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Trip Planner: USA / Maryland / Fort Washington / Fort Washington Park
Fort Washington, located near the community of Fort Washington, Maryland, was for many decades the only defensive fort protecting Washington D.C. The original fort, overlooking the Potomac River, was completed in 1809, and was begun as Fort Warburton, but renamed in 1808. During the War of 1812, the fort was destroyed by its own garrison during a British advance.For travelers who use our international travel planner, Fort Washington holidays become easier to arrange, with trips to the Fort Washington Park and other attractions mapped out and timetabled.
The current historic fort—maintained by the National Park Service—was initially constructed in 1824. It is a stone structure with a good cannon shot down the Potomac River. The fort was extensively remodeled in the 1840s and 1890s. The Fort was turned over to the U.S. Department of the Interior in 1946 after its last military personnel departed.
The expansive grounds of the present Fort Washington Park, with its extensive hiking/bicycle paths and river view, are a scenic venue for picnicking, fishing, and outdoor recreation. Historical re-enactments are held periodically at the Fort, and there is a small museum. In 2006, repairs were done to shore up the crumbling outer wall, in preparation for the 200th anniversary.
The Fort Washington Light, located below the fort, was established in 1857. The current tower, standing 28 feet tall, was constructed in 1882.
Fort Washington Park reviews
The fort is rather small, but historic. Some cannon and a few signs. A visitor's center with displays and a gift shop. A small light house is visible, some confusing signage points to the lighthouse..... more
The fort is rather small, but historic. Some cannon and a few signs. A visitor's center with displays and a gift shop. A small light house is visible, some confusing signage points to the lighthouse..... more »
A great historic site. While the battery ruins and visitor center aren't open, the fort is (particularly the guardhouses and jail.) NPS Passport stamps are on the porch, as well as Junior Ranger...
A great historic site. While the battery ruins and visitor center aren't open, the fort is (particularly the guardhouses and jail.) NPS Passport stamps are on the porch, as well as Junior Ranger... more »
Not far from DC he can experience some real history here at the fort. Rocking chairs, cots, cannonballs & cannons make a walk through the fort really interesting. The views of the water from the fort are nice. The lighthouse adds to the historical coolness of the park. If you have time there is a trail that loops you through the woods and back around to the front. It takes roughly an hour. It’s a Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail. Good parking available, though somewhat limited, so get there early.
Fort Washington Park is historically beautiful. It's nice that it sits right along the river too. Be prepared if you're going to check out the historic site, it has plenty of inclines and declines, wonderful for a nice hike. I saw several people walking the parking lot and roads(which are obviously mostly flat) for exercise. There's plenty of shells on the bank of the river too. Fun place to visit, learn a little history, and enjoy the sights and sounds of the river.
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