Safe Places to Stay in Washington, D.C.

Written by – Updated October 18, 2021

safe places to stay in washington dc

Is Washington, D.C. safe for tourists?

Answer: A majority of tourists will feel safe in Washington, D.C. especially if the majority of their time will be visiting the National Mall and Smithsonian Museums. Washington, D.C. like most cities has experienced a difficult series of months, but thankfully the Metro hasn’t been a place for civil unrest, and instead is still one of the best was for tourists to get around DC.

What are safe areas to stay in Washington, D.C.?

Answer: For tourist that don’t enjoying staying in the city there are many safe neighborhoods outside of Washington, D.C. on the Metro lines. Tourist that want a comfortable suburban setting and a safe place to park the car will want to look at staying in Dunn-Loring, Vienna, or Falls Church, outside D.C. in Virginia, other safe places to stay for tourist in Maryland are Shady Grove, Bethesda, or Silver Spring.

Areas to avoid in Washington, D.C.


The areas of Washington, D.C. tourist may want to avoid or continually criticize for a lack of feeling safe are the areas around the Union Station, NoMa and Navy Yard Metro stations.

Areas to avoid in Washington, D.C.
Union Station
Navy Yard

Safe Places to Stay in Washington, D.C.

Neighborhood Commute
L’Enfant Plaza Walk to National Mall
Ballston, VA 15 mins
Bethesda 20 mins
Branch Ave., MD 30 mins
New Carrollton, MD 30 mins
Alexandria, VA 30 mins
Dunn-Loring, VA 30 mins

Safest Hotels in Washington, D.C.

#1 Courtyard Marriott, at Dunn-Loring


Why People Like It. The most popular hotel on this website is the Courtyard Marriott at the Dunn Loring Metro. It is well liked because of its easy access off I-495 and I-66 near Tyson’s Corner. The Courtyard Marriott has secure free underground parking and is a short walk to the Metro. The hotel doesn’t have a free breakfast, but it does offer free wifi, a gym, and pool. Online reviews are rarely negative and many reviews appreciated several casual dining options within walking distance to the hotel.

#2 Omni at Woodley Park (Zoo)


Why People Like It. Families will enjoy all aspects of the Omni near the Woodley Park Metro for the neighborhood, proximity to attractions, and hotel grounds. Also, it is within the District of Columbia. Families will like that the Omni hotel grounds are large and feel more like a resort. Its also walk-able to the National Zoo, and within a short distance to a few unique restaurants surrounding the Woodley Park Metro. Don’t expect to get freebies like internet, parking or breakfast, all that is charged and usually at a premium. There is an outdoor pool.

#3 Capitol Holiday Inn, at the Smithsonian Metro


Why People Like It: This is the ideal hotel for families who want to spend almost all of their time in D.C. at the National Mall seeing museums and monuments. The hotel location is within walking distance to the Air and Space Museum. This is not an ideal hotel for business travelers or couples because there are no restaurants or nightlife attractions nearby. Families will appreciate the rooftop pool, and free meals for kids. As of March 2016 the hotel has been renovated. One nagging complaint was that the hotel backs up to the train tracks and this does cause noise. Ask for a hotel room away from the tracks.

#4 Country Inn & Suites, Suburbs South


Why People Like It: The Branch Ave. Metro station is in a suburban setting particularly good for families on a budget who are looking for a base to launch their vacation. The location won’t excite or distress, but that is okay for most travelers who just need a reliable hotel for sleeping and breakfast. These hotels are quite similar. In fact, they are all on the same cul-de-sac. Each are 3 blocks from the Metro and that walk can take about 15 minutes, but out of the bunch Country Inn and Suites is the one to consider first.

What are safe areas in DC for families that want a hotel near Smithsonian Museums?


Without question the best hotel for families who want a safe hotel near Smithsonian museums and the National Mall is the Capitol Holiday Inn. The hotel has gone through renovations in 2014 and much is new. There is a beautiful courtyard and rooftop pool so kids can swim as well as run around close to the hotel. The location is not busy at night, so this will help parents keep an eye on their children. The only drawback is a lack of restaurants around the hotel, but most families may not mind that nuisance. Read our full article about where to stay in Washington, DC with a family.

Is downtown Washington, D.C. Safe?


Answer: There are plenty of safe pockets in downtown dc for tourist who want a reliable neighborhood within walking distance to the National Mall. Foggy-Bottom is one of the best places for hotels in a safe DC neighborhood near tourist attractions. Foggy-Bottom is home to George Washington University and has a number of local hotels that cater to families who need suite rooms. Hotels rates are expensive, but often more affordable than near by areas in Dupont Circle, Woodley Park or Chinatown.

Is Washington, D.C safe at night?

Answer: Most tourist will feel safe after dark in common tourist hubs near and around the National Mall. Tourist should always consider their surroundings and chose their own comfort level. Its not uncommon for tourist to walk the area of downtown adjacent to the National Mall after dark. Its also not uncommon to see bike rides take to the local trails with headlines to see Washington, D.C. monuments at night on the National Mall.

Stay in D.C. Suburbs

Safe Places to Stay in Maryland


Finding a safe place to stay in Maryland near a Metro station outside of Washington, DC is great a way to save and feel comfortable in your surroundings. The best neighborhoods are Shady Grove, New Carrollton, or Branch Ave. All of these Metro stations have hotels nearby that offer free parking. Another options is Bethesda. However, don’t anticipate saving a whole lot over downtown DC hotels in Bethesda. Bike riders might appreciate that Bethesda is connected to downtown by the Capital Crescent trail. Silver Spring is a runner up to Bethesda.

Safe Places to Stay in Virginia


Virginia offers many safe places to stay with near the Metro. Probably the best mix of affordability and comfortable surroundings  is Dunn Loring, East Falls Church, Eisenhower, or Spring Hil. All of these areas are well liked by tourist and have hotels with free parking. Ballston and Clarendon in Arlington, VA will offer the best blend of vibrant urban hubs, but on average cost more. The Comfort Inn at Ballston is a popular choice. The Courtyard near the Dunn Lorning Metro is one of the most popular hotel choices on this website and is directly of I-66, right across from the Metro and 30 minutes outside DC.