This lush wetland park on the banks of the Anacostia River is an oasis of lily pads and blossoms amid the city streets. The park land was originally owned by Walter Shaw, a hobbyist who cultivated and sold rare and exotic water lilies and lotus flowers; in contrast, these historic man-made ponds are surrounded by unspoiled and uncultivated marshes that characterize what the area looked like before the city was built. Every July, the park hosts a free lotus and water lily festival, when the garden is in peak bloom.
More about Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens
Read more about 10 Hidden Gems in the National Park System
Blog Post 10 Hidden Gems in the National Park System Want to explore a few remarkable places off the beaten path? These 10 NPCA picks offer great ways to escape the crowds while enjoying unique, underappreciated natural and cultural treasures around the country.