With the New Year fast approaching, now’s a great time to reflect upon goals and accomplishments. For us in Virginia, that often means making most of what this beautiful state has to offer. So, in conjunction with any other bucket list you may have started, we’ve gone ahead and created a list of the 14 things every true Virginian has done in his or her lifetime. See how many you can tackle!
1. Drive the Blue Ridge Parkway
One of the most scenic drives in Virginia, the Blue Ridge Parkway offers breathtaking panoramic views of the mountains.
2. Conquer Mount Rogers, the tallest peak in Virginia
Just shy of 6,000 feet, Mount Rogers is the tallest peak in Virginia. Many Virginians make the goal of conquering this peak, which can be accessed from the scenic Grayson Highlands State Park.
3. Tube down the river
Virginia's scenic rivers are known for being the perfect place for water activity. You'll have to wait for the weather to warm up again, but it's definitely one of the best things to look forward to come summer time.
4. Visit, or stay in, one of Virginia's historic resorts
Virginia's historic resorts are world-famous. Photographed above is the Homestead, which was built in 1766. Whether you stay for a weekend or just a brief visit, you're in for a treat.
5. Take an old fashioned camping trip
If you haven't experienced camping in one of our fantastic State Parks, you're truly missing out. Located in every corner of the state, most of these parks have gorgeous camping facilities and even cabins.
6. Embark on a ghost tour
You'd be surprised at how authentic these tours can be. With so many haunted buildings and stories in the state of Virginia, you might be in for a truly terrifying (but fascinating!) evening.
7. Treat yourself to an authentic, delicious Virginia breakfast
And don't forget a side of homemade grits, crab cakes, and ham biscuits...does it get any better than that?
8. Take a boat ride to Tangier
Accessible only by boat, Tangier Island is one of the most unique spots in the entire state. A visit to this town offers perspective on what life is like in a quiet, yet vibrant fishing village.
9. Visit a President's home
Most Virginia natives have visited these beautiful homes on a field trip, but a visit as an adult is equally as impressive. You might be surprised about how much there is to learn about these figures. Photographed above is Mount Vernon, the home of George Washington.
7. Explore a cavern
Visiting one of the many natural caverns in Virginia is a must. These underground spaces were mostly discovered by accident and show a world of unique geological formations -- the largest cavern system along the East Coast.
8. Take a brewery tour
Breweries are here to stay. With so many popping up all over the state, they have become a friendly place to gather, whether you happen to enjoy beer or not. Photographed above is Hardywood in Richmond.
9. Shop at a local farmer's market
There's no better way to support the farmers in Virginia than by visiting your local farmers market. It's also the best way to experience the state's fine produce.
10. See the Chincoteague Pony Swim
The pony swim to Chincoteague is unbelievably unique. Visitors from all across the country visit the small Virginia island during the summer (usually in July) to witness these beautiful creatures and the saltwater cowboys that escort them.
11. Visit a living history museum
Virginia's definition of living history museum is about as literal as you could imagine. Places like Jamestown and colonial Williamsburg are fantastic ways to learn about early life in Virginia.
12. See a concert at a unique venue
From the Wolf Trap (photographed above) to old theaters and saloons, Virginia has a fantastic range of live music venues.
13. Go for a waterfall hike
There are few things more rewarding than hiking to a beautiful, scenic waterfall. With so many in Virginia, you've got plenty to choose from, and they're gorgeous all year round. Photographed above is Great Falls Park in northern VA.
14. Take a picture by a LOVE sign
Because let's face it...who doesn't love Virginia?!
With so many opportunities and adventures in Virginia, this list is only a beginning. Which activities would you add to the list? We’d love to hear your thoughts!