If you are looking for any top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C., this guide will help you to find them. Washington D.C. is well connected to the Northeast and New England by train. In this guide, we are going to tell you possible getaways you can take by car, train, or flight. By the end of the article, you will be able to choose one you like.
1. New York City
We believe that any list of weekend getaways from Washington D.C. should start with New York City. New York City is one of the top-rated weekend gateways from Washington D.C. You can start your journey with Amtrak’s Acela Express train which starts from Union Station in Washington. It will take you to the Penn Station in Manhattan within three hours. You have plenty of things to do in New York.
You can explore the many museums or enjoy a foodie adventure in the city’s many great restaurants. You can stay in the Dominick Hotel which is located in a neighborhood called Hudson Square, next to SoHo and TriBeCa. The hotel is located within the walking distance of Lower Manhattan as well. This luxury hotel features rooms and suites with sensational views of the city.
2. Ocean City, New Jersey
Ocean City, New Jersey is the best family-friendly beach getaway and one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It will take three hours from D.C. to reach there. Ocean City was founded 100 years ago as a church retreat location. We mentioned before that this is a family-friendly getaway. Many businesses close on Sundays to allow visitors to enjoy their family time and there are no alcohol sales anywhere in the city.
Many of the businesses here close for the winter and it’s a great destination to visit in summer. There are small hotels and motels to stay and no mega-resorts can find here. There is a 2.5-mile-long wooden boardwalk lined with shops, restaurants, ice cream stands, and a few amusement parks. The Port-O-Call Hotel is located right on the Boardwalk at 15th Street and within walking distance of the whole town. The hotel has a large pool and rooms which have balconies overlooking the beach.
3. Old Town Alexandria
Alexandria, Virginia is an easy getaway destination from Washington D.C. You can visit there by train via the Metro or by car. It is located right across the Potomac River from Washington. The city is focused around a mile-long stretch of King Street and it has preserved buildings, now converted into more than 200 locally-owned restaurants and shops. You can stay in the Lorien Hotel & Spa which is located in Old Town on King Street. This luxury boutique hotel has stylish rooms as well.
4. Harpers Ferry, Virginia
Harpers Ferry, West Virginia is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It only takes about 90 minutes from Washington to reach there. The city’s scenic beauty and plenty of outdoor activities make it s great weekend getaway. It also played a significant role in Civil War history.
The Harpers Ferry National Historical Park is the best place to start your journey. You can explore the history as well as the beautiful scenery by hiking in the area. Because there are plenty of historic sites and exhibitions to learn about the area and its history. If you like to spend a night here, there are many camping areas. If not you can stay in the Ledge House Bed and Breakfast Hotel.
5. Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
Gettysburg is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It only takes about 90 minutes from Washington to reach there. Gettysburg is a historic city and it is the site of the battle that was a key turning point of the Civil War. Gettysburg Memorial Battlefield, a national park located in Southern Pennsylvania is a great place to start.
You can stay in the Gettysburg Hotel which is located at 1 Lincoln Square. The hotel was opened in 1797 and it has a great history as well. You can easily visit Pennsylvania Dutch Country, a rural farming area that has a cool climate and is home to the local Amish population. It will take about an hour to visit there from Gettysburg. Both of them make for a great getaway.
6. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Philadelphia is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It only takes about 2 hours from Washington to reach there. This historic city has many museums and great restaurants to explore. You can start your journey with a historic downtown area called Old City which is located near Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. It is popular as America’s most historic square mile.
You can also see the Liberty Bell Center and historic buildings from the colonial period in the Independence National Historical Park. We recommend you stay at The Morris House Hotel which was built in 1787. This luxury hotel is a few blocks from Independence Hall and this will be a great option if you are looking for a romantic colonial getaway. The furnishings and decorations of the hotel are all done in the Federal style as well.
7. Annapolis, Maryland
Annapolis, the capital city of Maryland is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It will take about an hour from D.C. to reach there. The city coffers many museums, shops, and fresh seafood. It is home to the United States Naval Academy as well. We recommend you stay at the Annapolis Waterfront Hotel, the city’s only waterfront hotel. Some of the hotel’s suites and rooms have perfect views of the harbor.
8. The Greenbrier
Greenbrier, West Virginia is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It will take about a four-hour drive from Washington D.C. to reach there. You can also take the Amtrak Cardinal train from Union Station to visit there. It will take about six hours to reach the resort. This large resort first opened on the site in 1778. Now it has become an 11,000-acre luxury mega-resort and wellness spa.
Greenbrier has plenty of things to do. This is an ideal place for families, couples seeking a romantic experience, and solo travelers. Over the years, 27 US presidents, international royalties, and celebrities have stayed at The Greenbrier. You can find more than 50 outdoor activities to do such as golf, fishing, and horseback riding. It has a bowling alley and a movie theater as well.
9. Rehoboth Beach, Delaware
This small-town beach city is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It will take about a 2.5-hour drive from Washington D.C. Rehoboth Beach home to the summer residence of President Joe Biden. Therefore it has gained international fame. The city is popular for its old-fashioned wooden boardwalk and the broad, sandy, and flat beach as well.
The boardwalk is lined with carnival games, locally owned shops, and food stands. You can find a bandshell in the center of town on the boardwalk as well. If you visit there, don’t forget to join with musical programming and performances here. Rehoboth Beach is a very family-friendly summer destination. Also, the city is an ideal place for shopping. Because there’s a large outlet mall just outside of town and there’s no sales tax.
10. Cape Hatteras
The Cape Hatteras National Seashore, North Carolina is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It will take about a six-hour drive from Washington D.C. The area all around Cape Hatteras is popular for surfing and sportfishing. We recommended staying at the Cape Hatteras Motel which is located near the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. It sits right on the sand and faces the sea as well. The area in front of the motel is popular for surf fishing and the motel has oceanfront rooms and two-bedroom suites with full kitchens.
11. Whitetail Resort, Pennsylvania
Whitetail Resort is the best, closest ski resort to Washington, D.C. No doubt it is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. The resort is located on Two Top Mountain in the Bear Pond Mountains in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania. It will take about a two-hour drive from Washington D.C. Whitetail Resort features 23 trails to ski. They are all lit for skiing at night. Although there are a variety of courses for skiers of all abilities, the elevation difference is only approximately a thousand feet.
Three high-speed lifts are available at Whitetail Resort, which also offers a snow tubing and snowboarding terrain park. Rentals and tutoring are also available at the resort. Whitetail Resort is a popular winter holiday destination. But the truth is it is a four-season resort. They offer visitors a variety of activities all year-round as well. Hiking, mountain biking on mountain trails, and fishing in a mountain lake are just a few of them. You can stay at the Mercersburg Inn. This Georgian Revival mansion has 17 rooms and suites. It will take about 15 minutes from the mountain to reach there.
12. Goodstone Inn & Restaurant
Goodstone Inn & Restaurant itself is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It is located at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the town of Middleburg, Virginia. The area is filled with horse farms. There it is called Virginia’s “horse and hunt” capital. It will take about an hour’s drive from Washington D.C. Goodstone Inn has a complex of six historic houses and cottages on a 265-acre estate.
The cottages have been converted to create 18 luxurious suites and rooms. They have been created according to the country’s English or country French style. The Goodstone has its farm and it makes much of the food. Also, the resort’s restaurant features a French-inspired menu. Those things have made the resort a popular foodie destination. Many visitors come from DC just for a meal. This luxury boutique resort has an outdoor heated pool and a spa. As well as features miles of hiking and biking trails.
13. Orlando, Florida
Orlando, Florida is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It takes less than three hours by a direct flight to reach there. You can take an overnight train to reach there as well. Amtrak’s Silver Meteor leaves Washington D.C. in the early evening. It reaches Orlando just after noon the next day. If you like you can drive to Orlando. But it is not fast as the train. You can stay at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes. It has its championship golf course, several fine-dining options, and a world-class spa.
14. Myrtle Beach
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It is popular as a family-friendly golf destination. Aside from that, there are plenty of things to do in Myrtle Beach. There are beautiful beaches along the South Carolina coast to play on. As well as there is a beachfront boardwalk, amusement parks, all kinds of water sports, and fun things to do.
You can take a cheap flight to Myrtle Beach from Washington. It will take about 90 minutes to reach there. We recommend you stay at the Hilton Grand Vacations Club Ocean 22 Myrtle Beach. It will take a 15-minute walk from the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk area to reach the hotel. It has a nice pool, a gym, a restaurant, and rooms and suites which have private terraces. Some of them have direct ocean views as well.
15. Boston, Massachusetts
Boston is one of the top-rated weekend getaways from Washington D.C. It only takes less than 90 minutes to reach there by taking a flight. You can also take the Amtrak Acela train, which takes about six hours or a seven-hour drive. We recommend you stay at the Fairmont Copley Plaza, Boston which is located in the Back Bay neighborhood. Also, it is close to the many attractions in Boston.
If you like to visit sites that are important to the American Revolution, you can take a self-guided walking tour of the city’s Freedom Trail. You can also visit the Boston National Historic Park where you can take guided tours and learn about specific aspects of American history.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Weekend getaways, are they worthwhile?
Weekend getaways have a lot of advantages. To begin with, they offer a simple means of taking a few days off from the stresses of everyday life. Life is busy, and it’s vital to take a vacation because many people have full-time jobs, homes to maintain, and children to raise.
What cities are nearby to Washington, DC?
There are many cities that close to washington D.C. Some of them are Virginia’s Alexandria, Maryland’s Frederick, Maryland’s Silver Spring, Maryland’s Gaithersburg, Virginia’s Reston, Maryland’s Rockville, Virginia’s Arlington. Many of them have top tourist attractions.
Is there a train that goes from DC to Maryland?
MARC offers service along the Penn, Camden, and Brunswick lines between Union Station in Washington, DC, and stations in Maryland. All three lines are open from Monday through Friday, and the Penn Line also offers weekend service.
Which route circumnavigates Washington, D.C.?
Highway 495. The 64-mile route that rings Washington is Interstate 495, or I-495. In addition to Fairfax County and the city of Alexandria in Virginia, the route also travels through Prince George’s and Montgomery counties in Maryland.