You already know how magical West Virginia can be in the wintertime, but if not, we’ll help open your eyes. There are plenty of fun things to do in West Virginia in winter, but you may not have discovered the ideas we have featured below. Let’s take a look at a few West Virginia winter activities you can put on your winter bucket list in West Virginia.
Holiday Events In West Virginia
Wintertime in West Virginia is a special time of year when holiday events, tree-lighting ceremonies, and
Christmas light shows come to town. Here are a few ways to enjoy the holidays in West Virginia. 1. St. Albans Festival of Lights
St. Albans Festival of Lights, 931 Observatory Dr, St Albans, WV 25177, USA
Location: St Albans, WV Popularity: As one of the longest-running drive-thru light shows in the area it can draw a crowd. But since you are driving in your own vehicle the number of visitors doesn't affect the ride. Price: Free. Non-perishable food donations are welcome to help support local nonprofit food banks.
A Christmas lights show is a wonderful way to light up your holiday spirit. If you are looking for free things to do in West Virginia in winter a drive-thru light show is a fun activity to do with the family.
St. Albans Festival of Lights
has been going on since 1988, and each year there are new and exciting events and holiday light displays. Toward the end of November, on specific days each, enjoy a walk-through or a hayride tour of the light show. Or, the drive-thru event starts November 25 and runs through December 26. (Closed for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day)
2. Martinsburg Tree Lighting Ceremony Location: Martinsburg, WV Popularity: Tree lighting ceremonies are usually pretty busy since everyone is gathering around to get the best view. Price: Free.
There are a number of fantastic small towns in West Virginia that have tree-lighting ceremonies. One of our favorites is the one in Martinsburg that happens in early December. The whole town gathers in the downtown area for the annual tree lighting, which makes it a fun event to kick off the holiday season. Enjoy caroling and goodie bags for the kids handed out by Santa. The church bells ring out holiday tunes too! For more tree-lighting ceremonies in West Virginia check out this featured article of six lovely towns in WV that have light-filled Christmas Tree lighting ceremonies.
3. Blennerhassett Hotel Festival of Trees
The Blennerhassett Hotel, 320 Market St, Parkersburg, WV 26101, USA
Location: Parkersburg, WV Popularity: Since the Festival of Trees runs for a few weeks you have plenty of time to pick a day that works for you. Price: The event is always free, however, there are some ticketed events that support United Way. Enjoy a tree-trimming contest, charter breakfasts, and even a tree auction so you can take one of the magnificently decorated trees home with you.
Another wonderful holiday event in West Virginia is the Blennerhassett Hotel's
Festival of Trees
. Kick off November each year by attending this fun and light-filled event. It runs through early December so you have plenty of time to come visit. Imagine several dozen trees all lit up and decorated to the nines. You might even catch sight of the Grinch - be sure to spread some holiday cheer to turn his frown upside down.
4. Heritage Farm Christmas Village
Heritage Farm Museum & Village, 3300 Harvey Rd, Huntington, WV 25704, USA
Location: Huntington, WV Popularity: This hidden gem is a delightful way to get a unique Christmas experience and get a historical view of what life was like in the 19th Century. Price: Adults 18-64 $17, Seniors 65+ $14, Youth 13-17 $12, Children 4-12 $10. Free admission for children three and under.
Every December this 19th Century farm and museum transforms into a Christmas village. Enjoy a live Nativity drama of the Christmas story, tractor rides on the jingle Wagon, Christmas cookie making, carols, and handmade gifts in the gift shop. It is a festive event set in a charming village that really brings out the holiday spirit. If you are looking for fun family things to do in West Virginia in winter check out
Christmas Towns In West Virginia
When the holiday season rolls around in winter, some towns come alive with holiday spirit. A
Christmas Town can be a charming small town in the mountains or a big city that goes all out with festivities. Either way, these are some of the best Christmas towns to plan a getaway to in West Virginia. 5. Beckley Location: Beckley, WV Popularity: As bigger small towns go, Beckley is both a center of activity for Southern WV and a charming town with plenty of activities to enjoy around the holidays. Price: Tickets for the festival are $12.50 for adults and $10 per child.
Even though Beckley is the largest city in Southern West Virginia the population is only around 17,000. That doesn't mean it doesn't know how to get festive for the holidays. A key feature of the town is the old coal mine. The
Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine
opens up for two consecutive weekends, one at the end of November and one at the beginning of December. A magical Christmas tradition comes to life with Appalachian Coal Town Christmas. Not only can you join in on the usual Christmas activities like caroling, ice skating, sleigh rides, and plenty of yummy treats, but you can take an underground Christmas-themed mine tour.
Oglebay Resort, 465 Lodge Dr, Wheeling, WV 26003, USA
Location: Wheeling, WV Popularity: The Festival of Lights in Wheeling brings visitors from far and wide - millions of visitors each year, in fact. Price: Admission to the drive-thru light show is $30 per vehicle. Trolley tours are $20 per person Monday through Thursday and $30 per person Friday through Sunday.
Wheeling is a mid-sized city along the Ohio River in the Appalachian Mountains valley between Ohio and Pennsylvania. It is home to one of the most beautiful Festival of Lights held at the
. Not only will you be treated to millions of lights, but there is a 70-foot Christmas tree, a life-sized nativity scene, Gardens of Light at Bissonnette Gardens, and ice skating at the Winter Carnival. You can hop in your car and drive through the light show or jump on the trolley and take a tour. The event kicks off in early November and runs through the first week of January.
7. Harpers Ferry
Harpers Ferry, WV 25425, USA
Location: Harpers Ferry, WV Popularity: This historical celebration of Christmas is a fun and mostly free event if you are looking for cheap things to do in West Virginia in winter. Price: There is no entry fee for the Olde Tyme Christmas event, however, some ancillary events have a small fee, and the Harpers Ferry National Historical Park has a $15 per vehicle parking fee. There is a free shuttle once you are in.
Harpers Ferry, WV is another charming town that gets pretty festive around the holidays. Its signature event is the
Harpers Ferry & Bolivar Olde Tyme Christmas
. It occurs on the first and second weekends in December. Make sure you warm up with some hot chocolate as you go for a wagon ride through beautiful Harpers Ferry National Historical Park with historical 19th-century buildings. The town really goes all out with holiday decorations, live music, a magical tree lighting ceremony, and even a historic candy-making demonstration.
8. White Sulphur Springs
White Sulphur Springs, WV 24986, USA
Location: White Sulphur Springs, WV Popularity: The Greenbrier Hotel is the place to be in West Virginia during Christmas time. Price: There are many free and paid events, classes, and ceremonies to enjoy at the Greenbrier. Room rates start at $359 per night.
White Sulphur Springs is a winter wonderland come Christmas time. And the Greenbrier Resort is the hub of activity. Magical horse-drawn sleigh rides through powder snow, Weekend with Santa events, tree lighting ceremonies with caroling and hot chocolate, and even Christmas cookie decorating. Or, for a more adult-themed event how about a little hot cocoa and s'mores mixology? All through the month of December the Greenbrier has themed events and workshops to help celebrate the holidays.
Greenbrier at Christmas
is one of the most special places to enjoy winter activities and holiday events in West Virginia.
If you are looking for bucket list-worthy
outdoor activities, West Virginia has got you covered. When the snow falls heavy and thick, break out the skis, snowshoes, sleds, snowmobiles, and snow pants, and get ready for some winter fun because winter in West Virginia is almost heaven for outdoor enthusiasts. 9. Ice Skating at Canaan Valley Resort
Canaan Valley Resort & Conference Center, 230 Main Lodge Rd, Davis, WV 26260, USA
Location: Davis, WV Popularity: One of the most popular outdoor ice skating rinks in West Virginia can be found at the Canaan Valley Resort. Price: A two-hour session costs $7 for adults and $5 for kids and seniors. Skate rental is only $3.
A West Virginia winter wouldn't be complete without enjoying a day of ice skating at the
Canaan Valley Resort State Park
in Davis, WV. The ice rink at the Canaan Valley Resort has incredible views of the Appalachian Mountains while being protected by a beautiful wooden roof. Stop for a warm-up around the fire pit, or grab a hot cocoa and chill. The resort also has wonderful accommodations, as well as snow tubing, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and alpine skiing and snowboarding.
10. Snow Tubing at Coca-Cola Tube Park
Snowshoe Mountain Resort, 10 Snowshoe Dr, Snowshoe, WV 26209, USA
Location: Snowshoe, WV Popularity: Galactic Tubing is a fun and popular winter activity, and with eight lanes there is plenty of room for lots of quality rides. Price: Grab a family four-pack for $50 during the week or $75 on the weekends. A single ticket is 15 mid-week and $22 on weekends for anyone age 13-plus. Ages 4-12 are $15 on weekdays and $19 on weekends.
Another fun winter activity in West Virginia is hitting a snow tubing park.
Snowshoe Mountain Resort
is a ski resort in the aptly-named town of Snowshoe, West Virginia. The area has 244 skiable acres in the Allegheny Mountains, some of which are dedicated to the Coca-Cola Tube Park. If you enjoy a rush, slide down one of the eight tube lanes at night with the runs all lit up with colorful LED lights. If you haven't tried snow tubing yet, it is one of our favorite fun things to do in West Virginia in winter.
11. Skiing/Snowboarding at Winterplace Ski Resort
Winterplace Ski Resort, 100 Old, Flat Top Mountain Road, Ghent, WV 25843, USA
Location: Ghent, WV Popularity: Winterplace is one of the most popular ski resorts in West Virginia since it is located right off Interstate 77. Price: All-day lift tickets are $80 for adults and $59 for children. There are discounted rates for multi-day passes. Evening skiing from 4 p.m. on is $49 for adults and $39 for children.
Not only is the Winterplace Ski Resort perfect for skiers it is also the
biggest snow tubing park in West Virginia
. Winterplace is a top mountain for those learning to ski since over 70 percent of the runs are intermediate or beginner-rated. Seasoned veterans can still have a ton of fun with the more advanced runs available. And, there is no need to wait for a heavy snowfall of powder to enjoy the slopes because all of the runs are equipped with snow-making equipment.
12. Zip lining at ACE Adventure Resort
ACE Adventure Resort | Whitewater Rafting West Virginia, 1 Concho road, Oak Hill, WV 25901, USA
Location: Oak Hill, WV Popularity: If you are looking for the ultimate outdoor adventure this winter in West Virginia, check out this fun adventure park. Price: Adult rates start at $79 and Youth rates start at $49.50.
West Virginia has plenty of backcountry hiking trails to explore, but a unique way to get a view of the beautiful landscape of the Mountain State is from above. The
ACE Adventure Resort
is a super cool place to enjoy the best zipline course in WV. It is especially scenic in the winter after a fresh snowfall. With incredible views of the iconic New River Gorge Bridge and the stunning gorge itself, the New River Gorge zipline tour is a half-day adventure for anyone age eight or older. Night zipline tours are two hours long and open for anyone aged 13 and up.
When the snow starts falling in West Virginia it’s time for a road trip to enjoy the most beautiful parts of the state. Whether you rough it by camping in the gorgeous Blackwater Falls State Park in Tucker County surrounded by the Allegheny Mountains, or you go for something a little posher like a cool Bavarian Inn, we are sure you’ll find the perfect
romantic weekend getaway or family vacation. 13. Opossum Creek Snowy Cabin Location: Lansing, WV Popularity: Opossum Creek is a popular place to stay year-round, but you'll have a more quiet getaway in the wintertime. Price: Cabin rentals start at $220 per night with a minimum stay of two nights.
With nine different cabins to choose from
Opossum Creek Retreat
is a delightful spot for a snowy winter getaway. If you are looking for romantic things to do in West Virginia in winter staying in a cozy cabin with a crackling fire in the fireplace tops the list. Not only is it a lovey-dovey way to spend a weekend but you can turn up the adventures with lots of winter activities from hiking, snowshoeing, and horseback riding to frozen waterfall chasing and rock climbing. The retreat even has pre-planned itineraries if you need some tips on what to do during your stay.
14. Berkeley Springs State Park
Berkeley Springs State Park, 2 S Washington St, Berkeley Springs, WV 25411, USA
Location: Berkley Springs, WV Popularity: As a warm weather destination the hot springs can get pretty busy, however, the Roman Bathhouse is only available as paid private sessions so you can enjoy some alone time in the relaxing hot healing waters. Price: Some of the outdoor springs are free to use, however, the main Roman Bathhouse is available for private sessions. The cost is $27 per half hour for the first adult with each additional adult being $17 per half hour. Seniors get a small discount on those rates. Children aged 6-12 are $11. Children ages 5 and under are $3. Berkeley Springs
is home to a number of hot and cold natural springs. Wide use of the springs dates back to the 1700s when Lord Fairfax owned the property and was taught about the healing properties of the springs by local Native Americans. A number of historical figures were enamored with the springs including George Washington who first dipped a toe in its soothing warmth when he was 16. He and many other prominent American figures owned land around the springs in the late 1700s. Now there is a full-featured spa on the property run by the WV Division of Natural Resources. Just imagine you can soak your stress away in the same spot that George Washington himself did. There are no accommodations in the park but
Cacapon Resort State Park
is about ten miles away.
15. Safari Lodge Hot Tub Getaway
Peterstown, WV 24963, USA
Location: Peterstown, WV Popularity: This little gem is your private oasis in Southern West Virginia that you'll want to keep as your very own secret. Price: $229 per night.
Take a trip to Africa right here in West Virginia with this amazing
Safari Lodge-style cabin
in Monroe County. The Four Fillies Lodge is an 84-acre estate with several themed vacation properties including gypsy wagons, historic mills, and this Kenya Safari Lodge. It is a beautiful two-person cabin with a tropical jungle theme that is sure to spark a little romance on that special weekend you've been looking forward to. Enjoy stunning mountain views while taking a dip in the hot tub looking out into the Jefferson National Forest and Bluestone Wildlife Management Area.
16. The Bavarian Inn
Bavarian Inn, Resort and Brewing Company, 164 Shepherd Grade Rd, Shepherdstown, WV 25443, USA
Location: Shepherdstown, WV Popularity: As you might imagine this darling boutique inn can be quite popular around the holidays. Be sure to plan ahead if you want to book one of these adorable chalets. Price: Rates start at $160 per night.
Can you picture a snowy evening all nestled into your cozy room at an authentic Bavarian inn, resort, and brewing company? Enjoy picturesque views of the Potomac River with luxury amenities at the
- a truly charming inn that resembles an old-world German village. Grab an authentic German-style beer at the brewery or find something special in the private wine cellar to toast away the evening at one of the best places to stay in historic Shepherdstown, WV. Choose one of the darling chalets overlooking the Potomac River, or choose to stay at the Schwartzwald Building that overlooks The Grey Stone Manor.
Now that we have stoked the fire of your imagination, which of these fun things to do in West Virginia in winter do you plan on doing? Share your favorites with a comment.
There are some
day trips in West Virginia that are even better in winter. Which ones, you ask? Try these six adventures you can take in WV that take on even more meaning in the wintertime.
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