Map Graphic - Heart Of Appalachia

Southwest VA - Heart of Appalachia

At Virginia's westernmost tip, the Heart of Appalachia region is one of rugged beauty in its landscapes, culture and people.

From the Cherokees to the coal miners to modern-day celebrities, the folks here will astound you.

Music is celebrated along "The Crooked Road: Virginia's Heritage Music Trail," which takes you to mountain-music venues for some serious flat-footin', fast fiddle and banjo tunes and lonesome tenor echo's. One of the most famous celebrities of this region was Dr. Ralph Stanley, who has an event in his honor every spring. Some of the Saturday night events include:

The history and heritage of the region can be explored at:

The rugged beauty of the region can be explored at:

If you enjoy adventure, this region is loaded with places to canoe and kayakcamp and see wildlife.

Enjoy the Heart of Appalachia, where the heartbeat of the region continues to reverberate through the people that travel here and witness its many charms.

Carter Family Fold

The Carter fold is a rustic, 800+ seat music shed offering traditional music every Saturday night…

Area Highlights

Breaks Interstate Park

  • Ky-Va 80

The park, located on the Virginia/Kentucky border, is one of only two Interstate Parks in the nation. The park encompasses 4,500…

Natural Tunnel State Park

  • 1420 Natural Tunnel Parkway

More than 850 feet long and as high as a 10-story building, Natural Tunnel was naturally carved through a limestone ridge over…

Burke's Garden

  • Rt. 623

Known as “Vanderbilt’s First Choice” and “God’s Thumbprint,” beautiful Burke’s Garden is Virginia’s highest valley, and its…

Southwest Virginia Museum State Park

  • 10 West First Street

Dedicated in 1948, the Southwest Virginia Museum in Big Stone Gap chronicles the exploration and development of the region. The…

Harry W. Meador Coal Museum

  • East Third Street and Shawnee Avenue

Museum features exhibits and objects collected by the late Harry Meador Jr., an executive with a local coal company. Museum…

Crab Orchard Museum & Pioneer Park

  • 3663 Crab Orchard Road

Historic Crab Orchard Museum preserves the cultural heritage of the Appalachian Region with exhibits on the 500 year-old Native…

Trip Ideas