• Great Falls of the Potomac in summer

    Great Falls

    Park Virginia

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  • Trash Free Park

    Great Falls Park is now a trash free park. Trash cans have been removed. Please come prepared to carry your trash out with you. More »

  • River Safety

    Learn more about how to stay safe around the Potomac. The Potomac has dangerous currents and going into the river is not permitted. Swimming and wading could cost you your life. Stay safe. Stay out of the river. More »

  • No Water in Visitor Center Courtyard

    Due to plumbing problems, there are no bathrooms available in the Visitor Center (VC) courtyard. There are portajohns behind the Snackbar for public use. *Please note: Restrooms near the lower parking lot are fully operational.

  • Weekend and Holiday Delays for Entry

    Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays when there is a good weather forecast, expect delays of up to an hour from Noon to 4pm when entering the park.

Frequently Asked Questions


What are the park's hours?

Great Falls Park is open daily from 7 a.m. until dark. The Visitor Center is open from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. each day, with extended hours during the spring, summer and fall months.


Is it possible to drive to see the Falls?

No. Vehicles are restricted to the paved road and the parking lots. The Falls are a short five to ten minute walk from the Visitor Center. Three overlooks offer different opportunities to view the Falls. Overlooks 2 and 3 are handicap accessible.


Can I bring my dog to the park?

Pets are permitted throughout the park, but must be on a six foot leash at all times and may not be left tied out or unattended. There are no off-leash areas in Great Falls Park. Do not leave pets in vehicles, as temperatures in a locked car can be fatal. Pets, with the exception of service animals, are not permitted in the Visitor Center or on Ranger led programs.


What picnic facilities are available? Do you take reservations?

Picnic tables and grills are available on a first come, first serve basis. No reservations are needed. There are no covered facilities in the park. Ground fires, wood fires, and collecting wood for fires are prohibited.


Is it possible to get married in the park?

Yes. Great Falls has been the site for many weddings over the years. Weddings do require a permit. For more information, visit our Weddings page, or contact the park at 703-285-2965.


Where can I find information about visiting the Maryland side of the Falls and hiking the Billy Goat Trail?

The Maryland side of Great Falls is part of the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park. Visit their website for information and driving directions. To reach C&O's visitor center by phone, call 301-767-3714.

Did You Know?

The second carousel in Great Falls Park

There used to be a carousel at Great Falls Park. A flood caused by Hurricane Agnes in 1972 damaged the carousel beyond repair.