Visit the Shenandoah Valley this Fall
September 23, 2022
You’ll love the Shenandoah Valley any time of year. But when the weather turns crisp and the trees showcase their colorful displays around, the Valley is unbeatable. Schedule a getaway at one of our can’t-miss resorts or lodgings. You can fill your itinerary with nearby fall fun from this home base. There are so many ways to enjoy the season, from festivals to horseback rides to pumpkin picking. Here are some ideas!
- Historic Rosemont Manor is a beautiful venue for a special getaway or your dream wedding. They offer spa services, special occasion amenities, and packages that include breakfasts, picnics, and more.
- See Mother Nature in her fall glory at Blandy Experimental Farm, Virginia’s state arboretum. Check out the Ginko patch, take a self-guided audio tour, or hunt for geocaches and hidden garden treasures.
- Check the schedule at the Clarke County Fairgrounds for events like the Watermelon Pickers’ Fest, the Fall Fiber Festival, and the popular twice-a-year Luckett’s Fair, which “showcases more than 200 of the best ‘vintage hip’ vendors” selling antiques and furniture, architectural salvage, and other unique finds.
- Pick your favorite fall pumpkins from the patch at The Homestead Farm at Fruit Hill Orchard. Stop in on a Thursday evening for live bluegrass or a Saturday between now and October 1 for one of the Outdoor Maker’s Markets that feature items by local vendors, crafters, and growers.
- History buffs, nature enthusiasts, and horse lovers will all enjoy trail rides through the foothills at Rocking S Ranch. This ride will traverse some of the same ground covered by Civil War calvaries.
- The Shenandoah Valley Apple Harvest Festival (September 17-18) at the Frederick County Fairgrounds will have vendors, a car show, live music, inflatables, apple-pie-eating contests, and a canine challenge course.
- Book a cozy cabin or chalet near Basye. You’ll love the flexibility of the units at Chalet High, which can sleep up to eight people and are only minutes from four seasons of adventure at Bryce Resort.
- Bryce Resort is hosting Oktoberfest (October 8) with performances by Alt Washingtonia Schuhplattler Verein. Grab your stein, lederhosen, and/or dirndl and enjoy the show with good food and drink!
- Shenandoah Autumnfest (Saturday, October 1) at the Shenandoah County Fairgrounds in Woodstock will get you in the mood for fall with BBQ, local craft beer, cider, wine, and spirits, live music, vendors, harness racing, log splitting contests, and exhibits celebrating things like the honeybee’s 400-year history in Virginia.
- Head to the pumpkin patch and enjoy Sycamore Banks Farm a family farm located off US Route 11 in Mount Jackson. On (October 22-23) enjoy an evening of fall fun at the Supper and Spirits event.
- Brookside Cabins (Luray) is near the entrance to Shenandoah National Park and is the ideal home base for hikers and leaf peepers. This remodeled 1940s motel will help you find you now as they do not have the distractions of TVs or phones. Reserve one of the honeymoon cabins that come complete with hot tubs! You’ll also enjoy the vast, homestyle menu at the onsite Brookside Restaurant.
- Head to the pumpkin patch at Luray’s Valley Star Farm for a weekend pumpkin-picking experience with can’t-miss views. Fairview Fun Farm also lets you peruse the patch for your perfect pumpkin. You’ll also find a corn maze, hayrides, the “Tongue-Biter” mega slide, and more fall fun.
- The 53rd annual Page County Heritage Festival (October 8-9) at the Page County Fairgrounds offers lots of fall-themed and historic fun for everyone. You’ll find activities for kids, lots of craft vendors, a steam and gas engine show, demonstrations on spinning and crochet, basket making, apple butter making, and more.
- Fun fall activities at four-season Massanutten Resort include leaf peeping from hikes and decks, spa services, mountain biking and E-Bike tours on the Western Slope, archery, new Escape Dinners, golf, and the indoor water park. Choose lodgings from condos or hotel rooms and dine at several on-site restaurants.
- Dayton Days Autumn Celebration (October 1) and Elkton Autumn Days (October 15-16) are both fall festivals featuring arts and crafts vendors, live music, food trucks, and fall-weather activities for everyone.
- There’s no more wholesome way to spend an afternoon than picking apples at Showalter’s Orchard. Choose from over 30 varieties of apples, enjoy the panoramic views, and quench your thirst with some orchard-made sweet or hard cider.
- The Friendly City Inn Bed & Breakfast is a downtown mansion built in 1885 that’s been restored and offers cozy, comfortable rooms with vintage decor and modern amenities. It’s an ideal place to stay to access the best of Harrisonburg’s dining, shopping, and culture as well as attractions in the surrounding countryside.
- The International Festival (September 24) celebrates this area’s rich cultural and language diversity with international food, crafts, entertainment, and exhibits. The festival is free and family-friendly.
- Spend your Saturday morning exploring the fresh and local bounty at the Harrisonburg Farmers Market. You’ll find produce, meats, seasonal items, flowers, and more. The market is held in the open-air Turner Pavilion, which provides shelter from the elements, plenty of parking, and is close to a Virginia LOVEworks sculpture. There’s often live music.
- Swoope’s Inn at Meadowcroft is a historic and romantic inn where “old meets new.” You’ll stay in a renovated cabin on the 300-acre farm perfect for long walks or just kicking back and relaxing in the gardens. Cider House Bed and Breakfast (Waynesboro) is another updated historic property with comforts and views to die for, this time on a historic apple orchard farm.
- Enjoy the fall colors on a trail ride through the George Washington National Forest with North Mountain Outfitter (Swoope). Taking inspiration from the Old West, “North Mountain Outfitter rekindles the cowboy way of life by providing riders with a unique wilderness adventure.” Another great way to enjoy the season with an animal is at Point of View Alpaca Farm (Mt. Sidney) where you pair with an alpaca for a stroll around the beautiful farm.
- Skeeter’s Cornmaze at Creative Works Farm (October 1-23): Get lost in the themed 6-acre corn maze. When you find the way out, there are lots of other fall-themed things to do like gaga ball, corn hole, and shopping for pumpkins.
- Queen City Mischief and Magic (September 24-25): This annual event started as a home-grown fan festival for the Harry Potter series. It now transforms downtown Staunton into a charming village that welcomes all things mystical and magical. Themed dining, shopping, and lots of hands-on activities will keep the entire family busy.
- Oktoberfest at the Frontier Culture Museum (October 1): Explore the museum and celebrate the season with beer, German food, barbeque, and live music from the Stadtkapelle Gersthofen band and Elbe Musikanten German Band.
- Fall Foliage Bike Festival (October 14-16): This annual weekend of riding, sightseeing, and activities draws cyclists from up and down the mid-Atlantic region. A variety of well-marked routes suits riders of all abilities.
- Book a stay at the Iris Inn, a luxurious modern retreat with incredible views of the Shenandoah Valley from above. Enjoy a meal at the restaurant that focuses on locally sourced ingredients and take a hike or scenic drive to admire the changing leaves. You might also schedule treatments at the onsite spa, toast your toes at the firepit, and watch the sunset over the Valley.
- 51st Annual Fall Foliage Art Show (October 8-9): Historic downtown Waynesboro closes to vehicular traffic and welcomes 150 fine artists specializing in various media. Besides juried artwork, you’ll find craft beer, delicious food, and lots of live music.
- Waynesboro is located at the gateway to both the Skyline Drive and the Blue Ridge Parkway, widely considered among the top most beautiful roads in the country. Take in the colorful fall foliage with a scenic drive.
- Just a mile from the Blue Ridge Parkway, Lexington’s Sugar Tree Inn is free from tech to keep you focused on the here and now. The inn’s private rooms are spread across five buildings, all a short walk from the central lodge where you can enjoy watching passing wildlife from the huge dining room windows. Plan ahead for a Thanksgiving getaway full of autumn scenery and fresh-cooked meals.
- Take a trip to Swisher’s Farm (Fairfield) during pumpkin season for a large selection of pumpkins for decorating, carving, or cooking. You’ll also find gourds, cornstalks, and other fall-themed items. Swisher’s is open throughout the growing season, providing fresh-picked goodness for your table.
- Mill Day at McCormick Farm (October 1): This annual event centers around the operation of the historic mill and includes a Q and A session. There will also be vendors, music, food, activities, and farm tours to learn about the site’s agricultural research.
- Built in 1847, Mountain Home is a simple, but a well-appointed place to stay just steps from the Appalachian Trail and a 3 ½-mile walk from Shenandoah National park. This B&B is dedicated to being green and offers shared spaces for hikers as well as private rooms for other guests. Look forward to a delicious breakfast that can be prepared according to specific dietary needs.
- Visit downtown Front Royal for the 50th annual Festival of Leaves (October 15). You’ll find live music, arts and crafts, historic walking tours, hay rides, local art and quilts, and more. Start celebrating early at the block party at the downtown gazebo on the 15th.
- Tap into beer history at the Virginia Beer Museum. Not only will you learn about the Shenandoah Valley’s relationship to beer, but you’ll also see beer artifacts and taste some of the many beers on tap. Try something seasonal!
VISIT the SHENANDOAH VALLEY
one of the most popular
getaway destinations in Virginia