Question by jst4pat: Any suggestions on places to go & things to do and see in Virginia & West Virginia?
We will visit all states east of the Mississippi in the spring of 2008. We are coming from Calif traveling in a R.V. Thanks
wc gems you truely are a gem! you went above and beyond with your help..
Answer by wcgems
There are so many things that you could do or see, but it really all depends on you interests. Below are a bunch of possible stops.
Kruger Street Toy & Train Museum – Located in a restored Victorian-era schoolhouse, the Kruger Street Toy & Train Museum features a guided tour, interactive displays, an operating O gauge train layout, a gift shop, and a snack bar onsite.
Palace of Gold – Palace of Gold was originally created to be a home for Swami Srila Prabhupada, founder of The International Society for Krishna Consciousness. Today, it stands as a tribute to Srila Prabhupada and is visited by thousands of people yearly. The palace features breathtaking stained glass windows and beautiful grounds.
West Virginia Penitentiary – West Virginia Penitentiary is a historical site that is over 120 years old. It is an imposing stone structure fashioned in the castellated Gothic architectural style and features opportunities to learn about the riots, great escapes, and the life of a prisoner.
Oglebay Institute’s Glass Museum – Oglebay Institute’s Glass Museum is a treasure house of sparkle and glitter. Featuring over 3000 examples of Wheeling Glass made from 1829-1939, the glass museum displays cut lead crystal, Victorian art glass, and more.
Good Zoo & Benedum Planetarium – Visit the 85 species of animals nestled in 30 acres of flowers, trees, hills, and valleys. The Discovery Lab is designed to make learning about animals fun and easy for children. Visit a barn filled with friendly domestic animals such as llamas, ponies, pigs and donkeys. Watch a show in the Benedum Science Theater. Journey through the zoo on a half mile train ride and much more.
Women’s History Museum – Women’s History Museum contains artifacts, documents and genuine memorabilia from more than 20 historic women. Including Helen Keller, Eleanor Roosevelt and many more.
Rich Mountain Battlefield – Rich Mountain Battlefield is one of the earliest engagements of the Civil War. It consists of more than 400 protected acres including the battle site at the top of Rich Mountain and a section of the Staunton-Parkersburg Turnpike connecting the two sites.
Pricketts Fort – Pricketts Fort serves as a living history site where interpreters recreate late-18th century lifestyle through period attire and the demonstration of a variety of colonial crafts. Throughout the Season, you may find blacksmiths, spinners, weavers and other traditional artisans at work. There are also picnic tables, and a great nature trail.
Mini-Museum of Geology & Natural History – The Museum of Geology and Natural History holds the key to preservation, and exhibition of rock, mineral, and fossil specimens from all ages of West Virginia’s geologic history. In addition to being a repository for all types of geologic specimens, the museum’s on-going collections also includes historic books, maps, manuscripts, and artifacts.
Tomchin Planetarium & Observatory – Tomchin Planetarium & Observatory offers exciting and interesting planetarium shows and sky-watching. Learn about the moon and stars in a fun way.
Ridgefield Farm And Orchard – Ridgefield Farm And Orchard has beautiful landscape with fields abound with apples, pumpkins, and Christmas trees. Experience the harvests and capture the mood of the seasons. Discover the satisfaction of picking your own apples and pumpkins in the natural beauty of our farm setting. Share the fun of cutting your own Christmas tree with your family and friends.
Mountain Laurel Gallery – Mountain Laurel Gallery has a fine collection that includes: unique pottery, watercolors paintings, photographs, blown and stained glass, jewelry, silks, weaving, knitting, beautiful chandeliers and more. All of the pieces are hand crafted, many are one-of-a-kind.
Seneca Caverns – Seneca Caverns were discovered in 1760, and commercial tours began in 1930. Spectacular natural formations and huge chambers provide magnificent views for visitors and delight to photographers. Because of its astounding beauty, the caverns have earned the nickname ‘West Virginia’s Underground Wonderland.’
Belle Boyd House – Belle Boyd House, famous for Civil War spy Belle Boyd spent part of her childhood in this house. The house has been preserved as a museum to honor this unique woman. Sections of the house include the Belle Boyd Martinsburg Room, the Lincoln Room and the Ben Boyd Store, which offers local history books, pictures, maps and Civil War memorabilia.
Fenton Art Glass Company – See for yourself how Fenton craftspeople transform the fiery glass into works of art during our free tour. Trained Fenton tour guides will lead you on a journey through America’s largest handmade glass company. To complete your Fenton experience, visit the Fenton Museum. Established in 1977, it is dedicated to preserving the unique heritage of glassmaking in the Ohio Valley.
Jackson’s Mill Historic Area – Jackson’s Mill Historic Area is located at the site of Gen. Thomas J. ‘Stonewall’ Jackson. The building serves as a museum housing agricultural, milling and homestead artifacts of the 18th century.
Oil & Gas Museum – Oil & Gas Museum offers exhibits that allow visitors to explore into the past of the oil and gas history in West Virginia
Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad – Potomac Eagle Scenic Railroad is one of America’s most beautiful train rides. View historic farms and lush mountain greenery. Around every curve you are rewarded with the splendor of native wildflowers, evergreens and mixed hardwoods, in an unspoiled countryside environment. Eagle sightings occur on over 90% of all excursions.
Hinkles Drying Art Glassworks – Discover history and be entertained at the same time. Family oriented fun. Hand crafted glass comes to life through the use of a variety of tools in the hands
Greenbrier River Trail – Greenbrier River Trail is a 75 mile long former railroad, now used for hiking, bicycling, backpacking, bicycling, horseback riding, and cross-country skiing. The trail passes through numerous small towns and 35 bridges and 2 tunnels as it winds through the valleys, also the trail is directly adjacent to the lovely Greenbrier River and is surrounded by peaks of the Allegheny Mountains.
Smoke Hole Caverns – Smoke Hole Caverns has an impressive system of walkways that ensures an accessible view of the many wonders. There is the genuine Crystal Cave Coral Pool, found in only one other cavern in the world, and filled with golden and rainbow trout! The Sparkling Room of Million Stalactites, with the second highest ceiling of any cavern in the United States and so much more!
Augusta Heritage Center – Augusta Heritage Center offers classes and exhibits of making traditional music, crafts, dancing, folklore and more. Experience the chance to learn, share and enjoy this interesting and valuable heritage.
The Bottling Works Museum – The Coca-Cola Bottling Company built this plant in 1939. Production ceased during the late sixties and the plant became a distribution center, operating as such until 1990. In 1992, restoration began and the plant is now a growing soft-drink exhibit and headquarters that houses an unbelievable display of Coca-Cola collectibles. 426 East Main, Romney. (304) 822-4783.
Huntington Museum of Art – The Huntington Museum of Art offers displays such as the beauty of glass, the wisdom and whimsy of Appalachian folk art, sculptures, the detailed work of American furniture, the serenity of 19th and 20th century American and European paintings; and the intricacy of Islamic prayer rugs.
Heritage Farm Museum – Heritage farm museum allows you to step back in time at this farm museum and village which recreates and preserves our Appalachian heritage. It features the farm museum, petting zoo, animal barn, displays and more.
The Mountain State Mystery Train – Mountain State Mystery Train offers spectacular routes and destinations to see. Experience some of the most interesting cultural attractions and destinations, They are designed to provide a truly rewarding, memorable and enriching vacation experience.
Camden Park – Nestled between the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Camden Park’s twenty six acres are home to 25 amusement rides, including a kiddieland, log ride and three coasters. Camden Park offers games, food stands, a cafeteria, gift shop, miniature golf course, stern wheeler riverboat, extensive picnic facilities and authentic Native American burial mound.
Blenko Glass Company – Blenko Glass Company, offers a interesting way to gain understanding of the making of hand blown glassware. Be entranced with the first floor’s factory outlet area and its many examples of the craftsman’s art. On the second floor you will see the Designer’s corner, where nine leading American stained glass studios on display, a beautiful exhibit of their artistry as practiced today
New River/Greenbrier Valley
Tamarack – Tamarack features some of the best handmade crafts in the state. Guests have the unique opportunity to watch West Virginia Artists at work. Artists master their crafts in one of Tamarack’s five demonstration studios daily as well as get answers to questions from the artists themselves. Also there are live entertaining musicians and actors you can enjoy.
Equestrian Adventures – Equestrian Adventures, offer access to over 6000 acres of trail on horseback riding fun along the New River Gorge National Park.
Organ Cave – Organ Cave is one of the longest caves in the United States with over 40 miles of mapped passageways. The exploration of the cave is far from complete as teams of experienced explorers continue their work.
Sunshine Farm and Gardens – Sunshine Farm and Gardens, In the past 27 years they’ve managed to amass a diverse collection of well over 10,000 different, hardy to zone 5 perennials, bulbs, trees and shrubs from every corner of the Earth on a 60-acre mountain top.
Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine – Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine is 1500 feet of underground passages that have been restored from the mine operated by the Phillips Family in the late 1800’s. Get an authentic view of low seam coal mining from its earliest manual stages to modern mechanized operation.
Appalachian National Scenic Trail – The Appalachian National Scenic Trail is a 2,167-mile (3,488 km) footpath along the ridge crests and across the major valleys of the Appalachian Mountains from Katahdin in Maine to Springer Mountain in north Georgia. The trail traverses Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina and Georgia.
Bluestone National Scenic River – This scenic river preserves relatively unspoiled land in southern West Virginia and contains natural and historic features of the Appalachian plateau. In its 11 miles, the lower Bluestone River offers excellent warm water fishing, hiking, boating, and scenery.
Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historic Park – The C&O Canal follows the route of the Potomac River for 184.5 miles from Washington, D.C. to Cumberland, MD. The canal operated from 1828-1924 as a transportation route, primarily hauling coal from western Maryland to the port of Georgetown in Washington, D.C. Hundreds of original structures, including locks, lockhouses, and aqueducts, serve as reminders of the canal’s role as a transportation system during the Canal Era. In addition, the canal’s towpath provides a nearly level, continuous trail through the spectacular scenery of the Potomac River Valley.
Gauley River National Recreation Area – The 25 miles of free-flowing Gauley River and the six miles of the Meadow River pass through scenic gorges and valleys containing a wide variety of natural and cultural features. The Gauley River contains several class V+ rapids, making it one of the most adventurous white water boating rivers in the east.
Harpers Ferry National Historic Park – Throughout its history, Harpers Ferry has been the backdrop for remarkable and unparalleled events. Here, in one setting, several themes in the American story converge: Native Americans, industry and transportation, African-Americans, John Brown, the Civil War, and the natural environment. Harpers Ferry became part of the National Park System in 1944. The park covers over 2,300 acres in the states of West Virginia, Maryland, and Virginia.
New River Gorge National River – A rugged, white water river, flowing northward through deep canyons, the New River is among the oldest rivers on the continent. Located in southern West Virginia, New River Gorge National River was established in 1978 to conserve and protect 53 miles of the New River as a free-flowing waterway.
The New River is the 2nd oldest river in the world (the Nile being the oldest).
On Rt 19 is the NEW RIVER GORGE BRIDGE (the one on the Quarters) and it USED to be the WORLDS longest steel arch bridge…. now its the 2nd because Taiwan buillt a longer one.
Also there are MANY festivals throughout the year. Just check the WV Tourism site next year for the dates.
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