With its rolling hills, amazing food, and stunning Appalachian sounds, ‘The Mountain State’ truly has something for everyone, and we seriously think you should add this special state to your travel bucket list. It might not be the first place that comes to mind when you’re dreaming up your next vacation, but this unique part of the world has so much to offer – no matter whether you’re a foodie or an adrenaline junkie. We’ve come up with some strong reasons why you should add West Virginia to your travel bucket list, so don’t go anywhere just yet!
‘Almost Heaven’ – West Virginia’s Natural Beauty
As John Denver sings in ‘Take Me Home, Country Roads’ (now one of the official songs of the state), West Virginia really does offer a slice of ‘almost heaven’. An appreciation of the great outdoors is part of the state’s identity – even featuring in the state’s motto, ‘Montani semper liberi’ – Mountaineers Are Always Free. Its natural beauty is incredible all year round, so consider visiting in the quieter months – the fall colors here are astonishing, and through the winter, the landscape frequently becomes a winter wonderland. Interestingly, West Virginia also boasts America’s newest national park – The New River Gorge is now the 63rd official national park in the US, and is home to stunning waterfalls, breathtaking viewpoints and rich local wildlife.
If you enjoy getting active in the great outdoors, West Virginia will be right up your alley. The state is famed for its epic offerings when it comes to recreational activities – many folks flock to the state for some of the very best hiking trails, rock climbing routes, fishing spots and ski slopes in the US. There’s plenty here for thrillseekers – white water rafting and mountain biking are becoming seriously popular for visitors to West Virginia. Online gambling was also legalised in the state in 2019, so these days there’s even more fun to be had within state lines – if this interests you then definitely check out this roundup from time2play.com. You won’t ever be stuck for things to do here – so whether you’re travelling solo, as a family, or in a large group, there’s something on offer for absolutely everyone.
Fascinating Arts, Culture and History
West Virginia is a storied region with a fascinating political and cultural history, so those who love to delve deep into the past will find plenty to chew on here. Over the centuries, the area has been home to many indigenous tribes, historical farming methods and political disputes – the state has a notable labor history, especially with its history of coal mining activities, so visiting historians will have plenty to learn. Keen geographers will also be thrilled to visit West Virginia, as its rugged terrain and variety of flora and fauna showcase the wonders of the natural world.
If you’re looking for a cosy getaway then look no further, as the accommodation on offer in West Virginia has it all – think log cabins, hot tubs, friendly Bed and Breakfasts and luxurious resorts. That classic warm southern hospitality will make you feel right at home, and a quick browse on the web will reveal some absolutely once-in-a-lifetime locations. Ever wanted to sleep in a treehouse surrounded by foliage and birdsong? Or soak in a steamy hot tub whilst snow gently falls all around? These unforgettable experiences can be found all over the state, so take your time and you’ll certainly find a perfect place to stay.
West Virginia has a flourishing music scene and has deep roots in the Appalachian folk tradition. This stunning soundscape grew from Scots-Irish music, so expect plenty of fiddle playing, ballads and songs filled with nostalgia and emotion. If the music scene floats your boat, there are a number of incredible events hosted here throughout the year – head to Clifftop for the annual Appalachian String Band Festival, or to Elkins in Randolph County, where the Augusta Heritage Festival keeps the Appalachian tradition alive. Folks here are proud of their musical heritage, and these unique events regularly attract some of the greatest folk musicians from all over the world. There are so many events that we can’t list them all here, but for folk music lovers and those passionate about the Appalachian folk tradition, West Virginia is a seriously sacred place to visit, year on year.
From its breathtaking scenery to inspiring sounds – West Virginia has plenty to offer every kind of traveller. We could keep going with endless reasons to love this stunning part of the world – so have you booked your trip yet? Make sure you add West Virginia to your travel bucket list, as this unique and spirited state has just so much to offer.