Small Town, Big Adventure
Located just outside of Shenandoah National Park is the delightful little town of Luray, Virginia. Luray is proof that good things come in small packages. There is an amazing amount of things to do and see in this wonderful small town. Read on for 8 reasons why you need to plan a visit to Luray, Virginia.
1. Shenandoah National Park
I had to start the list off with the crown jewel of Virginia, Shenandoah National Park. Any visit to this area should include a stop here. It is so large and there is so much to do. I would plan for at least 2 days just to explore the park.
You can hike, bike, and/or get a Junior Ranger badge with the kids (or kids at heart!). Shenandoah is a history lover and outdoor enthusiasts dream location. For the those who love rustic luxury, stay or visit one of the park’s historic grand lodges: Big Meadow and Skyland. You can also drive all or part of the 105 mile Skyline Drive that runs through the park.
2. Luray/Hawksbill Greenway
Also for cyclists, skaters, and walkers, plan to check out the awesome Luray/Hawksbill Greenway. The 2 mile greenway connects rural and urban spaces as it meanders through town. Most of the greenway is along the river and there are lots of wonderful murals to see along the way. It’s perfect for families and riders of all ages. It is a paved, fairly level path that is completely separated from the traffic lanes.
3. Hawksbill Brewing Company
If you know the AdventureDawgs, you know we’re going to find a brewery! Even though Luray is small, they have a newly opened local craft brewery that is the bomb! We loved Hawksbill Brewing so much we visited twice. That’s impressive considering we were only in town for 3 days lol! The brewery is family friendly. You can also bring you fur babies and hang out on their lovely patio to play some games. Who’s up for a game of giant Connect 4?
4. Luray Caverns
Did you know Luray Caverns is the largest, most visited caverns in the eastern US? It is also a US Natural Landmark. They give guided tours through the caverns a couple times an hour. It is like an otherworldly experience. I would imagine it’s what hiking on Mars would be like. The guides are friendly and knowledgeable. The caverns also stay a comfortable temperature year round. It makes a nice place to avoid the sweltering heat of summer.
5. The Car Carriage Caravan Museum
When you visit Luray Caverns, you get two museums, in addition to the caverns, all for one price. The first is the Car Carriage Caravan Museum. It is located right next to the cavern’s entrance. If you love cars, this is the place for you. They have an amazing array of vehicles. It is a self guided walk through and starts from horse drawn buggies up through the vehicles of the 1950’s. It is a very impressive collection.
6. Luray Valley Museum
Have you ever wanted to travel back in time to see what it was like? Well a visit to the Luray Valley Museum is like doing just that. You get to experience what it was like on a Luray Valley Farm in the 19th Century. Check out a Conestoga wagon, visit the home of the county’s first Delegate to the Virginia Assembly, and read Confederate and Union signatures scrawled on the church walls. Best of all, the admission to this living history museum is also included in the cavern admission!
Did you watch the Dukes of Hazard growing up? I know I did and I loved it. If you are a fan of the show, you need to visit Cooter’s Place just outside of Luray. It has a cool and free museum full of memorabilia from the shows. You can also get your picture taken in the General Lee or Roscoe’s patrol car! They have a little diner if you want a lite lunch, dinner, or snack plus an ice cream counter, and gift shop. For the superfans, they are having the final Duke Fest the last weekend in July. Get your tickets for “Cooter’s Last Stand” July 29 and 30, 2017 before they run out. Most of the remaining cast members will be there and over 100 General Lees are signed up to attend. It should be quite an event.
8. Luray KOA
If you’re visiting the area, you need a place to stay. There are a few well maintained old fashioned motels in town. They are cute and clean. Our #1 place to stay in the area though, would have to be Luray KOA. It is the most picturesque campground I’ve ever stayed at. I felt relaxed and pampered just entering the property. They have plenty of amenities and large sites with full hookups. If you don’t have a camper, they have nice tent sites, a yurt, and cabins for rent. For more info, check out our upcoming Tripadvisor review and post on the campground.
So there you have our 8 reasons to visit Luray, Virginia. It amazes me how much this little southern town has to offer. Have you been there before? Would you add anything else to the list?
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