For the golfing enthusiast, there’s a special pleasure in discovering a golf course that combines well-designed holes and breathtakingly beautiful scenery. If you’re looking to escape the city and lose yourself in golfing paradise, Front Royal may be your perfect destination.
Conveniently located just minutes from I-81 and I-66, Front Royal is easy to reach from the D.C./Northern Virginia Area. Yet this delightful town hasn’t lost any of the quintessential charm of a country town in the Shenandoah Valley. Spend a few days golfing in Front Royal. You’ll find the golf courses enjoyable, the scenery unforgettable, and the atmosphere irresistible!
Read on for help planning your golfing trip to Front Royal. We’ve included recommended lodging, and two golf courses to be sure to check out, as well as some tips to help you enjoy the best of our small town life!
Front Royal’s Most Convenient Golfing Accommodation
Front Royal’s award-winning Holiday Inn and Suites is a natural choice for the golfer in search of a comfortable home away from home. Located just off the I-66 Front Royal exit, the hotel is easy to access and find. It’s also on the grounds of the Blue Ridge Shadows Golf Club! You can look out of your window and plan your strategy for the day’s golfing, while enjoying the vista of a perfectly maintained golf course against the jaw-dropping background of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
If you want to roll out of bed and onto the golf course, Front Royal’s Holiday Inn and Suites is the place for you. Be sure to check out their golf packages. You’ll rest easy knowing that you got a great deal on both your stay and your golf!
Go here to explore more options for lodging in Front Royal.
Front Royal Golf Courses for an Unforgettable Round (or Two!)
Whether or not you decide to stay at the Holiday Inn and Suites, you’ll want to put the Blue Ridge Shadows Golf Club high on your list of golf courses to enjoy in Front Royal. The name says it all. This classic 18-hole course features engaging challenges and cleverly crafted holes, all set in the shadow of Virginia’s stunning Blue Ridge Mountains. There’s even a sixty foot waterfall just behind the eighteenth green. With a comprehensive practice complex on site as well, you’ll find hours upon hours of enjoyable golf play await you at Blue Ridge Shadows!
Less than five miles from Blue Ridge Shadows Golf Club is of Front Royal’s best golf courses. The Shenandoah Valley Golf Club has been voted by the Golf Digest as one of the top ten golf courses in Virginia! The Shenandoah Valley Golf Course boasts 27 holes that stay true to the original design of the course, over fifty years ago. Repeat visitors can enjoy a revered tradition, as well as introducing variety into their game. The whole course is surrounded by stunning scenic views. Want to spend some time tuning-up your game? You can schedule a private lesson at the Shenandoah Valley Golf Club.
Neighboring the Shenandoah Valley Golf Club is Bowling Green Country Club with two 18-hole courses to choose from. With the two clubs so close to each other, you can spend less time driving and more time exploring golf courses on your trip to Front Royal. At Bowling Green Country Club you can enjoy more stunning mountain views while you play. For those looking to spend time practicing, the club also boasts the best driving range in the Winchester area. Private lessons are an option here too.
If you want to experience the Shenandoah River while you golf, your best option is the Front Royal Golf Club. It’s a smaller club, with only nine holes, but four of the holes are located right on the banks of this breathtaking river. That’s more than you’ll find on any other course in Virginia! The Front Royal Golf Club is also incredibly close to Front Royal’s Holiday Inn and Suites. Hop in your car and you can be there in just a few minutes.
Finally, for a relaxed, family-owned small-business feel, don’t forget to stop by Sly Fox Golf Club. This 18-hole course has benefitted from recent renovations, and features exciting water hazards. It’s challenging for experienced players, but accessible for young golfers and seniors too.
Don’t Forget to Discover Front Royal!
With all the good golfing available in Front Royal, you may be tempted never to leave the greens! However, if you can tear yourself away, it’s definitely worth taking a few hours to enjoy the charming town of Front Royal. Explore Front Royal’s quaint Main Street area, or grab a beer at the end of a long day on the course. You’ll find a great choice of fun spots to enjoy a locally brewed craft beer, including the Front Royal Brewing Company, the Virginia Beer Museum, and the Bushel Pub at the Apple House.
Front Royal, Virginia is truly a haven for golfers looking to enjoy a relaxing weekend in the idyllic Shenandoah Valley while playing on top-notch golf courses. Don’t wait to plan your next golfing getaway. Make your reservations today, and look forward to an unforgettable trip as you discover golfing in Front Royal!
A landscape carpeted with delicate wildflowers is a quintessential spring sight. After a long winter, spring wildflowers are a welcome harbinger of the glorious warmer seasons that Mother Nature has in store. Read on to discover the spring wildflowers of the Shenandoah Valley! We’ve included a brief introduction to what you can expect to see, as well as some suggestions for where to find the best wildflower scenery.
Spring Wildflowers in the Front Royal Area
While we often think of wildflowers in vibrant sunny meadows, you’ll find that the earliest flowers of the spring are more commonly shade lovers. Some of spring’s most famous and popular wildflowers are bloodroot, bluebells, trillium, violets, azaleas, and mountain laurel. These stars of the spring wildflower show flourish mostly in forest and on riverbanks. With its forested parks and riverside trails, the Front Royal area is full of places to enjoy these favorite spring wildflowers.
Want to come upon a forest floor carpeted with bluebells or trillium? Or to stroll along a river bank overflowing with delicate blooms? Use our handy guide below to plan your next outdoor adventure, and you’re sure to find some spring wildflowers waiting to greet you.
1. Shenandoah National Park: A Wildflower Lover’s Destination
Front Royal’s famous neighbor, the Shenandoah National Park draws crowds in every season, and spring is no exception. It’s the home of 862 known wildflowers, and its wooded trails provide ample opportunities for wildflower sightings. It’s no surprise that the Shenandoah National Park made this list of the best places in the country to see wildflowers!
If you’re planning a wildflower viewing trip to Shenandoah National Park, check out this handy wildflower calendar first. That way, you’ll know which species you can expect to enjoy when.
2. Blandy Experimental Farm and Virginia State Arboretum: Get a Wildflower Education
Located just thirty minutes from Front Royal, the Virginia State Arboretum is a great place to plan your next spring wildflower stroll. The Arboretum features a variety of native habitats. Check out the woodlands for those early spring favorites.
If you’re looking for a more formal educational experience, check out their programs. You could sign up for a wildflower walk, or join the upcoming wildflower webinar
3. Shenandoah River State Park: Enjoy Riverside Bluebells
Moving our wildflower search from forest floors to river banks, the next destination on the list has to be the Shenandoah River State Park. If you love a woodland scene filled with bluebells, don’t look any further than the Bluebell Trail at this local park. You’ll enjoy a gentle, one mile walk by the famous Shenandoah River. This hike is such a perfect spring stroll that it made this list of recommended wildflower hikes in Virginia.
4. Take Advantage of the NOVA 4-H Center’s Hiker Parking
For a more adventurous hike that’s famous for its wildflowers, park your car at the NOVA 4-H Center, and hike back into Front Royal. This strenuous hike will take you eleven miles, along a stretch of the Appalachian Trail, and then through the Shenandoah National Park. You’ll be ready for that hearty beer and burger when you make it to town!
Bonus: Take a Drive past Flowering Trees
The ground isn’t the only place to look for spring flowers in the Shenandoah Valley! As trees begin to flower, they make for some of the most stunning sights in a spring landscape. And on the scenic byways around Front Royal, you can enjoy them from your car! If you’re looking for a spring drive that features flowering trees, try heading south on US-340 towards Luray. You’ll find yourself enjoying views filled with dogwoods and redbuds, some of Virginia’s favorite spring flower-bearers.
This spring, make a resolution to get out at least once and discover the wildflowers of the Shenandoah Valley. There are plenty of great wildflower destinations in the Front Royal area!
Mom and pop shops have always been a big part of the American Main Street . . . and the American Dream! There are few things that say “America” more than a husband-and-wife team who work hard to provide a valuable service and share their talents with the town! When the kids join in (or even take over!), a business operation becomes a true family tradition.
March 29 is National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day. Discover Front Royal is celebrating by highlighting Front Royal’s fantastic mom and pop shops. From restaurants to roller rinks, our mom and pop shops are diverse . . . and they’re an essential part of our small-town living experience. You may well run into the owners when you stop by. Don’t forget to thank them for their hard work!
Below you’ll find the stories of the people behind five of our town’s mom and pop shops, as well as a list of several more local mom and pop businesses.
1. Po Green’s: Classic Southern Food in Front Royal
Husband and wife team Edwin and Anneise Green head up Po Green’s, your stop in Front Royal for Barbecue and Southern food. They’re the perfect team for the restaurant business. Edwin is the chef, and heads up the kitchen side of things, while Anneise is in charge of the dining room and the restaurant’s catering business. She’ll also occasionally lend a hand in the kitchen whipping up a home baked dessert or two.
2. Downhome Comfort Bakery: Homemade Goodies on a Small Scale
Keith and Maureen are the happy couple behind Downhome Comfort Bakery. Maureen is at the heart of creating delicious homemade baked goods. Meanwhile Keith enjoys offering a friendly welcome (and a Front Royal history lesson!) to any customers who have time for a chat.
3. L’Dees: The Diner where Customers become Part of the Family
4. Mac’s Roller Rink: A Decades-long Roller Skating Tradition
5. C&C’s Frozen Treats: Ice Cream meets Family Fun
William (Crazy Willie) and Nina Huck own C&C’s Frozen Treats on Main Street. The couple relocated to Front Royal from Louisiana, and they’re not ashamed of their “deep south” heritage! Their delicious ice cream has become the talk of the town. With the unique selection of “crazy” flavors changing every week, you’ll never get tired of Main Street’s classic ice cream parlor. The Hucks have also worked hard to bring the Front Royal community together. In the spring, they host an annual Family Fun Day that includes a parade on Main Street, a Louisiana crawfish boil, and, of course, ice cream!
6. Turnmeyer Galleries
Turnmeyer Galleries is so much more than a photo gallery! They offer workshops, classes, gifts, Fine Art, jewelry, candles and an array of other boutique items. Their store offers unique pieces from local artists and craftsmen. It's truly a must stop and shop on Main Street!
Even More Mom and Pop Shops in Front Royal!
If you’re looking for a mom and pop shop to support on National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day, choose one of the five above, or see below for a more comprehensive list. The shops listed below are certified mom and pop, and guaranteed to put a smile on your face.
I Want Candy: Main Street’s destination for all the candy you could want.
Talk of the Mountain Seafood: from crabcake to oysters to catfish sandwiches, you’ll find it all here and more!
Two Fat Butchers: a classic butcher shop. On the weekends, check their smoker outside for ready-to-eat smoked foods.
Ben’s Family Cuisines: a restaurant serving a variety of Asian specialty food.
Royal Spice: Front Royal’s family-run Indian Restaurant.
Happy Creek Coffee: Coffee, tea, and gluten free food!
Dusty's Country Store: Gourmet Food Store inside Downtown Market
The COVID-19 lockdowns have been particularly hard on small business owners. Many are still recovering. This year, celebrate Mom and Pop Shop Business Owners Day by supporting your favorite Front Royal mom and pop Shop. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, use this post to discover a new one.
And remember ...
Welcome to Discover Front Royal’s “Discover-y” blog series! As spring weather begins to lift our spirits and tempt us outdoors, we’re turning the focus to the fantastic natural world around us. This series will feature a monthly post on the outdoor world around the Shenandoah Valley. Today’s topic: spring birds of the Shenandoah Valley!
Read on for some recommendations of birding spots in the Front Royal area. We’ve also included a list of five favorite birds that beginner and experienced birders alike will enjoy observing this spring (and even late winter if you are eager to get out there!).
Birding in the Front Royal Area
The Front Royal area is home to some fantastic spots for birding. An obvious place to start is the famed Shenandoah National Park. With its mountain-ridge location and plenteous forest habitat, the Shenandoah National Park is a magnet for migratory birds. The Dickey Ridge Visitor Center Area, just five miles from the Front Royal entrance station, is a top recommendation for bird-watching. Explore the trails in this part of the park if you’re in search of some spring bird sightings. See here for a further list of the park’s best hikes for birdwatching enthusiasts.
Another highly recommended spot for bird-watching around Front Royal is the Blandy Arboretum. The 700 acres of the arboretum include a variety of habitats, making it a great destination for wildlife enthusiasts of all kinds. Explore on your own, or consider checking out the arboretum’s educational programs. There are several birding offerings, which could be a great fit whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned birder looking for some company and fresh perspective on your birding adventures.
Finally, to view a diverse range of birds including waterfowl, don’t forget to check out some of the riverside locations around Front Royal. Shenandoah River State Park is a commonly recommended destination for bird enthusiasts. And if you head to Eastham Park you can take a birding walk along the Shenandoah River without even having to leave town.
1. Eastern Bluebird
Eastern Bluebirds are one of the few brightly colored birds you may sight around the Front Royal area in the dead of winter. While many birds leave the area in the fall, Eastern Bluebirds can be seen all year long. If you head out birding before spring has really started, Eastern Bluebirds are a great species to look out for. The pop of blue and rusty red will brighten any late-winter’s landscape.
A late winter birdsong to listen for is the “FEE-BEE” mating call of the Black-Capped Chickadee. Male Chickadees can begin to make this call as soon as late January. You’ll start to hear it more and more often as spring approaches. The Shenandoah Valley area is home to two species of Chickadees: Carolina and Black-Capped. The two are so closely related that they can interbreed. When they do, the offspring have the fascinating ability to make the distinctive bird call of both species.
3. Black-and-white Warbler
The sound of birdsong is a well-known hallmark of the return of spring. But did you know that in the Shenandoah Valley, it’s often the Black-and-White Warbler who’s the first to announce the end of winter. This distinctive, black-and-white striped bird is one of the first migratory birds to arrive in Shenandoah National Park each year. Hearing or seeing this bird is a sure sign than spring has finally come. Black-and-white warblers are also known for their “creeping” movement as they explore tree trunks in search of food.
4. Cerulean Warbler
The Cerulean Warbler used to be one of the more common birds of the lower Mississippi valley. In recent years, numbers have declined, and Cerulean Warblers are now a much rarer sight. One of the best places to spy them is Shenandoah National Park. Every spring, birding enthusiasts head to the park from miles around in hopes of laying eyes on one of these cheerful, bright blue songbirds. You’ll need to look hard and upwards! Cerulean Warblers generally prefer the higher part of the forest canopy.
5. Baltimore Oriole
The riverside trail at Eastham Park is a great spot for spring sightings of plentiful Baltimore Orioles. These brilliantly colored song-birds love to make their spring nests in the sycamores by the Shenandoah River. Take a stroll on the walking trail and keep your eyes peeled for the Baltimore Oriole’s attention-grabbing flash of orange.
Exploring nature and birding is a great spring pursuit. Once you get hooked, you can even bring the birds to your own backyard, and watch them right out of your window.
Consider putting up a bird feeder or nesting box this spring for bird-watching fun that keeps on going even after you get home. You’ll be helping out the Shenandoah Valley’s feathered friends too!
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