Travel Ideas and Stories - Virginia's Travel Blog
ShareRSS  

Posts Tagged ‘Hampton Roads’

48 Hour Fall Getaways in Virginia, Part 8 of 8

by Casey | Posted on September 26th, 2013

Absorb the rich history and heritage of Virginia this fall while being surrounded by flashes of orange and yellow. Most assuredly, a walk along cobblestone streets brings a piece of Virginia’s patriotic past to your present. Huzzah! These 48-hour getaways are made for those who thrive in beautiful surroundings with a story to tell.

In Richmond, History is Always in Season

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

Architecture takes center stage in the capital city, and fall foliage makes it all the more breathtaking. Among your must-sees are Agecroft Hall, a 15th-century English Tudor-style home rebuilt in Richmond in 1925;  Virginia House, a 12th-century house transported from England to Richmond in 1925, redesigned and rebuilt with gardens by Charles Gillette; and Maymont, a Victorian estate and mansion furnished with rare, shiny things, and surrounded by lush gardens and stately trees.

As you admire the town, dine around and enjoy the tastes, too. The Dairy Bar is a milkshake hot-spot while Can Can Brasserie is a fine place for dinner in bustling Carytown. Just on the outskirts of downtown proper and on the banks of the James is The Boathouse at Rocketts Landing. Sunsets from the deck are breathtaking.

Rest for a while at Linden Row Inn, The Jefferson Hotel, or perhaps Grace Manor Inn. All have their own unique story to tell, and you’ll feel right at home.

The rest of your hours can be spent traversing beautiful places in greater Richmond, like Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden and Meadow Farm Museum. Or, take a trip down plantation lane, or Route 5, as it’s more commonly known. Along the James River are the James River Plantations – Belle Air, Berkeley, Edgewood, North Bend, Piney Grove at Southall’s Plantation, Shirley, Sherwood Forest, and Westover. Some are open to the public and others are not. Please call ahead if you’d like to make a visit.

Fredericksburg Fall Haunts

FoodE Courtyard

FoodE Courtyard

Loaded with Civil War history, as well as presidential history, the Fredericksburg area has fall fun in store with historic haunts. Touting several farm-to-table restaurants, you’ll have no trouble finding a great place to eat. It’s the decision that’s tough. Will it be Bistro Bethem, FoodE, or  maybe Poppy Hill Tuscan Kitchen?

Get down to serious shenanigans of a historic kind with the Ghosts of Fredericksburg Tour. It’s a 90-minute, leisurely paced walking tour complete with a costumed guide wielding a lantern.

Rest comfortably at Hampton Inn and Suites or Wytestone Suites, where the mulit-room accommodations allow the family to spread out. Shut-eye will be key for what lies ahead …

Hit the history hard, but in the daylight this time. In your midst is Fredericksburg Battlefield and National Cemetery, the Confederate Cemetery, St. George’s Church, and Hugh Mercer Apothecary Shop. Sprinkle in stops along the way, like lunch at Virginia Barbeque and a sweet treat at Goolrick’s Pharmacy.

Looking to skirt around some history and add a dash of adrenaline-burning fun for the kids? Belvedere Plantation is your place. Pick your own pumpkins, enjoy a hayride, visit with the animals at the petting zoo, and even take a turn in the Maize Maze.

Heart of Appalachia Driving Tour

Breaks Interstate Park

Breaks Interstate Park

Get in touch with coal mining heritage, mountain music heritage, and the beautiful natural wonders of Southwest Virginia when you spend 48 hours driving through autumn’s color.

The Pocahontas Exhibition Mine and Museum in Tazewell County was an operational mine from 1882 to 1955 and is the only exhibition coal mine designated a National Historic Landmark. Swing through for photos or call to arrange a tour if you’re with 11 or more people.

Nearby, the Crab Orchard Museum & Pioneer Park shares their 14 log cabins to display life from the 1800s – when this area was considered the “wild, wild west.” Speaking of “the west” being here in Southwest Virginia, don’t miss Breaks Interstate Park, dubbed the “Grand Canyon of the South.” It’s right on the Virginia/Kentucky border and the overlooks will absolutely, unequivocally take. your. breath. away. In fact, settle in for the night in one of their luxury cabins, and enjoy dinner at the Rhododendron Restaurant on-site.

Tap into the music and arts heritage of the area with stops at the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, the John Fox Jr. Museum (author of Trail of the Lonesome Pine and other novels), and the June Tolliver House & Folk Art Center in Big Stone Gap.

If you want to further extend your stay or add in some outdoor sites, consider Cumberland Gap National Historical Park, Gap Caverns, Wilderness Road State Park, or Natural Tunnel State Park. Each is an immensely beautiful and important stop.

LOVE's a Trip - 48 Hour Fall Getaways

 

If you’re looking for more suggestions on places to spend 48 hours of your time this fall in Virginia, see these previous posts from our series of eight:

Part 7 - Part 6 - Part 5 - Part 4 - Part 3 - Part 2 - Part 1

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation.
Virginia is for Lovers.

SEE OUR FIRST FALL FOLIAGE REPORT OF THE SEASON!
Want the next edition? SUBSCRIBE



48 Hours, Destinations, Fall in Virginia, History | 1 Comment

48 Hour Fall Getaways in Virginia, Part 7 of 8

by Casey | Posted on September 24th, 2013

October Virginia Wine Month kicks off next week and we have a few wine-themed getaways that will go perfectly with your leaf peeping!

A Wine Getaway in Northern Virginia

Sunset view from the deck at Grandale Farm Restaurant.

Sunset view from the deck at Grandale Farm Restaurant.

How about starting in Berryville at Veramar Vineyard? It’s 100 acres of  breathtaking beauty. Upcoming events at Vermar include Chili Day on October 5 and Italiano Pasta Day on October 19. If you’re visiting at another time and are looking for lunch, try Village Square Restaurant in the heart of downtown Winchester. Two recommendations for staying the night are Smithfield Farm Bed & Breakfast in Berryville or Old Waterstreet Inn in Winchester.

On day two, take Route 7 into Loudoun County to sip more wine at Loudoun Valley Vineyards in Waterford and Dry Mill Vineyards & Winery in Leesburg. For dinner, plan to enjoy a wonderful farm-to-table dish at Grandale Farm Restaurant. This restaurant has been touted by Travel + Leisure among other publications; you won’t go wrong. Want to call it a night here? Book a place at Goodstone Inn & Estate or Red Fox Inn.

Day three equals more wine! Hit Fauquier County’s Wine Trail to visit Barrel Oak Winery in Delaplane and others along the way. Cheers!

MAP this trip!

Paddle Your Glass Off on the Eastern Shore

The Charlotte Hotel & Restaurant

The Charlotte Hotel & Restaurant

The world’s first kayak winery tour was launched by and from SouthEast Expeditions in Onancock to Chatham Vineyards. The idea has been such a hit that Holly Grove Vineyards is now on board, too! If you’re an avid kayaker, both vineyards can be kayaked to and enjoyed in a full-day tour. And at the end of that day? A great dinner and sunset view at Mallards at the Wharf followed by a comfortable, peaceful night’s sleep at either Charlotte Hotel, The Inn at Onancock or Spinning Wheel Bed & Breakfast.

In the morning, enjoy breakfast in Exmore at Yellow Duck Bakery Cafe or Exmore Diner before heading to Williamsburg. Fall is beautiful across the entire Commonwealth, but to experience some of our nation’s founding history amid the foliage is stunning. Spend some time at Colonial Williamsburg and include lunch at one of the period taverns. Buy yourself a fancy hat and blend right into the 18th century! Then it’s on to Williamsburg Winery for a tasting and tour. Stay the night nearby at Colonial Gardens B&B, Liberty Rose B&B Inn, or A Williamsburg Sampler B&B.

Ways to Spend Another Day:

MAP this trip!

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
Sign up to receive our weekly Fall Foliage Report.

 

 



48 Hours, Couples, Destinations, Fall in Virginia, Wine | Comments Off

48 Hour Fall Getaways in Virginia, Part 6 of 8

by Casey | Posted on September 19th, 2013

Stretch your time and your legs as you meander around Virginia this fall. Spend a few days away with those you love most, doing what you love most. Together is where it’s at.

Lake Drummond - Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge

Great Dismal to Back Bay

The Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge Canal Trail in Chesapeake is a stunning (mostly bug-free) attraction each fall, when the colors peak late October to early November. Bring your camera to possibly capture beautiful wildlife and incredible sunrises and sunsets.

Between the Refuges:

- Northwest River Park - 763 acres of paddle sports, fishing and hiking
- Mount Pleasant Farms – Don’t miss their Fall on the Farm weekends in October!
- Cullipher Farm Market – Two corn mazes and u-pick pumpkin patch
Surf & Adventure Co. Lunchbox Kayak Tour of Back Bay – 2-3 hrs; no experience required
- Blue Pete’s Seafood Restaurant – Award-winning She-Crab Soup; outdoor seating; local hang-out

Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge is an 8,000-acre coastal habitat in southern Virginia Beach. Dunes, woodland, beach and marsh areas are home to loggerhead sea turtles, peregrine falcons, bald eagles, and approximately 10,000 snow geese at peak fall migration.

Map This Trip

 

Assateague Island

Lighthouse Touring: Mathews – Virginia Beach – Assateague

Assateague Lighthouse has received a semi-extreme makeover. See her in all her fresh, red-and-white-striped glory this fall, along with a few sister lights, starting at New Point Comfort in Mathews.

New Point Comfort Lighthouse is the third oldest lighthouse still standing in the Chesapeake Bay and the tenth oldest in the United States. Appreciate it from the observation walkway at the southern end of Route 600, or paddle your way out for an up close and personal view.

Between the Lights:

- New Point Comfort Nature Preserve
- Bethel Beach Natural Area Preserve
- Linda’s Diner
- Fort Monroe Casemate Museum
- Bubba’s Marina and Seafood Restaurant

Both Cape Henry Lighthouses in Virginia Beach can be seen at Fort Story military base with a government-issued form of identification for everyone aged 16 and older, plus the vehicle registration and insurance card. Admission to climb the old Cape Henry Lighthouse is $5 for 13 and older; $3 for 12 and under. Must be 42″ tall to climb; children may not be carried.

Between the Lights:

- First Landing Cross
- Surf Rider Restaurant
- Citrus Breakfast & Lunch
- Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel
- Exmore Diner
- Island Creamery
- Don’s Seafood
- Assateague Explorer Pony Watching/Wildlife Cruises

Finally, Assateague Lighthouse! It’s a beauty at 142′ tall. Visit anytime you wish, but if you enjoy celebrations, might I suggest October 5, 2013? The grand re-opening will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and will include music, fun for the kids, free lighthouse climbs and more. The lighthouse will be re-lit at approximately 10 a.m. with a ribbon cutting ceremony.

Map This Trip

 

Douthat State Park

Douthat State Park

Hot Springs Rustic and Resort

Take your fun to the mountains this fall as you experience what is possibly the best of both worlds: state park to luxury resort.

Start at Douthat State Park in Millboro where the hiking and fishing are fine. Book a cabin or pitch a tent. It’s a great place to appreciate the beauty around you. Stay a night or two, then pack it up and go upscale at The Omni Homestead Resort in Hot Springs.

Mountain Adventures:

- George Washington National Forest
- Cascades Golf Course
- Allegheny Springs
- The Wine Shop at Hot Springs
- The Gallery at Seven Oaks
- Garth Newel Music Center
- Sam Snead’s Tavern

Map This Trip

Looking for more great ways to get away in Virginia? Look no further than the other posts in this 48 Hours series.

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
Sign up to receive our weekly Fall Foliage Report.*

*Fall Foliage Reports will begin on or about September 25.

MORE:

Fall Related Blog Posts



48 Hours, Destinations, Fall in Virginia, Outdoors, Travel Ideas | Comments Off

Camping Destinations for Fall Fun

by Casey | Posted on September 12th, 2013

Camping can be about getting away from it all, but it can also be about thrifty travel. If you save money on your accommodation, that savings can then be applied to nearby attractions and dining. Give it a try at one of these campgrounds that have great fun nearby.

Williamsburg KOA

Williamsburg KOA

Williamsburg KOA was built for family fun with many on-site special events and tons of fun nearby, too. The campground can accommodate RVs and campers of all sizes, but boast deluxe cabins with linens provided, too.

SPECIAL DEAL: Stay Free on Thursdays when you book Friday & Saturday nights!

Nearby:

Ed Allen’s Campground and Cottages in Lanexa rests along the shores of Chickahominy Lake. It’s 85 acres of hardwoods, which equals stunning foliage. The lake sunsets rival the best you’ve seen anywhere, and the fishing is good, too.

Nearby:

 

Northwest River Park Campground

Northwest River Park Campground

Northwest River Park Campground is a 763-acre escape Chesapeake, and is a usual on the “Best of Chesapeake” list. Electric and non-electric sites are available, as well as camping cabins.

Nearby:

 

Fredericksburg/Washington DC South KOA is located in Fredericksburg amid Civil War battlefields. Like its Williamsburg KOA cousin, there are plenty of pull-through sites, tent sites and cabins awaiting your arrival.

Nearby:

 

Find more great camping for your fall weekends at Virginia.org/CampingRVing, or check out a couple of our camping-related blog posts below.

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
Sign up to receive our weekly Fall Foliage Report.*

*Fall Foliage Reports will begin on or about September 25.

——————————

Related Articles:



Fall in Virginia, Family, Outdoors, Travel Ideas | Comments Off

5 Ways to Enjoy National Fishing and Boating Week

by Casey | Posted on June 3rd, 2013

June 1 – 9, 2013 is National Fishing and Boating Week and we have five fun ways you can enjoy the water this week in Virginia.

Buggs Island Lake / John H. Kerr Reservoir. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

Buggs Island Lake / John H. Kerr Reservoir

1. Free Fishing Days - June 7-9 are designated Free Fishing Days in Virginia, where you are welcome to fish without a license in any freshwater or saltwater environments except designated stocked trout waters, which are marked with signage. This is the perfect opportunity to introduce your children to fishing.

2. Go Big – Head to Virginia’s largest lakes for plenty of coves  that are sure to be full of fish. The boating and watersports are awesome, too!

Largest: John H. Kerr Reservoir / Buggs Island Lake in Clarksville includes more than 50,000 acres of fresh water and over 800 miles of shoreline. Try either Occoneechee or Staunton River State Park for the best public access.
Second Largest: Smith Mountain Lake is so large (500 miles of shoreline) that it can be accessed from three counties – Bedford, Franklin and Pittsylvania. Try Smith Mountain Lake State Park for the best public access.
Third Largest: Lake Anna also reaches into three counties – Louisa, Orange and Spotsylvania. The lake offers more than 200 miles of shoreline and 13,000 surface acres of water. Lake Anna is noted for being one of the best lakes on the eastern seaboard for fishing large mouth bass. Head to Lake Anna State Park for the best public access.

Blue Marlin.

Blue Marlin caught from “Flat Line” with AquaMan Sportfishing Charters.

3. Cruise – Step onto a harbor cruise if you’re not quite ready to slip out into the Atlantic on a charter. Try the Carrie B. out of Portsmouth (a Mississippi river boat replica), Miss Hampton II out of Hampton, American Rover out of Norfolk (a sailing schooner) or Victory Rover, also out of Norfolk. A harbor cruise out of Norfolk would be especially fun this weekend as Norfolk Harborfest is going on and there will be many ships to see, not to mention fireworks!

4. Cast a Long Line – Hop aboard a charter and head out into the Chesapeake Bay or Atlantic Ocean for stellar offshore and deep sea fishing. Captains of Bay Fisher IICatchin’ Up, Final PursuitFlat Line, High Hopes, Key DreamsLemon Twist, Long Time Com’n, MatadorMatty J, Net Profits, Obsessed, Ocean EagleRock Hound, and Wave Runner will help you land croaker, flounder, sea bass, tautog, cobia and possibly a blue marlin, among others.

5. River Runs – Virginia’s rivers are ripe for a variety of freshwater fish, and there are plenty of guides on standby to help you get started.

New River Trips

New River Trips

New River

Shenandoah River

Matt Miles Fly Fishing, LLC

Matt Miles Fly Fishing, LLC

James River

 Rappahannock River

Are you all set with great ideas and contacts for a week on the water? Comment below to share your experiences and tell what’s biting where.

Enter to win the Virginia Great Outdoors Month Sweepstakes

Related Information:

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
Request a free Travel Guide or sign up for our e-newsletter.

 



Outdoors, Travel Ideas, Virginia Destinations | 1 Comment