The Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia (northern) region has among the highest concentrations of Africans in the United States. The reasons for this are varied but include historical precedence, access to higher education, proximity to a capital city and international airports, access to a diversity of resources and services, and a deep spirit of inclusion and pan-Africanism. The concentration of African peoples in the DMV region has added considerably to the cultural landscape – expanding opportunities to access African goods, restaurants, entertainment, fashion and more.

Here is how to spend a day in a Washington, DC, rich in African flavor.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

Start your day with a scrumptious breakfast at Keren Café and Restaurant. Keren is a Michelin Guide  ̶ listed Eritrean restaurant offering an array of traditional breakfast options – all day long. Be sure to order the Ful, while you are there. Ful is a breakfast staple, rich, delicious and healthy ingredients like fava beans, tomato, and onion with a hint of spice from the berbere seasoning and jalapeno. Top off your meal with a warm beverage of your choice, and you are ready to start your day.

Plan ahead to optimize your enjoyment of local museums

Take in an array of immersive exhibits at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. This museum began as a private educational institution in 1964 to promote cross-cultural understanding in the social sciences and arts, teaching visitors how to look at and appreciate African Art. Current exhibitions include Before Nollywood… the Ideal Photo Studio and Ike Ude: Nollywood Portraits. Be sure to also visit Artechouse to view the Ase: Afro Frequencies multi-sensory immersive exhibit (from now until November 13) and reserve a tour of the National Museum of African American History and Culture while you are in town!

Delectable refreshments abound

No doubt you have worked up an appetite by now! Head on over to Moi Moi, one of Washington DC’s newest additions to its restaurant scene, to enjoy a meal like no other. Reservations are required to partake of the culinary artistry of Chef Howsoon Cham. His new venture offers modern American cuisine with both a West African and Southern accent.

Head over to enjoy after-lunch refreshments at Sankofa Video Books and Café. This Washington, DC, institution hosts an impressive selection of books about people of the African Diaspora. The yummy desserts and all-natural fruit smoothies are not to be missed!

Take in a uniquely Washington DC experience

Looking to get outdoors, enjoy some fresh air and burn some calories? Head over to the Meridian Hill / Malcolm X Park, located in the Columbia Heights/Adams Morgan neighborhood. There you can participate in the 40-plus year-old tradition of the Drum Circle at Meridian Hill. Each Sunday afternoon at 3pm, a multicultural mix of residents bring their drums, open hearts, and willing hands to create an only-in-Washington, DC, experience of making music, and celebrating African rhythms, unified by a spirit of peace and community.

Dinner and dancing anyone?

End of your day at Appioo African Bar and Grill on U Street, in the heart of Washington DC’s historic Black Broadway/Shaw neighborhood  ̶  an important local hub of Black culture and entertainment. Appioo offers home-cooked Ghanaian cuisine and African drinks in addition to a thriving nightlife scene on the weekends with live bands and DJs.

Want to explore more of the DMV region? Check out our guide to spending a day north of Washington DC – in Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties!