Almost Heaven adventures for all to enjoy
The Mountain State is home to world-class adventure and exploration, offering a wide variety of options depending on visitors’ interests. There are plenty of adventures in Almost Heaven that are affordable, and they’re closer than you might think.
There are 45 state parks and forests in West Virginia, each with its own set of adventures. Scenic trails, rushing water, jaw-dropping views and so much more are waiting for you. West Virginia’s state parks offer the perfect mix of adventure and relaxation that is ideal for the entire family. If you’re interested in taking a vacation to a state park, many offer tremendous deals and packages to make planning your trip easier than ever.
Spend an afternoon at the West Virginia Culture Center
The West Virginia Culture Center is located on the beautiful grounds of the historic WV State Capitol Complex in Charleston. The Culture Center showcases West Virginia’s artistic, cultural and historic heritage. The lower level of the Culture Center is home to the West Virginia State Museum – designed to allow visitors to literally trace their way through the history of West Virginia. Visitors will begin in the ancient coal forests of West Virginia and slowly work their way through important and influential time periods of the state, becoming entirely immersed in its history as they progress. The Culture Center is open Tuesday through Saturday, and admission is free to the public. Be sure to take a stroll around the WV State Capitol Complex and make your way to downtown Charleston for exquisite dining at one of the many restaurants on Capitol Street.
Measuring 3,030 feet long and towering 876 feet above the New River, the New River Gorge Bridge is the longest single-span arch bridge in the Western Hemisphere and the third highest vehicular bridge in the United States. For no cost, visitors can make their way to the Canyon Rim Visitor Center to view photographs and exhibits of the people, towns and industry of the area around the Gorge. Fayette Station Road will take you to the bottom of the Gorge along the banks of the New River where you can relax by the water (and maybe catch a few whitewater rafters as they pass by). If you’re visiting in October, be sure to experience Bridge Day, an event unlike any other that features vendors, exciting events, base jumpers and more. If you’re hungry, neighboring Fayetteville is home to some of the most charming local dining in the state.
Walk where the millionaires walked
At one point in the late 1800s, the town of Bramwell was home to more millionaires per capita than any city in the United States. Business was booming in the southern coal fields of West Virginia, and coal barons were flocking to the charming Mercer County town that conveniently sits on a peninsula of the scenic Bluestone River. Today, mansions line the brick streets of the town, and The Corner Shop Diner still stands on main street. You can spend an entire day exploring the historic streets, getting a peek at some of the most unique architecture in the state, and enjoying fantastic food and milkshakes in downtown Bramwell. Make a stop at the historic Bramwell Train Depot Visitor Center to learn about the unique history of the town of millionaires.
Rising 900 feet above the confluence of Seneca Creek and the North Fork of the South Branch of the Potomac River, Seneca Rocks is undoubtedly one of the most recognizable landmarks in Almost Heaven. If you’re up for the challenge, you can make the roughly 1.6-mile trek to the top of the rocks and experience one of the most incredible scenic views Pendleton County has to offer. If you’d rather admire the rocks’ beauty, you can visit the discovery center at the base of the mountain and learn more about the early settlers of the valley.
You don’t have to have a large budget to treat yourself to an adventure in the Mountain State. With so many affordable options, there are so many ways to discover your version of Almost Heaven.
What is your favorite West Virginia adventure?Get Your Travel Guide
This post was last updated on August 3, 2020