Virginia is a state that is rich in history, a location of many historical battles and monuments, and the birthplace of eight U.S. presidents. Within this historical epicenter also lies the magnificent beauty of fall foliage. The geography of Virginia blends the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Chesapeake, providing tourists with a variety of landscape to view the spectacular autumn colors.
Between the Blue Ridge Mountains, verdant woodlands, and rolling hills, Virginia has become a prime location for all fall foliage enthusiasts. Virginia’s foliage season begins in late September and goes until mid November. Peak foliage season for Virginia usually occurs between mid October to mid November when the mountainsides light up in a blaze of fiery reds and orange. From forest trails to scenic drives, Virgina offers an array of fall foliage tours.
Prince William Forest
Prince William Forest spreads over 15,000 acres of Virginia’s piedmont forest, making it the largest expanse of Piedmont Forest in the National Park Service. With 37 miles of hiking trails and 21 miles of bicycle-accessible roads, Prince William Forest has become a prime location for Virginia fall foliage tours. Prince William Forest Park has an 11 mile Scenic Drive that provides a colorful sightseeing tour from the comfort of your car. Another favorite walking tour is The Quantico Falls hike, which takes you to the fall line where the Quantico Creek transitions between the Piedmont and the Coastal Plain. Prince William Forest Park is located only 35 miles south of Washington, DC, and is a central location with easy access from most eastern states.
Virginia’s Skyline Drive is a National Scenic Byway that runs 105 miles along the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains. This scenic drive takes places within the Shenandoah Valley at Front Royal, and travels down the mountain to Waynesboro, where it meets the Blue Ridge Parkway. Keep a look out for the Appalachian Trail, which runs parallel to Skyline Drive, and provides spectacular views and lively wildlife. Stretch your legs at The Appalachian Trail which covers 100 miles of Shenandoah National Park, and offers 500 miles of hiking trails.
The National Park Service offers up-to-date information on highway conditions, and offer a variety of maps for you to follow while on Skyline Drive. From the North District you can take US Hwy 340 to US Hwy 211, traveling from Front Royal to Thornton Gap on a 31 mile stretch. From Central District take US Hwy 211 to US Hwy 33 which runs from Thornton Gap to Swift Run Gap, the next 34 mile stretch of highway. The last 40 mile stretch of Skyline Drive starts from the South District taking US Hwy 33 to US Hwy 250 from Swift Run Gap to Rockfish Gap. We hope you enjoy your scenic fall foliage drive.
The Chesapeake Bay region of Virginia boasts more than 6,500 acres of rolling hills and 1,100 miles of shoreline. This spacious area has beautiful fall foliage and is perfect for hiking, biking, and walking tours.
Shenandoah National Park
Shenandoah National Park is just 75 miles from our nation’s capital of Washington, DC. To reach this Park you will take the Skyline Drive along the crest of the mountain and enjoy beautiful scenic views. Shenandoah National Park has over 500 miles of trails, including 101 miles of the Appalachian Trail. Take the shorter trails to the waterfalls, or delve deep into the forest on your walking tour of beautiful Virginia fall foliage. Hike under the cooling oak trees along the Appalachian Trail, and watch as the trees show off a display of vibrant autumn colors.