Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens

Washington, DC 20022

Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens

Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"This is a short hike but well worth the time to see the amazing water flowers and plants that grow in this marsh. The trail winds around several ponds and out to the marsh that joins the Anacostia River. The gardens contain an array of ponds with thousands of blooming water flowers, including several varieties of water lilies. These bloom in the late spring and summer and are best during the morning before temperatures get too hot—they tend to close up if it reaches over 90 degrees.

The park is popular with birders, who look for rails, sparrows, and blackbirds. Ducks and Canada geese are very abundant and easy to spot. Several types of wildlife also reside in the park including frogs, turtles, muskrats, and beavers; and butterflies and dragonflies buzz around the marsh pools. Boardwalks lead out to the mudflats right along the river. Look for great blue herons and other water birds as you walk out there. On the Marsh and River Trail, walk between the Kenilworth Marsh and a wooded swamp to the end, where the two meet the Anacostia River. Many people visit the area by canoe, so you might see some on the river."

More Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Best Hikes with Kids: Washington, DC, the Beltway & Beyond (The Mountaineers Books)
Jennifer Chambers
View more trails from this guide book
"Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens is a twelve-acre national park that sits on the Anacostia River. The park features forty-five artificial aquatic ponds that showcase lilies and lotus flowers and both native species and those from around the world. In addition, the ponds provide habitat for animals, such as fish, muskrats, turtles, and frogs. This 1-mile hike winds around the outside of the ponds and out to the end of the boardwalk. The best time to view the flowers is during summer, especially in the morning when they are open. Plus the trail offers little shade. Watch out for abundant poison ivy along this exposed hike. Beyond the ponds, walk the River Trail and the boardwalk through the wetlands to observe plant and animal life, such as the great blue heron, which thrives in this wetland. The park has a small visitor center where you can talk with a ranger, read interpretive signs, buy books to expand your child’s curiosity, and view paintings of lilies by the former landowner." Read more
60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Washington, DC (Menasha Ridge Press)
Renee Sklarew and Rachel Cooper
View more trails from this guide book
"The Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens and Kenilworth Marsh constitute an alluring botanical gem and a hiking locale worth visiting in any season. The new connection to the Anacostia Riverwalk Trail allows the option to extend the length of the hike beyond the national park. For a short and exotic urban hike that's wonderfully nonurban, visit the Kenilworth Aquatic gardens and adjoining 77-acre Kenilworth Marsh, located on the east bank of the Anacostia River. There you'll find a combination of tidy garden landscape and mini-wilderness in the collective form of gorgeous water-lily ponds (also a summertime butterfly hot spot), wildflower-infested woodlands, a plant-and-wildlife-rich tidal marsh, and a lovely air of serenity. This trail incorporates the entire boundary of the national park and includes 2 miles on the new Anacostia Riverwalk Trail." Read more
Best Hikes with Kids: Washington, DC, the Beltway & Beyond (The Mountaineers Books)
Jennifer Chambers
View more trails from this guide book
"The park features forty-five artificial aquatic ponds that showcase lilies and lotus flowers, both native species and species from around the world. In addition, the ponds provide habitat for animals, such as fish, muskrats, turtles, and frogs. Beyond the ponds, walk the River Trail and the boardwalk through the wetlands to observe plant and animal life, such as the great blue heron, which thrives in this wetland. The park has a small visitor center where you can talk with a ranger, read interpretive signs, buy books to expand your child’s curiosity, and view paintings of lilies by the former landowner. The River Trail is 1.4 miles out and back on a peninsula between the Anacostia River and its wetlands. The trail is wide and shady with a combination of grass-covered and crushed stone surfaces. Within 100 feet, there is a vernal pool on the right created by flooding of the Anacostia. At this spot and others along the trail, play “I Spy” for evidence of beavers. Kids may notice the telltale pencil point of a small tree trunk or the removal of large sections of bark and cambia on the lower trunks of larger trees. The beavers have been busy with this tree!" Read more

Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens Reviews

With no reviews, your opinion of this trail could be huge! Help other outdoor enthusiasts today.

Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens Photos

Show off your photography skills ... post your pics of this trail!

Trail Information

Dog-friendly, Kid-friendly, Stroller/Wheelchair Accessible
Accessibility
2.1
Distance
Out-and-back
Trail Type
Easy
Skill Level
2 hours
Duration
Year-round
Season
Birding
Additional Use
Wildflowers
Features
1900 Anacostia Dr. SE, Washington, D.C. 20020; (202) 426-6905; www.nps.gov/keaq
Local Contacts
A National Park Service map at www.nps.gov/keaq/planyourvisit/maps.htm. Maps are also available at the visitor center.
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Dec 2018