Four Seasons of Outdoor Fun in Virginia
RICHMOND Va. - Virginia
is a four-season destination with the geography and climate to match every
outdoor activity, adventure and sport. No matter what the season, Virginia's
natural areas and wildlife preserves, state and national parks and
national forests, towns and cities make it an ideal destination for outdoors
lovers. Find more information on Virginia outdoor recreation at www.Virginia.org/outdoors.
Hiking lovers can enjoy the multitude of trails to choose from throughout the state including more than 500 miles of the famed Appalachian Trail. Each spring in Virginia hiking lovers can experience the world's greatest hiking festival - Trail Days in Damascus - known as Trail Town, USA. The celebration is a well-known Appalachian Trail thru-hikers reunion and ultimate party for more than 20,000 hiking enthusiasts. Spring also offers birders the chance to spot various birds during the height of the spring Neotropical songbird migration at the Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge Birding Festival in Suffolk or the International Migratory Bird Celebration at Chincoteague Island.
Summer: Fun can easily be had at Virginia's beaches and waterways where activities abound for water lovers. Virginia's moderate climate makes for a long beach season where visitors can find warm, sunny beaches from early spring into fall. The action-packed Virginia Beach oceanfront is home to the longest boardwalk in the country and is perfect for taking in the ocean views while biking, rollerblading and more. The unspoiled beaches of Eastern Shore are some of the most serene and natural in the state, including Assateague Beach, part of the National Seashore, and where visitors can catch a glimpse of the wild ponies of Chincoteague Island.
Virginia's Snowflex Centre in Lynchburg is the only place in the United States where people can ski and snowboard outside in the summer on Snowflex, a multi-layer, material with misting devices that simulates the effects of snow, allowing maximum speed and edge control for turns.
Fall: Fall is a wonderful time for outdoor lovers to get out and play: the weather is mild and 15 million acres of foliage are vibrant with color. Virginia has many parks and protected forests where families can engage with the great outdoors and hike, bike, go horseback riding, rock climbing and more. Two of the country's most legendary scenic drives, the Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive, offer some of the best views and outdoor recreation opportunities. There is perhaps no better time than fall to stop at two of the most photographed spots in Virginia - Mabry Mill off the Blue Ridge Parkway and McAfee Knob on the Appalachian Trail.
Biking lovers can enjoy leisurely fall rides along Virginia's rails to trails and whitewater rafters can experience the intense whitewater of the Russell Fork during weekends in October when water is released from the John Flannagan Dam and Reservoir.
Winter: Winter at Virginia's mountain resorts is an ideal time for families with little ones who are just starting to ski or to show an interest in winter sports to get started. They will love the pace and speed of the slopes at Wintergreen Resort, the Homestead, Massanutten and Bryce Resort.
Winter is the only season in Virginia where wildlife lovers can try to catch a glimpse of illusive humpback whales in their natural habitat while on a whale watching boat trip on a winter coastal adventure led by naturalists from the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center each December through March.
Love is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Go to www.Virginia.org/outdoors or call 1-800-VISITVA to request a free copy of the 2013 Virginia is for Lovers travel guide. Stay connected with Virginia on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/VirginiaisforLovers or on Twitter at @VisitVirginia.
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