Kaitlyn’s 5 Favorite DC Getaways When You Need to Escape the News-Cycle

I’ve never had my head up my ass about politics: while I listen to the news, I’m not particularly wonky and I don’t have a sick proclivity to torturing myself with minute pieces of policy. Of course, keeping up with the news is extremely important. But lately, politics and the news-cycle have felt even more soul-sucking than normal. Every time I turn on my radio I want to knock my head against the steering wheel, before changing my mind and turning on Spooked Podcast.


“The world is frustrating, the parasite in the White House is infuriating.”

The world is frustrating, the parasite in the White House is infuriating, and around every corner is a new current affairs bombshell waiting to send our mental for another ride. Through all of this, I’ve accepted that it’s okay for me to turn off the news, unplug, and just try to enjoy life for what it is.

Today, I’m sharing some of my favorite places to escape to when too much shit is hitting the fan in my mind. Have more suggestions? Share them in the comments!

Scott’s Run Preserve

Just one mile from the beltway on Georgetown Pike, Scott’s Run is a nature preserve full of easy-to-moderate trails that you can stroll through on a weekend morning. It also has a waterfall, so if rushing water puts you into a state of calm, I would highly recommend you check it out. (Just don’t go into the water…) After you’ve gotten your fill of mind-soothing nature, I would recommend checking out The Italian Store for a truly delicious sandwich.

Gravelly Point

Nothing drowns out the noise quite as well as the sound coming from an airplane flying above you, which is exactly what you get at Gravelly Point. I’m from Virginia, and don’t know if too many D.C. folks know about this spot, but it’s so unique. You could pack a lunch, pick a spot at one of the many tables, and just forget all your worries watching the airplane fly right on by. I’ve honestly spent hours there, reading books and daydreaming about all the places the passengers are heading for.

Del Ray, Alexandria

Del Ray is about 20 minutes south of D.C., but totally worth the visit if you’re looking for some “small town” vibes. I mean, it’s definitely not a “small town,” but it’s one of those places everyone knows each other, and you can spot a dog about every 10 feet, which is a bonus for me. I’m am very food-centric, so here’s a few places you could visit: Junction Bakery, for their cheddar and chives scones; Taquiera el Pablano, for strong margaritas; and Dairy Godmother, for sweet custard concoctions.  

Shenandoah Park

If you want to truly and completely escape, you need to take a day trip to the Shenandoah National Park. I’ve been going to the Shenandoah with my family every year since I could remember – we stay at a camp site called Lewis Mountain where we chop our own firewood, cook over the flames, take some casual hikes, and settle down with a good book around the fire. It’s honestly rejuvenating. One of my favorite hikes is the Bearfence Mountain Trail, which leads you straight up to some really wondrous views of the park around you.  

One of Virginia’s many, many wineries

You know what really goes well with nature? Wine. (And a designated driver.) Virginia is home to so many wineries that are really not that far from D.C. There’s nothing better than kicking back on a cool, fall day with a glass of rkatsiteli in your hand. Here are some good spots: Bluemont Vineyard, Cana Vineyards, and Chrysalis Vineyards.  

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash