With local farms in full swing, grapes starting to weigh down the vines, and pick your own farms all over the map, summer in Virginia is a time of plenty. It’s a great time to enjoy some fresh, local produce, and heading to a rural area like Front Royal definitely brings you closer to where your food is coming from. Discover Front Royal is will be featuring our local foods throughout the season, with tips on where to find them and how to enjoy them.
Today we’re giving you the run down on two fantastic local products, as well as a recipe to combine them for a delicious summer drink to enjoy on a balmy summer evening. Read on to discover Front Royal’s strawberries, wine, and Strawberry Sangria!
Finding Local Strawberries around Front Royal
In the category of popular, early summer produce, strawberries are high on the list. Fun to pick, delicious to eat, and at the center of countless summer dishes and desserts, strawberries are a summer staple. They also boast numerous health benefits including vitamin C and antioxidants. Strawberries are available in grocery stores all year round, but did you know that food grown in your local area and freshly picked in season has been shown to boast greater nutritional value than food shipped from far away? It tastes better too! Taking advantage of some locally grown strawberries this summer is fun and healthy at the same time!
Wondering where to find farm fresh strawberries? Head to Front Royal! Picking your own is lots of fun for all the family and you can do it here. In the Front Royal area, strawberry picking season can start as early as mid-May, and typically continues through June. Hartland Orchard/Green Truck Farms and Hollin Farms are popular locations for pick your own strawberries. Farming and weather can be unpredictable, so be sure to check ahead and make sure picking is available before heading to the farm. Don’t have time to pick? At Hartland, you can purchase strawberries pre-picked for your convenience.
Sip on Virginia Wines
Strawberries taste great with another outstanding product of the Front Royal area: wine! Many wines pair well with strawberries. If you head to one of Front Royal’s wineries for a strawberry picnic, the staff can help you pick out the perfect bottle.
Why not make a day of it, with strawberry picking in the morning followed by a relaxing afternoon at a local winery? If you’re planning on picking at Hartland Orchard or Hollin Farms, Arterra Wines is an amazing winery option close by. Here you’ll find unique wines created with no additives. Even the yeasts used to ferment the wine are those naturally occurring on the grape skins. If you’re sensitive to some of the additives typically found in wines, or if you’re simply looking to clean up your diet (while still enjoying wine!), this winery is a must-visit!
Valley View Farm (though not a winery) is another convenient option for berry pickers where you can enjoy locally produced wines in a beautiful setting. Or check out Aspen Dale Winery for another amazing winery close by. With beautiful, extensive grounds to explore, it’s a great place for the whole family to relax and enjoy a picnic.
See a more extensive list of the Front Royal area’s wineries here.
Bring it Home and Enjoy Strawberry Sangria
Enjoying Front Royal’s fantastic local fare doesn’t have to stop when you get home. Bring a bottle of wine (or a few!) and some strawberries home and combine them to make a classic summer drink: Strawberry Sangria! Recipes for this summer favorite can be as simple or as complicated as you like, but this one’s a good place to start. Featuring just wine, strawberries, and a few other simple ingredients, it’s a sangria recipe that’s easy to make with primarily Front Royal-sourced ingredients! Plan ahead and chill overnight for best results. Enjoying this refreshing summer beverage is a great way to experience a taste of the Shenandoah Valley!
A wine and strawberries day in Front Royal Virginia is a perfect way to experience local produce and summer in the Shenandoah Valley all at once. Enjoy the fruits of the season and the stunning countryside, and leave with a tasty treat to enjoy at home.
There’s nothing that says “I love you” to a mom quite like the chance to spend some special time with family. And on Mother’s Day, the beautiful spring weather makes spending time outdoors together a perfect fit. This Mother’s Day, head to Front Royal and give the gift of a fun outing in the Shenandoah Valley. You and Mom can connect over something you both love to do.
Read on for ideas on a range of delightful outings in the Front Royal area for you and Mom. You can enjoy the beautiful spring of the Shenandoah Valley together. We’ve given suggestions for moms of all kinds, so you’re sure to find something your mom will love!
For the Mom who Loves Outdoor Adventures
We think of mothers as a safe-haven, and rightly so. But moms are also some of the most adventurous people there are! Taking on responsibility for one or several tiny humans is not for the fainthearted!
Does your mom love to adventure in the great outdoors as much as she loves the great adventure of motherhood? If so, you’ll have no problem finding a Mother’s Day outing she’ll enjoy in the Front Royal area!
With the Shenandoah River winding through Front Royal, a day on the river is a great way to adventure and relax at the same time. Front Royal has a range of friendly outfitters who’ll take care of your needs. Check out Front Royal Outdoors, or Down River Canoe Company, to find a river trip that works for you.
If you’re more interested in getting out on some hiking trails, you have some great options in the Front Royal area too. With the George Washington National Forest, the Shenandoah National Park, and the Appalachian Trail all within easy distance, you can find an iconic hike without too much trouble. If your mom is a serious hiker or biker, combine this outing with the gift of an All Trails Pro subscription. All Trails Pro is like a GPS app, but for hiking trails! Mom can enjoy the trails with a whole new sense of security.
For the Mom who Loves a Small-Town Vibe
Depending on your tastes, spring weather can be just as enjoyable on the streets of a quaint small town as in a mountain landscape. If your mom is a lover of small town life, she’ll definitely enjoy an afternoon in Front Royal.
Be sure to attend C & C Frozen Treats 7th Annual Family Fun Day on Saturday, May 7th from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on East Main Street! It's the perfect event for a family outing!
To give your outing a bit more structure, consider following the Front Royal Walking Tour. This self-guided tour takes you through Front Royal’s most historic and picturesque streets. You’ll learn some local history along the way. Feel free to take a break along the way and enjoy hunting for treasures in an antique store, sipping on a coffee, or savoring an ice cream cone.
Another great idea for enjoying Front Royal’s small town atmosphere is an afternoon at the Dr. Seide Memorial Botanical Gardens. Within the 3.5 acres of beautifully planned gardens, you’ll find benches, walking paths, and even a stretch of Happy Creek. The same complex is also home to one of Front Royal’s most extensive parks, so the whole family can enjoy playgrounds, sand volleyball, tennis, basketball, and more.
For the art appreciation moms, ARTFEST maybe the perfect end to a perfect day! Come and enjoy beautiful live music and more!
For the Mom who just Wants to Relax
For some Moms, a slower-paced day in the countryside is the best way to relax and rejuvenate. If you’re looking for an outing along these lines, you might consider heading to Sunflower Cottage in Middletown. Mom can enjoy this picturesque herb farm, and visit the retail garden center to pick out herbs, flowers, or planters for the coming season. Don’t forget to include a stop at the farm’s Backroom Brewery for some refreshment. Here you’ll find craft beers made with hops grown right on the farm. The brewery is open from 12-8 on Sundays, so on Mother’s Day you can enjoy brunch, lunch, or dinner!
For another relaxing option, consider planning a picnic at one of the many fantastic wineries surrounding Front Royal. Sipping on a glass of Virginia wine in a gorgeous setting will be a restorative experience for anyone!
Celebrate Mom in the Front Royal area this Mother’s Day weekend. With a range of options to suit all tastes, you can get out in the fresh spring air of the Valley and enjoy a memorable day together.
May is finally here, the end of the school year is well in sight, and (if you haven’t already) it’s a great time to start making travel and tourism plans for the summer. In Front Royal, we love the many guests who pass through our small town. May 1-7 is Travel and Tourism Week, and we’re joining the celebration by recognizing the fantastic folks who find something to draw them to Front Royal. There are so many things to love about Front Royal, that tourists come into town for many different reasons. Read on for our handy guide to six kinds of tourists/travelers you’ll find passing through town!
1. Hiking Legends
The most legendary hike in the U.S.A. is unquestionably the Appalachian Trail. Large numbers of dedicated hikers taking on the daunting challenge of hiking the over-two-thousand mile trail every year. As the Appalachian Trail passes close by Front Royal, it’s not surprising that many of them drop by our town. In fact, with an affordable shuttle service from the trail to the town, a free locker, laundry, and shower service, a premium gear shop, and fantastic restaurants to fill hungry hikers, it’s not surprising that Front Royal is a favorite stop for Appalachian Trail hikers. There’s even lodging specifically provided by and for Appalachian Trail enthusiasts. An officially designated Appalachian Trail Community, Front Royal has become a model for many of the towns that host Appalachian Trail hikers every year.
If you enjoy hiking, you don’t have to be undertaking the Appalachian Trail to find some hiking to love around Front Royal. Shenandoah National Park is another favorite hiking location, with stunning scenery and hikes ranging from easy to challenging, including the beloved Old Rag.
2. River Relaxers
For those who enjoy fishing, boating, swimming, tubing, or anything that requires a river, Front Royal is a dream destination. With the North and South Forks of the scenic and lovely Shenandoah River meeting right in town, there are so many opportunities for river recreation that Front Royal is known as the Canoe Capital of Virginia. Bring your own gear, or work with one of our friendly outfitters. You’ll find an enthusiastic welcome, a beautiful river, and a boatload of memories waiting to be made! Check out Front Royal’s riverside campgrounds for even more time to enjoy the river.
“Leaf-Peepers” are the tourists known for pursuing the stunning sights of the changing leaves of fall throughout. Fall is a great time of year to visit Front Royal. With Shenandoah National Park one of the top leaf-peeping destinations in the country, October is a popular month for visitors. Head to Front Royal to access the park and enjoy the stunning vistas of vibrant fall colors spread across the Blue Ridge Mountains.
From to farm-to-table operations, pick-your-own farms, craft breweries and internationally acclaimed restaurants, the Front Royal area has plenty to keep a foodie happy for a long, long time. Plan a weekend or longer to explore the gourmet food options of the Front Royal area, and enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner Front Royal style!
5. Wine Lovers
With sensational sipping spaces, rolling vineyards, and stunning mountain views, Front Royals wineries are a special destination for all lovers of wine . . . from the casual to the connoisseur. Pack a picnic, enjoy a tasting, or buy a bottle. There are so many ways to enjoy the amazing Virginia wines and wineries of the Front Royal area. Don’t forget to stop by Front Royal Wines before you leave town and pick up some souvenirs to bring home.
6. Big City Escapees
Living and working in the big city takes its toll, and sometimes you just need a little WanderLOVE. For residents and commuters in the D.C. Metro area, Front Royal is the ideal destination to find that love and enjoy a country weekend. Less than a 90 minute drive from central Washington D.C., it’s convenient enough for a day or weekend trip, but still rural enough that you’ll feel like you’ve truly entered a different world. Break free of the city and head to Front Royal for fun, adventure, relaxation, and restoration.
Front Royal draws visitors for many reasons, and it’s a dream destination for a variety of tourists and travelers. Do you find yourself drawn to join one (or more!) of our groups of happy visitors? If so, make plans for your trip to Front Royal today! You’ll find yourself wanting to come back again and again!
We all know how much women love friendship and social connection, and there’s something extra special about time spent with “just the girls.” Planning a getaway or weekend together is a great way to take these strong, sisterly bonds to the next level. If you’re planning a girls’ trip in 2022, put Front Royal at the top of your list of destinations. With fun shopping, outdoor adventure, wineries, gourmet food, and more, there’s too much to do for just one weekend! Read on for six ideas to help you plan a girls’ trip that any group will love!
1. Spend an Afternoon at a Winery (or Meadery)
What better way to kick off some time with the girls than by enjoying some wine together! Especially if you’re reuniting a group that hasn’t been together in a while, sipping on some wine is a great way to renew old bonds quickly. Plan your trip to Front Royal, and you’ll get to enjoy wine against some of the most stunning views of the Shenandoah Valley. Front Royal has lots of fantastic wineries waiting to host you. Try Rappahannock Wine Cellars, Chester Gap Cellars, or Glen Manor Vineyards for outstanding wines and amazing ambiance.
Want to switch out wine with something that may be new to you, but is old news for humanity? Consider planning a mead tasting instead at one of Front Royal’s two local meaderies.
2. Get Creative Together
Artsy group? You’re in for a treat in Front Royal! Head to Explore Art and Clay for a fun adventure painting your own pottery. Or schedule a Paint Party at The Studio! Bring your own refreshments, relax, and enjoy a painting project together under professional instruction. You’ll even bring home a memento of your trip. Plan a totally creative weekend and visit both studios. Art lovers will want to check out Turnmeyer Galleries for souvenirs too.
3. Explore the Town and Shop
Talking of shopping, if you have a group of eager shoppers you’ll have a hard time finding a more unique, fun, and memorable place to shop than Front Royal. Set aside some time to wander around in the historic downtown area, where you’ll find antique stores, farm markets, unique gift shops, a used book store, and more, all within walking distance. Don’t forget to save time for taking a break and treating yourselves to some delicious coffee, baked goods, or ice cream!
4. Bond Over an Outdoor Adventure
In Front Royal, it doesn’t have to be all about doing stereotypically “girly” things! Many women enjoy exercising in the great outdoors, and sharing an outdoor adventure can be one of the best bonding experiences you’ll have! Pack snacks and plan a day on the river, or head to Shenandoah National Park or George Washington National Forest for an unforgettable hiking adventure.
5. Explore the Front Royal Dining Scene
When you’re ready to relax over that delicious meal that someone else cooked, Front Royal is a great place to be. For a girls’ weekend, ViNoVA might be our top pick. Enjoy more wine with tasty tapas to share.
To treat yourselves to a classic fine dining experience, check out The Element. Or enjoy craft beer and gourmet food at PaveMint Taphouse or Vibrissa Beer.
6. Relax and Get Cozy with Accommodations that Feel Like Home
The activities and the food are only half of what makes a girls’ weekend amazing. The other component that can make or break the trip is where you stay! Sharing an Airbnb will give you a great way to extend your time together, get cozy in pjs, and maybe even bust out the popcorn and enjoy some romantic movies. Front Royal has lots of accommodation options that are cozy and unique. To get your search started check out this one and this one. Or see here for a fuller list of lodging options in the Front Royal area.
With cozy lodging, fun activities, and adventure in store, Front Royal has everything it takes to make for a great girls’ trip. As an added bonus, it’s conveniently located within easy distance of Northern Virginia, so if you’re in the D.C. metro area, you won’t have to spend half your weekend travelling. Start planning your 2022 get together with your girls today, and make Front Royal the destination!
Discover Front Royal