Our beautiful Nation’s Capital is open and welcoming visitors again. You can find what’s open at Washington.org. In this post, I’m going to offer some images of typical Washingtonians doing typical things. The theme is comfort and casual. People do dress up for occasions, but overall, dress for the weather, and wear good walking shoes. You’ll want to see all the amazing attractions, and that takes some shoe-leather.
Cherry Blossom Season is our favorite time of the year!
First, many businesses continue to offer virtual work, so there are fewer people on the city streets these days. If you’re looking for where the locals are, consider making Dupont Circle, Logan Circle, U Street Corridor or the DC Wharf your home base.
Summer: If you want to pack the right clothing for a summer visit, plan to be sweaty and sometimes chilled. Warm because of the heat and humidity, and cool because every building is air conditioned. During the summer, it’s sometimes rains for a short time in the afternoon, so check the weather before you leave. You might take along an umbrella, which can do double duty as rain and sun protection.
Hats are very important to protect you from the sun and cold, of course, but when choosing headgear, make sure to bring something that won’t blow off when it’s windy.
Everyone should slather on and carry sunscreen year-round. In many parts of the city, there is very little shade. The concrete sidewalks get warm. There are a few fountains where you can cool down. The best is at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden and Georgetown’s Waterfront Park.
You should plan to walk a lot (the National Mall is 2 very long miles), so especially in hot weather, pack double sets of thin socks rather than too-thick ones, and carry some precut moleskin bandages: They offer the best possible protection and won’t sweat off. I think flip flops are not a good idea at all, but if you must, just wear them for part of the day. You’ll thank me for it.
Shorts are perfectly fine during the day of sightseeing, and for outdoor dining. Sneakers and sandals too.
Washington is not the trendiest place, so you’ll feel comfortable wearing casual, classic clothes. For men consider wearing a collared shirt, jeans/dress pants, and nice sneakers in the evenings. Casual jackets and sweaters are the perfect layers. In the winter, wear a heavy parka, especially if you want to dine outdoors.
If you’re looking for insider’s information on visiting Washington DC, check out my guidebook, The Unofficial Guide to Washington DC.