Loading my family of five into an Audi Q7, we started near our home in Northern Virginia and traveled to the Eastern Shore, across Southside on Route 58, motoring west past Marion and heading north through Hot Springs, the Shenandoah Valley and then across to Middleburg. We tasted our first clam fritter sandwich and rode in a Formula 1-style racecar, buzzed over rock and through river via RTV, and listened as chamber music filled a mountain valley.
And there was more. At the end of it all—seven days and more than 1, miles later—pulling into our driveway in the dusk of a muggy June evening, I felt that familiar contentment wash over me. Do it all at once like we did, or take it one road trip at a time. But definitely go. The road is waiting.
Near the southern tip of the Eastern Shore is Kiptopeke State Park in Cape Charles , where we find a nice beach on the bay with very fine sand. We make a mental note to swing through here again and rent one of their three-bedroom cabins or huge six-bedroom lodges in a secluded area where kids can roam. If the time is right, the diner serves unique drum fish ribs, which are very popular.
Listening to the launch countdown online from the dock, the rocket ignites on schedule, a brilliant white flare in the pre-dawn darkness. More than 30 seconds later, its seismic rumble reaches us, arriving in ripples, like pulsating thunder.
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Alternatively, we could have watched from Wallops Visitors Center , which is right on Route , the road to Chincoteague. All three viewing points are located within 10 miles of the launch pad. Rockets launch from Wallops on average times a year, depending on mission schedules. The nextone is slated for Nov.
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Findout more by calling the WallopsVisitors Center. The smart and stylish room Marina Bay is only a year old and not only has a modern-looking breakfast area and lounge, but also has its own boat landing and slips on the dock. Special kudos for having clever room clocks that show the time on three sides, so they are readable from both beds in a double room.
The cake-style doughnuts hit the spot after the hard work of cheering an early morning rocket launch. The swim took place this year July National park passes are valid. The Eastern Shore Railway Museum in Parksley displays cars from the golden era of rail travel, including a Pullman sleeper car and a couple of cabooses.
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The white sand recreational beach at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge is ideal for sunbathing. Parking and restrooms are available at the end of Beach Access Road, and lifeguards are on duty all summer. Having returned from the Eastern Shore, we head west on Route 58 in search of race cars. Those include small circuits like South Boston Speedway , and bigger ones like Martinsville Speedway and Bristol Motor Speedway which someone thoughtlessly located on the Tennessee side of Bristol.
Reaching Clarksville on the shores of Kerr Reservoir , we stop in at Los Bandidos Mexican Restaurant , a pair of state police patrol cars in the parking lot providing all the local endorsement we need. We are not disappointed—the Chilaquiles Mexicanos dish is an absolute winner. We were lured to the South Boston area by the flowing, pastoral 1,acre, 3.
It was our chance to pull on a fire suit and strap on a helmet, just like pro racers do on television. Providing the best of the old South and modern travel, the stunning white Greek Revival home began as a more modest structure in before being remodeled into its current form in the s.
Today, guests stay in a new hotel constructed behind the antebellum Berry Hill mansion. The historic Berry Hill antebellum mansion is backed by a contemporary room hotel with a restaurant and tavern—and the foot-wide portico is a gorgeous place to relax in the rocking chairs and watch the lightning bugs emerge on the expansive front lawn. Formula Experiences also offers a night ride. That means sitting shoulder-to-shoulder with the driver while tearing through the dark at mph. Although wine trails may be explored year round, the month of October, designated as Virginia Wine Month, is one of the best times of the year to plan a Virginia wine trails road trip.
In celebration of Wine Month, there are many unique wine experiences, wine festivals, winery tours, travel packages and more planned across Virginia each year. As home to the former capital of the Confederacy and the sites of the first and final major battles of the American Civil War, Virginia has a significant number of key Civil War sites.
The Virginia Civil War Trails program consists of five interconnected campaign driving tours across the state, featuring more than stops. Trail routes and stops are marked with interpretive markers and informational trailblazing signs. Maps and brochures are available at visitor centers and online at the following websites. Visit the famous wild horses of Chincoteague and Assateague , explore quaint coastal villages, enjoy fresh local seafood and visit a few wineries. If time permits, plan to include an overnight visit to Tangier Island pictured , for a uniquely Virginia experience.
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Share Pin Email. At the close of the highway, head toward Marlinton for a late lunch at the Greenbrier Grille for a sandwich and outdoor dining on the Greenbrier River. Along the way, take in the rural farmlands, rocky rivers, and mountain views before staying the night in the Graceland Inn. Rise early with breakfast at the Inn then gear up for another day of mountain scenery. Along the way, be sure to stop at the numerous hot spots like Smoke Hole Caverns near Petersburg, Fort Mill Ridge in Romney, and dozens of local restaurants and shops.
Spend the night at Cacapon Resort State Park and rest well for the last day of your journey. On your final day, enjoy a leisurely drive through the Eastern Panhandle , rich in history and heritage.