The 11 Best Places in Virginia to Visit — Handbags Only
Virginia is an amazing country worth visiting! Located on the East Coast, this is a state that has a little something for everyone. From its cities like Richmond to its national forests near the West Virginia border, it’s the perfect place for a road trip or city break when you’re on the East Coast. However, it can be difficult to determine the best places in Virginia to visit when planning your trip. So, to make your visit easier, we are sharing some of our best places in Virginia to explore once you arrive. I promise, it has a lot to offer and is perfect as a stopover if you’re venturing on a wider road trip around the East Coast. Take a look below at the best places in Virginia to visit when you arrive. Have the best trip! 1.) Most popular for family trips, Williamsburg is also frequented by history buffs and people who love the past. Williamsburg is known for its historic homes dating back to the 18th century along with the culture of the place and the antiques that can be seen all over the city. Historically and to this day, the people of Williamsburg have also been making a living from the beauty of this city by crafting and portraying historical figures to not only preserve the city’s culture but to attract tourists as well. All of this being said, if you want something a little more exciting, you’ll want to visit a few of the epic parks nearby. If you see, there are two epic parks in Water Country USA, Busch Gardens. Both are epic for a day out, with the former being the largest water park in the entire state of Virginia. Best of all, you can purchase this combined park pass to get you to both parks. We love it, especially with the new Riptide Race slide! Further Read: Best Things To Do In Virginia 2) Shenandoah National Park Shenandoah National Park is another amazing amazing place in Virginia that you have to visit. Here, you can get a good view of the foliage and it is also a great place where you can stroll and have some picnics. Nearly 200,000 acres to discover filled with trails, overlooks, and the most amazing scenery. Want to drive through one of the best places in Virginia to visit? Skyline Drive is a popular way to see Shenandoah National Park that you can’t miss. As you can see, the drive snakes through valleys and hills, giving you a site as picturesque as the gorgeous Franklin Cliffs Overlook. It is very beautiful and one of the best places in Virginia to visit if you love the great outdoors. Oh yeah, and for a little more adventure, you can even participate in ranger programs that vary from meadows to aviaries and everything in between. 3.) Virginia Beach Yes, it can get a little busy in Virginia Beach, but that shouldn’t stop you from visiting this gorgeous stretch of Virginia waterfront. It is absolutely stunning and totally accessible without any strenuous hike or lack of facilities either. Trust me, Virginia Beach is a really amazing place for everyone to enjoy. Well if you love beaches this is it! This huge stretch of golden sand has heaps of rooms and plenty of hotels to stay in for a few days on the coast. Heading with the family? Pop into the Ocean Breeze Water Park, which features cool water slides, wave pools, and a water playground. It is fun for all ages. If that’s not your thing, you can visit the area at the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge and Museum of Marine Science, all before you fill up at Beach Bully BBQ. Nothing fancy but the food is good here! The beef sandwich is very tasty. If you want a quieter beach experience, go to absolutely stunning Sandbridge Beach, with far fewer people. Further Read: Best Things To Do In Virginia 4) Mount Vernon One of the most historic places in Virginia, Mount Vernon is famous as the home of George Washington from 1754 until his death. It is one of the best places in Virginia to visit if you want to learn more about the history of the United States. To give you a little background, under Washington’s direction, Mount Vernon was a work-in-progress that reflected Washington’s admiration and personality in its design, decoration, and construction. It’s totally worth a visit. Today, Mount Vernon is painted in its own unique way (which was all the rage in the 18th century). The bright green walls of the “New Room” were also noted as Washington’s favourites. You’ll be able to see a lot inside, including the belongings of George and Martha Washington and family photos. Also, when it came to the grounds and gardens, Washington took a less formal and naturalistic plan compared to his predecessors. Which, honestly, is pretty cool. You can also book bike tours of Mount Vernon which are very good. You’ll be able to follow a self-guided tour with a full day rental all around Mount Vernon. she is very beautiful. 5.) Roanoke Another place in Virginia is Roanoke. Also known as the Star City of the South, Roanoke is a joy to stroll as you will also find the Mill Mountain Star which you can spot as well. In the past, Roanoke was an important transportation hub in the past. Nowadays, Roanoke has developed a thriving arts and culture scene that is well worth a visit. You can visit cultural centers, music venues, theaters and museums today. Some popular sites you might want to check out include the Taubman Museum of Art and the Virginia Museum of Transportation. Oh, and to eat, head over to Bailey’s. Leg of lamb is delicious. 6.) Charlottesville Speaking of the best places in Virginia to visit, Charlottesville will almost certainly be on the list. This beautiful college town delights with stunning historical scenery and is also home to the excellent University of Virginia. Once in Charlottesville, you can enter two historic homes of James Monroe and Thomas Jefferson, two former presidents of the United States. Jefferson founded the University of Virginia. He also designed many of its buildings. Oh, and one of the highlights of the city is the Rotunda, so be sure to take a look at this structure when you visit Charlottesville. And be sure to pop over to the Tip Top Restaurant for their oven-hot subs. You will be left stuffed. 7.) Sterling You might think that Virginia is mostly about history and city life, but that’s not all the wonderful state has to offer. When you visit Sterling, you’ll find another side of Virginia – it’s rich in agriculture and just as gorgeous. Sterling Farms is still somewhat of a hidden gem in Virginia. However, more tourists are discovering this treasure with the passage of time. The Heritage Farm Museum is a must see as this is where you will have the chance to learn about the life of early farmers and you can even ‘milk’ a life-like cow – it’s an experience. Ha! Visiting with family? The museum offers lessons for children that are hands-on to give them a full experience as well. Oh, and don’t forget to explore the Downpour Algonkian, known for its waterslides and natural scenery, Claude Moore Park and Recreation Sportsplex where you can fish and picnic. Next, head to the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, which is a short drive away. It is an aviation museum that is part of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum and well worth a visit in Virginia. Throughout the year, there are various exhibits that share the legacy of American aviation. You’ll see the likes of the Gemini 7 space capsule, the space shuttle Discovery, and the Air France Concorde. It’s epic! Now, you may not spend more than a few hours in Sterling but it’s a great stopping point before heading across the state line to visit Washington, DC. It’s very close. Further Read: Best Things To Do In Washington DC 8.) Richmond Being the capital of Virginia, Richmond is really worth a visit, especially for its history. Once here, you will learn about Richmond’s important role in the history of America and Virginia. Colonists from England settled the city in the early 1600s. Richmond is considered the Confederate village of Powhatan. It has a very long history in connection with towns, when (in 1737), present-day Richmond was created. But enough about the past centuries! Today, Richmond is frequented and famous for its art scene and is a place where you can learn about history through its sites such as the American Civil War Museum, the Poe Museum, and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. All of them are worth a visit if you’re spending a few days exploring Richmond. You can also check out the various fairs, festivals, and venues in the area to make the most of your trip. Plus, don’t miss the local ham biscuits, sailor’s sandwiches, and the pepper cheese that Richmond is famous for. Oh, and be sure to pop into Shyndigz for peanut butter pie. It is very delicious. 9.) Luray Caverns Perhaps the most popular cave system in the state is the Luray Caverns. Trust me, not only will geologists think it’s one of the best places to visit in Virginia. Now a National Natural Landmark, Luray Caverns is the largest cavern in Virginia. Many columns and impressive cave formations can be found in this place. Most visitors explore the Luray Caverns on hour-long tours led by expert guides. The guides point out different points of interest and several cave rooms and it’s interesting to hear about how they were all formed. One of the highlights of the ride is the Great Stalacpipe Organ that plays musical notes when you tap on different stalactites. Other must-sees include Saracen’s Tent and Dream Lake. 10.) The Chincoteague and Assateague Islands The Chincoteague and Assateague Islands are found off the coast of Virginia and are some of the best places in Virginia to explore when you’re on the state’s fringes. Best of all, both islands are very different to visit. You see, Chincoteague is best thought of as the fun and lively sister, while Assateague is the more gentle and easy-going sister—if you notice my drift? They are both completely different yet incredible in their own ways. In Chincoteague, you can find the Chincoteague Island Museum, Maui Jack’s Waterpark, and foodie spots like the Ropewalk Restaurant that are great to visit at sunset. The Bayou Steam Pot is delicious. Whereas, on the pristine island of Assateague, you’ll get to experience the gorgeous coastline (at Assateague Beach), where you can kayak, see horses, and camp too. Now, most visitors explore both islands and we definitely recommend it. Trust me, it is one of the best places in Virginia to visit when traveling up the coast. you’ll love it. Further Read: Best Things To Do In Virginia 14 Best Things To Do In Virginia Check out the best of Great Britain! Head over to our YouTube channel for travel videos!