Sweet, Sweet, Summertime in Virginia

With both an abundance of warm sunny beaches and miles of majestic mountains on display -plus everywhere in between – Virginia is an exceptional place to visit in the summertime. Take a memorable road trip to experience the breathtaking scenery, or simply stay put in that one perfect place, tucked away in a luxurious lodge, leaving the busy world behind. Virginia offers everything you love in a sweet summer holiday.

The Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia
For the road trippers, Virginia is a wonderful place to wander. Small towns full of historic charm, featuring local food and drink and unique attractions, dot the rolling countryside along Virginia’s 3,600 miles of Scenic Byways. Roads like the 23-mile Colonial Parkway take travelers on a trip through America’s history to discover the Birthplace of America. Or follow a self-guided route like the Virginia Oyster Trailto uncover countless treasures around the Chesapeake Bay. Virginia’s onlineWanderLove guide is packed full of inspiring trip ideas for every type of road warrior, including recommendations for lodging.

False Cape State Park, Virginia
For the beach goers, travellers will find themselves hard pressed to decide in which waters to dip their toes. Virginia Beach offers the consummate holiday experience, with its three-mile boardwalk full of beach-front fun. But the beach experience in Virginia goes well beyond one popular destination. Lakes and remote waterfrontsaround the Chesapeake Bay serve up a variety of sandy shores, each with its own particular charms. Take a waterside sunset stroll at False Cape State Park. Head towards the beautiful Smith Mountain Lakeand try a little water-skiing. Or check out Lake Anna, whose white sand beaches will make you forget you are lying next to a landlocked lake rather than the Atlantic Ocean.

Wild Ponies in Grayson Highlands State Park, Virginia
For themountain fans, preferring to seek the cooler temperatures found at higher elevations,Shenandoah National Park and the Blue Ridge Parkwayoffer scenic vistas and a wealth of outdoor activities, from hiking to mountain biking to rock climbing.Virginia is a great place to hike a portion of the Appalachian Trail, with a full quarter of the world-famous cross-country trail inside its borders. And who could resist the chance to catch sight of some wild ponies on the peaks in Grayson Highlands State Park. For those more into just relaxing with mountain views, a stay in Charlottesville provides stunning backdrops of the Blue Ridge Mountains along witha short drive into Shenandoah National Park. Additionally, the city offers a wide selection of attractions, from Thomas Jefferson’s mountaintop home, Monticello, to more than 40 wineries located along the Monticello Wine Trail.

Virginia’s Eastern Shore
For those looking to first and foremost avoid the crowds, or even book a last-minute trip, Virginia provides plenty of off the beaten-path destinations. From remote beaches to mountain hideaways, historic treasures to world-class attractions, there’s an alternative location which still offers everything you need for a fabulous summer holiday. No rooms available in Virginia Beach? Onancock may bethe ticket. Called “the Gem of the Eastern Shore” this small town is chalk full of waterfront excursions, award-winning restaurants, and a diverse arts scene. Shenandoah National Park booked up? The George Washington and Jefferson National Forests also contain impressive scenic beauty not to be missed. Explore some of the lesser-known summer vacation locations Virginia has to offer, complete with lists of places to stay and dine, to make your summer holiday planning super easy.

Walsh Family Wine, Loudoun County, Virginia
Even if you don’t want to drive during your holiday, Virginia has you covered.In Northern Virginia, home to Washington Dulles International Airport, you’ll find the regional Metrorail, with a newly extended Silver Line that takes you directly from the airport to numerous destinations. You can travel west into Loudoun County, known as DC’s Wine Country. offering more than 50 wineries andnumerous tour companies to transport you around. Or east to Alexandria on the Potomac River, with its cobblestone streets and beautifully preserved 18th- and 19th-century architecture. And don’t think the beaches and mountainsare inaccessible if you don’t drive! Amtrak provides train service through Virginia to the beaches of Norfolk and Virginia Beach, as well as service to Charlottesville and mountain cities like Roanoke, on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Virginia has you covered for whatever style of sweet summer holiday you seek. Plan your getaway at Virginia.org.

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