Dupont Circle, in northwest Washington, D.C., is technically "just a traffic circle" with two large rings of traffic around it. In reality it is much more. The park is full of life every day. Locals hang out to people watch, chess players use the tables for frequent chess matches, office workers take in a bit of sun while they eat their lunch. This park is always hopping and is a great spot to take a break and people watch when you are in the neighborhood.
The park's main feature is a large statue sculpted by Daniel Chester French. The statue, situated in a round fountain, honors Samuel F. Dupont, a rear admiral in the U.S. navy during the Civil War. There are three figures which represent the forces in a sailor's life, sea, wind, and sky. The figures are surrounded by elements from the three themes, including seagulls, boats, sails, stars, and fish. French also designed the statue of Abraham Lincoln in the Lincoln Memorial on the Mall in Washington, D.C.
Although this park is well used and much loved, you won't find a page for it on the National Park Service's website. The park is just one of many smaller parks in the area administered by the National Mall and Memorial Parks, part of the National Capital Region of the National Park Service.
—Felicia Carr, NPCA
If You Go
Dupont Circle has its own Metro stop on Metro's Red Line, which makes it a super easy spot to visit when you are in Washington, D.C. The area is full of lunch and dinner spots and bars and clubs which makes it a popular spot day and night.
It is easy to make your visit to Dupont Circle into a day trip that includes two national parks in Georgetown--the Old Stone House and the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park (C & O Canal). Just ride the Georgetown Metro Connection (the Blue Bus), which runs from Dupont Circle through Georgetown to the Rosslyn Metro station.
Hop on the Blue Bus at Dupont Circle (at 19th Street and Sunderland) and get off in Georgetown. Ask the driver for the stop closest to Thomas Jefferson Street and M Street.
The Georgetown office of the C & O Canal is located at 1057 Thomas Jefferson St., NW, Washington, DC 20007. Canal rides are available Wednesday through Sunday.
The Old Stone House is located at 3051 M Street, NW.