Romantic Boat Rides in Washington, D.C.

Romantic Boat Rides in Washington, D.C.

Written by Boatsetter Team
July 27, 2022

Last Updated on August 5, 2022 by Boatsetter Team

Spend an evening as magical as Mermaid Ariel and Prince Eric’s boat ride by setting up your next date on the water! We’ll help you prepare for a most romantic boat ride in Washington, D.C. Here’s a list of:

  • Spots for your romantic cruise in the DC area
  • What to bring aboard for a lovely evening

Explore Lovely Boat Rentals in Washington, D.C.

Places to Go on Your Romantic Cruise

Let’s dive right into some of the most romantic waterways in Washington, D.C. for a night you and your date will never forget!

Tidal Basin, near the Jefferson Memorial

Tidal Basin, Washington, D.C.

This gorgeous nineteenth-century reservoir has a magnificent view of the Jefferson Memorial and those iconic pink cherry blossoms in the spring and early summer. It’s the perfect backdrop for you and your beloved.

The Tidal Basin has gentle waters and is surrounded by gorgeous monuments, green pastures, and exotic trees. You’ll catch glimpses of the Lincoln Memorial, Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, and scenes of the Potomac Park.

This park has a lovely Japanese Pagoda, mature old-growth trees, open recreation fields, and many botanical interests. You’ll also see the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, George Mason Memorial, a bathing beach, and Floral Park.

This area is the perfect backdrop for an intimate conversation or an unforgettable proposal! But if you’re not ready to propose, this spot will work fine.

Cruise Down the Potomac River

Potomac River.

The Potomac River runs through the heart of Washington, D.C. It offers some of the best, most tranquil, of Washington, Arlington, Alexandria, Virginia, and Maryland before finally spilling into the Chesapeake Bay.

From the river, you can see dozens of parks, grassy fields, wooded glens, historic buildings, important capitol buildings, memorials, monuments, statues, elegant marinas, dockside restaurants, luxurious resorts, and so much more. Almost the entirety of the river is inherently and flawlessly romantic.

You will most likely catch a glimpse of the Georgetown Waterfront National Harbor Ferry as it travels from Georgetown to National Harbor Ferry Terminal.

Continue south past DC, Arlington, Alexandria, and Fort Washington to a forested area perfect for a party of two that wants to enjoy their conversation.

At the convergence of the Potomac River and the Chesapeake Bay, you’ll see the bright white Point Lookout Lighthouse. This dreamy area is destined to feel whimsical and wonderful, especially if you’re out with your love.

Stop Near the Watergate Steps

Watergate Hotel, Washington, D.C.

You can find the grand Watergate steps near the Lincoln Memorial, leading down to the Potomac River.

These steps were built to accommodate dignitaries, politicians, and important visitors who had traversed the Potomac to reach Washington.

Near sweeping stairs is carefully crafted landscaping. Across the steps are Columbia Island and Potomac Park.

You’ll also be near Theodore Roosevelt Island and Little Island, which are well-maintained, peaceful, and wonderfully abundant in songbirds, deer, squirrels, and other furry friends.

The Theodore Roosevelt Bridge and the Arlington Memorial Bridge complement the scenery. It’ll make you feel like you’re paddling through a real-life romantic movie!

Paddle Down the Washington Channel

Washington Channel.

The Washington Channel runs out of the Tidal Basin and meets back up with the convergence of the Potomac River and Anacostia River, next to Hains Point.

On the east side of the channel, you’ll notice The Wharf, several docks, tidy piers, and the Southwest Waterfront Park, home of the Titanic Memorial.

The west side of the channel holds the East Potomac Golf Links, which offers green rolling fairways and a lovely picnic area. Located on the golf course, the Hains Point Picnic Area is peaceful and quiet despite being in one of the nation’s busiest hubs.

You’re likely to see several people out for a walk with their dogs, leisurely biking, or couples taking a romantic stroll beside the channel. This point is an ideal spot to catch a sunset or a sunrise, as views to the east and west are phenomenal.

What to Bring Aboard

A Romantic Playlist

Create a playlist of your own, ask your captain to bring one, or grab one from online. Keeping the music on low volume in the  background will really set the mood and make it easier to connect, relax, and enjoy the cruise.

A Thoughtfully Arranged Bouquet of Flowers

Flowers will make them smile and provide a pleasant aroma that’ll help set the mood.

Here’s a tip for brownie points. If they don’t have a favorite flower, go off their favorite colors or scents!

Suppose they regularly use a peony fragrance, bringing a bouquet of pink peonies shows them that you’re paying attention.

An Intimate and Delicious Dinner

Romantic Boat Ride Picnic.

Don’t forget the food! Sharing a meal can be so romantic. A few dinner date ideas while boating are:

It will be nice to share a great meal and good conversation, especially with the beauty of Washington, DC surrounding you.


Wine and champagne are not the only fancy indulgences in romance! Don’t overlook the magic a simple cup of rich coffee, floral tea, or decadent chocolates can bring to your date night.

While it may feel silly to some, try bringing a pair of matching romance novels aboard too. Reading a good book together can be extremely intimate and romantic, especially with our lives being so preoccupied.

Quiet, simple intimacy is special and can strengthen your bond as a couple while also allowing you to recharge from life.

A Camera (or Smartphone)

These moments are for the rest of your lives, so capturing smiles, surprises, and even tears will be much appreciated.

Grab a polaroid or disposable camera if you want to go for more romance. These photos tend to come out more authentic and have a much more romantic feeling than digital ones.

They also help you to stay off your phone and be in the moment with your special person. But if you use your smartphone, the key here is to not use your smartphone for anything more than snapping a few photos.

Okay, you’re almost ready for your big date. All you need is to book your boat and a captain if you need. And remember, the smallest details paint the best picture.

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