Even during a work day, the cherry blossoms have traffic backed up all around the Tidal Basin. Thousands visited the Tidal Basin as the ancient Japanese trees begin to hit their peak bloom.
But while everybody agrees the cherry trees are worth the trip, the biggest challenge is for those who drive here.
"The blossoms are great," says Ricky Johnson of Macon, Ga. "Parking is a mad house, it's a madhouse."
Park police are out enforcing the parking restrictions. Much of Ohio Drive is permit only and the parking lots next to the Tidal Basin are either closed or full. "Finding a spot is pretty tough," says Joe Borelli of Waynesboro, Va. "It's totally packed, people fighting over spots, it's hard to find a spot anywhere."
But for those willing to leave their cars at home, there's a new option this year: Capital Bikeshare has just opened two new kiosks along the National Mall.
One tourist spending her first days of retirement touring the East Coast and made a special trip to see the cherry blossoms.
"It blows you away," says Maine resident Jan Driver. "We've stopped at a lot of beautiful gardens along our journey, nothing compares. It's just incredible."