‘Virginia is For Lovers’ may be the Virginia tourism slogan, but it should be Virginia is for families. Virginia really does have it all, white sandy beaches, wooded mountains, and great amusement parks. There is history, sports and just about anything that any family could want to do.
With a three-mile boardwalk along the seashore, there is bound to be a spot that has your name on it in Virginia Beach. Pack up the kids, a cooler, your boogie board and head to the beach. This is one of the most perfect locations on the east coast for a family vacation. There are tons of beachfront hotels where you can just walk out and enjoy the views. When you have had enough of the waves there are lots of other things to do. Play miniature golf, ride a go-cart, pedal a bike or take a Segway tour. There are plenty of things to fill your vacation with enough memories to last for years.
If you want to incorporate a history lesson with your vacation in Virginia, there are several destinations that fit the bill. None offers quite as much variety however as Colonial Williamsburg. Located on over 300 acres there are a multitude of original and reconstructed homes, buildings and businesses. Some of the buildings have been converted into museums others are still in private hands. There are audio tours that you can take that will fill in a lot of information about what you are seeing. There are also events that happen every day. You may hear a speech or see some activity being performed; it is different all the time. While you are visiting Williamsburg, Jamestown and Yorktown are very close by and the area is referred to as the historic triangle.
Busch Gardens Williamsburg
Busch Gardens Williamsburg is more than just an amusement park. It is a cultural experience as well. The kids will get all the adrenaline rush they could possibly want but in addition, for many children, this will be as close as they get to a European adventure. In one park you travel from Ireland and Italy to Germany, France, Scotland and England.
Shenandoah National Park
Shenandoah National Park in the far west of the state, has all the great outdoors that anyone could possibly want. The park which is close to several major cities, has over 500 miles of hiking trails. There are four campgrounds within the park. Most of the park is also open to backwoods camping if your family prefers to just hike out into the wilderness.
One of the cities which is close to the park is Staunton. The Blackfriars Playhouse offers performances all year and it is an educational experience for children to see plays, Shakespeare included performed in an original setting. This is very much in the style of the Globe Theatre in London.
Charlottesville is the home of the University of Virginia, it also has three presidential homes. The most famous is Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson, followed by James Madison’s Montpelier and James Monroe’s Ashlawn-Highland. This is the best sort of history lesson, where children and adults can enjoy walking in the footsteps of our former presidents.
Civil War sites
Virginia has a wide selection of Civil War sites. There are battlefields at Manassas and Fredericksburg. Richmond was the capital of the Confederacy and the White House of the Confederacy is there, as well as the Museum of the Confederacy. Arlington, Virginia is the site of the National Cemetery which is one historic site that is fascinating for every member of the family.
Lexington has the home of Stonewall Jackson and his grave, as well as the grave of Robert E. Lee. Appomattox is the site of the surrender of General Lee to General Grant and it is a destination that provides several hours of interesting Civil War history. The addition of a Museum of the Confederacy branch makes it an even better destination for history living families.
There are many more areas of Virginia that are fascinating places to visit. Historic cemeteries, colleges, presidential sites and much more await the family that chooses Virginia for their family vacation.
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