George Washington Memorial Parkway

George Washington Memorial Parkway

Quick Facts

George Washington Memorial Parkway


(804) 224-1732

Map Directions

Things To Do


The George Washington Memorial Parkway (GWMP) preserves the natural scenery along the Potomac River. It connects the historic sites from Mount Vernon, where Washington lived, past the nation's capital, which he founded, and to the Great Falls of the Potomac where the President demonstrated his skill as an engineer. Developed as a memorial to George Washington, the Parkway may be used on any day to travel to exciting historical, natural, and recreational areas. These places are all linked by this planned and landscaped road, the first section of which was completed in 1932 to commemorate the bicentennial of George Washington's birth. Considered a commuter route by many local residents, the GWMP offers the traveler much more than convenience. It is a route to scenic, historic and recreational settings offering respite from the urban pressures of metropolitan Washington. It also protects the Potomac River shoreline and watershed. The parkway provides a pleasant day from Mount Vernon to Great Falls, passing through the same lands George Washington frequently traveled by horse. The Parkway links a group of parks that provide a variety of experiences to millions of people each year.

Map of George Washington Parkway

Latitude, Longitude: 38.773090, -77.053299



  • Boating

    Boating is available.

  • Bicycling

    Bicycling available.

  • Climbing

    Rock climbing available.

  • Fishing

    Fishing is permitted at certain areas along the Potomac River. Inquire at visitor centers for more information.

  • Hiking

    There are dozens of trails along the parkway. Most parks along the parkway also have trails.

    The section of the Potomac Heritage Trail that is located within the G.W. Parkway is a 10-mile long scenic hiking trail. It follows the Potomac River north from the Theodore Roosevelt Island parking lot to the American Legion Bridge on I-495. The trail offers sweeping views of the Potomac River and Potomac Palisades along steep, rocky, forested hillsides, home to a diverse community of plants and animals. The trail follows the wooded hillsides used for centuries by Native Americans as fishing and trading grounds, the historic route taken by Captain John Smith in 1608, and the economic corridor George Washington envisioned to expand transportation and trade westward.

    The Potomac Heritage Trail provides access to several sites along the George Washington Memorial Parkway, including Theodore Roosevelt Island, Fort Marcy, and Turkey Run Park. It also connects to several local parks including Potomac Overlook Park and Gulf Branch Nature Center.

  • Picnicking

    Picnic tables are available at nearly all parks along the parkway.

  • Water Sports

    Waterfall viewing.


The spring and fall are the best seasons to visit Virginia. Summers are hot and humid for most of the day and evening.



The Parkway is adjacent to the Potomac River North and South of Washington, D.C. and is accessible from all major travel routes from the South and West of Washington, including I-495, I-95, and I-66.


The Reagan National Airport is located directly off of the Parkway. The Parkway is also accessible by Baltimore Washington International Airport to the North and Dulles International Airport to the West.

Public Transportation

Washington Metro Area Transit Authority provides local bus and rail (METRO) service to several points on the George Washington Memorial Parkway. Please visit their website for maps and locations.

Phone Numbers


(804) 224-1732