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23 Spectacular Places to Visit in West Virginia

I have mentioned a few times on this site that I think West Virginia is so underrated. These are some of the best places to visit in West Virginia – destinations that just prove how overlooked this state is!

We have included West Virginia bucket list places that are cities, parks, and more. Did we leave off any cool places in WV? Let us know in the comments! Thanks!

West Virginia Bucket List Destinations – Map

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Best Places to Visit in West Virginia

Harpers Ferry

Harpers Ferry is one of the most beautiful small towns in West Virginia. It’s also recognized because of Harpers Ferry National Historical Park.

It is located right at the crossroads of two mighty rivers- the Shenandoah and Potomac, and there is a large overlook that you can see Virginia and Maryland from known as ‘The Point’.

In the town and park area, you can discover wonderful 19th-century buildings, a museum dedicated to the Civil War’s 1859 abolitionist raid site, John Brown’s Fort, and so much more.

Best Places to Visit in West Virginia - Harpers Ferry

Harpers Ferry is also a place where visitors can stop by the Appalachian Trail Visitor Center to see the exciting long-distance hiking trail. For those with a sweet tooth, visit True Treats Historic Candy, a unique candy shop that dates back to the mid-1900s that sells everything in vintage packaging.

Alternatively, you can stop by the Gilded Flea Market to purchase antiques (or stop by Vintage Lady for handmade gifts).

Don’t forget to take the city tour known to be America’s oldest ghost tour. It is located in Harpers Ferry’s Low Town and lasts for two hours.


The capital of West Virginia is Charleston. The city is situated where the Elk and Kanawha Rivers meet. Here, you can visit the West Virginia State Museum and Theater, the beautiful Governor’s Mansion, spot the impressive gold-domed State Capitol, and much more.

Make sure that you don’t miss The Clay Center for the Arts and Sciences and Discovery Museums which also contain a concert hall where locals and other state artists perform. You will also find a Planetarium here.

West Virginia State Capitol in Charleston

Charleston is also home to hip art galleries located on the downtown riverfront, including boutique and vinyl record shops alongside cozy, small restaurants.

Besides the historical attractions in Charleston, the city is home to many green parks, both new and old.

You’ll also find street art and cafes at several parks in the city including Kanawha County Parks & Rec, Wine Cellars Park, Little Creek Park, and more.

New River Gorge National Park

New River Gorge National Park should definitely be on your West Virginia bucket list if you like beautiful nature, wild rivers, hiking, and other activities.

The National Park in West Virginia is the newest park to be designated as such by the United States National Park Service. Here, you will be able to find plenty of natural and historical sites to see.

New River Gorge National park

In the park, you can hike to sites such as the fascinating 3,030-foot-long New River Gorge Bridge constructed in 1977, the transcontinental Midland Trail, and check out the hidden Sandstone Falls and Brooks Falls (and Boley Lake).

Sandstone Falls is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in West Virginia!

Grandview State Park (now part of New River Gorge NP)

Being a popular place for hiking, picnicking, and sight-seeing, Grandview State Park is 1,400 feet above the river, and it rewards the visitors with some of the most outstanding views in the state.

Visitors can also get a glimpse of the gorge’s fascinating cultural heritage from the Main Overlook. An active railway and the town of Quinnimont can be seen from here and it is where the first coal was transported out of the gorge in 1873.

Another impressive feature are the Catawba rhododendrons that bloom there in Grandview. The purple Catawba rhododendrons bloom in mid-May, while the great white rhododendrons bloom in July. The exact times vary from year to year, so make sure to check it out before your visit.

Blackwater Falls State Park

Located in West Virginia’s Tucker County in the Allegheny Mountains, Blackwater Falls State Park is famous for its 62-foot-tall Blackwater Falls.

Blackwater Falls State Park 1

This is one of the best places for hikers because it’s one of the most photogenic places in the park besides Lindy Point, Elakala Falls, Pendleton Point Overlook, and many more natural spots.

Blackwater Falls State Park is a paradise for outdoor adventurers, especially hikers, and it offers numerous hiking trails like the Davis Trail, which is connected to Monongahela National Forest, Balanced Rock Trail that crosses Elakala Trail and other trails, Lindy Point Trail that reaches Gee Haw Trail at a height of 3,000 feet to provide mesmerizing views, and many more.

Snowshoe Mountain Ski Resort

As a part of Pocahontas County in West Virginia, Snowshoe Mountain Ski Resort is one of the best places for winter activities in the state.

The territory of the ski resort offers three great skiing areas, more than 60 trails, and 4 bike trails that enable visitors to participate in many fun activities like tubing, swimming, snowmobiling, and biking. It doesn’t matter which season you visit Snowshoe during- you always will find many wonderful things to do!

Snowshoe Ski Resort in WV

You can also take off-road tours on the 4-seat Polaris RZR vehicle in the snow-covered mountains, relax in a wonderful spa with a massage, eat delicious food in local restaurants, and try wine next to a cozy fireplace.


Wheeling is located in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains on the Ohio River in Ohio and Marshall counties.

Wheeling provides visitors with many unique attractions and historical sites, such as the 1,650-acre park built in the 1800s, the massive Wheeling Suspension Bridge built in 1849, museums, theaters, interesting shops, and so much more.

Visitors can also check out the Capitol Theatre, which is one of the oldest operating theaters in West Virginia, having been constructed in 1928. It is still operating, and you can even watch Broadway shows there.

Things to do in Wheeling WV

Another popular site is the Kruger Street Toy and Train Museum, which will show you everything about trains and the toy-making industry from the 20th-century.

Also, the city is known for its family-owned restaurants and cozy cafes where you can try local food and enjoy nice wine after strolling and checking out the Blue Church or Cathedral of St. Joseph. Click here to find out more things to do in Wheeling, WV!


Home of West Virginia University, one of the nation’s most well-known colleges, Morgantown is a lovely city for you to discover beyond the campus (okay, and on campus too)!

Morgantown is, as mentioned above, well-known for its university, WVU, which is home to the Milan Puskar Stadium, as well as spring wildflowers and old-growth forests located in the WVU Core Arboretum on the Monongahela River, the Metropolitan Theatre built in 1924, lovely beaches on Cheat Lake, and so much more.


Morgantown is also an ideal place to visit in West Virginia for everyone because the city offers a wide variety of activities like Dorsey’s Knob, rock climbing, birdwatching at Cranesville Swamp, visiting the gallery of Benedum and Davis artists, walking on 1889 Dent’s Run Covered Bridge, and more.

Monongahela National Forest

One of the most popular landmarks in West Virginia, the Monongahela National Forest, is located in the Allegheny Mountains. The forest is full of lush green trees, rivers, and rich wildlife.

The national forest offers many mining activities and sites to visit like Canaan Valley Ski Resort, Spruce Knob- the highest point in West Virginia, and Cass Scenic Railroad State Park where you can see old trains from the beginning of the 20th century and even beforehand.

Dolly Sods Wilderness in Monongahela National Forest

You can also check out the Dolly Sods Wilderness Save, where you can enjoy a lovely valley covered with red spruce trees, boggy forests, and windswept boulders.

One of the most significant and popular places in the Monongahela National Forest is Seneca Creek Falls, which is a wonderful natural waterfall you can climb after taking the Seneca Creek Trail to see an amazing view of the area.

Berkeley Springs State Park

The beautiful town of Berkeley Springs is one of the best places to visit in West Virginia. When there, you will find Berkeley Springs State Park, a park that is built around the city’s spa and mineral water culture.

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This spring water is 74.3 degrees, and it is known to have a natural curing ability. It is especially popular for people who have digestive disorders. In the park, you can find and visit bathhouses where you can enjoy amazing spa procedures and massages.

Berkeley Springs State Park entrance

In Berkeley Springs State Park, visitors can also see great historical monuments like Saint Vincent De Paul Catholic Church, George Washington’s Bathtub where the first President enjoyed relaxing, and the Museum of the Berkeley Springs located in the 1815 bathhouse.

You can also hike to Prospect Peak to see the sunset and so much more!

Charles Town

Located in Jefferson County, Charles Town was named after President George Washington’s brother, Charles Washington, whose home is also located here.

Besides that, Charles Town is known for the Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races, as well as the Jefferson County Museum where visitors can learn more about the history of the area.

Charles Towne West Virginia

It is also a great place for adventure lovers. You can also check out the River Riders Family Adventure Resort, where you can raft, hike, bike, and enjoy nature.

Don’t forget to visit Bozzo Family Vineyards, which is a couple of miles away from the town and where you can try locally-made wine and learn about how it’s made.

Seneca Caverns

This is one of West Virginia’s karst show caves and is an epic place to visit! The mysterious and beautiful Seneca Caverns is located in the Germany Valley close to Riverton.

It used to be a place for the Iroquois confederacy tribe of Seneca Natives as a ceremony facility back in the 1400s. It was commercialized in 1930. The Caverns are part of the Appalachian Mountains where the great Native trading route passed. It was also used as storage and shelter.

Seneca Caverns

If you plan to travel to West Virginia and visit its beautiful sites, then the amazing Seneca Caverns is a must-visit. They have 45-minute tours that will take you 165 feet underground where you can learn more about this underground kingdom and its mineral rocks and features.

Cathedral Falls

Cathedral Falls (also known as Bird Rock Falls) is one of West Virginia’s highest and most stunning waterfalls. It falls into a natural amphitheater, which is what the falls were named after.

It’s about one mile east of Gauley Bridge and is located in a small roadside park along US Route 60. Although the falls are visible from the road and the parking area, a short walk will provide much better views!

Cathedral Falls in West Virginia

From the Forest Heritage Scenic Byway, Cathedral Falls is a short and very scenic riverside walk. You can also see French Wide Falls and Mill Shoals there.

Kanawa Falls

Kanawa Falls is located in Glen Ferris and is yet another beautiful place worth visiting in West Virginia!

This wide waterfall flows into the Kanawa River. From an accessibility perspective, it’s quite a manageable place to visit. However, if you’re not visiting by boat, you should settle for some distant views of the falls.

Something that differentiates this particular waterfall from others in West Virginia is that Kanawa has water all year round. Notably, since the dam diverts some water to the power plant, the falls are less powerful during the dry season.

Hawks Nest State Park

Hawks Nest State Park is a 270-acre recreational area with a nature museum, aerial tramway, hiking trails, jet boat rides, and one of the most challenging whitewater rafting rivers in the country. There is also a 31-room lodge that features well-supplied suites, fine dining, and ample conference and meeting space.

Hawks Nest State Park

Hawks Nest is a scenic overlook just 10 miles north of the New River Gorge Bridge that offers a bird’s eye view of the rugged New River Gorge National River below.

Though rafting will certainly keep you occupied, Hawks Nest State Park offers a variety of other activities. For example, you can take the aerial tramway from the top of the scenic New River Gorge canyon at Hawks Nest Lodge to the marina at the bottom.

Visitors can also take guided bridge walks, airplane rides, rock climbing, horseback riding, and bicycle rentals in the area.

Babcock State Park

With its 4,127 acres of breathtaking scenery, Babcock State Park is one of West Virginia’s most popular locations. The Glade Creek Grist Mill, a fully-functioning version of the original Cooper’s Mill that once stood on the property, is located 20 miles southeast of the New River Gorge Bridge.

Babcock State Park in WV

Nature photographers will absolutely love the Glade Creek Grist Mill at Babcock State Park, which is a quite popular destination for artists to capture the beauty of the area.

Whitewater rafting in the nearby New River Gorge, hiking, fishing, and mountain biking are all among the other activities available in the park.


Regarded as “Gateway to the Shenandoah Valley,” Martinsburg has been named the “fastest-growing city in the state.” The city serves as the county seat for Berkeley County, located in the heart of the Eastern Panhandle.

Patterson Mill in Martinsburg

The area is famous for a few historical sites like the Adam Stephen House, Childhood Home of Belle Boyd, the R&O Roundhouse, etc.

When it comes to parks and recreation, 23,000 acres of Sleepy Creek Wildlife Management Area are accessible to visitors for outdoor exploration. The area offers hiking, birding trails, biking, boating, canoeing, kayaking, and fishing spots for its visitors.


Bluefield, located at the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, has a lot to offer to its visitors these days as it tries to move beyond its coal mining past. Bluefield is a perfect place to live, work, and play because of its proximity to world-class fishing, hiking, and skiing destinations.

When in Bluefield, visit the Ridge Runner Train, a family-friendly attraction that runs from spring to early autumn in Lotito City Park.

The train runs on Saturdays and Sundays from 12 PM to 6 PM. Walking and biking paths, the Yakkity Yak playground, tennis courts, and other park amenities are all accessible nearby.

Gauley River National Recreation Area

The Gauley River National Recreation Area includes 25 miles of the Gauley River and 6 miles of the Meadow River, both of which flow through scenic gorges and valleys with a diverse range of natural and cultural features.

When the water from Summersville Dam is released in September, whitewater rafting enthusiasts flock to the Gauley River to experience what many consider to be one of the most exciting whitewater rafting experiences in the world.

Gauley River National Recreation Area

Gauley River is also prominent for having many unusual plant species, like Virginia Spiraea, Appalachian Blue Violet, and Balsam Squaw-weed.

Stonewall Jackson Lake State Park

The park has public hunting lands and an excellent fishing hole at the dam’s foot. Stonewall Resort, Briar Point Campground, and Stonewall Marina are all located within the park. The visitor center at Stonewall Jackson Lake State Park is full of exhibits and information about the area.

The Stonewall Jackson Resort State Park, just 3 miles off I-79, is a secluded retreat surrounded by the rolling hills of Stonewall Jackson Lake. It has facilities to accommodate all ages.

These include an Adirondack-style lodge, cottages, campgrounds, a wide range of recreational sports (including boating and golf), and 3 restaurants.

Coopers Rock State Forest

Coopers Rock State Forest, opened in 1936, is home to some of Almost Heaven’s most iconic views. The park, which is about 13 miles from Morgantown and located just off I-68, has canyon overlooks, picnic shelters, historical sites, 50 miles of hiking and biking trails, sandstone cliffs for climbing, cross-country ski terrain, a lake ideal for trout fishing, and a nearby river for rafting.

Coopers Rock State Forest

In case you plan to visit in the wintertime, note that the main gate to Coopers Rock State Forest is closed until April. You can park in the day-use parking area and the forest is still accessible by foot or bike.

The Greenbrier

The Greenbrier is a luxury resort in Greenbrier County, near White Sulphur Springs in the Allegheny Mountains.

The place has 710 guest rooms, 20 restaurants and lounges, over 55 indoor and outdoor activities, 36 retail shops, and overall 11,000 acres of land.

The Greenbrier

It provides spacious accommodations, private estate homes, shopping spots, golf courses, pools, tennis courts. From hiking through 11,000 acres of breathtaking mountains and a diverse selection of restaurants to gambling at the on-site casino and a tour of the Cold War bunker, there is indeed a lot that visitors and guests can do there!


Parkersburg is the county seat of Wood County, West Virginia, and is one of the largest cities in the state (yet only has 31,000 people)!

One of the main attractions in Parkersburg is Blennerhassett Island, a historical site located just off the city’s shoreline in the middle of the Ohio River. The island has lovely trees and well-kept grounds, making it a relaxing setting for horse and carriage rides offered by the mansion and museum.

Blennerhassett Island Historical State Park

Another famous sight there is Fort Boreman Park. It’s a state historical landmark that has been repurposed as a public area with scenic views of Parkersburg and the Ohio River.

Every year, thousands of locals and tourists come to learn about the history and participate in the activities available.


Huntington is a city in West Virginia located at the base of the Ohio River and at the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains.

Transportation, steel processing, and shipping were once its primary industries, but healthcare, tourism, and finance have come to replace them in recent decades.

Huntington Rose Garden

Visitors should take advantage of the city’s numerous parks, which provide entertainment and an escape into nature’s tranquility. A few technology and art museums, an amusement park, and fine-dining restaurants are also located in the city.

We hope that you found some really epic destinations in West Virginia to put on your WV bucket list!

What are your favorite places to visit in West Virginia? Let us know in the comments!

Additional West Virginia Travel Resources

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6 thoughts on “ 23 Spectacular Places to Visit in West Virginia ”

You mentioned Greenbrier,WV, but said nothing about Green bank, the infamous radio telescopes. It’s hard to get to cause GPS doesn’t work in this area of WV, but very interesting for space enthusiasts!

Oh wow that is actually insanely cool to know because I have always been a space enthusiast! I am going to try to get out there when back in VA in June! Thanks so much for the tip!

Bozzo Winery is located on U.S.Route 9,Loudoun County, Virginia ,not West Virginia Steve

Did I miss it? apologies if I did but Audra State Park. It’s small but a gem! And Beartown also! So so many places. We have a beautiful state.

Charles Town, not Charles Towne. Also how is Shepherdstown, oldest town in the state, home of Shepherd University, the Bavarian Inn, James Rumsey Monument, Old German Street Bakery and historic civil war trail and cemeteries not on the list? Beautiful town and a must see! Also Harpers Ferry was home of the Niagara Movement, precursor of the NAACP as well as HBCU Storer College.

Thank you very much, corrected! We will try to update it and add the info next time.

10 Best Places to Visit in West Virginia

Tucked away between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Ohio River, West Virginia is an absolutely beautiful part of the States to explore, with a plethora of incredible landscapes on show.

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Its many mountains, forests, and whitewater rivers lend themselves perfectly to all kinds of fantastic outdoor activities. As the state is mostly overlooked by tourists, you’ll often have all the incredible scenery to yourself.

Despite being quite sparsely populated and rural, there are some lovely mountain towns for you to visit, with lots of interesting Civil War historical sights and cultural landmarks on show. Very much a hidden gem, West Virginia’s gorgeous countryside and natural wonders are waiting to be explored.

10. Cass Scenic Railroad [SEE MAP]

Cass Scenic Railroad

© Alan Kolnik / Dreamstime

As well as taking you through some lovely countryside, the Cass Scenic Railroad also takes you into the past, as you ride in a beautiful old carriage pulled by a steam-driven locomotive. Hearing the whistle blow and seeing steam billow out above the train is a magical experience, and train lovers will enjoy taking a ride on the heritage railroad.

Surrounding the tracks is a delightful state park of the same name. Around the historic lumber mill town of Cass, there are many beautiful hills and valleys for you to explore, with hiking, mountain biking, and boating all on offer.

One of the best moments of the train ride is when you approach the summit of Bald Knob – the third highest peak in the state – and see the world stretching away towards the horizon.

9. Seneca Rocks State Park [SEE MAP]

Seneca Rocks State Park

© Kenneth Keifer / Dreamstime

One of the most impressive and recognizable natural sights in the whole of West Virginia, the distinctive Seneca Rocks lie at the heart of a wonderful state park of the same name; they are definitely worth checking out if you want to go rock climbing or hiking in a pristine setting.

The jagged rock formations have a remarkable 375 different rock climbing routes for you to try out, and the panoramic views from the tops of both North Peak and South Peak make the climb well worth the effort.

With the gently ululating forest-coated hills below only punctuated by seas of green grass and fields, the scenery is a delight. Hiking along the state park’s many paths and trails is a lovely way to spend a morning or afternoon.

8. Fayetteville [SEE MAP]


© Steveheap / Dreamstime

Despite its small stature, the tiny town of Fayetteville certainly packs a punch with all that it has for you to see and do. While its historic downtown area is full of great bars, restaurants, and galleries, the main reason that everyone visits is the astounding nature that lies at its doorstep.

With the millennia-old New River coursing nearby, Fayetteville attracts lots of thrillseekers, who come to partake in the exhilarating outdoor adventure activities it has to offer up; kayaking and whitewater rafting down the New River Gorge are popular pastimes.

In addition to this, visitors can go horseback riding or llama trekking through the nearby natural areas, or rock climbing or rappelling in the gorge and fishing along the river.

7. Hawks Nest State Park [SEE MAP]

Hawks Nest State Park

© James Vallee / Dreamstime

Lying just to the north of Fayetteville, Hawks Nest State Park is another fantastic place to head if you love the great outdoors. There are lots of different activities for you to choose from, as well as beautiful landscapes to explore. While the most majestic view is undoubtedly that of New River Gorge Bridge and the reflective waters below it, there is loads of lovely scenery on show.

Visitors can go hiking or mountain biking along a plethora of different trails and paths that snake their way through the surrounding forests. As well as going on a heart-racing whitewater rafting trip down the New River, you can also take a scenic trip on the state park’s aerial gondola. The view is particularly spectacular during fall when the foliage below turns a mesmerizing array of yellows, reds, and oranges.

6. Snowshoe Mountain Resort [SEE MAP]

Snowshoe Mountain Resort

© Alex Grichenko / Dreamstime

Located on Cheat Mountain, Snowshoe Mountain Resort is the largest ski resort in the area. Consequently, every winter, hordes of skiers and snowboarders from all around the US and further afield descend upon its many slopes, pistes, and trails. With cute, cozy cabins for you to stay in, the resort is a lovely place to vacation.

While most people visit Snowshoe Mountain Resort during the winter, summer also has its charms; the surrounding forests have lots of great hiking paths and mountain bike trails for you to explore.

In addition to this, there is a golf course on offer, as well as a spa and swimming pool complex. Guests can also enjoy watersports on the lake.

5. Berkeley Springs State Park [SEE MAP]

Berkeley Springs State Park

Andrew Bossi / Wikipedia

Home to a magnificent mineral spa that has been used for eons, Berkeley Springs State Park is a lovely place to head to if you want to unwind, relax, and bathe in its restorative waters. Long known for their medicinal powers, the warm waters bubble up from natural mineral springs.

The state park has been used as a health resort for over 250 years, with the first bathhouse built here all the way back in 1784. The historic Roman bathhouse is very picturesque with all the lovely trees, gardens, and pools around it. Visitors can go for a dip in one of the baths, enjoy a steamy sauna, or book an invigorating massage.

4. Charles Town [SEE MAP]

Charles Town

© Georgesheldon / Dreamstime

Not to be confused with the state capital Charleston, the historic Charles Town is a very popular place to visit and was named after George Washington’s youngest brother. Founded in 1787, you can still see many of the family’s former homes and farms scattered about here and there, and there is a very quaint, small-town feel about the place.

A great place to head to if you want to learn more about the region’s rich history is the Jefferson County Museum, which has lots of interesting artifacts and photographs on display. Charles Town also makes for a laidback base if you want to head off to explore the wilds of the Shannondale Springs Wildlife Management Area.

There’s also a water park located nearby if you want to splash about and have some fun, and a casino if you want to try your luck at blackjack, poker, and slot machines.

3. Charleston [SEE MAP]


© Francisco Blanco / Dreamstime

The largest city in the whole of West Virginia, Charleston lies at the point where the Elk and Kanawha Rivers meet. Its impressive State Capitol building is set in a very scenic spot overlooking their tranquil waters. As it is the commercial, cultural, and administrative heart of the region, there’s a lot going on, and numerous festivals and events take place here during the year.

While walking around town, you’ll see lots of beautiful old buildings, which display a variety of different architectural styles. There are a couple of fantastic museums for you to check out, such as the Avampato Discovery Museum and the West Virginia State Museum.

In addition to its historical and cultural attractions, Charleston has some brilliant restaurants, bars, and cafes scattered around the city, with lots of parks and nature spots also on offer. These make for some fantastic hiking and mountain biking; the nearby Kanawha State Forest is particularly delightful to explore.

2. Blackwater Falls State Park [SEE MAP]

Blackwater Falls State Park

© Steveheap / Dreamstime

One of the most photogenic places in the whole of West Virginia, Blackwater Falls State Park certainly is majestic; the glorious waterfall that lies at its heart is undoubtedly the highlight of what is on show. Covering a vast swathe of territory in the Allegheny Mountains, the state park is centered around Canaan Valley and Blackwater River, with lots of lovely forests and woodlands found to either side.

Exploring the myriad of paths and trails that meander through the stunning scenery is a magical experience as you pass beautiful viewpoints and sparkling waterfalls. It is well worth camping overnight in the park if you have the opportunity.

Coursing over Blackwater Falls, the white jets of water stand out delightfully against the greens of the trees lining the riverbanks. Fall is a particularly pleasant time of year to visit, as the foliage creates an unforgettable scene.

1. Harpers Ferry [SEE MAP]

#1 of Best Places To Visit In West Virginia

© Svetlana Larina / Dreamstime

The most popular tourist attraction in the whole of the state, Harpers Ferry is located at the point where the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers meet, with enchanting, forest-coated mountains all around it.

Due to its strategic location, the small town was fiercely fought over during the American Civil War. As such, there are a number of interesting historical sights for you to check out, with plenty of old buildings and important landmarks on show.

While many visitors come to learn more about the role Harpers Ferry played in the Civil War and to see its many sights, just as many come to enjoy the magnificent wilderness in the area. Whether it’s ziplining, whitewater rafting, or inner tubing, there are loads of fun activities for you to try out.

Hiking along the scenic Appalachian Trail is a must if you’re looking to immerse yourself in nature. While Harpers Ferry is undoubtedly quite a touristy place, there is a lovely laidback vibe to the town, with lots for you to see and do.

Top 17 Most Beautiful Places to Visit in West Virginia

West Virginia is one of the most beautiful and underrated regions in the US. The Eastern state is mostly known for its timber and coal mining industries but in more recent years has since transformed into an outdoor lover’s paradise.

The scenery and landscapes here are nothing short of jaw-dropping with sprawling lakes, stunning mountains (West Virginia is often known as the Moutain State), white-water rivers, and gorgeous winter ski resorts. Here are the best and most beautiful places to visit in West Virginia…

1. West Virginia State Capitol, Charleston – a beautiful building to explore in West VirginiaWest Virginia State Capitol

An inspiring State Capitol building, the West Virginia State Capitol is one of the most impressive buildings in Charleston. The classical-style legislature building overlooks the scenic Kanawha River and its swirling waters.

The magnificent building with impressive flooring, delicately engraved flowers, Austrian crystal chandeliers and marble walls is one-of-a-kind. Built in the 1930s by renowned architect Cass Gilbert, the state capitol is a part of the West Virginia Capitol Complex and the Governor’s Mansion.

Standing atop the building is the highest state capitol dome in the United States. Watch the Senate in session or catch a glimpse of the shimmering dome at night, this historic building is truly a sight to behold.

2. Monongahela National Forest – a beautiful place to explore with gorgeous vistas, country roads and flowing streams

Beautiful places to visit in West VirginiaMonongahela National Forest

A vast paradise of beautiful forest, rugged landscape and free-flowing rivers, the Monongahela National Forest is located in the Allegheny Mountains of East Virginia.

Engulfing more than half of the Pocahontas County, the Monongahela encompasses some of the most ecologically diverse areas in the US. With five federally designated wilderness areas, river systems, the Mon provides a wide range of recreational opportunities.

Hike the majestic Falls of Hills Creek, rock climb the quartzite-capped Seneca Rocks, camp beside the beautiful settings of Williams River, or simply drive through the Highland Scenic Highway, the Monongahela is an ideal place to explore the beauty of nature.

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3. New River Gorge Bridge – the longest arch bridge in the Western Hemisphere

New River Gorge Bridge

Ranked amongst the finest mega-bridges of the world, the New River Gorge Bridge is located near the city of Fayetteville in the Appalachian Mountains. Built in 1977, the bridge connects the hills on either side of West Virginia’s New River Gorge.

A marvel of engineering, the 3,030 feet long bridge with an arch of 1,700 feet is one of the longest steel span bridge in the western hemisphere.

Easily the most photographed places of West Virginia, the bridge is a sheer work of structural art.

4. Babcock State Park – one of the most stunning places to visit in West Virginia

Babcock State Park West Virginia

Adjacent to the bubbling New River Gorge National River with rugged cliff tops and a serene atmosphere is the beautiful Babcock State Park. Located in the Fayette County of West Virginia, the Babcock state park covers 4,127 acres of pristine beauty to connect with nature.

The heart of the park is the legendary Glade Creek Grist Mill which is a replica of the original Cooper’s Mill. A living monument of the numerous mills which once thrived in West Virginia, the Glade Creek provides freshly ground cornmeal.

Seep in the breathtaking views of the cliffs and waterfall or stroll along the Boley and Glade Creek Lake, this iconic state park is a perfect tranquil retreat.

5. Daniel Boone Park – a gorgeous park with beautiful natural scenery

Daniel Boone Park West Virginia

West Virginia’s riverfront capital, the Daniel Boone Park is nestled along the bubbling Kanawha River near the capital city of Charleston.

The Park commemorates the early Charleston resident and assemblyman who was a pioneer frontiersman of the United States.

A scenic park tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Charleston city, the Daniel Boone Park offers a quaint and relaxed environment along the banks of the lovely River.

Enjoy a day out picnicking, boating or feeding the wildlife, the park is an excellent place to sit back and delight in the calm scenery.

6. Bear Rocks Preserve – one of West Virginia’s most loved beauty spotsBear Rocks Preserve

An iconic treasure of the Mountain State, the Bear Rocks Preserve is a 477-acre subalpine landscape covered in heath barrens, massive boulders, and windswept shrubs.

Owned by the Nature Conservancy, the Bear Rocks form the northern border of the very popular Dolly Sods Wilderness of the Monongahela National Forest.

Over the years winds and rains have sculpted the quartz and sandstone rocks into quirky formations. At 4,000 feet elevation, the high rock and scoured ridgelines make for an excellent hike to witness & capture the breathtaking beauty of this massive landscape.

7. Harpers Ferry National Historical Park – a very popular place to visit with the family

Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

Harpers Ferry West Virginia

At the confluence of the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers is the charming historic town, Harper’s Ferry. In and around this quaint town is the Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. Located within 50 miles of Washington DC, the park is a stepping stone to the era of American history.

Stroll the picturesque streets or visit the historic buildings and museums, this region will give you an insight into early American life & the Civil War.

Hike to the site of the Civil War battle and the famous Ohio Canal Trail or explore the restored historic district, you’ll love Harper’s Ferry for its endless recreation and nature.

8. New River Gorge National Park – a slice of a scenic paradise and one of the best places to visit in West Virginia

New River Gorge West Virginia

New River Gorge National River

Easily one of the most beautiful places to visit in West Virginia the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve is protected by the United States National Park Service.

The sparkling water of the New River is known for the calming presence amongst the West Virginian woods. One of the oldest rivers of the continent, the New River Gorge National River conserves approx. 70,000-acres of land between the towns of Hinton and Fayetteville.

Established in 1978, the New River is one of the oldest rivers on the continent.

The country’s best whitewater rafting and rock climbing destination, New River continues to shape the geological features of the longest and deepest gorge in the Appalachians.

Whether you seek solace or adventure, an experience in the New River will leave you renewed and forever changed!

9. Appalachian National Scenic Trail – the most loved recreational footpath in the US

Appalachian National Scenic TrailAppalachian National Scenic Trail WV

One of the most popular trails of the US, the Appalachian National Scenic Trail traverses 14 states through majestic mountains, forests, meadows and culturally important lands along the East Coast. While the stretch of the Appalachian Trail in West Virginia is brief but lives fully to the state’s motto.

The extensive 2,200-mile trail of the AT weaves through the mountain ridges and raging rivers along the border.

While the trail around the Harper’s Ferry is bustling, southern West Virginia’s trail cuts through the majestic mountains and ridges of the Jefferson National Forest and the Peters Mountain wilderness.

10. Spruce Knob – West Virginia’s highest point in the Allegheny MountainsSpruce Knob West VirginiaSpruce Knob - best places to visit in West Virginia

Amidst the wonderful wilds and enchanting mountains of the mountain, the state is the beautiful and unchanging Spruce Mountain and its summit, Spruce Knob.

An alpine mountain covered with spruce trees, grassy openings, and forested ridges gives you the feel of the north without having to travel that far.

At 4,863 feet on the Allegany Mountains, the Spruce knob is a part of the Monongahela National Forest. Blanketing the East Coast, the dense spruce forest of the Spruce Mountain offers excellent hiking and backpacking opportunities.

Catch the awe-inspiring scenery from the lookout tower or hike through the graveled trails, Spruce Knob is a true wonder of West Virginia.

11. Coopers Rock State Forest – a hidden wonder of the West Virginia state forests

Coopers Rock State Forest

Once a hideout of a fugitive cooper trader, the Coopers Rock State Forest is a slice of heaven miles from Morgantown. Established in 1936, the 12,747-acre park extends through Monongalia and Preston counties.

A local’s favorite, the park features canyon overlooks, historic sites, sandstone cliffs, cross-country ski terrain and a perfect river for rafting.

With a chain of stunning rock cliffs along the Cheat River Gorge, the main overlook provides a striking panorama of the gorge and distant horizon.

Hike along the enormous boulders and rhododendron blooms or enjoy the breathtaking overlooks, the Cooper Rock is a relaxing getaway with friends and family.

12. Summersville Lake – one of the most beautiful lakes in West Virginia

Summersville Lake West Virginia

This gorgeous West Virginia beauty spot is a fantastic place to visit or take a vacation – you can camp or stay in cozy cabins located around the lake.

The stunning lake was formed by a rock-fill dam on the Gauley River and is now is the largest lake in West Virginia, with around 2,700 acres of superb quality water.

A fantastic place to hike, swim or just relax and take in the wonderful and tranquil West Virginia scenery.

13. Cranberry Glades Botanical – an exotic ecosystem which is also home to ancient bogs

Cranberry Glades Botanical

Offering a stark different climate from Central West Virginia, the Cranberry Glades Botanical Area preserves the largest area of bogs in the Mountain State.

The predominant acidic wetlands of the north are found in the Hillsboro Town of Pocahontas County.

Part of the Monongahela National Forest, the bogs are full of cranberry plants, wild orchids, and carnivorous bug-eating pitcher plants.

The 750-acre of the botanical area offers a boardwalk to explore the unique ecosystem and learn about this landscape of the southern mountains.

14. Trout Run Valley – a hiker’s heaven in the Great North Mountain Range

Trout Run Valley West Virginia

A tributary of the Cacapon River, the Trout Run Valley belongs to the Potomac River. Located in the Hardy County of West Virginia, the Trout Run Valley offers stunning vistas of the Little Sluice and Massanutten Mountains.

Part of the George Washington National Forest, the Trout Run Valley is a hiker’s paradise with numerous trails.

Catch a stunning vista of the ascending mountains, beautiful ridges, and streams from different perspectives in the 27-mile hike of the Trout Run Valley.

15. Cheat Lake Trail – a soothing escape along the serene lake and beautiful West Virginia countrysideCheat Lake Trail West Virginia

A scenic wooded 4.5-mile trail along the east banks of Cheat Lake is known for its scenic lake views and lavish forests. The trail located on the east of Morgantown off Morgan Run Rd offers a tranquil place to enjoy nature and its varied fauna and flora.

The wide crushed stone path trail is easily accessible on foot and bike.

A beautiful place to come and relax, the Cheat Lake Trail also offers beaches for swimming, piers, and boat docks. Trail along the former rail corridor or view the charming nature at the trail’s southern end near Greystone, Cheat Lake offers the best spot for leaf-peeping during fall.

16. Snowshoe – West Virginia’s best winter destination

Snowshoe West Virginia

The largest winter East Coast ski destination in the Mid-Atlantic, Snowshoe village is located in Pocahontas County in West Virginia. Nestled in the Allegheny Mountains, the village of Snowshoe lies atop the summit of the mountain.

Heaven for skiers and snowboarders, Snowshoe offers wide acres of expanded terrains and evenly trails for ski beginners and maverick. With extensive biking trails, snowmobiling, tubing, biking, and much more, the choices at Snowshoe are endless.

17. Blackwater Falls State Park – one of the most spectacular places to visit in West Virginia

If you are looking for a majestic place that has a serene vibe, look no further! One of the best places to visit for nature aficionados is Blackwater Falls State Park.

The 57-foot cascade is located in the Allegheny Mountains of Tucker County which is about 2 miles from Davis. This majestic fall features stunning points such as Lindy and Pendleton, popular places for proposals and one of the most photographed spots.

Hikers in particular will definitely enjoy this park as it offers 20 miles of hiking trails and the longest sledge run on the East Coast. This attraction is open all year round, so whenever you happen to be in West Virginia why not visit this amazing park?!

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Scott started his travelling life back in 1999, when he headed off on a solo jaunt to South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia with just a backpack, a camera and a spirit for adventure. After that, the travel bug bit hard and now he is always seeking to head off somewhere new. Over the years he has lived in Italy, Qatar, Ireland, UK and the US but his spiritual home will always be Rome as this is the city which most satisfies his unrelenting craving for culture, good food and great football. Scott loves nothing better than to be behind the camera and also runs his own blog and Instagram page. He also counts Melbourne, Cape Town and Tel Aviv among his favourite places. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @scottbalaam




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