Camping season is in full swing, and there’s no better place for a night beneath the stars than in the northern Shenandoah Valley. Located between George Washington National Forest and Shenandoah National Park with I-81 running right down the middle, you’ll find it’s a scenic and convenient setting for your next getaway.
Whether you’re traveling solo or packing up the whole family, discover welcoming campgrounds, friendly faces, and charming towns around every corner. Spend your days hiking to some of Virginia’s most breathtaking spots, paddling and fishing cool mountain waters, testing your mountain biking skills on tough terrain, and driving the backroads for unique roadside stops. At the end of the day, refuel with a delicious burger, explore the Shenandoah Spirits Trail, and settle in for the night at your campground.
The Best Burgers Around
What better way to take a break from adventuring than with a burger, plate of fries, and refreshing drink at some of Virginia’s best eateries and craft drink establishments. Between the 22 wineries, 21 breweries, four cideries, and two distilleries along the spirits trail, you’re sure to find a drink that suits your tastes.
When you’re near Massanutten, grab a burger and fried oreo from Jack Brown’s Beer & Burger Joint and keep your eyes peeled for exciting things to come from Brew HaHa Brewing Company. Snack on some southern cooking that tastes like home from Brookside Restaurant in Luray before popping over to the adjoining art gallery and gift shop for something to remember your trip by.
If you’re the kind of person who likes a lot of options, 50/50 Taphouse in Winchester features cold drafts and 50 different burgers ranging from classic toppings to Fritos, hansbrowns, and pineapple. Just a four-minute walk away, Broken Window Brewing Company has even more craft beer options to keep the night going.
In Rockingham County, combine a stop at Hank’s Grille & Catering for burgers created with local beef and homemade buns and Brix & Column Vineyards for live music and delicious wine. Grab a bite to eat at Horseshoe Curve Restaurant before heading over to Twin Oaks Tavern Winery to soak up the tastes and sounds of Clarke County.
At Old Dominion Doggery & Burger Shoppe, fill up on appetizers or the Quadzilla, four layers of meat, four layers of cheese, chili, and coleslaw on a bun. Then take in the beautiful scenery of Shenandoah County at Cave Ridge Vineyard and Winery.
Main Street Mill Restaurant is a long-time local favorite in Front Royal for burgers and fries loaded with toppings. Don’t forget to swing by the Virginia Beer Museum for a beer, free tour, and live music.
Cozy Campgrounds for All
Kick back and relax around the campfire with s’mores and friends at one of the many campgrounds in the area. From five tent and RV campgrounds at Shenandoah National Park to backcountry sites in George Washington National Forest, spectacular vistas abound.
The Cove Campground has it all with swimming and fishing on two lakes and hiking on a certified tree farm. Swift Run Campground is another great option for tent and RV camping, just minutes from the Swift Run Gap entrance to Shenandoah National Park. At Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Campground, you’ll find daily activities for the whole family, themed weekends, a dog park for your furry friends, and more.
Stay alongside the Shenandoah River at Watermelon Park Campground or Low-Water Bridge Campground, both offering tube rentals and calming views, while Bally Brook Farm is your glamping destination and adventure basecamp. In addition to being a great campground, check out the majestic caves and towering formations at Endless Caverns. Find your home away from home at Creekside Campground as you sit by the fire ring, eat lunch at the picnic tables, and suck up the beautiful scenery.
Between the six sprawling counties, several hopping cities, and countless charming towns along the Interstate 81 corridor, discover all the Shenandoah Spirits Trail has to offer this summer.
All photos courtesy Shenandoah Spirits Trail