Shenandoah County has something for everyone. It’s a lofty claim, but truthful. History buffs will revel in museums, battlefields, and historic buildings while shoppers with an eye for creativity will gush over artisan wares. Love great food? Who doesn’t?! Farm to table is alive and well, and that includes beverages, friends.
Come along and learn about the outdoor recreation flowing from mountaintops to riverbeds, and all the great experiences in between. This is Shenandoah County, Virginia.
A great getaway plan must include great eats along the way. Therefore, in the Town of Edinburg, the Edinburg Mill Restaurant is a must. Located on the lower level of the historic 1848 Edinburg Mill, the chefs center their seasonal menu around fresh, local ingredients.
Old Dominion Doggery & Burger Shoppe in Strasburg serves 100% grass fed beef and 100% beef and kosher hot dogs. You won’t believe the topping options! Get creative with guacamole, pineapple, pork rinds, bananas … among so many other things. They even have a breakfast hot dog, if your mind stretches that far.
Flour and water are necessities for baking. The aptly named Flour & Water Co. in Woodstock excels at baking. There you’ll score freshly baked breads, brownies, quiche, and more. A seasonal lunch menu includes sandwiches, salads, and soups. Their Sunday afternoon tea is so popular that you should strive to make a reservation.
Country stores are the backbone of the backroads. If you need fishing bait, they’ll have it. A giant jar of dill pickles? Score! They’re also famous for old fashioned candy, jams and jellies, local honey, hoop cheese, and fantastic homemade everything. You’ll find a half dozen or more country stores across Shenandoah County, and you’ll want to stop if you see one.
Pro Tip: See how Route 11 Potato Chips are made at their factory in Mount Jackson and be sure to take a few bags home.
Time to Play
What’s your passion? Get on the Shenandoah River from a number of public access points (including historic Meems Bottom Covered Bridge), play a round of golf at Shenvallee Golf Resort in New Market, hike Seven Bends State Park in Woodstock, or hit the mountain bike trails at Bryce Resort in Basye.
Guided horseback riding is an incredible experience. Make your way through George Washington National Forest with the help of Fort Valley Ranch. Go down under via Virginia’s only cavern elevator at Shenandoah Caverns. The chilly cave system is perfect for hot summer days.
All of those experiences are cool, however, the coolest may be those that take you high into the sky. Try hang gliding from Woodstock Tower or skydiving out of New Market.
Shenandoah County has a variety of artisan shops and galleries, and the Shenandoah County Artisan Trail dots the map for you to find each one and then some. Broaden your vision of art to include agri-artisans and their respective spaces.
Care to create art of your own? In Woodstock, Suzanne’s Studio can become your studio as you paint your own pottery, canvas, and clay.
The Shenandoah Valley Music Festival puts world-class music on an outdoor stage at Orkney Springs Shrine Mont Camp and Conference Center in Woodstock. The festival occurs each summer and brings well-known names like The Four Tops, Black Violin, Phil Vassar, Madeline Peyroux, and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band – and that’s just this year.
Get Hands-On with History
Prior to pioneer settlement, the Shenandoah Valley was the fertile home of Native Americans. Learn about Shenandoah County’s history from as far back as they can tell it through the Battle of Cedar Creek (1864) at Cedar Creek and Belle Grove Plantation National Historical Park.
Strasburg Museum offers exhibits and artifacts from the 18th century through the 20th, plus it’s housed in a Southern Railway depot. Check out a collection of local pottery as well as Native American artifacts when you visit.
The Battle of New Market occurred in 1864 and is recounted at New Market Battlefield State Historical Park. The Virginia Museum of the Civil War tells the story of Virginia Military Institute cadets as young as 15 bravely fighting in the battle. The Emmy-winning film, Field of Lost Shoes, plays every hour.
See more war-related landscapes at Fisher’s Hill Battlefield in Toms Brook and Hupp’s Hill Civil War Park and Visitor Center in Strasburg. At the latter, stories of women and children maintaining the homefront take center stage.
The Shenandoah Valley Cultural Heritage Museum in Edinburg is a great introduction to the history of Shenandoah Valley transportation, commerce, industry, and historic culture in general.
If you’ve yet to visit “Camp Roosevelt” in Shenandoah National Park, visit the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Museum in Edinburg first. It tells the tales of those who built President Roosevelt’s getaway camp, the very first CCC camp.
Sip the Good Stuff
The Shenandoah Spirits Trail is your gateway to more than 45 craft breweries, wineries, distilleries, and cideries in the Shenandoah Valley, and a chunk of those are found in Shenandoah County.
Check out Box Office Brewery, a new brewery situated in the renovated downtown Strasburg Strand Theatre. For wine, consider a stop at Muse Vineyard in Woodstock. Their 2009 Clio Blend took home the 2015 Virginia Governor’s Cup.