Meridian Hill Park, Washington DC

4.1
#18 of 22 in Parks in Washington DC
Meridian Hill Park is a structured urban park located in the Washington, D.C neighborhood of Columbia Heights; it also abuts the nearby neighborhood of Adams Morgan. The park was designed and built between 1912 and 1940. This 12 acre (49,000 m²) formally landscaped site is maintained by the National Park Service as a part of Rock Creek Park, but is not contiguous with that much larger nearby park. Meridian Hill Park is bordered by 15th, 16th, W, and Euclid Streets NW, and sits on a prominent hill 1.5 miles (2.42 km) directly north of the White House. The park has also been unofficially known as "Malcolm X Park" by some city residents.HistoryAt the time of Washington, D.C.'s creation in 1791, the land beneath present-day Meridian Hill Park was owned by Robert Peter, wealthy Georgetown merchant, and was known as Peter's Hill. In 1804 President Thomas Jefferson had a geographic marker placed on this large hill. Centered exactly north of the White House, this marker helped to establish a longitudinal meridian for the city and the nation: the "White House meridian". After the War of 1812, Commodore David Porter, a naval hero of that war, acquired the hill in 1816 as part of a 110-acre tract of land that he had purchased; he named this property "Meridian Hill". On the brow of this prominent hill on his new estate, and close to the marker, Porter then built a large and famous mansion which he also named Meridian Hill. The home faced south with a dramatic view of the White House and the Potomac River beyond. Meridian Hill Park today shares this view.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
49 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • July 16, 2017
    Today we visited the park. It is family and pet friendly. You can pitch a hammock, bring a picnic, ride your bike, lay out and read a book, or people watch. We had the pleasure of listening to live Cu...  more »
  • April 10, 2017
    On Sundays, there is a drum circle that takes place in Meridian Hill Park. It is a fantastic experience that I recommend everyone who visits D.C., visit at least once. You will certainly feel at peace...  more »
  • March 28, 2017
    I have been living in DC for the past 5 years plus and I hear people who have been here for years and doesn't know Meridian Hill Park ,,,, What???? it's beautiful place in summer to visit on Sundays t...  more »
Google
  • June 27, 2017
    It's a beautiful park. A lot of attention was paid to the design and building of this park, however today some areas are in need of repair. Some portion of the fountain is not working and it looks like it has been out of commission for some time. Broken and uneven pavements, overgrown weeds, and dead grass. As other reviewers have said, you'll notice a colorful mix of individuals in this park.
  • June 13, 2017
    Any Sunday from spring to late fall, come through for a fantastic view of the city and random cultural experiences. Respect the drum circle. Love the drum circle. Follow the drum circles leaders and join impromptu African dance classes.
  • July 6, 2017
    A beautiful park with great views. We went here to watch the July 4 fireworks. The park has a nice center mall surrounded by a paved path with park benches.
  • June 22, 2017
    My favorite park in DC! It's unique & a bit quirky, tends to be quite friendly, and it has lots of character. I love all the hidden little paths and alcoves and the awesome cascading fountain!
  • July 5, 2017
    5 stars for design, location, view, and uniqueness. Just don't get mugged. (A recurrent problem with Meridian Hill)

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Most visitors to Washington, D.C., end up in the East End, the old downtown district containing most of the city's major cultural attractions. For a more authentic Washingtonian experience, consider staying at a smaller hotel just a little north or east of this busy area. Neighborhoods outside downtown offer less expensive accommodations and affordable street parking, as well as opportunities to meet more locals and fewer tourists. Alternatively, try a hotel in Georgetown, packed with high-end shops and Colonial architecture.
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