The hot and humid weather has arrived, it must be July in Richmond! There is certainly so much to love about the Richmond area, but by July a lot of us are looking for ways to beat the heat! Luckily, we live in one of the nation’s most beautiful and diverse states, where we have many different regions to explore during every season. This time of year it’s so easy to pack up the car and escape to the mountains for a breath of fresh air and change of scenery — even if just for a day or weekend.
When you live in a Cornerstone Homes community in the Richmond or Fredericksburg areas, many of the state’s premier mountain destinations are a just short drive away. Here are a few of our favorite places to escape the heat, indulge the senses, and enjoy the peace and serenity of a mountain retreat.
1) The Market at Grelen
Somerset, VA – 1 hour, 15 minutes away
On your way up to the mountains you’ll find a gem of a garden market nestled in the Virginia foothills that’s completely unique to this area. The Market at Grelen encompasses a retail tree nursery that’s known for high quality products, a pick-your-own berry and fruit farm, a 4,500-square-foot event venue, and a farm-to-table café with vegetables grown right on-site. Oh and don’t miss the fabulous gift shop with treasure to fill your new home!
2) Wintergreen Resort
Nellysford, VA – 1 hour, 45 minutes away
Located on the eastern slopes of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Wintergreen Resort offers visitors 11,000 stunning acres of mountain landscapes, recreation, and amenities throughout the year. In the summer, enjoy a luxe vacation with golf, tennis, hiking, fly fishing, swimming, a mountaintop spa, and world-class dining. Guaranteed to be 10 degrees cooler here!
3) The Omni Homestead Resort
Hot Springs, VA – 2 hours, 45 minutes away
A premier destination for 23 U.S. presidents, the Homestead Resort can be your mountain paradise, too. In addition to resort suites of the highest class and comfort, the grounds feature two of the best golf courses in Virginia, along with a host of activities to enjoy in the summer, including horseback riding, zip lining, and kayaking.
4) Floyd County, VA
3 hours, 30 minutes away
Tucked away in the Blue Ridge province of Southwest Virginia, Floyd County is dotted with picturesque small mountains, valleys, ridges, and streams and is so worth the drive! To enjoy the ultimate weekend getaway and explore the area’s abundant natural beauty, there are plenty of quaint and cozy accommodations, including cabins, cottages, and bed-and-breakfasts. There’s no shortage of outdoor recreation, sightseeing, entertainment, and events to keep everyone in the family busy and happy! Don’t miss the Friday night jam sessions at the Floyd Country Store!
5) Lydia Mountain Lodge
Stanardsville, VA – 1 hour, 30 minutes away
Take a break from the normal hustle and bustle and head up to Lydia Mountain to enjoy stunning Blue Ridge Mountains scenery, private log cabins (with A/C!), indulgent spa treatments, delicious casual cuisine, and lots of peace and relaxation.
6) Blue Ridge Parkway – Virginia
Pack the car for a 3-day adventure and head out to explore the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway. This 469-mile stretch of road is operated by the U.S. National Park Service and is divided into four districts: the Ridge, the Plateau, the Highlights, and the Pisgah and takes about three days to explore. Plan to drive at a relaxed and leisurely place, and enjoy the stunning landscapes and many destinations along the way.
7) Mount Rogers National Recreation Area
Marion, VA – 4 hours, 15 minutes away
If you’re up for a little longer excursion and a more active getaway, Mount Rogers NRA offers rugged, unspoiled, and beautiful landscapes to hike, paddle, horseback ride, camp, fish, swim, and picnic. It is home to vast wildflower meadows and wild ponies, and it’s easy to get a glimpse of both when you spend time here.
8) Shenandoah National Park
Luray, VA – 1 hour, 45 minutes away
Whether it’s hiking, camping, waterfall chasing, wildlife watching, sightseeing, or just being in tune with nature for a bit, Shenandoah National Park is the ultimate summer retreat with some of the country’s most beautiful natural landscapes.
Virginia is full of mountain destinations and retreats to give you a respite from the heat, and it’s easy to get to any of them from Cornerstone Homes’ active adult communities in the Richmond area. And with our lock-and-leave lifestyle, no matter where you choose to go, and for however long, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that your home is safe, secure, and well maintained for the duration of your trip.