Seeing the cherry trees downtown when they’re in full bloom is a classic DC activity. Even though I’m behind schedule on my bucket list with nine activities and five months left, I knew a quick trip to the Tidal Basin would be worth it.
Last week I heard from the annoyingly peppy early news anchors that the cherry blossoms would peak on Thursday, so I planned to go see them that weekend, the same weekend H and I would go see the Caps last regular season game. When I saw it would be so cold that Saturday there was a chance of snow, however, I realized I would need to go after work Friday if I wanted any semblance of spring weather. Furthermore, I knew convincing H to meet me after work would be much easier than convincing him to make a special trip to the Tidal Basin (like any good metro area native, he thinks the cherry blossoms are overrated).
Friday afternoon I hopped on the metro right on schedule to meet H. We emerged onto the mall, where the weekend had definitely started—it was one of the first nice spring days and everyone was outside. Tourists and locals alike were streaming past the Washington Monument towards the cherry blossoms across roads congested with Friday-afternoon traffic. The first few cherry trees were underwhelming—nice, but not worth making a special trip. When we got to the edge of the Tidal Basin and saw the blooming trees ringing the whole basin like a giant flowerbed with the Jefferson Memorial rising out of it, I saw the appeal. Better still, Friday was windy, so the branches were constantly in motion and flower petals were blowing through the air in the most serene, beautiful way.
Less serene were the masses of people like us trying to get a good photo of the Memorial framed by cherry blossoms and another of themselves with a cherry blossom backdrop. Most of the women there thought the same way I did and were dressed for the occasion in delicate blouses and dresses. One woman was in full blogger regalia, wearing a white coatdress and holding a bouquet of tulips.
Close to the Jefferson Memorial, we could see that the steps were dark with people, and we decided that we didn’t need to go all the way to the Monument to get the effect of the cherry blossoms. We would our way back through the crowd and ambled back to the metro.
Did anyone else go see the cherry blossoms? Do you have any suggestions about the best time to go or the best spot? Let me know in the comments!