Virginia - Nature and Scientific Wonders
Almost 550 miles of the legendary trail run through Virginia. More than 100 of those miles lie within the Shenandoah National Park
Perhaps the most beautiful of the island's off Virginia's Eastern Shore, Chincoteague is a paradise of gentle, coastal beauty. Readers of a certain age will remember the 1947 book, "Misty of Chincoteague," about the island's annual wild-pony roundup.
Clinch Haven Farms
Fun for everyone, but especially the kids, pick your own vegetables at this farm in Big Stone Gap. The farm also features tours, an animal petting area, a corn maze and pumpkin patch.
Devil's Den Nature Preserve
Located in Fancy Gap, the preserve is a unique 250-acre tract on the eastern edge of the Blue Ridge escarpment.
Marvel at the monumental stalactite and stalagmite formations at the country's largest caverns. Nearby, check out the Luray Singing Tower, which has a carillon of 47 bells.
Chincoteague, go fishing, or go hiking in the nearby Blue Ridge Mountains.
Maymont Nature and Visitor Center
Watch river otters swim circles and play at this 25,000-square-foot center in Richmond. A 20-foot waterfall and 13 huge aquariums tell the story of life within Virginia's waters.
Shenandoah National Park
One of the east coast's most spectacular parks, the Shenandoah offers 500 miles of hiking trails and includes the 105-mile Skyline Drive, a National Scenic Byway that draws tens of thousands to see the fall foliage. The park covers the crest of the legendary Blue Ridge Mountains as well some 100 miles of the Appalachian Trail. Whether you're interested in a day trip or an extended camping expedition, the Shenandoah should be at the top of your list.
Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center of the National Air and Space Museum
See all manner of aircraft, including the space shuttle Enterprise, at this incredible museum in Chantilly. The Center also has an IMAX theater and flight simulators.
Sail back in time to this tiny Chesapeake Island where life is lived according to the rhythms of the tide. Watch watermen harvest the Bay's bounty, tour the nearly car-less island by bike or golf cart, or search the shoreline for Native American arrowheads.
Monroe Park Goldmining Museum
Visitors can pan for gold at this museum located in Goldvein in northern Virginia.
Virginia's Atlantic Coast
In addition to its shores and islands on the Chesapeake Bay, Virginia's ample coastline makes it a popular beach destination. Virginia Beach offers a three-mile oceanfront boardwalk and action-packed fun, while the 800-acre Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge's dunes and woodlands are home to a wide assortment of wildlife, including loggerhead sea turtles and peregrine falcons.