Swim in gin-clear water, discover First Landing heritage and find the real Pochohontas at these family-friendly parks:
First Landing is a family favorite because it offers visitors so many exciting activities in a stretch of serene nature that stretches for nearly 3,000 acres. Boat or fish on the lake, enjoy a picnic in the picnic area or swim. There are also numerous cycling trails, as well as a beach to relax on. Children will be thrilled by the playground and fascinated by the displays on Indian society that line the Cape Henry Trail. Chesapeake Bay Center boasts fascinating displays on the First Landing.
You have seen the Disney movie now visit the park for Pochahontas Premieres concerts and family entertainment at a 2,000 seat amphitheater. 64 miles of trails are joined by a museum dedicated to the workers who helped build the state park system. Leisure pools, complete with slides and toddler areas and nature and history programs spell endless entertainment.
Besides its wonderful name, Hungry Mother is known for its sandy beaches and water sports rentals (fishing, canoes, kayaks, paddleboarts). Families can also enjoy hiking and biking trails and retell the story of Hungry Mother and the Native American raid on a local settlement.
Follow the legendary Appalachian Trail, discover the Grand Canyon of the South and more when you hike in these Virginian State Parks:
Back in 1767 the intrepid Daniel Boone was purportedly the first European to discover the Breaks. Sometimes called 'the Southern Grand Canyon', this verdant swoop of valley is a dramatic sight and well worth negotiating the steep hiking trails to see. There are 25 miles of trails, plus trails for mountain biking and horse riding. World class rock climbing and hydro biking on Laurel Lake are among the park's other attractions.
Perhaps one of the country's most scenic hiking trails is right here in Virginia, though it runs all the way from Georgia to Maine some 2,200 miles in total. The Virginian stretch includes the soaring Mount Rogers and plenty of whispering sub-alpine forest. Spot American black bear, timber rattlesnake, elk and beaver species.
Collect fossilized shark teeth along the Potomac River. Spot American bald eagles, kingfishers and ospreys soaring over the park as you hike its extensive trail system. Explore the Northern Neck of the river, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. There are plenty of facilities for fishing and boating as well.
From new sports like fairy stone finding to trout fishing on Dothat's lake and biking and horseback riding near Lake Anna, Virginia is a great state for sports-fans:
Lake Anna is one of Virginia's most popular with sports fans. When it comes to water sports, this large lake can provide. A bathhouse and boat launch facilitate your boat trips. What's more, there are biking and horseback riding facilities and trails and you can even pan for gold after learning about the mine's history at the Visitor Center, or on guided tours of the Goodwin Gold Mine.
Besides the legend of the fairy stones, this park is known for its 168 acre lake, which melts into the Philpott Reservoir. That's a lot of space to play on. The park offers exceptional facilities for water sports fans, such as boats of all kinds, from paddleboats to kayaks, plus an equestrian center, outdoor playground and numerous hiking and biking trails. All this, just minutes from Blue Ridge Parkway.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Douthat has a lengthy history as a park packed with adventure. Snuggled in some of the state's most breathtaking scenery, its mountain-overlooked 50 acre lake is skipping with trout and there are plenty of boat rentals and bike trails to explore. What's more, there are playgrounds and picnic areas, an amphitheater and even a restaurant from which you can look out on the lake.