Surrounded by the natural beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains and seated at the foot of the James River, Lynchburg is an outdoor playground with boutique hotels in historic, redesigned spaces, eclectic eateries serving delicious food for all palates and a vibrant, walkable downtown—a place where you can get out on the water for some fun in the sun, and then wine and dine the evening away.
Lynchburg offers many ways to stay whether you’re looking for a name-brand hotel, a boutique experience or a cozy bed and breakfast. The most recent addition to the downtown area is The Virginian, an elegant hotel with art deco touches and rooftop restaurant. Traveling with your four-legged companion? The Craddock Terry Hotel welcomes the whole family, including a greeting from its wire fox terrier mascot, Penny Loafer.
For a fun day trip on the water, there’s a perfect opportunity right in Lynchburg’s backyard! Located on the eastern bank of the James River across from the city is Rivers Edge Park where you can put in your own craft or rent a canoe or kayak at James River Adventures and take a leisurely paddle or float downriver. Ask your hotelier about a packed lunch to enjoy during the trip.
If fly fishing is your activity of choice, TaleTellers Fly Shop has everything you need to get started. It offers classes for people of all ages on how to tie custom flies and cast lines, and provides guided fishing tours for the best places to catch catfish, musky and largemouth bass.
Lynchburg has two state parks nearby for a jump in a lake or just to paddle around. Holliday Lake is located in the lush forests of Appomattox County just 25 minutes from Lynchburg. There you can hike, ride a horse along the trails or rent a boat and go paddling or fishing for largemouth bass, crappie and bluegill. Swim areas provide refreshing fun for all, and playgrounds offer the kids an opportunity to burn off extra energy.
Less than an hour’s drive from Lynchburg is James River State Park where you can rents canoes, kayaks and tubes to explore the 8 miles of river that you can paddle or float down while enjoying the gorgeous flora and fauna of the area, or toddle around the Branch Pond. This is also a great location for fishing riverside or pondside.
After a day on the water, you’ve no doubt worked up a hunger for some great food and a beverage. A renaissance has been taking place with Michelin Star chefs setting up shop in Lynchburg’s downtown, and Food Network veterans donning their aprons and wielding pastry brushes to satisfy the city’s sweet tooth. Walk through the doors of any Lynchburg restaurant and you’ll be met with extraordinary flavor and a desire to please any palate. Whether you want to stop for a quick bite, enjoy a brewed beverage or sit for a full-course dinner, Lynchburg is full of choices.
Take it a little easier the next day and visit one or more of Lynchburg’s many attractions. From a garden walk at the Anne Spencer House & Garden or Old City Cemetery Museums & Arboretum to a walk through history at the Lynchburg Museum and Point of Honor Historic Home, there is much to show you how the city got its start and why its people love it so much. The arts are a big part of what makes Lynchburg tick: take in a show, concert or gallery exhibit at the many venues throughout the city or duck into a local shop and take home a piece of Lynchburg with you.
To plan ahead, visit lynchburgvirginia.org to virtually explore the locations, sights and experiences that await you. When you find something of interest, click “Add to Itinerary” to remind you to share this new experience with someone special when you make your trip to Lynchburg.
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