Staunton has plenty of trendy restaurants, local wine, luxurious lodgings, and unique shopping and entertainment opportunities. That’s why it’s the ideal environment for making new memories during a wonderful girlfriends’ getaway. You and your besties will want to make it an annual trip. Here’s a fun roundup of must-do activities.
We’ve updated this to reflect Covid conditions, however, check each business’s website or Facebook page to see current hours and offerings as these may change frequently. Many businesses are open for business in accordance with the current guidelines.
When you arrive, head straight for Staunton’s extremely walkable downtown. The Staunton Farmer’s Market is open from the first Saturday in April until Thanksgiving, and often features live music. Nibble a baked treat and scout out seasonal produce, honey, jams and pickles to take home.
Next, take a walking tour of Staunton’s five historic districts, visit the Woodrow Wilson Birthplace in person or virtually, or explore Augusta County’s living history at the Frontier Culture Museum. Stop in at Paris Cake Company for something sweet. And if cupcakes are your particular passion, you can’t skip the 100+ flavors available at Queen City Cupcakes. Chipotle pineapple or citrus mint, anyone?
Staunton has a lot to offer girlfriends who enjoy shopping together. Plan to spend some time exploring our boutiques, galleries, and antique stores. Design at Nine offers the latest in women’s fashion, shoes, and accessories. Try Latitudes for fair trade selections ranging from women’s apparel, to jewelry to recycled metal wall art. If you’re looking for more art to buy, check out Beverly Street Studio, where local artists exhibit and sell their work. You might also be captivated by the spectacular glass work at Sunspots Studios. Bonus: you can go into the studio and watch the artist blowing and sculpting the molten glass.
Relax and Recharge
If you’re serious about relaxing, why not share a spa day with your girlfriends? Indulge yourself Staunton’s newest spa, the Spa at the Blackburn. Choose from an extensive menu of skin treatments, massage, reflexology, and nail care delivered in an upscale, serene setting. You can select single treatments or combine them for a full or half-day experience. You can also relax at Breezy Hill Day Spa, housed in a historic mansion or Mill Street Body and Soul Day Spa and Salon, which is right downtown. Breezy Hill and Mill Street’s services also include massage, facials, manicures, and pedicures. Breezy Hill offers an all-day session that includes lunch.
Take a scenic drive to the Skyline Drive or the Blue Ridge Parkway to admire the world-famous views of the Shenandoah Valley from above. Hikers can take advantage of numerous trailheads along these roads.
For other ideas, see An Alternate Spring Break: 5 Awesome Hikes or Hiking Trips that Are Amazing in Fall. If it’s spring or summer, consider a side trip to Fishersville for a ramble around the Andre Viette Farm. Viette is world famous for his daylilies, and the farm and garden center is open year round. Get inspired by the beautiful gardens and take some plants home to your own. Another place for spotting blooms is Pebble Hall Wildflowers. Pick a bouquet of whatever’s in season, pet the horses, and plan a picnic to appreciate the view. In warmer weather, you might also rent a kayak or stand-up paddleboard from Rockfish Gap Outfitters in Waynesboro for a fun-filled day of paddling on the South River or Sherando Lake.
Drinks and Light Fare
If you’re thirsty, head to Ox Eye Tasting Room to check out their new outdoor space, and taste a variety of their wines. Follow your tasting with a full glass of your favorite. You should also visit one of Staunton’s newest venues, The Green Room, where you can enjoy wine, beer, and light fare such as apps and sandwiches. Or go to Yelping Dog Wine, where wine can be enjoyed by the glass or by the bottle, and you can munch on a cheese plate or gourmet grilled cheese sandwich. If you prefer a vineyard with a view, take a picnic to Barren Ridge Vineyards, only a short drive east of Staunton.
Dinner with Friends
Staunton boasts a rich restaurant scene with much to choose from, but if you’re looking for fare to share with your girlfriends, try a range of Spanish tapas and other Mediterranean food at Aioli Restaurant. If pizza and beer are more up your alley, split a gourmet pie at Shenandoah Pizza and Tap House. And if you still have room for more food, get some scoops of homemade gelato at The Split Banana. Here, a number of flavors, both traditional and exotic will tempt your taste buds. Guinness Extra Stout in a waffle cone, anyone? Many Staunton restaurants are offering indoor seating at this time, but downtown has extended its dining initiative, involving restaurants like Baja Bean Co., BLU Point Seafood Co., Laughing Bird Pho, Zynodoa, and more through January. And if you’d rather carryout, there are plenty of curbside pickup options.
Staunton After Dark
Many of Staunton’s watering holes host events on different nights of the week. Fun stuff includes trivia, live music, open mic nights, karaoke, vineyard walks, and virtual entertainment. Check out the Staunton on Tap and the Shenandoah Beerwerks Trail events page for more info on events. And if active puzzle games are your style, book a Staunton’s Crack the Code Escape Room. Groups of six or fewer use their wits to puzzle out clues and escape the room in under an hour. A trip to Staunton isn’t complete without some Shakespeare at the American Shakespeare Center. You can catch a performance – with Covid precautions in place – almost every night year-round.