Tidal Basin Paddleboat Boats - Washington DC

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Smithsonian Station MuseumMuseumMuseum
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Museum Phone: (202) 479-2426

Museum Website: tidalbasinpaddleboats.com

Museum Address: 1501 Maine Ave, SW Washington, DC 20024

Museum Cost : 2-passenger boat ($14 per hour), 4-passenger boat ($22 per hour).

Hours of Operation

Paddleboats can be rented daily from March 15 thru Labor Day weekend (weather permitting). The hours of operation are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. with the last boat going out at 5 p.m.

From Columbus Day Weekend thru March 14, it is closed.

After Labor Day until Columbus Day Weekend, it is open Wednesday thru Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (weather permitting).

If you're looking for a fun way to explore the Jefferson Memorial and surrounding areas in Washington DC, there are many options for you and your family. A popular option for tourists and local visitors is the rental of paddle boats at the Tidal Basin. You can enjoy the fresh air of the outdoors and the amazing view of the monuments as you leisurely paddle along the water. This is not only fun, but also a great way to enjoy the day during the fall and spring.

There two types of paddleboats: a 2-passenger boat and a 4-passenger boat. The 4-passenger boat comes equipped with a canopy to keep you out of the sun and works quite well. The 2-passenger boat does not have a canopy. So whether it's just you and your significant other, or you and your family, there is a paddle boat that can accommodate your needs.

Paddleboat renting is particularly popular in late March or early April when the National Cherry Blossom Festival takes place. If you want to rent a paddleboat during the Cherry Blossom Festival, it is recommended that you go early in the day because the Tidal Basin gets very crowded. Otherwise, make your reservations online to ensure that there is a boat held for you. Through the month of September, paddle boats can be reserved in advance at tidalbasinpeddleboats.com.

A Photo ID is required to rent a boat. Also, at least one boat passenger must be 16 years old or older. Younger passengers who can wear a life vest can ride in a boat. Although the Tidal Basin Boathouse provides life vests for passengers over 18 months of age or 25 lbs, paddle boating is not for little kids, especially if they are sitting behind you while you paddle. The paddleboats do not have seatbelts, so your kids would not be strapped in. This means that they could just get up whenever they want to and could easily fall right in.

Although paddleboats are available for rent daily thru the warm weather season, it is recommended that you go on a warm day in late spring or on a cool day in early fall. Also, make sure to wear comfortable shoes and clothes that you don't mind getting a little wet.

So if you are in Washington DC and plan to visit the National Mall, consider renting a paddleboat at the Tidal Basin in Washington DC. You will have a great time navigating around the basin, chasing ducks, checking out the Jefferson Memorial, the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial and World War II Memorial, which you can see as you paddle across the Tidal Basin. For questions, call (202) 479-2426 or send an email to [email protected].


The Tidal Basin Paddle Boat dock is located at 1501 Maine Avenue, SW on the eastern shore right next to a concession stand. If you are coming from the National Mall, go West on Independence Ave., then turn left and head South along 15th St. going towards the Jefferson Memorial. The dock is to the right. It's that simple.

If you are traveling by the Metro, get off at the Smithsonian Station and the take the 12th St. and Independence Avenue exit. Then walk west on Independence Avenue towards 15th Street. Then turn left on the Raoul Wallenberg Place/15th Street intersection and continue toward the Jefferson Memorial. Look for the Tidal Basin Paddle Boat dock. Again you will see it on your right.

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