Edith J Carrier Arboretum
The Edith J. Carrier Arboretum is among the top things to do in Virginia.
It is located in Shenandoah Valley, Harrisonburg, on the campus of James Madison University, and is one of the few dog-friendly locations in Virginia that you can visit.
It is both a botanical garden and an arboretum.
Taking up 125 acres of land, the Edith J. Carrier Arboretums lined with a forest of Oak-Hickory, flowers, plants, and more.
Throughout the area, you can walk on paved paths, take in the cool, rustic atmosphere, admire statues, sit on well-crafted seats, and feed the ducks.
Fern Valley displays some relaxing New York fern, and the April Walk Daffodil Garden is perfect for those who cant get enough of those fun plants.
There is also a planting area for experimentation that houses hybrid azaleas, an herb garden, and even a wetlands garden.
Address: 780 University Blvd, Harrisonburg, VA 22807, United States
Three Rivers Avian Center
Three Rivers Avian Center is dedicated to wild bird conservation and teaching the public about the importance of maintaining and preserving the ecosystem. Founded in 1990, the 100-acre facility is situated between Sandstone and Hinton in Summers County along the southern part of the New River Gorge National River. The avian center rescues, rehabilitates, and releases back into the wild a variety of non-game and endangered wild birds from hummingbirds to eagles, soaring, and wading birds. If birds cannot be released into the wild after rehabilitation, they are cared for at the center. Three Rivers Avian Center is open seasonally on the first Saturday of every month from May through October and offers free tours for visitors by appointment only.
Brooks Mountain Rd, Brooks, WV 25951, Phone: 304-466-4683
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Enjoy The Winter Snowfall In The Mountains Of The Monongahela National Forest
West Virginias mountains make it an incredible destination for winter activities, from skiing and snowboarding to snowshoeing and snowmobiling.
Snowshoe Mountain Ski Resort nestled high in the mountains averages 180 inches of snowfall a year and offers a variety of experiences from its progressive terrain park at Silver Creek to the terrain-based learning at the Snowshoe Basin Ski School.
In the summer it is one of the best places for mountain biking on the East Coast. Canaan Valley Resort in the eastern part of the state near Virginia offers one of the longest snow tubing runs in the mid-Atlantic at 1,200 feet.
It also has about 20 miles of cross-country skiing trails its a beautiful place to visit in West Virginia in the winter. To the north in Wheeling, the family-friendly Oglebay Resort has a great terrain park for snowboarders of all ages.
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Whipple Company Store Scarbro
Located smack in the middle of the Appalachian mining country, Whipping Company Store is an unusual storehouse, built in 1890 by a coal company as their headquarters for all their social, financial, and logistical activities.
Built in an octagonal shape, the store was operational until 1954. After that, it changed hands a few times before being acquired by a local couple in 2006. The couples aim was to change it to its original purpose and use it for the purpose of education.
What most of us ignore is the fact that the abundance of coal and the trades involved with coal mining is what helped the United States of America to be built. And, the Whipple Company Store is dedicated towards the role of coal in the transformation of the nations history and the men and their families involved in the trade.
Ruffner Cabin And Daniel Boone Park
When the old Joel Ruffner home on Kanawha Blvd. was torn down in the 1960s, hidden within it was found the walls of the original log cabin around which the later house had grown. Carefully reconstructed in Daniel Boone Park, this cabin, built some time before 1803, is believed to be the oldest extant house in the county.
Built by Joseph Ruffner, who bought much of the land on which Charleston stands today, was the first of a long line of Ruffners who were instrumental in the city’s early history. You’ll find some Ruffner furniture on display in the Craik-Patton House.
Daniel Boone Park, which commemorates the early Charleston resident and assemblyman, has picnic tables, a fishing pier, and boat docking.
Address: U.S. Route 60, Charleston, West Virginia
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Hike Sunrise Carriage Trail
This is a 1.4 mile trail close to downtown. Dogs are allowed on leashes and the trail is a favorite for the scenery and well maintained gravel path. Expect to find plenty of other people on the weekends or on a nice day.
Theres a place at the top that overlooks Charleston and historic monuments and statues along the way.
These are just some of the best things to do in Charleston, WV. This capital city has much to offer and is a must-see stop if youre heading to the Mountain State.
Till next time, safe travels!
*I was a guest of the West Virginia and Charleston tourism boards on this trip. All opinions are my own.
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Wander Around Capitol Street
Capitol Street is arguably the most popular street in Charleston and where all of the memories of days gone by took place. Gone are the huge department and chain stores, but in their place, locally owned restaurants and shops that are fun to browse and explore.
Surely this is enough reasons for you to want to visit Almost Heaven, West Virginia. Need more? Message me and Im happy to provide additional suggestions.
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Sample Blue Smoke Salsa
If youve ever seen a display of West Virginia products, chances are you have seen Blue Smoke Salsa, a delicious jarred salsa created and bottled in Ansted, West Virginia. It is truly delicious and comes in five flavors: XXX hot, hot, medium, mild, and my favorite, peach. Stop by for a tasing and take some home for later.
Fun Things To Do In Charleston Wv: From Artwalks To Appalachian Salt
Looking for the best things to do in Charleston, WV? Read on for my top picks.
Charleston is the capital of West Virginia and a first stop for many visitors to the state. Offering an ideal blend of history, arts and nature, Charleston makes the perfect long weekend getaway and is a 3-hour drive from East Coast hubs like Pittsburgh, Columbus and Louisville.
I had the opportunity to visit Charleston on my way to Bridge Day in October. It was the perfect fall weather and the landscape was just starting to change colors. If youre looking for mild weather and reduced prices, consider visiting during the shoulder season.
If West Virginia isnt on your radar, it should be! Here are the 12 best things to do in Charleston, WV.
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Bike The Greenbrier River Trail
This reclaimed railroad track turned bike trail starts at White Sulfur Springs and ends 80 miles later at Cass Scenic Railroad. The Greenbrier River Bike Trail is the perfect place to walk, ride bikes or horses, and enjoy nature. It also offers designated spots to stop and rest or jump in the river for a quick cool down.
Birthplace Of The Steamboat Shepherdstown
As most of us know, Robert Fulton is credited as the inventor of the steamboat. However, that is not correct. The steamboat that was apparently demonstrated by Fulton was built on the foundations of a technology invented by James Rumsey. Unfortunately, Rumsey passed away during a fundraising campaign for his newfound technology and everybody forgot about the actual creator. However, in Shepherdstown, West Virginia Rumsey is still regarded and revered as the creator of the steamboat.
The Shepherdstown Museum houses a half-built replica of Rumseys steamboat. Rumsey invented and designed the technology behind the steamboat in 1787, approximately two decades before Fulton demonstrated his Steamboat in 1807.
Though the two inventors had around 20 years in between them, needless to say, that they were equally talented, and both men contributed heavily to the American innovation.
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Ride Through A Coal Mine
West Virginia made its living through coal for many years and at this attraction, guests ride through the vintage mine in an actual coal car. The Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine ceased in 1953, but tours began nine years later. Everyone my age has been on at least one school field trip to the Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine, now a savvy attraction with a museum and historic coal camp buildings on the grounds.
Gauley River National Recreation Area
The Gauley River National Recreation Area includes 25 miles of the Gauley River and 6 miles of the Meadow River, both of which flow through scenic gorges and valleys with a diverse range of natural and cultural features.
When the water from Summersville Dam is released in September, whitewater rafting enthusiasts flock to the Gauley River to experience what many consider to be one of the most exciting whitewater rafting experiences in the world.
Gauley River is also prominent for having many unusual plant species, like Virginia Spiraea, Appalachian Blue Violet, and Balsam Squaw-weed.
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Explore The Chollar Mine
Mining and the town of Virginia City have had a close relationship throughout history.
Dont forget to visit some of the iconic and historic mines in this town when you visit Virginia City.
One such attraction here that you can explore today is Chollar mine.
The said site is known to be the place of one of the richest silver strikes in the country.
The site was first staked in 1859, and its known as one of the leading mines on the Comstock.
For around 80 years since then, miners managed to haul $17 million worth of gold and silver.
When you come here, you can learn about how these mines were built, how miners worked through them, and the geological importance of the rocks that you can find inside.
Bring your entire family here, and learn more about the mining industry in Virginia City.
The Natural Bridge Of Virginia
Zack Frank / Shutterstock
The Natural Bridge of Virginia is a huge limestone arch, carved out over the span of multiple millennia by the flowing of the Cedar Creek.
A true wonder to behold, its one of the most stunning tourist attractions in the state, and its natural status adds even more to its value as a wonder of the world, and its North Americas largest natural bridge on land at 215 feet in length.
In 1750, George Washington came to the site and surveyed it as a young man and carved his initials into it.
Later, in 1774, Thomas Jefferson would purchase a large amount of land that included the Natural Bridge from King George III.
But before American colonists got their hands on it, the bridge was considered sacred by the Monocans, a tribe living in the area.
Now, though, and since 2016, the Natural Bridge is its own State Park.
On certain evenings, the Natural Bridge of Virginia has a light show put on known as The Drama of Creation.
It first began in 1920 and is Americas longest-running light show.
Its Biblical in theme and can be a little odd, but if youre seeking what to see, its something to add to your list!
Address: 6477 S Lee Hwy, Natural Bridge, VA 24578, United States
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The Museum Of American Glass
As such, The Museum of American Glass celebrates the regions rich glass heritage.
Established in 1933, the museum aims to share glass pieces and artist stories specific to West Virginia.
In addition to seeing an assortment of unique early period pieces, kitchen glass, lamps, novelties, and hundreds more, the vast museum collections are astounding.
The museum also hosts ever-changing traveling exhibits that are sure to wow you.
Furthermore, the museum frequently hosts special programming like glass collecting clubs and specialty glass shows.
Be sure to check out the museums calendar of events to see if anything special is happening during your visit.
Following your tour of this comprehensive homage to the West Virginia glass heritage, the museum gift shop welcomes you to peruse monographs, catalogs, and collectibles.
If youre looking for unique places to go in West Virginia this weekend, be sure to give The Museum of American Glass a gander.
Address: 230 Main Ave, Weston, WV 26452, United States
Sample Cocktails At Bloomery Plantation Distillery
A post shared by Sarah Marie on May 31, 2018 at 11:23am PDT
Drive to Charles Town for a good time at the Bloomery Plantation Distillery, well-known in West Virginia for their natural fruit cordials. Housed in a log cabin distillery dating back to the 1840s, the Bloomery Plantation Distillery only uses farm-fresh ingredients grown in the area. You can taste authentic flavors in their cordials and cocktails. And with the distillery located along the banks of the Shenandoah River with the Blue Ridge Mountains not far behind, its a great place to enjoy a nice cocktail.
Bloomery Plantation Distillery
Opening hours: Mon, Thu: 12pm – 6pm Fri, Sat: 11am – 8pm
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Archive Of The Afterlife
This National Museum of the Paranormal is a great spot to check out if youre into frightful and brain-tickling sights.
The Archive of the Afterlife, established in 2011, houses many vexing artifacts.
For instance, during a tour of the museum, youll see such things as haunting photographs, spooky dolls, frightening weapons, and inexplicable objects.
The collection of artifacts has come from all over the world the museum will even take haunted items off your hands if youd like.
Guests of the Archive of the Afterlife may book private tours that allow them sole access to the museum for an entire day, brief public tours, and even bone-chilling ghost hunts.
Remarkably, the museum has been featured on many syndicated television shows.
Finally, the goal of Archive of the Afterlife is to share and research paranormal activity.
This West Virginia attraction is a unique but amusing place to visit during your stay in the state.
Address: 86 Railroad St, Cameron, WV 26033, United States
Kruger Street Toy And Train Museum
Kruger Street Toy and Train Museum
Housed in the building of an old elementary school, the Kruger Street Toy and Train Museum, built in 1906, is situated on a historic site.
One of the museums quirky but affable features is the resident cat, Loo, who saunters about in costume as if he owns the place.
The museums biggest collection and draw though is the astonishing toy collection housed therein.
Remarkably, toy exhibits are arranged thematically as follows: transportation toys, miniatures, dolls, and games.
Enjoy this step back in time with the nostalgic toys of your youth.
Train-wise, the museums most popular attraction is a restored caboose that once belonged on the B & O Railroad.
Moreover, the museum houses a train exhibit that boasts Lionel, American Flyer, and even Lawrence Liner trains.
For added fun, the museums lobby doubles as a small arcade.
Be sure to hit up the gift shop on your way for fun novelties and souvenirs.
Address: 144 Kruger St, Wheeling, WV 26003, United States
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Relax By The River On Your West Virginia Vacation
Families dont need a sense of adventure to enjoy West Virginias lakes and rivers. Scenic Summersville Lake provides the perfect destination for a relaxing family getaway with opportunities for boating, fishing, kayaking, and paddle boarding.
Alternatively, stay in the city. The Mon River Trail Network features 48 miles of bike path along the Monongahela River. The relatively flat path is a great place for a scenic bike ride.
Families can follow up their bike ride with a leisurely dinner at the Mountain State Brewing Co. right along the banks of the river just steps away from the bike path and not far from downtown Morgantown.
The city of Charleston also features riverside entertainment. The Kanawha River provides the backdrop for the summertime Friday evening Live on the Levee outdoor music event with food trucks lining the road behind the venue and a fun, family-friendly vibe.
Mummies Of Philippi Philippi
Graham Hamrick spent several years practicing his embalming techniques on fruits and vegetables before he was certain that he could try it on real corpses. The process, as opposed to what people expected, worked.
Once Hamrick completed mummifying the corpses, they traveled as a part of P.T Barnums circus. Attracted by the embalming procedure, the Smithsonian Institution offered to put his mummies on display, on the condition that Hamrick will have to share his secret procedure with the institution. But, Hamrick denied the offer.
Now, two female corpses of the lot rest at the Mummies of Philippi, though there is no certainty that they are the original mummies hand-crafted by Hamrick. Seeming mostly wooden and with no hair, one of the women is a former resident of the Weston insane asylum.
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