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5 Reasons Virginia is an Oasis for Outdoor Lovers

Flickr/Brian Holland

For those who love the outdoors, the Commonwealth of Virginia has a lot to offer.

Virginia is for lovers of many things, especially the outdoors. It was recently ranked the 11th best outdoorsy place in the U.S. Originally founded in 1607 as an English colony, the Old Dominion State is not only attractive to history buffs and tourists, it’s also a great place for outdoor enthusiasts to explore.

When I moved to Virginia from Southern California nearly four years ago, I was largely unaware of the countless opportunities to fish, hike, or seek out nature here. The fear of the unknown coupled with longing for familiar spots left me disheartened and searching for answers. I grew up thinking no state could rival California’s outdoor scene. After consulting locals and researching nearby spots, I soon discovered how attractive Virginia is for outdoor enthusiasts.

Here are five reasons Virginia is great for lovers of the outdoors:

1. Awesome Hiking Spots

Flickr/Chappie
Flickr/Chappie

There is no shortage of hiking in Virginia. Whether it’s climbing Old Rag Mountain in Shenandoah National Park, pictured above, or exploring First Landing State Park in Virginia Beach, hikers flock to our Commonwealth to get their fill of challenging or scenic trails. Trails vary in terms of difficulty level, from easy to difficult. To plan a Virginia hiking trip, check out Hiking Upward, the most reliable hiking blog for the Mid-Atlantic region.

2. Hunting Opportunities

Flickr/Shenandoah News Agency
Flickr/Shenandoah News Agency

Looking to hunt big game, small game, or waterfowl? Virginia has got it all. There are endless opportunities to hunt –including opportunities to hunt here in urban Northern Virginia and even on Sundays. Whether you’re looking to hunt bears, turkeys, elk, quail, or deer, the Old Dominion State serves as a great backdrop for world-class hunting.

Before hunting in Virginia, be sure to check out current regulations in place. Make sure to follow all local and state laws.

3. Great Fishing

Virginia State Parks
Virginia State Parks

Superb angling can be found all across Virginia. Whether it’s freshwater fishing or saltwater fishing, our bodies of water-however big or small-are great spots to hook in some quality fish. In Northern Virginia, prime fishing occurs in and around the Potomac River. In central Virginia, Lake Anna in Spotsylvania is arguably the best spot for landing good catches–especially largemouth bass. Down south, anglers can choose from freshwater fishing on the James River or deep-sea fishing in Virginia Beach. Virginia is indeed an angler’s paradise!

Learn more about fishing in Virginia from the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

4. Nature Abounds 

Flickr/m01229
Flickr/m01229

As a state with all four seasons, Virginia appeals to lovers of the outdoors year-round. Beautiful landscapes – coastline, countryside, forest, mountains – are found throughout the state. Each season offers different opportunities to go outdoors. Spring produces gorgeous flowers and the start of fishing season.

Summer, although humid, is great for any outdoor activity, especially visiting the Cape Henry Lighthouse in Virginia Beach. Fall is renowned for leaf peeping. Winter is ideal for hunting and walking trails. Our state sounds inviting, no?

5. Plenty of Landmarks

Flickr/Emily Carlin
Flickr/Emily Carlin

Virginia has many parks for outdoor enthusiasts to choose from. There are 21 National Parks, 10 National Natural Landmarks, and 120 National Historic Landmarks, like Monticello pictured above, here. Each park is unique and easily accessible to the public throughout the year. From caverns to beaches, there are plenty of places to visit and discover in Virginia. Find your ideal park here!

There’s so much to love about Virginia and her wonders. If you haven’t visited Virginia yet, consider planning your next outdoor adventure here.

NEXT: Stamp It Official: Virginia Passes Sunday Hunting Bill

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5 Reasons Virginia is an Oasis for Outdoor Lovers