Escape the crowds and enjoy an outdoor adventure in the fresh mountain air of Shenandoah County, Va. Nestled between the Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains, visitors can hike, bike, or horseback ride more than 178 miles of trails throughout the George Washington National Forest or the newly opened Seven Bends State Park for incredible views of the valley.
Cover photo: Cycling Red Banks Road, Mt Jackson, VA
Located on two acres of grassy meadow, stay at the idyllic Shenandoah Vineyard Retreat while you explore the area. Fuel up at the Woodstock Garden Café for locally-sourced salads and sandwiches or indulge in some freshly baked breads and pastries at Flour & Water before hitting the trails at Seven Bends State Park.
For a short hike, the Woodstock Tower features 360-degree views of the Shenandoah Valley and a bird’s eye view of the Seven Bends of the Shenandoah River. The rock outcropping at the end of nearby Big Schloss, a four-mile round trip hike, offers an ideal setting for selfies with a view.
Refuel after a busy day at the Historic Edinburg Mill Restaurant serving large salads brimming with fresh veggies or hearty steaks and seafood. Swing by the Heritage Mill Wines 1848 to pick up a bottle of wine or chocolates to take back to the room. Or wind down at Muse Vineyards with expansive outdoor seating options.
Bucket List: If you take the Massanutten Trail, there is a clearing where hang gliders launch and the view of the seven bends of the Shenandoah River is spectacular!
All photos by Jonathan Kozowyk