Three Free Festivals in Washington DC to Put on Your To-Do List

Free Festivals in Washington DC

In a city as diverse as Washington, D.C., our favorite festivals introduce locals and visitors alike to the various cultures in our world.

Not only do these events offer amazing entertainment, but they are also educational and enlightening.

The best events to get your dose of culture include the Folklife Festival, Cherry Blossom Festival, and Passport DC.

For those visiting D.C. during the warmer months, you won’t be disappointed if you plan your summer trip just to attend one of these festivals. Here are some details to help you decide which festival to attend first.

Cherry Blossom Festival

Don’t miss the chance to take part in the Cherry Blossom Festival if you’re in the U.S. capital anytime from mid-March to mid-April.

This month-long festival celebrates the blossoming of the Japanese cherry blossom trees gifted to the United States from Japan in 1912.

Festival activities include pink fireworks, celebrity musical performances, parades, and more. Restaurants around the city also come out with fun food and drink specials featuring cherry flavorings.

What makes this festival so intriguing is that the blossoms are fragile and are only around for a couple of weeks. The first strong rain or winds blow the blossoms away and the trees won’t bloom again for another year!

This event signals the start of tourist season in D.C. so be ready for huge crowds enjoying the cherry blossoms along with you.

Folklife Festival

At the end of June and into July, the National Mall comes alive with tents and stages for the Smithsonian Folklife Festival.

A two-part festival that showcases foreign cultures, this event includes performances, food tastings, and personal dialogue about diverse ways of life.

You’ll never get tired of attending the Folklife Festival because the agenda changes each day. In fact, every year, the Folklife festival presents visitors with the culture of a different country.

Prepare to spend an entire day enjoying all that this event has to offer. It’ll be hot and humid during this time of year, so wear comfortable clothes and bring plenty of water.

Don’t forget to pick up a souvenir before you leave to remember your day!

Passport DC

Every year in May, D.C.’s diplomatic community gives the public an inside look at the international cultures that they specialize in.

A month-long celebration of festivals, performances and open houses hosted by the international embassies, Passport DC puts an entirely different spin on being a resident tourist.

Visit the embassies to get information about your next vacation destination or check the Passport DC calendar for cultural dances and food demonstrations.

Be sure to wear walking shoes so that you’re able to move around between the different buildings.  Prepare to learn a lot, while having the time of your life.

Each year, D.C. comes alive with festivals that share the world’s cultures with tourists and locals. The best thing about these festivals is that they are free to take part in and they are accessible by everyone.

If you need a reason to visit Washington, D.C., here are three events that will be tons of fun for the entire family!

Photo by JulieK via