Off The Beaten Path | West Virginia
West Virginia is an amazing state. Filled with the beauty of nature, a variety of wildlife, history and much more. Visitors to the state will find all sorts of attractions and destinations to explore. Some of these points of interest my be tourist heavy and some may be a little more off the beaten path. Here are a few worthy destinations in the great state of West Virginia.
Cass Scenic Railroad State Park
Visitors to this state park will have a glimpse into a time when steam locomotives were an essential part of West Virginia's industry. Much of the park is preserved as it was during the time period when steam locomotives were the main form of transportation for industry. Visitors have an opportunity to explore the park and learn about the history of steam locomotives. In addition, the park offers an excursion on the historic Cass Scenic Railroad.
Coal Heritage Museum
Located in Madison, West Virginia, this museum is a great way to learn about one of the regions important industries. Coal mining played an important role in the state. The museum has a wide range of exhibits about coal mining and the lives of West Virginia coal miners. These exhibits include mining tools, photographs, oral histories and much more, all telling the stories of coal miners throughout West Virginia.
Grave Creek Mound Archeology Complex
Within this complex visitors can see the burial mounds built by the Adena culture. The Adena people were one of the original cultures inhabiting the region that is now West Virginia. The mounds were built over many years from around 250 to 150 B.C. The Grave Creek Mound Archeology Complex also has a great museum with exhibits and displays about the burial mounds and their construction as well as the Adena culture as a whole.
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
This delightful park and community is located at the point of convergence of the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers. Visitors to the park can explore the exhibits and museums in the historic community. Harpers Ferry National Historical Park also has trails to hike, including part of the Appalachian Trail. Another interesting feature of the park are the battlefields that visitors can learn about and enjoy exploring.
New River Gorge National River
The New River is one of this continents oldest rivers, and over 70,000 acres of land around this national river are protected and preserved for visitors to enjoy. The river passes through deep canyons and its power can be seen in the powerful white waters on the river. Visitors to the park can enjoy hiking, biking, climbing, whitewater rafting and more. Throughout this park there are historic sites, many opportunities to enjoy wildlife viewing and birding. Visitors can also visit a variety of points of interest within the park, including Sandstone Falls, the largest waterfall on the river, and the scenic overlooks in the Grandview area.
West Virginia Wildflower Pilgrimage
Starting at Blackwater Falls State Park, this event is a great way to enjoy all beauty spring in West Virginia has to offer. The state park acts as a launching point to explore the wildflowers and natural beauty in the surrounding area. Held annually, visitors can see a wide variety of wildflowers, wildlife, birds and the natural features of the region.
For visitors looking to recreate at any time throughout the year the Snowshoe Mountains are a great option. In the winter it is a great spot to enjoy skiing and snowboarding. Winter visitors will enjoy the 60 trails and slopes and four terrain parks on the mountain. However, this destination is also great for spring, summer and fall recreating. Visitors will also find excellent biking, golfing and more.