As the soft hues of dawn painted the sky with shades of pink and orange, I met Julianna and Cory at the Tidal Basin, nestled in the heart of Washington, DC for their romantic cherry blossom engagement session at sunrise.
Having recently relocated to our Nation’s Capital, Julianna and Cory were excited to celebrate their engagement against the iconic monuments that define their new home. What better way to capture the essence of their relationship and this new season together than amidst the beauty of the cherry blossoms during peak bloom?
The Tidal Basin, with its tranquil waters and panoramic views of the Jefferson Memorial, offered the perfect setting for their sunrise engagement session. The iconic backdrop is even more beautiful during cherry blossom season and it made the perfect location to walk hand-in-hand around the water and take portraits to celebrate their love and commitment to each other.
Each year, millions of tourists visit Washington, D.C. during the National Cherry Blossom Festival to see an estimated 3,000 cherry blossom trees scattered throughout the city.
While taking photos surrounded by the iconic cherry blossoms in peak spring bloom is an experience like no other, it also can be tricky to navigate due to the highly increased foot traffic from out of town visitors.
If you want to have your elopement or engagement session during the cherry blossom festival in Washington, D.C. here are a few things to know and tips to keep in mind.
1. Plan ahead. Cherry blossom season typically occurs in late March to early April, but the exact timing can vary based on weather conditions. Keep an eye on the peak bloom forecasts provided by the National Park Service so you can plan your trip accordingly.
2. Book early. If you’re visiting from out of town, book your accommodations as early as possible. Since cherry blossom season is a popular time to visit D.C., hotels and accommodations can fill up quickly. This also applies to getting permits for any special use events, like a D.C. Elopement. Because it is such a popular time you will want to make sure you have plenty of time to get the appropriate permits for your photos and activities.
3. Go early to avoid the crowds. Especially if you are visiting the The Tidal Basin it can get very crowded, especially during peak bloom. Consider visiting early in the morning or later in the evening to avoid the biggest crowds.
4. Explore less popular areas. While the Tidal Basin is the most famous spot for cherry blossoms, there are other locations throughout the city where you can enjoy them, such as the National Arboretum, Hains Point, and the Capitol Building grounds.
5. Be prepared for the weather. Spring weather in D.C. can be unpredictable, so be sure to dress in layers and bring an umbrella just in case.
6. Take public transportation. Parking in D.C. can be challenging, especially during cherry blossom season. Consider taking public transportation or using ride-sharing services to get around the city. If you are planning to drive yourself in the city, expect delays with traffic. You should also be able to look up your routes in advance to see what roads will be shut down and which parking lots will be available nearby.
7. Respect the environment and always follow “Leave No Trace” principles. Be mindful of the delicate cherry trees and the surrounding environment while enjoying the blossoms. Avoid climbing the trees, picking the blossoms, and dispose of any trash properly. With so much traffic in fragile areas, do your best to leave everything as good or better than you found it so that we can continue to enjoy the parks for years to come.
I hope these tips help you to avoid the crowds, keep our parks beautiful, and enjoy your spring Washington, D.C. Cherry blossom experience!