Not far from Washington, DC, is the lovely Shenandoah Valley. From scenic hikes and cascading waterfalls to historical landmarks and natural wonders, there is truly something to do for everyone. Whether you plan a weekend getaway or a week-long vacation, you'll never tire of all the exciting things to do in Shenandoah Valley.
Here are 6 of the best things to do in the Shenandoah Valley.
1. Cruise down the Shenandoah National Park Skyline Drive
Easily one of the most popular things to do in Shenandoah Valley, the Skyline Drive offers you 105 miles of breathtaking scenery. Go during the fall so you can appreciate all of the vibrant red, yellow, and orange foliage along one of America's most cherished mountain drives.
Where To Stay Near The Shenandoah National Park Skyline Drive
We have two Select Registry properties that are a half hour away from the Front Royal Entrance of the Skyline Drive. Nestled in a quiet village, the Ashby Inn and Restaurant is near Winchester and only one hour west of Washington, DC. Each of the inn's 10 elegant rooms are a nod to the village's deep historical roots. The village of Paris, Virginia played an important part in the lives of many prominent people in our nation's history like George Washington and Stonewall Jackson. Another lodging option near Winchester is the L'Auberge Provencale Bed and Breakfast in Boyce, Virginia. Here, you'll experience culinary masterpieces crafted with fresh vegetables and herbs from the B&B's own garden. This Northern Virginia bed and breakfast also has an award-winning wine list you'll need to taste for yourself. You're invited to enjoy an unforgettable stay in one of the 14 rooms at the L'Auberge Provencale Bed and Breakfast.
2. Travel back in time to the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library in Staunton, Virginia
Plan a trip to the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library at the birthplace of the President to have a look at various items from his lifetime. Expect to find things like memoirs of his friends and colleagues to his actual presidential car, a Pierce Arrow limousine at the library.
Where To Stay: Berkeley House Bed and Breakfast
Right across the street from the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library is the Berkeley House Bed and Breakfast. This Staunton, Virginia bed and breakfast is one of 23 buildings on the United States National Historic Register in the town. Each of its five elegant rooms has a unique theme, one is even dedicated to President Woodrow Wilson.
3. Visit the spectacular Shenandoah Caverns in Quicksburg, Virginia
For over 90 years, the Shenandoah Caverns has awed its visitors with its natural beauty. It also happens to be the only cavern in the state with an elevator. When you visit, look for the famous "Breakfast Bacon" formations. These formations are so intriguing, they even caught National Geographic's attention.
Where To Stay: The Sugar Tree Inn
If you'd like to stay somewhere with 40 mile high views, book a stay at one of the 13 rooms at the Sugar Tree Inn in Vesuvius, Virginia. The inn has been recognized for its romantic ambiance at an elevation of 2,800 feet. Located on 28 acres of wilderness, the Sugar Tree Inn is the epitome of rustic elegance, peace, and tranquility.
4. Spend the day hiking the Shenandoah National Park
With over 500 miles of scenic trails, it might take you more than a few days to hike the entire Shenandoah National Park. From stunning waterfalls to breathtaking vistas, make sure you visit the park's best hiking trails if your time is limited here.
Where To Stay: The Iris Inn and Cabins
Just minutes from the Shenandoah National Park is the modern Iris Inn and Cabins, a pet-friendly mountain retreat in Waynesboro, Virginia. The inn offers you 15 relaxing rooms to call home while exploring nearby attractions. Not only is it close to the Shenandoah National Park, the Iris Inn is also conveniently located near 25+ vineyards and Thomas Jefferson's home, Monticello.
5. See the best views at the Stony Man Mountain Hike in Luray, Virginia
If you're searching for scenic views, try out the Stony Man Mountain Hike. Just over a mile and a half, the hike itself is easy and the views are some of the best in the Shenandoah National Park on a clear day.
Where To Stay: The Inn at Willow Grove
Well worth the drive from the Stony Man Mountain Hike is the incredible Inn at Willow Grove in Orange, Virginia. This historic plantation home is the epitome of luxurious elegance. Each of its 14 rooms reflect the inn's historical grandeur with sitting areas, gas fireplaces, private porches, and spa bathrooms complete with heated tile floors, large soaking tubs, and more.
6. Be inspired by the Natural Bridge in Natural Bridge, Virginia
One of the Seven Natural Wonders of the Modern World, the Natural Bridge is an inspiring landmark. When you see the large bridge that resulted after years of the Cedar Creek carving out a gorge in the rocky limestone terrain, you'll understand why local Indians worshiped it, famous artists painted it, and Thomas Jefferson purchased it.
Where To Stay Near The Natural Bridge
There are two exceptional Select Registry properties just under 30 minutes away from the Natural Bridge in Virginia. Set on 50 beautiful acres, the Steeles Tavern Manor and Alpine Hideaway Cottages is a wondrous place at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains between Staunton and Lexington, Virginia. Stay in one of the 5 large guest rooms at the historic Manor house or pick one of the 3 cottages for a more private, romantic getaway. Another lodging option not far from the Natural Bridge is the Brierley Hill Bed and Breakfast in Lexington, Virginia. This B&B offers panoramic views of the Shenandoah Valley, and the Blue Ridge and the Appalachian Mountains. Choose from any of its 6 rooms for your stay and make sure to enjoy its award-winning gardens when you're not out exploring the Shenandoah National Park.
Stay Right Outside Of The Shenandoah Valley
If you're staying right outside of the area, you can still enjoy all of the exciting things to do in the Shenandoah Valley. Here are a few Select Registry properties that are a little over an hour away. Experience all of the luxuries of a full-service country inn at the Fort Lewis Lodge in Millboro Springs, Virginia. Start your morning with a delicious breakfast before setting out to explore the lodge's 3,200 acres of lush wilderness. After you've enjoyed a full day of mountains, forests, fields, streams, and wildlife, return to the Fort Lewis Lodge for a creative and hearty dinner before you retire to one of its 20 guest rooms. Treat yourself to a peaceful getaway at the Glen Gordon Manor in Huntly, Virginia. With views of the Shenandoah National Park and the Blue Ridge Mountains, travelers seeking a relaxing country vacation will find respite on the manor's 45 acres of pasture, lawns, gardens, and parkland. With only five rooms, you'll enjoy an intimate and luxurious retreat at the Glen Gordon Manor. Photo credit: Timurlaykov / Adobe Image