park located in the Downtown precinct reopened in September 2021 after a USD$21 million renovation that restored its fountain, added a children’s garden and public amenities.
In 2022, eight new hotels and new brands will open across Washington, DC, including the new AC Hotel Washington DC Capitol Hill Navy Yard and the Pendry Hotel at the Wharf. Classic properties have undergone extensive renovations, including The Ven at Embassy Row in Dupont Circle.
The National Park Service celebrates the 100th anniversary of the Lincoln Memorial on 30 May 2022, and completion of USD$25 million renovation that improves the visitor experience. Visitors can experience citywide celebrations throughout the month.
The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts continues celebrating its 50thanniversary throughout September 2022 with incredible performances, activities, installations, exhibits and a new JFK Statue on the REACH Campus. www.kennedy-center.org/press-releases/50th-anniversary-season
Passport DC – Citywide | 1-31 May, 2022
Returning in person, a month of programming across the city highlights DC’s international culture. The Around the World Embassy Tour and European Union Open House are favorites.
Capital Pride – Citywide | 10-12 June, 2022
DC’s LGBTQ+ community celebrates Pride Month with street festivals, concerts and a parade.
Smithsonian Folklife Festival – National Mall | June 22 – 27 & June 30 – July 2, 2022
A summer tradition, the festival plans to return to the Mall with a focus on the United Arab Emirates and earth optimism.
DC JazzFest – Citywide | 31 August – 4 September 2022
The ultimate American art form comes to DC stages with leading artists from all over the world. Performances are both free and ticketed.
For more information on Washington DC visit washington.org and for Covid-19 requirements and information visit https://washington.org/dc-information/coronavirus-event-attraction-information