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Wild, Wonderful West Virginia
Wild, Wonderful West Virginia
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Over 375 miles of train tracks have been converted into trails for walking, hiking, biking and horseback riding. The rail trails (30 in all), with their gentle or level grades and wide rights of way, are easily accessible and are among the most stunning and scenic in the country. 

The same rivers that carve West Virginia’s gorges also provide outstanding fishing and boating. With its year-round fishing season, including an open season for trout, as well as more than 20,000 miles of streams and more than 100 public fishing lakes, West Virginia provides anglers with a variety of fishing experiences.

There is also plenty of fun to be had on the water in West Virginia in spring. The Ohio and Kanawha rivers are popular for owners of pleasure boats, fishing boats and personal watercraft. Several of the state’s lakes provide wonderful boating opportunities, including Bluestone Lake in Summers County, Burnsville Lake in Braxton County, Stonewall Jackson Lake in Lewis County, Sutton Lake in Braxton County and Summersville Lake in Nicholas County.

If you’d rather swing a club than cast a line, you’ll find West Virginia to be a fantastic golfing destination. In fact, the Mountain State has the distinction of having the first golf club established in the United States (Oakhurst Links). Today, there are more than 100 courses in West Virginia.

West Virginia may provide endless outdoor adventure, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a wonderful place to relax. The state’s renowned spas are a wonderful way to soak away your stress in a hot mineral springs bath and enjoy a host of treatments provided by certified and trained professionals. Swedish massage, saunas, European facials, manicures, pedicures, mud and herbal wraps make for euphoric and relaxing ways to refresh winter-hardened skin.

West Virginia’s hospitality is legendary, and after one overnight visit, you’ll understand completely. Experience luxury at an upscale resort, or sleep under the stars along a swift-moving stream at parks or campgrounds. Wake up to a gourmet breakfast in a charming B&B or rent a cozy cabin nestled deep within our towering forests.

Whether you prefer relaxation or exhilaration, the outdoor recreation capital of the east offers spring and summer adventure that will suit you perfectly. Are shopping and dining more your taste? Come enjoy some truly unique shopping and a culinary destination that is a complete departure. And when it comes to arts and entertainment, the Mountain State holds many surprises, from world-class venues and major productions to small-town acts that remain true to age-old mountain traditions. Why not plan your escape today?

Wild, Wonderful West Virginia
Wild, Wonderful West Virginia
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Fun Fact

Gazing out from Dolly Sods impressive plateau
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Wild, Wonderful West Virginia

With elevations of more than 1,200 meters at certain spots, Dolly Sods is the USA's highest plateau east of the Mississippi River.

A BASE jumper on Bridge Day
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Wild, Wonderful West Virginia

October’s Bridge Day is the largest single-day festival event in West Virginia, where thousands of spectators watch BASE jumpers parachute off the New River Gorge Bridge.

Preparing a dish with local ramps
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Wild, Wonderful West Virginia

Every spring, eager ramp-diggers head to the self-proclaimed 'Ramp Capital of the World' in Richwood to forage for West Virginia’s unique wild onion.

Must see places

Costumed reenactors walk Blennerhassett Island Historical State Park’s grounds.

Blennerhassett Island Historical State Park

Take a sternwheeler from Parkersburg on the Ohio River to tour this state park and its historic mansion. Hike, bike or camp on the grounds.

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The view in Coopers Rock State Forest

Coopers Rock State Forest

An outdoor enthusiast’s dream, this recreation hub near Morgantown offers mountain biking and rock climbing on the Cheat River Canyon rim. Try the Raven Rock Trail to size up the views of one of West Virginia’s northernmost gorges.

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Kayaking along impressive rock formations on Summersville Lake

Summersville Lake

This lake’s turquoise water earned it the nickname “Little Bahamas of the East,” but it’s the world-class whitewater (Class IV-V rapids) on the Gauley River here that draws the crowds. Fish, boat, scuba dive or hike the sandstone cliffs.

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Taking a ride along the Durbin & Greenbrier Valley Railroad

Durbin & Greenbrier Valley Railroad

Ride historic steam-driven locomotives and vintage diesel-powered passenger trains April through December, viewing some of the most remote and untouched areas of the Mountain State, including Monongahela National Forest, along the banks of the Greenbrier and Tygart Valley and Shaver's Fork rivers.

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The Green Bank Telescope scans the skies

Green Bank Telescope

Eastern West Virginia is home to the nation’s largest “quiet zone,” where the Green Bank Telescope picks up radio transmissions from outer space. Visit the science center here to learn what makes this unique facility tick.

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Navigating the New River Gorge National River

New River Gorge National River

This powerful river drives right through the Appalachian Plateau, creating the gorge. A stark contrast to dense forests, cross the western hemisphere’s longest steel arch span on a bridge walk tour. Stride along a catwalk for the vantage point of a lifetime from 260 meters high. Nearby, go zip-lining, rock climbing or whitewater rafting. For a more relaxing experience, tube the river or birdwatch.

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Seneca Caverns

Plunge 50 meters below the earth on a tour of these ancient caverns, whose largest chamber measures 18 meters in some areas. Inside you’ll find steps down a well-lit path into a dazzling example of limestone formation.

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A boy and his wagon at Harpers Ferry National Historic Park

Harpers Ferry National Historic Park

It may be small, but the town of Harpers Ferry played a big role in the Civil War as the site of John Brown’s raid on the national arsenal. Recount that history through the park’s museums and exhibits, or explore it yourself on the 32 kilometers of trails. See historic structures as well as the point where the Shenandoah River meets the Potomac.

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Period exhibits inside the West Virginia State Museum at the Culture Center

West Virginia State Museum at the Culture Center

Literally walk through the state’s history on a path that goes from dirt to paved, with plenty of stops that explore West Virginia’s past along the way. The Charleston museum has 60,000 artifacts and exhibits on everything from paleontology to art, as well as a fully reconstructed settler’s cabin.

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The Greenbrier in brilliant sunshine

The Greenbrier

Stop and see this enormous, extravagant and historic hotel, a National Historic Landmark. Set on a mineral spring, the Greenbrier was built in 1778 and features a special bunker tour, where visitors can go into a declassified Cold War fallout shelter built into the mountainside.

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Explore West Virginia destinations

The Ace Hotel Rooftop in Downtown Los Angeles, California
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Explore West Virginia destinations

Hot Air Balloon flying over Asheville, North California
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Experience West Virginia

Official West Virginia Travel Site