The Potomac River’s importance to Alexandria, Virginia, is undeniable. The waterway provided entry to connected channels throughout the area to bring European settlers the supplies they needed into the city.
The Port City thrives today, not from commercial shipping like it once did, but from a well-rounded economy. However, Alexandria’s marinas remain sought after by recreational and professional boaters because of their convenient locations and plentiful amenities.
Not every marina listed here is in Alexandria, but they’re located just miles from the city in Maryland and Washington, D.C., and even Fort Belvoir, thanks to the easy access of the Potomac River.
This region is tightly interconnected, and although the locations are in different municipalities, tourists and boat owners alike use the marinas interchangeably. You’ll find permanent boat residents alongside day and hourly boat rentals at all of the marinas.
Marinas in Alexandria, Virginia
In the heart of Old Town, where the river meets the bustling commercial center, the city marina serves tourists and locals alike. The marina offers sightseeing cruises to Washington, D.C., and Maryland, as well as the opportunity to hire speedy water taxis that shuttle pro sports enthusiasts to the Nationals Park for a baseball game and Audi Field, home to D.C. United, the city’s major league soccer team.
City of Alexandria Marina
The City Marina has overnight boat slips plus additional short-term docking space on sea walls and adjacent areas. Overnight guests have access to a restroom and shower facilities. One 30-amp electrical connection and water hose bib are available for each boat slip. Because the marina is so popular, there is a waitlist for year-round leases.
Just a couple of miles from Old Town Alexandria and adjacent to the picturesque Dyke Marsh, Belle Haven Marina and Mariner Sailing School teaches locals to sail and drive powerboats. Belle Haven is owned by the National Park Service and operated by Marine Evolutions, Inc.
Belle Haven Marina from NPS
Available rental boats include: sailboats, kayaks, canoes, jon boats, stand-up paddleboards, and more. Fishing is prohibited on sailboats but allowed from the kayaks, canoes, and jon boats with a fishing license. The marina also has wet and dry storage, rack storage, moorings, and a launching ramp for trailers and car-top vessels.
Current servicemembers, veterans, and their families with access to Fort Belvoir have the chance to explore the Potomac River from the base’s marina. There’s plenty of stops to throw in a fishing line and watch local eagles, herons, and ospreys. Later, travel up the Potomac to get a glimpse of Mount Vernon and then head straight for Washington, D.C., to see the monuments from a captain’s view.
Fort Belvoir Marina
- 111 wet slips with 89 dedicated water and electric access per slip
- Approximately 300 dry storage spaces, without dedicated water or electric access per space
- Six covered dry storage stalls with dedicated electric access per stall, no water access
- 24/7 access to boat storage lot with a gate key
- Pump-out station
- Pump-out adaptors; $20 per non-slip holder
- Travel lift operation, appointment only; 48 hours advance notice required
- Two-lane boat launch ramp
Located on the Maryland side of the Potomac, near Fort Washington National Park, National Harbor, and across from Old Town Alexandria, the Tantallon Marina offers temporary boat storage, but it’s mostly known for the opportunity for boaters to dock and live on-site permanently or for the season. Residents can kayak, canoe, and bird watch right from their boat decks.
Some of the marina’s amenities include individual water connections and dock boxes with each slip. In addition, Meeco Commodore floating docks with composite decking were installed with new and certified 100-amp service with true 110/220 volts.
Just across the Potomac from Alexandria in Smoots Bay, National Harbor is home to a marina that offers a home for permanent boating residents and hourly and daily visitors. The marina is popular thanks to the connection with the waterfront resort with restaurants, stores, and entertainment venues, including The Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center and the Capital Wheel.
The marina’s amenities include:
- Security gate with PIN-code entrance to all docks
- Private shower, restroom, and laundry facility exclusive to marina patrons
- Complimentary Wi-Fi, cable, and water
- Dock carts staged at convenient locations
- Provisions delivered right to your boat from National Harbor restaurants, shops, and markets
- Onsite 125′ marine fuel station and sanitary pump-out systems
- Ice chest
- Miles of nearby bike and jogging trails
- Annual slip holder benefits
- Professional marina management with full-time staff
- Complimentary, secure, and convenient garage parking
- Metered electrical usage
- Fuel discounts and complimentary pump-outs
- Year-round, in-water berthing
- National Harbor rewards card
Washington, D.C., Marina
The Wharf Marina’s location is its best quality because of the convenient trek into Washington D.C.’s National Mall. The quick trip into the city takes tourists straight from their boats into the nation’s capital in just minutes.
Although the trip is walkable, The Wharf (the name of the collective businesses and residences surrounding the marina) offers a free SW Neighborhood Shuttle. Daily service includes routes from The Wharf to the National Mall, with stops at L’Enfant Plaza each way. However, you can stay completely entertained if you stay on The Wharf, thanks to the stretch of restaurants, entertainment venues, shopping, and hotels just steps from the marina.
Oh, if you happen to be so lucky and own a superyacht, the marina has 300 feet of alongside dockage with 15-20 feet of depth available.
And finally, what would a world-class riverside city be without a local West Marine Store? The necessary and popular boating supply store carries everything a captain would need, including boat accessories, maintenance supplies, and apparel. The store is about two miles inland. Just for fun, you can find the exact location at 38°47′58″ N / 77°3′5″ W.
With so many options, your boat trip to Alexandria for an overnight or dinner should be an easy one, thanks to the convenient choices. If you’re not a boat captain, you’ll quickly find plenty of options for sightseeing cruises and activities that arrive and depart from the same marinas. Pick one and choose your own adventure!
Are you moving to the Alexandria area? Take a look at our complete inventory of Alexandria homes for sale or rent.