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    #Downtown #Staunton is filled with amazing #architecture including the Romanesque-Revival Marquis Building seen here. It was designed by T.J. Collins in 1895 (he designed nearly 200 buildings throughout the city in various styles during the #Victorian Era). Note the large umbrella fixed to the corner of the turret! #loveva #virginia #vatravel #mainstreet #vais4lovers #oldschoolva
    Check out this awesome #aerial of the CSX A-Line #Train #Bridge (circa 1919) you've probably seen when driving on the Powhite Parkway crossing #JamesRiver! Props to @vintage_rva for the incredible capture. Tag your #VA photos with #LoveVa for a chance to be featured here! #trainbridge #drone #flyinghigh #rva
    Sip away the end of #summer at North Gate #Vineyard in Pucellville before the crush begins! They have live music every Friday evening (TGIF: Thank Grape It's Friday), making it an ideal time to stop by for a taste. Next month is #Virginia #Wine Month, when a lot of vineyards across the state will be harvesting their #grapes. Photo props to @emkittie! #VAwine #howisummer #winetime Tag your #VA photos with #LoveVA for a chance to get featured here.
    Here's a beautiful shot of @castlehillcider in Keswick posted by @merchcolony_cville. This is currently the only #cidery in the world to be fermenting and aging in buried terra cotta amphorae called kvevri. Plan a trip to try some of the world's finest right here in #Virginia. #loveva #vacider #drinklocal #cville #vatravel #castlehillcider #vaweddings
  • Archive for July 25th, 2014

    $10 or Less: Virginia Fun for Kids

    by Casey | Posted on July 25th, 2014

    Make your dollars go further when you can mix in some affordable fun with your family vacation! The attractions mentioned within this post are priced at $10 or less for admission (parents, too!). Enjoy!

    LOVE at Maymont. Photo by Casey Higgins.

    LOVE at Maymont. Photo by Casey Higgins.

    ~~ FREE ~~

    Parks and wilderness areas are go-to destinations for nature lovers, but consider some of Virginia’s cooler community parks, like Mount Trashmore in Virginia Beach. It’s 165 acres and offers a street course skate park with a deep bowl and competition-sized vert ramp for your skater dudes. While free, a pass application must be completed and submitted when you come to the park. Details

    Buzzing through the metro Richmond area? Have a picnic lunch at Three Lakes Park and Nature Center in Henrico. The Nature Center includes a 50,000 gallon aquarium along with live exhibits of native wildlife.

    Maymont is another fantastic Richmond destination. At 100 acres, the gardens are extensive. Do visit the Children’s Farm. Find a LOVEwork there!

    Bluebird Gap Farm is a 60-acre farm in Hampton. It’s home to about 150 animals and includes a picnic area with charcoal grills, a nature trail and large playground.

    If you have a child who is into the Transformers movies, he or she needs to see the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird at the National Air and Space Museum, Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen was filmed right there and your kid will recognize Blackbird immediately.

    Bluebird Gap Farm

    Bluebird Gap Farm

    More Free:

     

    ~~ $10 or LESS ~~

    A genuine Old School Virginia roadside attraction is Dinosaur Land in White Post. More than 50 dinosaurs have graced this attraction for 50 years. Great #selfie opportunities! $6 per person aged 11 and older; $5 per person 2 to 10.

    Regardless of the season, Snowflex in Lynchburg is a fun destination for those who love to ski and snowboard. Seriously! Ski or snowboard for $5-$7 per hour. If you require equipment, the rental fee is $12 per person, per day. Complete a waiver before your arrival. Details

    Speaking of a winter sport, why not ice skate year ’round, too?

    The Virginia Museum of Natural History in Martinsville always has something fun and creative going on – something to keep your child’s attention. Watch for “Night at the Museum” sleepover opportunities! Admission is $5 per adult and $3 per child.

    The Virginia Sports Hall of Fame in Portsmouth includes state-of-the-art interactivity that’s built for family fun. Check out the Hall of Fame inductees and play a bit of their sports while you’re there! $7 per person; children 2 and under are free.

    The 18-hole Perils of the Lost Jungle miniature golf course in Herndon is one the Top 5 Miniature Golf Courses in America as rated by Newsweek, Men’s Journal has called them one of the Best Miniature Golf Courses in America, and The Putting Penguin rated them #1 in the country! You can experience this adventure for just a couple coins on top of $10 (what’s 50 cents?). Adults are $10.50 and children 12 and under are $9.50.

    • Similar:
      • Glow-A-Rama, Buchanan – indoor blacklight mini golf
        • $8 per adult and $7 per child

    Claude Moore Colonial Farm National Park in McLean lets your kids get hands-on with history in a pre-American Revolutionary War setting (a small, low-income 1771 farm). Special events include the heritage animals that call the farm home, harvesting tobacco, tidying up with autumn chores, and more. Farm site admission is $3 per adult and $2 per child. Admission for Market Fair (a special event with select dates) is $7 per adult and $3 per child.

    When in Lynchburg, check out Amazement Square: The Rightmire Children’s Museum, home of the Amazement Tower, the tallest indoor, interactive climbing structure in the United States. Admission is $9 per person unless you plan to visit on a Family Fun Night (second Saturday of each month), in which case the fee is just $3 per person!

    Hunt Club's Petting Farm

    Hunt Club’s Petting Farm

    Who doesn’t love a zoo? Head to Roanoke’s Mill Mountain Zoo to see more than 175 animals. Inquire about the special Breakfast with the Animals experience (additional fee). Admission is $7.50 per adult and $5 per child.

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    Family, Travel Ideas | 4 Comments

    The Best of Virginia’s Outdoors

    by Casey | Posted on July 25th, 2014

    National accolades for everything from ice cream to small towns, hot dogs and whatever else you can think of keep rolling in for Virginia areas and businesses. While it’s hard to keep up with all that’s fabulous and acclaimed, we thought we’d give it a shot by sharing the more recent accolades. This post, The Best of Virginia’s Outdoors, is the first in a series you can look forward to. Be sure to subscribe to our posts to avoid missing the upcoming articles.

    BEACHES

    Virginia Beach

    Virginia Beach

    Virginia Beach & Boardwalk

    • #4, 10 Last-Minute Beach Getaways for Summer, Fodor’s Travel, 2014
    • #6, America’s Best Boardwalks, Travel + Leisure, 2014
    • #6, 10 Under-the-Radar Beaches in the U.S., Fodor’s Travel, 2014
    • One of the 20 Most Awesome Boardwalks in America, Budget Travel, 2014
    • The 10 Best Boardwalks in America, Men’s Journal, 2014
    • Best Beaches for Memorial Day Weekend, USAToday.com, 2014
    • 10Best: Southern Beaches, USAToday.com, 2014
    • #7, 9 Best Boardwalks in the U.S., Huffington Post Travel, 2013
    • #9, 10 Best Boardwalks in the U.S., National Geographic, 2013
    • 10 Uncrowded Atlantic Beaches for Summer, USAToday.com, 2013
    • One of America’s Most Awesome Boardwalks, Budget Travel, 2013

    Assateague Island National Seashore

    • #23, 2014 Best Beaches in the U.S., TripAdvisor 2014 Travelers’ Choice
    • #6, Best U.S. Island, USA Today Travel Reader’s Choice, 2014
    • One of the 10 Most Beautiful Beaches in America, Budget Travel, 2014
    • The Best Campgrounds in the Country, Men’s Journal, 2014
    • Among the Best Beaches on Earth, Travel + Leisure, 2013
    • Top 25 U.S. Beaches, TripAdvisor 2013 Travelers’ Choice
    • Top 10 Things for Families to Do in Virginia, Trekaroo.com, 2012

    Chincoteague Island

    • #7, Top 10 Beaches in the U.S., TripAdvisor 2013 Travelers’ Choice
    • #3, America’s Best Little Beach Towns, Travel + Leisure, 2012
    • America’s Best Beach Town, AOL.com, 2010

    BICYCLING

    Virginia Creeper Trail, Abingdon

    • #6, 10 Best Rails to Trails, Travel + Leisure, 2003

    Arlington

    • #23, America’s Top 50 Bike-Friendly Cities, Bicycling.com, 2012

    Capital Bikeshare, Arlington

    • #11, The 16 Best Bike Shares in the World, TheActiveTimes.com, 2013

    Harrisonburg

    • America’s Top Mountain Bike Towns, TheActiveTimes.com, 2013

    Williamsburg

    • Recognized as a Bicycle Friendly Community, League of American Bicyclists, 2013

    GARDENS

    Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

    Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

    Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, Richmond

    • #2, 10 Best Public Gardens in North America, USA Today, 2014
    • #21, 30 Must-See U.S. Public Gardens, TheActiveTimes.com, 2014
    • 10 North American Gardens Worth Travelling For, BBC Travel, 2013
    • Best Botanical Gardens in the U.S., Travel Channel, 2013

     

    GOLF

    Primland Resort, Meadows of Dan

    • #13, Top 100 Public Courses in America, Golf Digest, 2012
    • The Boutique Mountain Golf Resort in the U.S., Golf Odyssey, 2011
    • #22, Best Courses, Golfweek, 2010
    • Resorts to Watch, Golf Magazine, 2010
    • Best New Public Course in America ($75 and over bracket), Golf Digest, 2008
    • One of the Top 10 New Courses in the World, Travel + Leisure, 2007

    Golden Horseshoe Golf Club at Colonial Williamsburg, Williamsburg

    • America’s 100 Greatest Public Golf Courses, Golf Digest, 2012, 2011, …
    • Top 100 Resort Courses, Golfweek, annually 2007-2012
    • Top 100 You Can Play, GOLF Magazine, 2012, 2011, 2010, …

    HIKING

    Appalachian Trail

    • #5, 7 Adventure Trips You Need to Take this Summer, TheActiveTimes.com, 2014

    Cape Henry Trail at First Landing State Park, Virginia Beach (PDF)

    • #9, 30 Great American Hikes, TheActiveTimes.com, 2014

    Old Rag Mountain in Shenandoah National Park

    • #6, 30 Great American Hikes, TheActiveTimes.com, 2014
    • #29, 31 Great American Day Hikes to Do Before Summer Ends, TheActiveTimes.com, 2014

    RIVERS

    Shenadoah River. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

    Shenadoah River. CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

    Shenandoah River

    • Class I, 50 of the Best Rivers in the Southeast, Blue Ridge Outdoors, 2013

     

    SKI RESORTS

    Massanutten Resort, McGaheysville

    • 10 Best Ski Resorts for Summer Fun, Fodor’s Travel, 2014

     

    STATE AND NATIONAL PARKS

    High Bridge Trail State Park, Farmville

    • #17, 36 Stunning U.S. State Parks, TheActiveTimes.com, 2014

    Natural Tunnel State Park, Duffield

    • #21, 36 Stunning U.S. State Parks, TheActiveTimes.com, 2014

    Shenandoah National Park, Luray

    • #30, The Absolute Best National Park, TheActiveTimes.com, 2014

    COMMUNITIES RECOGNIZED FOR THEIR OUTDOOR OPPORTUNITIES

    Galax

    • The Next Great Mountain Towns, Blue Ridge Outdoors, 2013

    Luray

    • The Next Great Mountain Towns, Blue Ridge Outdoors, 2013

    Richmond

    • Best Town Ever, Outside, 2012

    Roanoke

    • 10Best: Bike-Friendly Cities, USAToday.com, 2014
    • Best Trail Town, Blue Ridge Outdoors, 2013
    • Best Mid-Sized Mountain Town, Blue Ridge Outdoors, 2012

    Learn more about Virginia’s outdoors at Virginia.org/Outdoors.

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    Outdoors, Virginia Destinations | Comments Off