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    #Goodmorning from the #VirginiaBeach Fishing #Pier. It looks like another beautiful day is in store for #Virginia. #LoveVA #sunrise #photooftheday #todaysunrise #vatravel #bigsky @visitvabeach #vaoutdoors
    Behind-the-scenes on today's photo shoot in #VirginiaBeach with photographer @meatkinson. We're #paddleboarding in front of the Cape Henry Lighthouse with Tula Adventure Sports. @tulasports #loveva #photoshoot #behindthescenes #photooftheday @visitvabeach
    Today's the day of the annual Pony Swim made famous by Marguerite Henry's "Misty of Chincoteague." Every year thousands of spectators gather from around the world to watch the #saltwatercowboys heard the wild ponies from #Assateague to #Chincoteague Island. This event is totally #bucketlist worthy! Photo props go to @cohennic. Tag your #VA photos with #LoveVA for a chance to be featured here! #repost #virginia #vatravel #wildponies #beach #photooftheday #cowboys #chincoteagueponyswim
    Do you recognize one of the oldest tourist destinations in the US? This beauty has been included on several "Seven Natural Wonders of the World" lists, was surveyed by George Washington in 1750 and was once owned by Thomas Jefferson as a personal retreat. While you're visiting don't forget to swing by the legendary Foamhenge, explore the Natural Bridge Caverns and get your photo taken with a baby tiger at the Natural Bridge Zoo. Photo credit: @takeiteasybee #loveva #virginia #vaoutdoors #naturalwonder #naturalbridge #howisummer #vatravel #virginiaisforlovers #photooftheday #fatherson
  • Archive for July, 2013

    It’s Tax-Free Shopping Weekend in Virginia!

    by Casey | Posted on July 31st, 2013

    This weekend, August 2-4, is Virginia’s tax-free shopping weekend.  Created for back to school shopping, anyone can shop and save big on clothes, shoes and more. It’s the perfect weekend to hit the outlets, malls and Main Streets of Virginia.

    Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets

    Potomac Mills Mall, located in Woodbridge, is Virginia’s largest outlet mall with more than 200 stores, and they’ve dubbed this weekend “No Tax, Save the Max.” Expect to cash in on great outlet prices plus additional sales this weekend only. Look for the “Super Sale” signs in the windows of participating stores.

    Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets in Leesburg has 110 outlet stores. Williamsburg Premium Outlets in Williamsburg offers 135 outlet stores. Both are having an additional sale on top of their 25-65% off retail prices and are offering extended shopping hours. Join the VIP Lounge for free to access exclusive online coupons for even more savings.

    Some of the deals you can expect this weekend at both Leesburg Corner and Williamsburg are “Buy 1, Get One 50% Off” at Adidas, Converse, Ecco, and Stride Rite Keds Sperry. At G.H. Bass & Co. men’s and women’s footwear is “Buy 1, Get 2 Free” through August 7.

    For clusters of great shopping, look to some of Virginia’s metropolitan areas. In Richmond there are several shopping destinations including the boutiques of CarytownShort Pump Town Center, and Stony Point Fashion Park. While you won’t find the outlet prices here, you will find the biggest brand names.

    Short Pump Town Center invites you to bring your same-day receipts totaling $100 or more to Guest Services to receive a $15 gift card anytime August 2 through 4. *Offer excludes Macy’s, Dillard’s, Nordstrom, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Apple and eateries.

    Shopping in Alexandria

    Shopping in Alexandria

    Have your kids in tow with you at Stony Point Fashion Park on Saturday? They’ll be entertained by Radio Disney between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. near the Pop Jet Fountain. Don’t miss your chance to win a family four-pack of tickets to see Bridget  Mendler at Busch Gardens.

    If the thought of crowds makes you clam up, go Main Street. You will be pleasantly surprised with what you find – unique fashions, school supplies that will not be easily confused with those of classmates, and superb customer service. When you “shop local” you feel the appreciation of those small business owners.

    Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall – More than 120 shops and 30 restaurants on and around old Main Street.

    Downtown Roanoke and City Market – One-of-a-kind shops and galleries.

    Historic Downtown Fredericksburg – More than 100 shops, chef-owned restaurants and boutiques.

    Historic Downtown Lexington – Quaint gift shops, specialty shops, cafes and more.

    About Virginia’s tax-free weekend, from the Virginia Department of Taxation: “During this three-day period, purchases of qualifying school supplies selling for $20 or less per item, and purchases of qualifying clothing and footwear selling for $100 or less per item will be exempt from sales tax.”  List of qualifying items

    Enjoy your shopping! It’s just another way to spend time with the ones you love. Check out these shopping packages to make a weekend getaway out of your excursion.

    LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
    Request your free Virginia Travel Guide. 



    Deals & Discounts, Events | Comments Off

    10 Virginia B&Bs with a Notable Breakfast

    by Casey | Posted on July 30th, 2013

    Recently we rolled out 22 Great Breakfast Spots in Virginia - as nominated by locals – and the response has been fantastic. In that same spirit of morning delights and food that’s worth the drive, we present to you 10 Virginia B&Bs with a Notable Breakfast.

    Innkeepers Sam and Sharon Elswick in the kitchen at Holladay House B&B.

    Innkeepers Sharon and Sam Elswick in the kitchen at Holladay House B&B.

    The innkeepers of Holladay House Bed and Breakfast in Orange take their breakfast seriously. Organic, locally-sourced ingredients are key to their morning preparations. The innkeepers are dedicated to supporting local farms and businesses, and you’ll find a list of their food partners here. In addition to the freshest breakfast possible (and made to your dietary specifications), Holladay House serves Holladay House Signature Coffee in cooperation with Orange County Coffee Roasters. It’s a custom roast that you can take home.

    Chestnut Cove B&B in Farnham is your choice bed and breakfast for hands-on stained glass creations, but don’t stop there. Guests have raved that the “scones at breakfast are worth the drive alone,” and that the innkeepers offer an “absolutely yummy breakfast burrito with beautiful presentation.”

    Ivycrest Inn B&B in Christiansburg is a grand Victorian with multiple spaces in which to enjoy your buffet-style hot breakfast each morning. One guest wrote of Ivycrest, “… woke up to a wonderful smell. We had a breakfast casserole and apple dumplings.” I’m imagining those hot apples on the porch during fall, myself.

    *Holladay House, Chestnut Cove and Ivycrest Inn were all nominated to be included in the 22 Great Breakfast Spots in Virginia post, but we felt this post was a much better place for you to find them.

    Channel Bass Inn on Chincoteague Island was recognized in May 2013 by The Daily Meal as one of the Top 50 US Bed and Breakfasts for Food. Fresh baked breads, fruits, warm compote, farm-fresh eggs and then some make the Channel Bass breakfast a “very full breakfast.” After you’ve enjoyed a great breakfast and whiled away the day, a three o’clock four-course tea affair awaits you, complete with scones and quite a variety more.

    The Magnolia House Inn in Hampton received attention from Essence in 2010, as innkeeper Joyce Blair’s Croissant French Toast was highlighted in a healthy living article. The intro to the article reads, “Four innkeepers at African-American-owned B&Bs share delectable recipes that will have your brunch guests wanting to stay the night.” Why not stay with Joyce, enjoy her french toast to see how it’s really supposed to taste, and then whip them up at home?

    Bay Haven Inn of Cape Charles has a farm-to-table philosophy for their breakfasts, making the preserves and jams from scratch, and serving a delicious meal using backyard and local ingredients. In addition, Bay Haven serves a personalized, micro-roast coffee by Eastern Shore Coastal Roasting Company. If available, ask for their signature sweet potato biscuits with Virginia country ham!

    Bay Haven Inn's signature sweet potato biscuits with Virginia country ham.

    Bay Haven Inn’s signature sweet potato biscuits with Virginia country ham.

    At the Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast in Lynchburg, you can expect a wide variety of three-course breakfast offerings, but also a special of the month. As fall approaches, let the idea of pumpkin waffles topped with apples and walnuts dance in your head, or maybe a gingerbread waffle in December? Dietary restrictions can be met with 48 hours’ notice.

    Cedar Springs Inn in Charlottesville boasts beautiful porch seating with expansive mountain views for their big country breakfasts. Each guest is served a personal loaf of coffeecake or sweet bread, plus fruit, choice of meat or fish, and choice of two savory and one sweet entree. There’s no reason to skip this breakfast.

    The White Pig Bed and Breakfast in Schuyler specializes in vegan breakfasts and is an oasis for rescued animals. White Pig has been honored as a winner of the Veggie Awards (2004) by VegNews, and by PETA with a Proggy Award (2004). Expect to find delicious offerings on their breakfast menu, including organic Belgium waffles with fresh strawberries.

    Williamsburg Sampler Bed and Breakfast in Williamsburg was honored with a proclamation from the Mayor of Williamsburg in 2008 in part for their US Registered Trademark SkipLunch® Breakfast. That term came to be, as their website explains, when the innkeepers were worried a guest who happened to be a college football player with a big appetite wouldn’t be satisfied with his breakfast. They served him a hungry man’s style breakfast and the player said, “Thanks for the Skip Lunch Breakfast.” And the breakfasts at Williamsburg Sampler have never been the same.

    Without a doubt there are dozens more amazing B&B breakfasts in Virginia and we want to hear about them! Simply leave a comment so we’ll know and others will, too.

    In the mean time, head over to Virginia.org to find more bed and breakfast inspiration to plan your next trip. LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers!

    RELATED: 10 Acclaimed Virginia Inns



    Food, Locals | 5 Comments

    RevQuest at Colonial Williamsburg. What is it?

    by Casey | Posted on July 25th, 2013

    I’ve heard of RevQuest: Save the Revolution! at Colonial Williamsburg and noticed that it’s presented each year with a different tagline. However, I have never taken the time to learn what it’s all about. What do you say we learn together?

    RevQuest at Colonial Williamsburg. Courtesy of Colonial Williamsburg.

    RevQuest in action. Courtesy of Colonial Williamsburg.

    RevQuest is an online/onsite alternate reality that’s built for families to become immersed in the history of the Revolution. By participating in RevQuest, we can have a new appreciation for our history. Had different choices been made in the 18th century, the direction our nation took could be vastly removed from what we know today.

    Each RevQuest player (Quester) is challenged to save the revolution by deciphering codes found throughout the Historic Area … via text message. (THIS is why kids [and their parents] love RevQuest. It’s a 21st century treasure hunt!) Questers must also avert crises along the way that could change the course of history.

    RevQuest is now in its second year and third iteration. Prior episodes were Sign of the Rhinoceros and The Lion and the Unicorn. Knowing that the game changes every year (or twice a year) is all the invitation you need to try to save the Revolution again and again.

    The current RevQuest challenge is The Black Chambers. The setting is 1781, nearly five years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Join the spy ring – the “Crossbones Club” – to solve the enemy’s secret messages and help save the Revolution.

     

     

    What You Need to Know:

    • RevQuest: The Black Chambers is included with your paid admission to Colonial Williamsburg. Buy Tickets
    • RevQuest: The Black Chambers continues through September 1, 2013, so don’t miss out!

    Next Steps:

    • After purchasing tickets online or in person, go to the Colonial Williamsburg Regional Visitor Center to pick up your orders. 
    • The first mission begins at 9:30 a.m. and the last at 2:30 p.m. Solving the mystery should take around two hours if you play it straight through.
    • Get a head start online to obtain the location of secret instructions for a side mission when you visit.

    Need help with making your travel plans? Check out this Kids Stay, Play & Eat Free Offer from Colonial Williamsburg. The deal is valid through August 29 and requires a minimum three nights’ stay. Rates are from $78 per adult per night at the Williamsburg Woodlands Hotel & Suites. You’re welcome!

    Reviews about RevQuest:

    Stay at Colonial Williamsburg

    Stay at Colonial Williamsburg

    Now that I’ve explored RevQuest online and am inching ever closer to finding the location for my side mission, I’m ready to pay a visit to Colonial Williamsburg. Not only has this sparked my interest, but it will surely entice my children.

    LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
    Request a free Travel Guide or subscribe to our enewsletter.



    Family, History, Virginia Destinations | 1 Comment

    See the Sights by Segway

    by Casey | Posted on July 24th, 2013

    A segway might look intimidating, but it’s actually pretty easy. A little balance and you’re on your way. Touring by segway is faster than touring on foot (of course!) and allows you to cover more ground and thus, see more. Strap on a helmet and sail across cobblestones to enjoy the sights of the following cities.

    Richmond – Wherever you want to go, a segway can pretty much get you there. Traverse Richmond’s Shockoe Slip with ease and make it to the canal in no time. Venture up to the hill for monument peeping and then over to Jackson Ward for a history lesson about the Harlem of the South. “Give me liberty or give me death” strike your fancy? Even Church Hill can be navigated on a segway.

    Segway of Richmond

    Segway of Richmond

    • Segway of Richmond Tours offers two-hour tours with a 15 minute training, or a one-hour micro tour with a 15 minute training. You choose your experience to see the parts of Richmond that just can’t be appreciated from a windshield.
      • Lincoln Walk – 1865: This special tour that follows the route taken by Abraham Lincoln and his son Tad after they disembarked from their boat at 17th and Dock Streets, went to the White House of the Confederacy, then on to Capitol Square before touring much of the city center which lay in embers. Offered daily at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. $65 per person. Ages 14 and older. Reserve
      • Also inquire about these tours:
        • Richmond Landmark Tour
        • Black History Tour
        • Monument Avenue Tour
        • Church Hill Tour
        • Jackson Ward Tour
        • Hollywood Cemetery Tour
        • Downtown Public Art Tour
        • Shockoe Bottom Tour
        • Edgar Allen Poe Tour
    • River City Segs also offers two-hour and one-hour tours with an indoor training course to get you started.
      River City Segs

      River City Segs

      • Lincoln in Richmond: Learn about Lincoln’s time in Richmond, the affects he has had on the city, and about the filming of Steven Spielberg’s LINCOLN while you’re on this tour. Points of interest include the James River, the canal, the Capitol, the White House of the Confederacy, the only statue of Lincoln in the South, and others. $59 per person. Ages 14 and older. Reserve
      • Also inquire about these tours:
        • Capitol Tour
        • Church Hill Tour
        • Hollywood Cemetery Tour
        • Public Art Tour
        • Black History Tour
        • River City Ride

    Norfolk boasts plenty of its own history. Skirt around the waterfront and more on a segway with Segway PT. Each tour is 60 minutes and $75 per person. Inquire about the various tours available:

    • First Landing State Park
    • Freemason District Cannonball Trail Tour
    • First Landing State Park Osprey Trail Tour
    Patriot Tours and Provisions

    Patriot Tours and Provisions

    Yorktown is the site of victory in the American Revolutionary War. Glide around the battlefield, Victory Monument and more when you saddle up with Patriot Tours and Provisions. Choose from a two-hour or one-hour tour for $65 and $39 per person, respectively. Inquire about these tours:

    • History Tour
    • Breeze Tour

    What say you? Would you tour by segway? Tell us which Virginia city or town you’d like to tour on a segway by leaving a comment.

     

    LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
    Request a free Travel Guide or subscribe to our enewsletter.



    Virginia Destinations | 2 Comments

    Book Now! 15 Summer Travel Deals & Packages

    by Casey | Posted on July 22nd, 2013

    If you have a few days to get away and are looking to save a few bucks, too, this list is for you. Happy travels!

    Accommodation Deals

    SpringHill Suites, Virginia Beach

    SpringHill Suites, Virginia Beach

    Lynchburg – Care to make a deal? Email The Carriage House Inn Bed and Breakfast, pitch them an offer they can’t refuse and within 48 hours they’ll reply to say ‘deal’ or ‘no deal.’ They’re looking for a per night rate for a stay of two nights or longer. Good luck! Valid through December 29.

    Newport News – Stay at the Marriott Newport News at City Center and your kids (up to four of them, ages 12 and under) eat free – breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Valid through September 8.

    Pearisburg – Book two nights at the Inn at Riverbend and take 50% off your third night. The Inn overlooks the New River and Appalachian Mountains. Don’t miss this offer! Valid through July 31. Book Now with offer code IARBSSM13.

    Stephens City – Book a stay for any Sunday through Thursday (non-holiday) between now and December 19 at The Inn at Vaucluse Spring and receive 20% off the regular rate.

    Virginia Beach – SpringHill Suites (oceanfront) invites you to stay three nights or longer and they’ll knock $25 off the daily rate. Breakfast is included. Book Now

    Warm Springs – Celebrate your birthday by going away! Stay at the Meadow Villas at Warm Springs ON your birthday and get a second night for 30% off. Call 717-951-3955 to make a reservation. Valid through December 20.

    Waynesboro – Receive 20% off your second and/or third night when you stay midweek (Tuesday-Thursday) at Tree Streets Inn. Valid through August 29.

    North Mountain Outfitters, Swoope, VA

    North Mountain Outfitters, Swoope, VA

    Attraction Deals

    Charlottesville – Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello should be on everyone’s history #bucketlist. If it’s on yours, you’re going to love this. Teenagers (ages 12 to 18) receive a 33% discount on their ticket between now and September 2. Adult rate: $24; children 6 to 11: $8; children 6 and under: free.

    Manassas – Civil War enthusiasts (or those just getting started with Civil War history) will appreciate a $15 Civil War Experience Pass that gives you entrance to six historic sites. It’s a 50% savings over single admissions for each site. Valid through December 31.

    Swoope – North Mountain Outfitters is offering half-day guided trail rides for two for 50% off between now and September 30. Whether it’s your first time or you’re an accomplished rider, you’ll love what you find. Reservations required. Call 540-886-7768.

    Williamsburg – Boo! Creep along on a Spooks and Legends Original Haunted Tour of Williamsburg a bit cheaper. Tell them you saw their deal on Virginia.org and they’ll discount each ticket by $2. Note, this tour is is geared toward adults. Call 757-784-6213 to make your reservation. Valid through December 31.

    Packages: Stay and Enjoy!

    Lynchburg – August is Virginia Craft Beer Month and the Virginia Craft Brewers Festival will be held August 24. Want to go? Need a place to stay? The Craddock Terry Hotel is offering a two-night stay for two with festival admission, tasting glasses, tasting tickets, and transportation to and from the festival. Must be 21 or older. Package starts at $249. Valid August 23-25. Book Now

    Pembroke – Stay three nights at Mountain Lake Lodge and get the fourth night free, but better than that is you’ll also receive a $100 activities credit to enjoy all of the family fun Mountain Lake has to offer. BRAND NEW: Treetop Adventures Aerial Adventure Course * Harvest Restaurant * Stony Creek Tavern * Mountain Lake Outfitters
    Valid through September 7. Book Now

    Richmond – Love jazz? Stay at The Jefferson Hotel August 9-11 and enjoy the Richmond Jazz Festival as part of your stay. Two tickets for each day of the festival, a traditional Southern breakfast for two each morning and three nights in luxury for $305/night. Book Now

    Virginia Beach – Stay at The Oceanfront Inn and receive the pin that gets you into all of the American Music Festival concerts during Labor Day weekend. A three-night stay is required. Valid August 30 through September 2.

    And these aren’t all! Find dozens more deals at Virginia.org.

     



    Arts, Beaches, Beer, Deals & Discounts, Family, Festivals, History, Outdoors | Comments Off