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Category: Accommodations

Our Guide to Em“bark”ing on a Pet-Friendly Trip to Staunton

If you’re like most Americans, you rarely leave home without your pandemic pet! Fortunately, there are a lot of pet-friendly activities, plenty of lodgings that cater to paws, and a wealth of restaurants and watering holes that are totally cool with your pet joining you on the patio. Here’s a “pound-up” of where your pet is welcome in Staunton.

Pup-cation Fun for People and Pets

Get outside to howl, run, and play fetch. Here are our favorite parks and hikes.

  • Gypsy Hill Park has a paved 1.3-mile loop that offers a nice view of the park as well as doggy bag stations and convenient trash cans. The star of the show, however, is the Gypsy Hill Bark Park. Divided into separate enclosures for small and large dogs, it gives pups a chance to meet and greet while their owners make small talk. The enclosures include tunnels, training ladders, “fire hydrants,” and benches for humans to sit. 
  • Leashed pets are welcome on the majority of the hiking trails in Shenandoah National Park. It’s actually one of just a few national parks with this perk. For day-trippers and campers, George Washington and Jefferson National Forest stipulates that dogs must be leashed on hiking trails (but may go off-leash in undeveloped areas). Make sure you pack plenty of water for your furry friend and check them for parasites after your outing.

  • Coyner Springs Dog Park in Waynesboro boasts a large, open off-leash area as well as trails for leashed dogs and their human packmates. The nearby Crozet Tunnel trail is a good hike for leashed dogs, especially if you’re afraid of the dark! Make sure you take your flashlight.

  • Leashed dogs are also welcome on the Augusta Springs Wetland trail, but you shouldn’t take your dog if you think he might disturb the waterfowl and other wildlife.

Un-Pack Your Bags

Kenneling your dog is expensive, sad, and can cause a lot of stress shedding. Fortunately, many Staunton inns and hotels offer luxury accommodations for people and dogs, so you can share that king-sized bed just like at home. Just check the fine print: lodgings may have restrictions on size and number of pets. They may also apply additional fees to bunk your fur baby.

  • Hotel 24 South is both a luxury, historic hotel as well as a pioneer in Staunton’s dog-friendly accommodations.

  • The Blackburn Inn opens select rooms to dogs and has extensive grounds to explore while you walk them. 

  • Howard Johnson by Wyndham is steps from downtown shopping, dining, and the farmers’ market. There’s also free parking, light breakfast, and wifi.
  • Sleep Inn Staunton ensures you’ll sleep well in one of their Designed to Dream rooms. Bring your pet: there’s no pet fee!
  • Best Western Staunton Inn boasts comfortable rooms, easy access to I-81, and no pet fee.
  • Comfort Inn Staunton has free breakfast, a pool, and is convenient to both the highway and downtown Staunton.
  • Motel 6 Staunton allows pets and lets kids stay free. You’ll also enjoy free coffee and expanded cable options.
  • Holiday Inn Staunton Conference Center allows up to three pets. It’s convenient to golf, the interstate, and kids eat free with paying adults.
  • Red Roof Inn Staunton is a great budget option. Kids and one pet up to 80 pounds stay for free.
  • Econo Lodge is convenient to the Frontier Culture Museum and downtown Staunton. It’s pet-friendly and offers free coffee.
  • Walnut Hills KOA and Sherando Lake Campground both accommodate families and dogs.

Paw-some Patios

Staunton has several dining spots where the waitstaff doesn’t mind stepping over Teddy’s outstretched paws. They might even bring him a dish of water!

  • Well-behaved dogs on leashes can join you at a table on the covered, gated patio at Table 44
  • The patio at Byer’s Street Bistro also welcomes dogs. Spend your lunch hour dining with Rex and watching the bustle of downtown. Bonus: Dogs will find water bowls and often treats.

  • Just want a quick bite? Stop by the outdoor patio at The By & By for coffee drinks, beer and wine, and sandwiches. 
  • The patio at Thai Staunton Restaurant is pet-friendly.
  • If you’re feeling like eating Mexican, take your pooch to Mi Rancho’s outdoor dining space where you can get relax with a big, tasty margarita. 
  • Prefer Italian? Family-owned Maria’s Pizza & Italian Restaurant has a dog-friendly patio where you can share your spaghetti with Lady.
  • The Pampered Palate, Cranberry’s Grocery & Eatery, The Split Banana, Nu-Beginning Farm, and the Clocktower Eats & Sweets all have delicious food and allow dogs at their sidewalk seating. 
  • Get there early and grab a spot at the Peck’s Bar-B-Que’s dog-friendly picnic table. There’s shade and nearby grass for your pet to sniff. There’s also a lone pet-friendly table at Sam’s Hot Dog Stand where you can enjoy a sack of all-beef hot dogs.
  • Share your BBQ and ice cream with your dog at one of the two dog-friendly picnic tables at Hog Wild BBQ and Klines Dairy Bar
  • Edelweiss Restaurant serves authentic German food like bratwurst and jager schnitzel. If you dine outside at one of the covered tables, Fido can join you and lick knackwurst juice off your fingers.

Bark-tastic Breweries

Want to spend an evening out having beers with your best fur buddy? Raise a glass because many of Staunton’s breweries are pet-friendly. 

Other Staunton Stops that are Mutts about Dogs

It’s not surprising to come across a dish of cool water waiting on the sidewalk on a hot day in downtown Staunton. Here are other pet-friendly destinations.

  • Your pet will be the star of the show at the Well Balanced Paw Pet Wellness Shoppe and Barkery. Specializing in nutrient-rich pet nutrition and relaxing small-animal massage, this downtown destination will keep your pet balanced and healthy for years to come.

  • Latitudes has all kinds of fair-trade gifts, including this snazzy puppy place-mat!
  • Locally owned Pets N Pals has been selling pet supplies like habitats, food, and toys since 1989. They also have healthy pets of all kinds for sale if you’re seeking a new companion. Petco has a big selection of supplies as well as fish, lizards, birds, spiders, and rodents. Also, check out Augusta Dog Adoptions and the SPCA for pets that need new homes.
  • It’s common to see happy dogs walking with their owners as they shop for dinner at the Staunton Farmers’ Market. Leashed dogs can also browse the aisles at Tractor Supply Co.

A Family-Friendly Guide to Staunton, VA

Are you bringing the family to Staunton this summer? Awesome choice! From historical sites to outdoor adventures to family-friendly places to eat and play, there’s so much to do that the entire family will have a great time. Are we there yet?

How to Enjoy the Great Outdoors

Staunton is a hilly town, but the 1.3-mile paved loop at Gypsy Hill Park is relatively flat and perfect for young cyclists. Better yet, there’s not a lot of traffic, so riding conditions are very safe. Gypsy Hill also has a skate park and ponds for fishing and feeding the ducks. There’s a dog park, too, if some of your babies are covered with fur.

Mountain bikers will find challenges at Montgomery Hall Park in the form of several miles of wooded trail with varying difficulty levels. Next, the family can cool off at the public swimming pool before playing a round of disc golf or burning some energy on one of the playgrounds.

Staunton is situated in some of Virginia’s best hiking country, so take advantage of hikes in Shenandoah National Park and George Washington and Jefferson National Forest. Consider Augusta Springs Wetlands, Sherando Lake Recreation Area, and North River Gorge.

Want to head underground to escape the heat? Visit the Claudius Crozet Blue Ridge Tunnel, a hiking trail that follows an old set of train tracks underneath Afton Mountain. You might also explore the formations in one of the area’s commercial caverns like Luray Caverns, Endless Caverns, and Grand Caverns.

Where to Find Entertainment

Spread out your blanket under the stars near the Gypsy Hill Bandstand where there’s live music four nights a week during the summer. Staunton’s historic 70-member Stonewall Brigade Band will get you parading with marches and big band classics on Monday nights. Tuesday night’s Praise in the Park will treat you to gospel and activities for kids. Local and regional bluegrass entertainers will visit Staunton on Wednesday nights, and Thursday brings you Jazz in the Park. Don’t miss the Happy Birthday America celebration on July 4th. Have a blast with a 5K race, a lively parade, a parent/child baseball game, concessions, live music, and fireworks.

Teach the kids to knock down some pins at family-owned Staunton Lanes! There’s also a snack bar and an arcade. If you’d rather exercise your brains, put your wits together to solve one of the active puzzles at Crack the Code. You’ll have an hour to solve multiple puzzles and escape one of the themed rooms. 

Staunton is home to the American Shakespeare Center‘s Blackfriars Playhouse, the world’s only re-creation of Shakespeare’s indoor theatre, so it would be a shame to go home without experiencing it. However, if your kids are a little young for the Bard, you might find an age-appropriate movie at the Visulite. Bonus: if you’re a parent sitting through another video-game-themed movie, at least you can enjoy a beer while you watch.

Where to Learn

Step back in time at the Frontier Culture Museum, which invites visitors to explore the lives of the Shenandoah Valley pioneers from the 1600s through the mid-1800s. Costumed interpreters answer questions and demonstrate daily activities. The Woodrow Wilson Birthplace and Presidential Library teaches about the life and times of this president who hailed from Staunton, as well as educational programs and downloadable content targeting younger audiences.

While Sunspots Studios isn’t a museum, you’ll learn all about the process of blowing glass if you stop in for a live demonstration. Using extreme heat, artisans blow and shape molten glass into globes and art pieces. Visitors can purchase completed (and cooled) glass in the gallery.

How to Explore

Explore the Saturday morning Staunton Farmer’s Market to find the tastiest local produce and baked goods. Listen to live music and talk to the producers at this weekly event that celebrates community. You can also see more of Staunton by hopping on the green trolley as it loops through town. Hop on and off at area attractions like the Jumbo Museum, where you can visit the oldest motorized fire engine in Virginia, and Gypsy Hill Park, where you can ride the $1 Gypsy Express Mini-Train that’s been delighting the young-at-heart for more than 60 years. Families will also love the way the free Traipse! app makes walking fun. Half historic tour and half scavenger hunt, Traipse encourages you to take an active part in learning about the town. 

Where to Stay

Staunton has a number of casual lodgings that are perfect for families. Reserve a room at the Howard Johnson. There’s an outdoor pool, and it’s an easy walk to downtown and dining. Tru by Hilton and Fairfield Inn and Suites by Marriot have great locations convenient to downtown Staunton as well as I-81 and I-64. Fairfield Inn and Suites has an indoor pool. If you’re hoping to spend more time in nature, book a campsite at Shenandoah Valley Campground or Walnut Hills Campground.

Where to Eat

Kathy’s Restaurant heaps on the goodness with traditional breakfast fare like pancakes and omelets served all day. Alternatively, grab some coffee and lite fare to go from The By & By. Catch some lunch at Wright’s Dairy Rite, a diner where your kids can get their burgers and fries in boxes that look like classic cars. Shenandoah Pizza serves gourmet pizza by the pie or by the slice celebrating local ingredients and lore. Skip the chain restaurants and grab a family-friendly meal at Remedy Burger, where there are smash burgers for adults and “happy trays” for smaller appetites. The Depot Grille serves up delicious American fare and includes a menu for kids. Finally, indulge yourself with a selection of fresh-made gelato flavors at The Split Banana, or head to Kline’s to get custard-style homemade ice cream. 

Where to Shop

If you want something to keep the kiddos busy on the ride home, Pufferbellies Toys & Books will deliver big time. This is the largest independently owned toy store in the Valley, and its carefully curated shelves will fascinate the kid in all of us. Readers will find a big selection of new favorites at the Book Dragon, and hobbyists and gamers will like Staunton Trains and Hobbies, the Hobby Surplus Outlet, and The Dragon’s Hoard.

Romantic Getaways in Staunton

Want to do something really special for your main squeeze this Valentine’s Day? How about a romantic getaway in Staunton? You’ll feel the love as you unwind and reconnect while sharing luxurious accommodations, decadent meals, and relaxing strolls through our historic downtown. We’ve even found some fun Valentine’s Day activities to try. Here’s our guide to where to stay, what to eat, and what to do on your romantic getaway in Staunton. 

Where to Stay

First things first: If you’re planning a romantic getaway, you’ll need a cozy nest away from home. Dreamy lodgings abound in Staunton, but we especially like those that are luxurious but also offer historic charm. The Hotel 24 South and The Blackburn Inn both feature elegant rooms in restored buildings, beds with pillowtop mattresses, and spa-like showers. You can impress your Valentine with the Blackburn Inn’s Love Is in the Air: Valentine’s Day Package, which includes prosecco and a pair of champagne flutes, a rose-petal turndown, a late checkout time, and dining credit at the onsite Second Draft Bistro. Perhaps a trip to the spa to relax and rejuvenate sounds like dream, so be sure to book in advance.

The Berkeley House Bed and Breakfast offers upgraded elegance in a large Queen Anne Victorian residence decorated in period style. Your stay includes an elaborate breakfast as well as an option to reserve a champagne and chocolates special. Frederick House offers the charm and individuality of a B&B as well as the comfort and amenities of a larger hotel. The beautiful and traditionally decorated 20-room hotel encompasses space in five historic downtown buildings. Ask about the Shakespeare Theatre Ticket special. Romeo and Juliet begins February 25th!

Cocktail Spots and Romantic Restaurants

Stop to flirt over some wine at Yelping Dog Wine or The Green Room, or grab a private tasting of Virginia estate wine at Ox-Eye Tasting Room. If the weather cooperates, you might also take a picnic to Barren Ridge Vineyards for delicious wine and one of the best views in Augusta County. If you’d rather refresh yourself with fresh craft beer, Shenandoah Valley Brewing Co. and Redbeard Brewing Company are located downtown. Nearby, Byers Street Bistro serves up some seasonal winter cocktails.

The Clocktower Valentine’s Day Soirée is happening on February 12 and 13. Start the night with happy hour at Tempest Bar & Lounge before dining on a decadent three-course dinner. Choices include shrimp, prime rib or lasagna, and tiramisu or creme brulee. After dinner, you’ll enjoy the comic show BoxCar Speakeasy & Reese Middleton’s Vintage Valentine Revue. Tickets include champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries.

The Baja Bean is a fun place to take your date for dinner. Enjoy all your Tex-Mex favorites and a wide selection of craft beer on tap. They’re running Valentine’s Day special that includes fajitas for two, a special drink or dessert to share, and a lovely local bouquet from Harmony Harvest Farm. Would you rather spend Valentine’s Day cuddled up in your room? Stave off your hunger pangs by ordering a heart-shaped pizza from Shenandoah Pizza & Tap House.

Make reservations to share a special night over Chef Boden’s four or five-course seasonal tasting menu at The Shack. The options change each week, but winter ingredients might include cranberries, hazelnuts, lamb, rockfish, and more, all paired with suggested wines. 

If you’re seeking a spot that has the feel of the big city, look no further than Zynodoa. Choose a unique cocktail that incorporates locally sourced ingredients like herbs or honey or select beer or wine from the extensive list. Next, order a dinner featuring “inspired Southern cuisine.” On the menu: Virginia blue crab fritters, Polyface Farm sweet tea brined chicken, Wade’s Mill apple & cheddar grits, and Saunders Brothers Honeycrisp apple cobbler. Zynodoa also serves an amazing brunch.

Sweet Somethings

Feed your romance with a cone from The Split Banana, which serves a big selection of freshly made gelato flavors like coffee toffee, cherry cheesecake, or Guinness extra stout. You can hold hands and share cones as you stroll around downtown window shopping and checking out the Victorian architecture. If you prefer soft serve with a side of nostalgia, pull up to the old-fashioned drive-in and fill your dessert cravings at Wright’s Dairy Rite, a Staunton institution since the 50s.

Don’t wait until Valentine’s Day night to steal your sweetie’s heart. Meet for coffee and pastries at Réunion, a Staunton sweet spot where you can order espresso, buttery croissants, and other baked goods that taste like they’re fresh from Paris.

Wow your honey with a beautifully decorated and delicious dessert from Paris Cake Company, Gorgeous cupcakes decorated like flowers? Check. Cut out cookies decorated like rainbows? Raspberry swirl cheesecake? Check and check. Bonus: You can indulge in these treats after an equally delicious dinner at Table 44. Firkin Pie Company’s February lineup includes chocolate cream, raspberries, and cream, and bananas foster all baked fresh. Even Cupid couldn’t keep his hands off this fine, fine pie!

It will be love at first bite when you present your special someone with a box of handmade, gourmet chocolate from Cocoa Mill Chocolates. The Valentine’s Day assortment even comes in an edible box and was voted best overall in a Wall Street Journal taste test. Giancarlo Fine European Pastries creates incredible chocolates made from Cordillera Colombian 65 % cacao and 36% dark milk, single bean chocolate.

Valentine Fun

A meeting of the minds is always a good idea, so Crack the Code Escape Room makes for a genius Valentine’s Day date. What’s even better is that if you book a spot for February 13, they’re running a special where participants get 10% off and some chocolate from Giancarlo Fine European Pastries! Another good date is to book a Couple’s Getaway Package at the Blackburn Inn spa. This day of pampering will ease away all your cares. It includes champagne and strawberries and massages for both of you.

The Valentine Flower Workshop at Redbeard Brewing with Brin’s Posy (February 9) is marketed for everybody, especially men! Unleash your creative side as you make a Valentine’s Day bud vase for your favorite person. Not only will you get to sip tasty craft beer, but you’ll also save money on flowers this year. Keep busy on Valentine’s Day weekend with a Silk Scarf Workshop by Suz Hues of The Foundry Pop-Ups. You’ll learn a new technique and take home wonderful memories and a new scarf. February 10.

Stoke the romantic fires on February 11th with the Blackburn Inn’s WinterStage production Isn’t It Romantic. This evening of classic love songs features broadway star Nancy Anderson and jazz pianist Wells Hanley. Romeo and Juliet is on stage at the Blackfriar’s Playhouse. Book your tickets to see Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers navigate the dangers of hate and love. We dare you not to cry.

If you’re still looking for a Valentine’s Day gift, make sure to check out our wealth of independent shops, galleries, and antique stores downtown. You’ll find a range of wares including candles and bath supplies, gourmet food and olive oil, art-glass decor, jewelry, clothing, games and gaming supplies, art, and vintage treasure of all kinds.

For more events, visit Staunton on Tap.

Plan Your Next Vacation in Staunton

Did you know that January 25th is National Plan a Vacation Day? And just like us, we bet you REALLY need one! From romantic weekends to family getaways, to weekends with the girls or guys, let us help with some quick recommendations on what to do on a vacation in Staunton!

Romantic Weekend

Share romantic meals, be pampered in luxurious lodgings, sightsee on one of America’s best main streets, and even discover the great outdoors. Here are some of Staunton’s best bets for couples.

Where to Stay

  • The Hotel 24 South and The Blackburn Inn both feature elegant rooms in tastefully updated historic buildings. Check the specials for romantic add-ons like champagne, chocolate, and spa packages.
  • The Berkeley House Bed and Breakfast offers an elaborate breakfast as well as packages for champagne and a trip to the Blackfriar’s Theatre.
  • The Frederick House is a 20 room inn, comprised of 5 historic houses, located in downtown Staunton, Virginia. They offer the privacy of a hotel, with the personal experience of a Bed and Breakfast.

Where to Eat

What to Do

  • The Staunton Farmer’s Market is open from the first Saturday in April until Thanksgiving, and it features fresh produce, baked goods, and live music. 
  • Take a self-guided or seasonal guided walking tour with the Historic Staunton Foundation.
  • Visit the Woodrow Wilson Birthplace to learn about Wilson’s connection to Staunton and much more.
  • Stop to flirt at Ox-Eye Tasting Room or take a scenic drive to Barren Ridge Vineyards to reconnect with your sweetie over some local wine.
  • Shop downtown Staunton’s independent stores and galleries for a range of wares including gourmet chocolate and olive oil, art-glass ornaments, unique gifts and art, and vintage treasure of all kinds.
  • Take in a show at the American Shakespeare Center. The 2022 season includes Romeo and Juliet, The Comedy of Errors, The Tempest, and more.

Family Fun

Looking for a wonderful family trip where fun, history, and the great outdoors are all in big supply? Here’s how to enjoy Staunton’s best with your family.

Where to Stay

  • The Fairfield Inn and Suites is a family-friendly hotel convenient to both downtown Staunton as well as the interstates. The hotel offers a free hot breakfast, free Wi-fi, and an indoor saltwater swimming pool.
  • The Storefront is a two-level downtown lodging with a full kitchen, two queen-sized beds, and a unique bar/lounge area with a television.

Where to Eat

  • Voted one of the best breakfasts in the Valley, Kathy’s Restaurant heaps on the goodness with traditional breakfast fare served all day.
  • Your kids will love the caboose parked outside of The Depot Grille. They’ll also love the American fare served inside for lunch and dinner. The menu includes a section for kids. 
  • Shenandoah Pizza’s gourmet pies celebrate local ingredients and lore. Parents will be pleased with the extensive tap list.
  • The menu at Baja Bean has loads of Tex Mex options including choices for the younger set and an impressive tap list. 
  • Finish your meal with one (or more) of the 18 fresh-made gelato flavors from The Split Banana.

What to Do

  • Pool your wits to solve one of the active puzzles and escape a themed room at Crack the Code Escape Room
  • Step back in time at the Frontier Culture Museum, which invites visitors to explore the lives of the Shenandoah Valleys pioneers from the 1600s through the mid-1800s.
  • Watch as artisans use extreme heat, to blow and shape molten glass into globes and art pieces at Sunspots Studios
  • Family favorites for shopping include treasure hunting at Staunton Antiques Center and hobby shopping at Staunton Trains and Hobbies. Pufferbellies is the largest independently owned toy store in the Valley, which has a hands-on policy and something to fascinate kids and grownups alike.
  • Hit up one of Staunton’s great city parks like Gypsy Hill Park to feed the ducks, hit the skatepark, and play on the playgrounds. Montgomery Hall Park has more playgrounds as well as miles of hiking and biking trails.
  • There’s always something happening at Augusta Expo. Events include the Augusta County Fair, monster truck rallies, Bigfoot conventions, and more. 

Getaway with the Girls

Share the best of Staunton’s trendy restaurants, local wine, and unique shopping with your besties. You’ll make so many new memories that you’ll want to make Staunton an annual destination.

Where to Stay

  • Not only does 4-suite Gibson’s Warehouse have an interesting history as a working railroad warehouse, but it’s also just steps from downtown Staunton dining and entertainment. Renovated efficiency apartments are appointed with full kitchens and living spaces. There’s also a common space in the lobby with seating so guests can mingle and socialize.
  • Staunton Stays is a four-suite boutique hotel in a beautifully renovated Victorian house. Each suite is decorated according to a different theme. All offer full kitchens, modern bathrooms, living quarters, and access to a laundry room.

Where to Eat

  • Try a range of Spanish tapas and other Mediterranean food at Aioli Restaurant.
  • Enjoy wine by the glass or bottle at Yelping Dog Wine. Share a cheese plate or munch on gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches.  
  • Savor wine, beer, and light fare such as apps and sandwiches at The Green Room.
  • Dine at Table 44 for amazing Southern food with a twist.

What to Do

Guys’ Weekend

Staunton has golf, cigars, the great outdoors, and food and beer.  What else do you need for an awesome guys’ weekend? 

Where to Stay

  • Tru by Hilton has modern amenities, access to both the interstate and downtown, and generous public gathering spaces.
  • Avid Hotel focuses on getting the essentials right at a value price.

Where to Eat

What to Do

5 Ways to Enjoy Your Staunton Staycation

Not ready for far-away travel just yet? You might want to skip that mid-winter trip out of the country. Why not take a Staunton staycation instead? We’ve rounded up five ways to have a blast and make new discoveries right here in Staunton. Here are our tips for seeing our beautiful city through fresh, new eyes.

Fill Your Days With Local Fun

How well do you really know Staunton? Why not find out with one of the unique tours you can take when you download the Traipse app on your phone. Combining trivia with touring, Traipse brings Staunton to life in over 12 themed tours. Level up your history game with a tour of the Frontier Culture Museum or the Woodrow Wilson Birthplace and Presidential Library, and the Camera Heritage Museum. Little ones will love the Antique Fire Engine Museum at the fire station, starring the oldest motorized fire engine in Virginia.

Try a New Outdoor Adventure

Venture a little way out of Staunton for some of the best outdoor adventures in the country. Glide downhill at one of the area’s four awesome ski resorts: Wintergreen Resort, Bryce Mountain Resort, Omni Homestead Resort, and Massanutten Resort all offer skiing, snowboarding, and snow tubing. Bridgewater’s Generations Park has a stellar skating rink. Shenandoah National Park and George Washington and Jefferson National Forest are packed with interesting trails in a range of difficulties, though you should check online before visiting for an area’s opening status. Head underground at Grand Caverns, the country’s oldest show cave. Another way to get underground is by exploring the Blue Ridge Tunnel Trail that follows an old railroad bed under Afton Mountain!

Skip the Souvenir and Invest in Something Unique and Meaningful

Do you sometimes waste money buying silly trinkets when you’re on vacation? Why not take all that money you’ll be saving and put it toward something you’ll really love, something that will bring your room together? Consider heirloom-quality furniture from Concepts Created, which uses reclaimed wood to create custom dining tables, hutches, benches, mantles, and more. Buy some exquisite art glass from Sunspots Studio, or make your walls pop with work from a local artist from the CoArt Gallery. If you like to personalize your space with words, check out the gorgeous custom signs from Blair Made. And if your kids are pining because they didn’t get Mickey Mouse ears, take them to Pufferbellies Toys & Books and let them pick out something they’ll love even more!

Are you one of those people who hangs out behind the camera and only goes on vacation for the photos? Score lots of likes by setting up shots at Staunton’s Best Insta-Worthy Spots, including near the large metal sculptures of flowerpots, books, and eyeglasses created by Ferguson Metal Fabrication. 

Make Take-Out a Fine Dining Experience

If you’re still hoping to wait a bit before hanging out in a crowded restaurant, why not take carry-out to the next level? Iron the fancy tablecloth and use those fancy forks you got for your wedding. Shake things up by ordering something new from your favorite restaurant. Most Staunton restaurants offer takeout, so you could even order different courses from different spots. Start with a bottle of wine from Yelping Dog Wine and a loaf of fresh bread from Newtown Baking. Enjoy entrees from Table 44, Chicano Boy Taco, or the Depot Grille. Still hungry? A decadent pie from Firkin Pie or a sundae from Wright’s will taste just right at the end of your night. 

Did you get some fancy new cookware for Christmas? The Staunton Grocery will help you break it in by supplying all the local and specialty food items you can’t find in the supermarket. Peruse the catalog online for meats, condiments, spices, specialty oils, and more, and whip up a gourmet feast.

Another good way to fill up and stay warm is to gather around the firepits and sip craft beer at Skipping Rock Beer Co. or Stable Craft Brewing.

Your Home Away From Home

Clutter and day-to-day tasks overwhelming you? Leave your baggage (physical and emotional) behind and check into a Staunton lodging property. Not only will you enjoy some focused time with just the essentials, but you’ll also see your city with new eyes. Best of all, someone else will make the bed! Book a room in a luxury historic hotel, a convenient brand hotel, a well-appointed bed and breakfast, or a unique vacation rental. Stop by the front desk or the Visitor Center for some brochures and ideas about where to spend your day. 

Staunton has much to offer both visitors and long-time residents. Get out there and have fun like a tourist!

Sip, Stay, and Explore: Hiking Trails and Virginia Wines

Escape to Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley for a weekend retreat filled with hiking, wine tasting, and more. Take advantage of the Blackburn Inn’s Sip, Stay, and Explore Package.

Enjoy a relaxing stay at The Blackburn, a private winery tour and tasting at Barren Ridge Vineyards, excellent food from our award-winning restaurants, and the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Read on for our suggested itinerary!

Friday: 

You’ll know you’re in for a wonderful, relaxing weekend when you arrive at Staunton’s Blackburn Inn. This classic red-bricked and white-columned building was designed by Thomas Blackburn in the 1820s. Don’t worry about its age, though. While the 49-room boutique hotel keeps its historic charm, it has been renovated and updated with your absolute comfort in mind. Chocolate-covered strawberries and Prosecco await your arrival in your plush room. After a glass of bubbly, stroll the streets of historic downtown Staunton and enjoy an al fresco dinner.

Stretch your legs by exploring the immaculately landscaped Blackburn Inn campus. Next, stroll around downtown Staunton. With over 100 independent restaurants, galleries, and boutiques as well as prime selfie spots like the “You Belong Here” mural and the Sears Hill Bridge, you’ll find so much to do in this small town.

When you’ve worked up an appetite, eat dinner at one of Staunton’s fine restaurants. Staunton’s restaurant scene is lively with an eclectic vibe. Whether it is southern-style comfort food, delicious ribs, or even artisanal pizza – you’ll find it in Staunton.

Your package includes a voucher for BLU Point Seafood Co. or Zynodoa (inspired Southern farm-to-table cuisine).

Head back to the hotel and sleep well in your historic room. You’ll enjoy wireless, high-speed internet and elegant touches like oversized bathrooms with glass rainfall showers, plush towels, and luxury toiletries.

Saturday: 

Wake up well rested to a lovely made-from-scratch breakfast in the hotel’s onsite Second Draft bistro. The ever-changing menu showcases seasonal, locally sourced fare like pastries, parfaits, frittatas, ham biscuits, eggs Benedict, and breakfast croissant sandwiches.

After you’ve eaten, hit the road and explore our great outdoors. With the Blue Ridge Mountains as your backdrop, take in the scenic views on a hike and picnic lunch (included in the package). With hundreds of miles of hiking trails choose from Shenandoah National Park, Blue Ridge Parkway, or the George Washington and Jefferson National Forest. You’ll enjoy a scenic drive through the Shenandoah Valley as well as incredible views from your hike.

A hiking map, assembled by avid hikers Rob and Angela of Barren Ridge Vineyards, is included in your package with recommendations on area hikes and helpful tips.

After your hike, unwind at the picturesque Barren Ridge Vineyards. Take a private tour of the vineyard, learning about the process of winemaking, the cycle of vines, and the impacts of climate, weather, and soil. With breathtaking views of the Valley, listen to music on the patio as you enjoy a bottle of wine along with a tapas dinner (included in the package) which includes excellent artisanal cheeses, your choice of salami, artisanal cheese, organic olives, and crackers, or baguette with a bottle of Barren Ridge Vineyards’ Rose.

You won’t want to leave without buying some wine to enjoy at home, so take advantage of special discounts: 10% per bottle, 15% for 6 bottles, and 20% for a case or more.

After the music, drive to Staunton and take an evening stroll through the safe, walkable downtown, making sure to check out the Victorian architecture and the historic train station. Stop in at the Green Room for a nightcap of craft beer, wine, or cider and a snack or ice cream in flavors like brambleberry crisp, brown butter almond brittle, or darkest chocolate.

Head back to the Blackburn Inn and fall into your luxurious freshly made bed and enjoy some well-earned rest.

Sunday: 

Wake up refreshed and start your journey back after a yummy breakfast in the hotel and another leisurely stroll around town.

Back at home, open a bottle of Barren Ridge wine and enjoy the memories of this perfect weekend. Remember, it’s never too early to begin planning your next visit to Staunton!

INCLUDED IN PACKAGE:

Vineyard Walk and Talk
1-hour private vineyard walk and talk at Barren Ridge Vineyards
Cheese & charcuterie to include the choice of salami, artisanal cheese, organic olives and crackers, or baguette with a bottle of Barren Ridge Vineyards’ Rose

Dinner Voucher
$50 dinner voucher for BLU Point Seafood or Zynodoa

Picnic for Two
Two sandwiches on ciabatta with turkey, ham, and salami, topped with lettuce and a red pepper cheese spread.  Served with a pesto Caprese pasta salad, chips, and cookies.

Breakfast for Two
Breakfast at the Second Draft Bistro.  Served Friday-Sunday from 7 am-11 am.

Sparkling Wine and Chocolate Covered Strawberries Arrival
A bottle of sparkling wine and decadent chocolate-covered strawberries are placed in your room ready for your arrival. Packaged and placed in the room following Stay Safe procedures.

Click here to reserve your weekend: Sip, Stay, and Explore

Downhill Fun: Skiing Adventures Near Staunton

Staunton is plenty hilly, but not quite hilly enough for skiing. Fortunately, it’s easy to drive to several ski resorts in Virginia that specialize in winter fun. What better way to spend a winter weekend than getting a workout on the slopes and then following it up by eating a big dinner, exploring Staunton’s vibrant downtown, and staying in one of our luxurious lodgings? See below for places to stay and things to do once you warm up from the slopes.

Massanutten Resort

40 minutes from Staunton

Ski day and night on Massanutten Resort’s 14 ski trails, which are serviced by seven lifts and suitable for a variety of ability levels. Private lessons are available to kids as young as 6 at Massanutten’s terrain-based learning area. There’s also a freestyle area on the slopes, 16 lanes of snow tubing, and ice skating on a 5,000-square foot rink. Here’s a link to see current conditions at the resort. If you want to warm up away from the elements, check out Massanutten’s indoor waterpark, which is kept at a toasty 84 degrees. Take a thrilling ride down a waterslide, learn to surf on the pipeline, or just float the lazy river. Facilities are instituting precautions against Covid-19.  Changes such as reduced capacity, required masks, and pre-visit online ticket purchases will keep you safe.

Wintergreen Ski Resort

40 minutes from Staunton

Wintergreen Ski Resort is a beautiful, four-season resort located in the Blue Ridge Mountains that features skiing, snowboarding, and snow tubing in the winter. It offers 26 slopes and trails to appeal to all ability levels. Want to improve those skills? Sign up for individual, semi-private, or family ski or snowboard lessons at the snowsports school. To reduce time waiting, Wintergreen boasts two high-speed 6-pack chairlifts and Radio Frequency Identification Devices that operate like EZ-Passes for the ski slopes. You can also order your rental equipment online. When you need to fuel up, you’ll find several different onsite dining options that serve both casual and formal meals.

Bryce Mountain Resort

1 hour and 10 minutes from Staunton

Bryce Mountain Resort is a four-season resort in the Allegheny foothills that offers skiing, snowboarding, and lessons in the winter. It was recently named one of North America’s top family-friendly ski resorts by Travel & Leisure. There are 8 slopes that can be accessed by ski lifts as well as a dedicated area for beginners with carpet lifts. Beginners ages 4 ½ and up can book lessons with the Horst Locher Snowsports School for private lessons or semi-private lessons for groups that traveled to the resort together. Three 800-foot snow tubing lanes, an ice skating rink, and three restaurants round out the fun. Those looking for a different kind of adventure can book a 1.5-mile snowshoeing endurance tour with Rev3Endurance

The Omni Homestead Resort

1 hour and 20 minutes from Staunton

The Omni Homestead Resort is located southwest of Staunton. It has nine downhill ski runs that are perfect for various abilities. The resort also boasts an Olympic-size ice rink. The resort has been recognized as “one of the top Beginner Friendly and Family Friendly ski resorts in the Southeast in the 2017-18 Best in Snow Awards.” Lessons are available for ages four and older. Plan to relax at the onsite spa at the end of your day. Wouldn’t a deep-tissue massage feel great after a hard day of skiing or snow tubing?

If You’d Rather Ice Skate Instead, Try Generations Park

30 minutes from Staunton

Lace up for fun on the ice at Bridgewater’s Generations Park. Besides a slippery good time, skating is good for your heart, your endurance, and your core. You can schedule hour-long sessions ahead of time by signing up online. If you need skates, the park offers limited rentals. 

Stay in Staunton

Once your day on the slopes is complete, head back to your home base of Staunton. Choose from our elegant properties steeped in history, cozy B&Bs or one of our brand hotels

Why not have a drink at one of our wine bars or craft breweries? We can also recommend some great fireplaces for toasting your toes. Dine in style at one of our downtown restaurants that run the gamut from fine farm-to-table dining, comfort food, and everything in between. After dinner, make sure to stream a Shakespeare show on the Blackfriars Playhouse’s Blackfriar’s TV.  You could also watch a movie at the Visulite, where you can sip a cold brew or glass of wine. In theater dining is powered by Baja Bean Co.; hot, local, and delivered to your seat!

Where to rent skis and snowboards?

If you’re staying nearby and want to skip the hassle of renting skis at the resort, we’ve got you covered.  Stan’s Ski and Snowboard, in Staunton, has options for daily rentals or,  if you’re looking to commit, the entire ski season. They have a variety of brands and can get you outfitted with apparel, equipment and any supplies you may need. 

Sleeping Beauties: Some of Staunton’s Most Beautiful Rooms

Planning to spoil yourself with a trip to Staunton? From luxury hotels to B & B’s and estates in the country, you’ll find somewhere on this list to dream about. Many are just steps away from all the restaurants, shopping, and entertainment downtown Staunton has to offer. What are you waiting for? Pack your bags and treat yourself to a stay in one of the nicest rooms in one of the best towns around!

Hotel 24 South

Step into any guest room at Hotel 24 South and you’ll find immaculate rooms with plush pillowtop mattresses and extensive in-house services. Renovated in 2005 and again in 2018, Hotel 24 South boasts luxurious and contemporary appointments in its rooms and suites. The classic lobby exudes old-time ambiance and lots of seating. Enjoy cocktails in the 1924 Lounge and weekend breakfasts at the on-site Magnolia South restaurant. Guests can frolic in a heated swimming pool and whirlpool and park in a secure garage. If you want to bring your furry friend, pets are welcome for a fee. Located in Staunton’s walkable downtown, Hotel 24 South is close to a number of fine dining and entertainment opportunities. 

 

Blackburn Inn & Conference Center

The Blackburn Inn is an upscale boutique hotel in a restored building originally part of Western State Hospital, a site with a long and interesting past. Located on 80 landscaped acres on the edge of downtown Staunton, the site blends character and charming details like original wood floors and tall windows with crisp, modern amenities. Book your stay in one of the 49-room hotel’s 27 unique floor plans and find updated touches like marble bathrooms with rain showers, soaker tubs, and luxury linens. You might also make reservations for a massage or manicure at the onsite spa. This hotel beautifully combines history with hospitality and you’ll be able to relax and rejuvenate before hitting the town to see everything Staunton has to offer. 

Frederick House

The beautiful and traditionally decorated 23-room Frederick House encompasses space in seven historic downtown buildings. Many of the rooms are in traditional houses, but others had former lives as a store, a stable, and a silent movie theater. The lodging’s website offers photos of the different rooms and suites to choose from, including space designed for young families. In addition to an incredible night’s sleep, you will wake up to the breakfast of your dreams in the form of a sausage and cheese strata, apple raisin quiche, ham and cheese pie, or more. Frederick House offers the charm and individuality of a B&B as well as the comfort and amenities of a larger hotel. If you’re looking for guidance during your visit, staff will help you design winery routes, navigate bike rentals, golfing, and fishing spots. They’ll even arrange picnic baskets for you if you’re heading out for a scenic drive or hike. 

The Berkeley House Bed and Breakfast

The Berkeley House Bed and Breakfast, an 8,000 square-foot Queen Anne Victorian mansion, sits across from the Woodrow Wilson Birthplace. The property was built in 1897, and the current owners modernized it and transformed it into an elegant inn in 2013. The updated inn retains many original details like fireplaces, stained glass, large windows, and period decorations. Select Registry chose the Berkeley House for its elite group of inns across the country. You’ll rave about the elaborate breakfast with many tasty dishes including praline pecan French toast, spinach quiche, stuffed Dutch baby pancakes, and more. Make sure you catch the wine and cheese served late Saturday afternoons! The bed and breakfast offers an American Shakespeare Center package, a craft beer package, and a champagne package to make your stay even more fun.

The Bella Inn

Guests staying in The Bella Inn are treated to a suite’s worth of amenities. Not only are the king-sized beds incredibly comfortable, but you’ll have room to spread out in a living room and full kitchen. The two suites are in the light-filled and thoughtfully restored 1870s McClure Printing building. They incorporate unique architectural details like lofted spaces and spiral staircases. There’s even a private patio with skyline views to enjoy morning coffee or a romantic dinner. Not into cooking for yourself? Look no further than the onsite Aioli for a Mediterranean dinner of tapas or select from Staunton’s range of options, all just steps away.

Staunton Stays

Staunton Stays is a four-suite boutique hotel in a beautifully renovated Victorian house. All four suites offer queen-sized beds and a sofa bed. You’ll also find full kitchens, modern bathrooms, living quarters, and laundry room access. Begin with a complimentary bottle of wine and basket of snacks before you cook a meal in your private kitchen or walk to a nearby restaurant. Each plush suite is decorated according to a different theme, including the Shenandoah Valley, France, dreams, and the artist’s imagination. 

Gibson’s Warehouse  

When renowned Staunton architect T.J. Collins designed a warehouse near the train station in 1905, he probably didn’t envision its current life as luxury lodgings. Gibson’s Warehouse is a recently renovated four-suite lodging space in Staunton’s Wharf District, close to dining, shopping, entertainment, and the farmers’ market. Originally, the historic building stored hay, fertilizer, and farm equipment. After renovations, it’s the epitome of comfort and sleek, industrial cool with tall ceilings, large windows, wood floors, and areas of exposed brick. In each private suite, you’ll find a full-sized kitchen, modern bath, living space, and a king-sized bed. Enjoy complimentary wifi and a treat basket. There is also a common space and seating in the lobby.

Inn at Meadowcroft

The romantic Inn at Meadowcroft is a short drive from Staunton, but when you’re looking for pastoral views and starry skies, you can’t beat the inn’s 300+ acres. The rooms are situated in restored cabins and a renovated 1794 log home. Rooms and suites are decorated with period antiques and contain details like log walls, fireplaces, and comfortable seating areas. The inn does a marvelous job maintaining the historic ambiance but updating with modern amenities. For instance, rooms include incredibly comfortable mattresses and bathrooms with both deep slipper tubs and sleek glass showers. 

 

Beyond Airbnb: Staunton’s Alternative Rentals

Staunton offers lots of choices of hotels, bed and breakfasts, and Airbnb properties, and now visitors have another option. Gibson’s Warehouse and Staunton Stays offer all the luxuries and amenities expected by seasoned travelers. This includes long and short-term rentals, uniquely decorated units, and private kitchens and living spaces. Best of all, both alternative rental spaces are located in walkable downtown Staunton, allowing visitors immediate access to the city’s best amenities.

Gibson’s Warehouse  

Gibson’s Warehouse is a four-suite loft lodging in a T.J. Collins-designed warehouse in Staunton’s Wharf District. Designed in 1905, the historic building originally stored hay, fertilizer, and farm equipment. After renovations, it’s the epitome of comfort and industrial cool. Additionally, its location is close to dining, shopping, entertainment, and the farmers’ market. It’s easy to explore downtown Staunton on foot! 

Each private suite offers a full-sized and fully-equipped kitchen, modern bath, living space, and a king-sized bed. The units also boast tall ceilings with visible rafters, large windows, wood floors and areas of exposed brick. Enjoy complimentary wifi and a treat basket. There is also a common space in the lobby with seating areas so guests can mingle and socialize. No pets or smoking.

Staunton Stays

Staunton Stays is a four-suite boutique hotel in a beautifully renovated Victorian house. Each plush suite has a different theme. All four suites offer full kitchens, modern bathrooms, living quarters, and access to a laundry room. Begin with a complimentary bottle of wine and basket of snacks before you cook a meal in your private kitchen or walk to a restaurant. All four suites offer queen-sized beds and a sofa bed. No pets or smoking.

  • The Shenandoah Suite is luxuriously appointed and decorated to represent the “Shenandoah Valley’s incomparable beauty and nostalgia.” You’ll find unique, farmhouse-chic furniture incorporating materials like sewing machines and barn wood.
  • The elegant Bons Amis Suite is decorated with comfy furniture and French-themed accents. This private, upper-level suite looks out over Staunton.
  • The Serendipity Suite is both comfortable and quirky. The space is located on the first floor and includes dreamy colors, cushy furniture, inspirational messages, and whimsical decor.
  • The decor in The Bohemian Suite includes bikes, butterflies, and original artwork. It will appeal to your inner artist. Bright with bold colors sure to inspire your imagination, the space offers several comfortable lounging and dining options.

Staunton Bed and Breakfasts

Dreaming of visiting a historic property, eating gourmet food, and receiving personal attention – all at an affordable price?  The Staunton bed and breakfast scene excels in modern comfort, convenience, and plenty of delicious, locally-sourced food. Whether you’re in town for an event, business, or romance, we’ll help you find your perfect home away from home.

Berkeley House Bed and Breakfast

The Berkeley House Bed and Breakfast, an 1897 Queen Anne Victorian mansion, sits across from the Woodrow Wilson Birthplace. The current owners modernized the property, transforming it into an elegant inn, but left many original details like fireplaces, stained glass, large windows and period decorations. Select Registry chose the Berkeley House for its elite group of inns across the country that undergo rigorous quality-assurance inspection. The Berkeley House offers an elaborate breakfast with many tasty dishes. Make sure you catch the wine and cheese served late Saturday afternoons! The bed and breakfast offers an American Shakespeare Center package, a champagne package, and a spa package with in-room massage.

Frederick House

Consisting of 23 rooms in seven historic buildings in downtown Staunton, Frederick House boasts the extravagance of a fancy hotel in a more personal setting. Since the buildings were not originally built to be hotel rooms, the B&B also offers plenty of personality: you might stay in what was once a silent movie theater, a stable, or a store. Visitors select from a menu of signature breakfasts including apple raisin quiche, ham and cheese pie, and strata with sausage. Ask about discounted tickets and backstage passes at the American Shakespeare Center. The Frederick House is downtown, so you can tour Staunton on foot, but if you choose to venture away to explore the Valley, Frederick House can arrange a picnic basket for you. They can also help with bike rentals, golf packages, fishing advice, and winery routes.

Montclair Bed and Breakfast

If you seek a cozy bed and breakfast bursting with Southern hospitality the Montclair Bed and Breakfast represents a perfect choice. The B&B’s prime location allows easy access to the restaurants, shops, and culture of downtown Staunton,  Included in the National Register of Historic Places, the 1880 Italianate townhouse has been carefully restored and decorated with fox hunt decor. Guests may relax in the house’s public area, private sitting rooms, or outside on the patio. Along with clean and comfortable accommodations, guests receive personal attention, private access, a stocked library, and afternoon refreshments.  In the morning, the hosts deliver coffee to the guest rooms. Guests may eat a gourmet breakfast in the formal dining room or in their rooms.

Other Great Places to Stay

Other great places to stay include The Bella Inn and The Bard’s Nest. Both are downtown within walking distance of local breakfast establishments.