Sometimes you need a break, but don’t want to take time off work or travel somewhere far. These are the best Virginia day trips, so you can take a break without having to leave the state!
Its never a bad idea to play hooky or take the weekend to explore some of the best Virginia has to offer. Check out some of the best Virginia day trips and start planning!
Visit the Jamestown Settlement
Virginia is the birthplace of our nation, and it’s home to the first English settlement in America, which is one of the best day trips in Virginia. Today, you can step back to 1607 and see what life was like for the first English settlers of our nation through galleries, live events, and recreations of the Jamestown fort, historic ships, and a Powhatan Indian Village.
No matter the season, you’re sure to find a festival going on somewhere in Virginia. These are easily among the best day trips in Virginia, because there’s guaranteed to be one that everyone in the family will enjoy! From large music festivals to small-town arts and crafts fairs, there’s something to satisfy everyone. Check out this list to find some festivals coming soon!
Go Underground at Luray Caverns
Luray Caverns is the largest cavern series in the East and a U.S. National Landmark, making it easily one of the best day trips in Virginia. They feature guided underground cavern tours, museums, a seven-acre 19th-century farm, a ropes course, a country club, a vineyard, and more. Located in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley, this is definitely a place you won’t want to miss.
Enjoy a Winery
Did you know that Virginia has over 250 wineries spread across it? Virginia wine also won 29 medals at the San Diego International Wine Competition in February 2015, meaning a trip to one of our wineries is one of the best day trips in Virginia. Visit virginiawine.org to a list of wine tours in your region. And check out our amazing experience on a wine tour, too!
See the Wild Ponies at Chincoteague and Assateague Islands
These side-by-side islands are famous for their wild ponies, which have inhabited the islands for hundreds of years. It’s speculated that they arrived when a Spanish galleon shipwrecked off the coast, or when the original settlers set their horses free. If you haven’t yet, you should try to catch the annual Pony Swim, where saltwater cowboys round up the ponies and swim them across the channel between the islands. Even if you miss the swim, these islands are a great destination anytime. But be careful! They roam 100 percent free and are prone to stampede every once in awhile!
Get an Adrenaline Rush
If you’re into fast cars, you’ll definitely want to check out the two NASCAR tracks in Virginia: Martinsville Speedway and Richmond International Raceway. At the International Raceway, you can even have the opportunity to ride along at top speeds, or drive the track yourself!
Check out Virginia Beach
Whether you’re looking for the hustle and bustle of a tourist beach or a quieter option, Virginia Beach has something that’ll suit you. If you’re looking for piers, boardwalks, hotels, and shopping, the main beachfront will be perfect for you. If you’re looking for something a little quieter, check out Sandbridge or Chesapeake Bay Beach.
Get a Thrill at Busch Gardens
Busch Gardens Williamsburg has won the National Amusement Park Historical Association’s “Most Beautiful Park” award every year since 1990. This park offers six world-class roller coasters and nearly 30 other rides and experiences. There’s sure to be something here for any age to enjoy.
Walk on the Wild Side at the Virginia Safari Park
This park in Natural Bridge spans 180 acres and is full of free-roaming animals. Many will come up to your car or just stand in the road and stare at you. After the drive, take the village walk to feed giraffes, interact with kangaroos, and check out the petting zoo! This place is guaranteed fun for the whole family.
Go to a State Park
Virginia is home to 36 state parks, all of which offer a variety of activities. There are countless trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding, making this a great day or weekend trip. Many of these parks also have lakes or rivers for swimming, fishing, and boating. You’ll never run out of things to do in our amazing state parks!
What’s your favorite day trip in Virginia? Did we miss one on our list? Please tell us in the comments below!