Virginia is full of outdoor enthusiasts who know that one of the best ways to experience the great outdoors here is by getting out and hiking in it. While there are plenty of difficult treks around here, sometimes it’s most rewarding to find an easier trail that allows you to focus on the scenery. Here are 11 easy and beautiful hikes that you’ll want to add to your outdoor bucket list.
1. Blackrock Summit Trail (Crozet)
With endless mountains views, wildflowers, and a sweeping panoramic, the Blackrock Summit Trail packs a mean punch in just 1 mile. The trail is located in Shenandoah National Park and can be accessed from April until October.
2. Cape Henry Trail (Virginia Beach)
The Cape Henry Trail in Virginia Beach is a 4-mile loop that offers beautiful views of the surrounding First Landing State Park. The trail features a lake and is also enjoyed by bikers.
3. York River State Park (Williamsburg)
The trail at Williamsburg's York River State Park is an easy-to-tackle loop that takes you 4 miles around the park. Hikers will enjoy the forest areas as well as the lake views of this relatively unknown trail.
4. Red Rock Wilderness Regional Park (Leesburg)
Located just outside of Leesburg, the Red Rock Wilderness Overlook trail is a 1.6-mile trek that provides a stunning overlook of the Potomac River. This trail is a favorite among locals because it's secluded and also very well maintained.
5. Stonyman Trail (Luray)
Just outside of Luray lies a 1.4-mile trail offering some of the most pristine views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Stonyman Trail is a great hike for adventurers of all ages and also makes for the perfect scenic picnic spot. The brief uphill trekking will be well worth it when you see the view from the top.
6. Belle Isle Trail (Richmond)
The Belle Isle Trail in Richmond meanders through one of the city's most beloved areas. The 1.8-mile loop is heavily trafficked and also lends itself to a variety of other outdoor activities. One of the most remarkable points is crossing the suspended bridge over the James River.
7. High Bridge Trail State Park (Farmville)
Besides its stunning views of the Appomattox River, one of the most appealing aspects of the High Bridge Trail is that hikers can walk as little -- or as much -- of it as they please. The trail is nearly 30 miles in entirety, enjoyed by bikers and horseback riders too. The bridge itself is nearly .5 miles in length.
8. Chestnut Ridge Trail (Roanoke)
Located in the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Chestnut Ridge Trail is a popular one. The loop is 5 miles long and enjoyed by hikers and bikers alone. You'll enjoy the slightly higher altitude but won't necessarily have to worry about changing your elevation much during the hike.
9. Roaring Run Hoop Hole Trail (Eagle Rock)
Less than an hour from Roanoke, Roaring Run Hoop Hole Trail is a great out-and-back trek for all family members. The trail runs just a little over a mile and features impressive flora as well as Roaring Run Falls.
10. Loft Mountain Loop (Grottoes)
Another breathtaking hike in Shenandoah National Park, Loft Mountain loop provides incredible mountain-top scenery. The loop runs for 1.8 miles and is especially stunning during the fall season.
11. Chesapeake Arboretum (Chesapeake)
The Chesapeake Arboretum Trail is a 1.6-mile loop that provides hikers with the chance to meander through wooded landscape featuring trees over 200 years old. The trail itself is mulched and runs along a clear stream. There are also plenty of benches so hikers can stop and enjoy the views.