Along the Blue Ridge Parkway

Along the Blue Ridge Parkway

Along the Blue Ridge Parkway

The Adventure Continues in Wytheville, Virginia

by Colette Boehm, Laurie Rowe Communications

WYTHEVILLE, VA – September 2020 Just 30 minutes from the Fancy Gap entrance to the Blue Ridge Parkway, Wytheville, VA offers parkway travelers a diversion that adds unique attractions and lodging and even more outdoor adventure to their excursion. Wytheville is located at the crossroads of Interstates 77 and 81 and has long been a convenient spot for those traveling through the region. The Great Lakes to Florida Highway Museum (975 Tazewell Street, Wytheville, VA 24382) offers a look back at that era when Route 21, known as the Great Lakes to Florida Highway, was the primary route to Florida from the Midwest.

BigWalkerLookout

But a stop in Wytheville goes way beyond convenience. For those who choose to travel the Blue Ridge Parkway, savor the views and experience the authentic Virginia lifestyle, it’s a treasure. There is easy access to adventure here. This is the center point of the Claw of the Dragon Motorcycle Trail. This 200-mile route is one of the most popular in the south and includes amazing views and exciting twists and turns.

One of those views is from Big Walker Mountain and the Big Walker Lookout (8711 Stoney Fork Rd, Wytheville, VA 24382). This family-owned and operated attraction sits at an elevation of 3400 feet and the 100-foot-tall tower offers a seemingly endless view. On the ground, the Country Store features local artisan crafts and homemade jams, jellies, candies and more. This is also home to Big Walker Mountain Scenic Byway, which crosses 16 miles of mountain vistas. With its historic farmsteads and beautiful forest lands, this route is also a treat for both birders and history buffs.

 

Wytheville Claw Of The Dragon View Bw

Speaking of history, the New River, the oldest river in North America, is the heart of the New River Trail, designated the New River State Park. This Rail-to-Trails treasure is almost 57 miles long and is an officially designated National Recreation Trail. The trail winds through beautiful scenery in Wythe and three other Southwest Virginia counties. It is popular for hiking and biking, as is the15.5-mile Walker Mountain Trail (8711 Stoney Fork Rd, Wytheville, VA 24382). This trail, rated difficult, is shared by hikers, equestrians and mountain bikers. It follows the mountain ridge and connects to the Crawfish Trail, about a mile from the Appalachian Trail in Crawfish Valley.

Wytheville Foster Falls Fall Color

Trails aren’t the only way to experience Wytheville. Just like the parkway, this destination offers an exceptional glimpse not only of the beautiful vistas of the region, but also of the people who make their living from the land.

A tour of Beagle Ridge Herb Farm (1934 Matney Flats Rd., Wytheville, VA 24382), Southwest Virginia’s premiere Lavender farm, showcases two acres of display gardens, amazing herb and perennial collections a butterfly house and more than four miles of trails.

Beagle Ridge Wytheville 1

West Wind Farm Vineyard and Winery (180 West Wind Dr., Max Meadows, VA, 24360) is a fourth-generation homestead in Southwest Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains with roots dating back more than a century. Today the family makes small-batch, hand-tended wines and welcomes guests to enjoy the wines and the views from their cozy tasting room.

Many choose to explore the culture and spirit of Wytheville throughout its charming downtown. Classic downtown streets are lined with locally owned businesses and one-of-a-kind shops. From home-town-favorite specialty shops to local brew pubs, Wytheville is a place like no other. There are museums to explore days gone by and unique lodging options for enjoying the night to come. For a delightful diversion just off the Blue Ridge Parkway, Wytheville is the perfect spot to enjoy an authentic Southwest Virginia experience.

West Wind Wytheville

WHERE TO STAY

There’s only one Wytheville. It’s true, no other town in the world shares this name. But with one visit, guests discover that its name is not the only thing making this destination special. Situated at the crossroads of two major Interstates (I-77 and I-81) this is so much more than a stopover location. A classic downtown chock-full of gems, Wytheville offers unique lodging, dining and entertainment options. Nearby, there are trails for hikers and cyclists as well as for those who love birding and byways. Add a bundle of homegrown attractions, and you’ve got a must-see destination in Wytheville. There’s only one!

ABOUT WYTHEVILLE

There’s only one Wytheville. It’s true, no other town in the world shares this name. But with one visit, guests discover that its name is not the only thing making this destination special. Situated at the crossroads of two major Interstates (I-77 and I-81) this is so much more than a stopover location. With a classic downtown chock-full of gems, Wytheville offers unique lodging, dining and entertainment options. Nearby, there are trails for hikers and cyclists as well as for those who love birding and byways. Add a bundle of homegrown attractions, and you’ve got a must-see destination in Wytheville. There’s only one!

Comers Rock Overlook

A Day trip in Downtown Wytheville

A Day trip in Downtown Wytheville

Wytheville Downtown Mix

A Day trip in Downtown Wytheville

For decades Wytheville has been known as the hospitality hub of Southwest Virginia, due in part to its ideal location situated at the crossroads of interstates 77 & 81 and sitting just 30 minutes from the Parkway but the small town charm is what keeps folks returning year after year.

Morning

Grab a freshly baked treat and cup of coffee at Olykoek Donuts in Downtown Wytheville and stroll down the brick sidewalk along Main Street to begin your day with a First Lady of the United States. The Edith Bolling Wilson Birthplace & Museum tells the story of President Woodrow Wilson’s second wife and her journey from Wytheville to the White House. Just one block north, the Thomas J. Boyd Museum, named for the Father of the town, Wytheville’s history is on display including the exhibit entitled “The Summer without Children”, how the Polio epidemic of 1950 impacted this small mountain town.

Lunch

Skeeter’s World Famous Hot Dogs are a staple in this town. Pull up a classic soda fountain bar stool and order a Skeeter dog and a baby Coke in the bottle. Moon Dog Brick Oven serves up some of the best pizza, wings and subs around or stop in at Open Door Café, Virginia’s only pay-what-you-can restaurant. A farm-to-table establishment with a chef prepared menu where everyone eats “Wythe Us”.

Afternoon

Spend your afternoon weaving through the unique shops that line Wytheville’s Main Street and offer treasures that include rare books, antiques, hand crafted furniture and pottery, fine jewelry, trendy fashions and more. A selfie under the biggest Pencil in Virginia is a must. This 30-foot icon at Wytheville Office Supply, has been suspended over Main street for 50 years. Wytheville’s LOVE work is another photographic requirement.

Dinner

A dinner reservation at Graze on Main is a definite while in Wytheville. Located inside the boutique Bolling Wilson Hotel (named for the First Lady), this casual but elegant hotspot serves a gourmet menu with a southern twist. Named for the sheep that grazed on the White House lawn during WWII while the Wilson’s were in office, Graze on Main serves up house-made cocktails, micro-brews and offers an extensive bourbon menu. Cocktails can be enjoyed pre or post dinner on The Perch rooftop bar surrounded by the panoramic mountain view.

Evening

Live music and craft beer are always on tap at Wytheville’s breweries. Seven Sisters Brewery (named for the local mountain range) hosts trivia, movie nights and live music all week as well as a weekly lineup of food trucks to ease an evening craving. 7 Dogs Brewpub, another local favorite offers a full service restaurant as well as their craft beer alongside live music in the music hall or the outdoor beer garden.