Things to Do in Arlington
Not only is Arlington a great place for business, but it’s also a great place to live and visit. From historical landmarks to cultural experiences, outdoor adventures to culinary delights, there's no shortage of things to do in Arlington. Whether you're a history enthusiast, nature lover, or foodie, this bustling county has something for everyone.
Arlington boasts a vibrant calendar of major events that celebrate the local culture, diversity, and community. From annual festivals to lively gatherings, here are a few noteworthy events to mark on your calendar:
- Arlington County Fair: Immerse yourself in the local culture by attending the Arlington County Fair, a beloved event that takes place every summer. Enjoy thrilling rides, indulge in delicious food, explore arts and crafts exhibits, and witness live performances.
- Marine Corps Marathon: Lace up your running shoes and join one of the most famous marathons in the world. The Marine Corps Marathon takes participants on a scenic route through Arlington and Washington, D.C., offering breathtaking views and a chance to support a worthy cause.
- Rosslyn Jazz Fest: If you're a fan of jazz music, don't miss the Rosslyn Jazz Fest. This annual event brings renowned musicians to Arlington for a day of soulful tunes and lively performances, attracting music enthusiasts from all around.
- Armed Forces Cycling Classic: Gear up for an exhilarating weekend of professional and amateur cycling races at the Armed Forces Cycling Classic. This annual event brings together cyclists from across the country to compete on the streets of Arlington. Cheer on the athletes as they showcase their skills and determination, and enjoy the festive atmosphere filled with food, music, and family-friendly activities.
In Arlington, it's also easy to get to things like the National Cherry Blossom Festival, 4th of July Celebrations and more.
History, Monuments & Museums
Arlington has long been known as a place to honor those who have served our nation. From historic sites to thought-provoking museums, here are a few of the must-visit attractions that showcase Arlington's rich heritage:
- Arlington National Cemetery: Pay your respects at this iconic resting place for many U.S. service members. Explore the vast grounds, witness the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and visit notable memorials like the Arlington House and the Kennedy Gravesites.
- The Pentagon: Take a guided tour of the Pentagon, the headquarters of the United States Department of Defense. Learn about its significance and history, and gain insights into the intricate workings of one of the world's largest office buildings.
- The Air Force Memorial: Soaring above the Arlington skyline, the Air Force Memorial stands as a striking tribute to the men and women of the United States Air Force. Admire the monument's architectural grandeur, consisting of three soaring spires representing the core values of the Air Force, visit the Reflection Area and take in the panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.
Other notable sites include the Marine Corps War Memorial (Iwo Jima), the Arlington Historical Society Museum and the Military Women’s Memorial.
Plus, if you're looking for even more opportunities to explore, Arlington is located just minutes from the National Mall in downtown D.C.
Arlington is packed with parks, nature centers and innovative kid-friendly play areas. Among the many things to do in Arlington for families, two of the most popular include:
- Gravelly Point Park: Bring a picnic and enjoy a relaxing day at Gravelly Point Park. Situated next to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, this park provides a unique opportunity to watch airplanes take off and land up close, delighting aviation enthusiasts of all ages.
- Theodore Roosevelt Island: Embark on an outdoor adventure at Theodore Roosevelt Island, a serene nature reserve dedicated to the 26th U.S. President. Explore hiking trails, spot wildlife, and visit the memorial plaza to learn about Roosevelt's conservation efforts.
You can also tackle an escape room as a family, explore one of Arlington’s parks and nature centers, sample some local ice cream or take to the ice at one of our ice skating rinks. You can also find the National Children’s Museum just across the Potomac river in Washington D.C.. No matter how your family likes to get out and explore, there's an Arlington activity for everyone.
And So Much More
Despite its small geographic size, Arlington is packed with exciting things to do. Visit StayArlington, Arlington's visitor site, to learn more about all of the things Arlington has to offer. You'll find more even information on shopping, dining and our local arts scene as well as great itineraries, seasonal spotlights and our current events calendar.