Things to Do in Staunton & The Surrounding Area

PRESENTED BY

"Traveler's Rest" - a Private Garden Retreat

&

"The Craftsman" - a Vacation Rental Home

Beautiful Downtown Staunton, VA!

 Downtown Staunton is filled with wonderful places to visit, to shop, to eat, to explore -- fine-dining restaurants, casual eating places, coffee shops, a tea house, a health food store/restaurant, art galleries, antique shops, 2 movie theaters, live theater, specialty gift shops, book stores, clothing stores, a thrift shop, a printing store, and much more!  Several places offer outside dining and there is music and entertainment in restaurants and theaters throughout the downtown!

Things to do in historic Downtown Staunton, Virginia:

 Such a charming town!

Walk to everything downtown from our B&B.  We have many fine dining restaurants (over a dozen), some casual eating spots, several coffee shops, a tea house, an ice cream parlor, a gourmet pizza place, and others -- everything from elegant dining rooms to casual bistros, from outdoor sidewalk seating to roof-top garden dining.

Several of our restaurants offer live entertainment. 

    Four of our casual restaurants have outdoor seating.

Click here for information about all the different restaurants in Staunton.  Then just use your backspace key to return to our website.  http://www.visitstaunton.com/dining/dining.htm.

The world-famous American Shakespeare Center is located in Staunton.  We have the world's only historically-correct re-creation of The Blackfriars' Playhouse, the name of the theater in which Shakespeare's plays were performed indoors.  Guests are coming literally from all over the world to attend performances at The Blackfriars' Playhouse here in Staunton.  Future plans include building a re-creation of  Shakespeare's outdoor theater, The Globe Theater.  Let us arrange for your tickets so you receive hospitality rates for reserved seating at the theater.  Their website is www.AmericanShakespeareCenter.com.  Use your backspace key to return to our site.

  

Pictured above are views of the interior of The Blackfriars' Playhouse (at the American Shakespeare Center) -- the left side is looking from the audience toward the stage and the second view is looking from the stage toward the audience.  An extraordinary experience awaits you!  Come and see a show at this theater.

The Heifetz International Music Institute located its permanent headquarters in Downtown Staunton, VA in 2012.  Several weeks each Summer the Institute, which is dedicated to the artistic growth and career development of some of the most talented young musicians in the world, will be conducting a six-week program here in Staunton.  Starting at the end of June, the concerts will continue through July and into mid-August each year.  It is an amazing opportunity for visitors in Staunton to enjoy some of the finest performances they will ever hear.

There are 2 movie theaters downtown as well as another one located in the mall.

Staunton Music Festival takes place each summer with many classical music events in Historic Downtown Staunton.  Concern venues include the historic Trinity Episcopal Church, The American Shakespeare Center's Blackfriars' Playhouse, the President's House at Mary Baldwin College, as well as other churches.  Their website is www.StauntonMusicFestival.com and their telephone number is (540) 569-0267.

There are 9 art galleries downtown.  Receptions on Friday evenings are very special and you can meet the artists.  Fourth Fridays in Downtown Staunton are lively events.  The art galleries are open late and some provide live music, food, and of course beautiful art.

Enjoy live glass blowing at one of the galleries downtown -- Sunspots. 

The Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum is located in Historic Downtown Staunton, VA at Woodrow Wilson's birthplace.  It is open daily except for Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year's Day, and Easter.  Their website is www.woodrowwilson.org and the telephone number is (540) 885-0897.   Use your backspace key to return to our website.

  

The Woodrow Wilson Birthplace and Presidential Library are located in Downtown Staunton, VA.

There is a FREE walking tour of the historic downtown area on Saturday mornings.

There are special guided tours of historic Staunton, available by appointment.  You can telephone (540) 885-2430 to arrange for your guided tour.  The website is:  www.stauntonguidedtours.com.  There is also a three-minute tour of Staunton on YouTube which you will be able to access from the Guided Tours website.

The Farmers' Market is located downtown:  Saturday mornings from April - November, opening at 7:00 a.m.  In addition to wonderful fruits and vegetables, you'll also find some meats, homemade breads and desserts, as well as fresh flowers and plants straight from the farm.  Sometimes you'll find a booth featuring Virginia wines from a local vineyard, or wool from local sheep, or homemade dips and sauces made with locally-grown herbs.

 

There are several day spas located in Staunton.    Enjoy couples massages, individual spa treatments, and many other spa treatments in this beautiful building near our B&B.

The TROLLEY, which only costs 25 cents, stops near our B&B and goes over to the city park and all around downtown (about a 25-minute loop, which runs continuously throughout the day).  We think you’ll find the trolley the ideal way to get around downtown although you can also walk to everything from our B&B  -- but you can get a real "over view" of the area when you take the trolley.  The trolley stops at the Staunton Visitors' Center for pickup at 15 minutes and 45 minutes after every hour and there are also several designated trolley stops.  You can also just wave and the driver will pull over for you if it is safe to do so.  The trolley makes a continuous loop around the downtown, Wharf area and out to Gypsy Hill Park once every 25 - 30 minutes.  Hours:  10:00 am - 10:00 pm  Monday - Saturday (May-December) AND 10:00 am - 6:00 pm Monday - Saturday (January - April). 

There are FREE concerts in the park in July and August (Monday - Thursday evenings) at the gazebo.  There are picnic tables and benches to sit on or you can bring your own chairs.

There are many other special events in Downtown Staunton throughout the year!

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Things to do in and around the City of  Staunton and on the Outskirts of Staunton:

Visit The Frontier Culture Museum at the edge of town (approximately an hour walking tour of 1600's, 1700's, and 1800's farmhouses, barns, and gardens from several European countries as well as an African village with huts and early American farmhouses).  New "exhibits" are always being constructed.

 There are often special events at The Frontier Culture Museum -- but, no matter what is going on, it is always fun to walk from homestead to homestead, experiencing what life would have been like in the 1600's and 1700's in Europe and the 1800's in Southwest Virginia.

Tour the gardens of Andre Viette's Farm and Nursery (free).

This sign is at the entrance of Andre Viette's extraordinary farm and nursery.  You walk around his private gardens and sometimes there are free lectures under the apple tree.  The Viette family is internationally known for their expertise in propagating the day lily.  Many other beautiful plants are planted throughout their gardens and they are identified so you can learn.  For instance, stroll through the extensive "shade garden" and observe the plants flourishing there.  Each plant is marked so you can write down the names of plants and have them in your own garden.  You can also purchase plants, books, and other things at their on-site store.  In addition, they have a large mail-order business.

Wade's Mill is an interesting place to visit -- and the drive through the country is beautiful. 

There are many vineyards to explore including a recently-opened one just outside of Staunton.

Barren Ridge Vineyards.        Rockbridge Vineyards.

Horseback riding is available.  The Star "B" Stables website is www.starbstables.com and their telephone number is (540) 885-8855.  Hour rides are available by appointment.  Keezlenutten Farm also offers trail rides and their telephone number is (540) 269-2227.

There are numerous antique shops between Staunton and Harrisonburg.  Enjoy the drive and stop all along the way.  (One antique center, a 10-minute drive from Downtown Staunton, is considered to be the largest antique mall on the East coast . . . and IT IS STILL GROWING!)   The plan is for this antique mall to be the largest antique mall in the United States.  You can easily spend a day and there's even a cafe to enjoy lunch!

Polyface, Inc. is a family owned, multi-generational, pasture-based, beyond organic, local-market farm and informational outreach in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley.  Hours: for sales, by appointment or 9:00 am - 4:00 pm Saturday.  Self-guided tours Monday -Saturday.  Guided tours by appointment only.  Guided tours offered free one day per month.  Regular fees for guided tours vary. Wheelchair accessible, public restrooms, pets allowed (on leash).

 Visitors at Polyface Farms (shown in photo at left).  Be sure to visit their website at www.polyfacefarms.com.   This farm is the only one in the United States and, as far as is known, the only one in the world which offers the educational experience this wonderful farm offers.

There are also antique shops in Stuarts Draft and Waynesboro, which are neighboring towns.

  There is another Farmers' Market on Wednesday mornings in Verona, a neighboring town (in addition to the Farmers' Market which is downtown on Saturday mornings).

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Things to do within a 30-minute to 45-minute drive from Staunton in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley:

The P. Buckley Moss Museum in Waynesboro houses the permanent collection by the “People’s Artist” Patricia Buckley Moss, which is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday from 12:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.  The Barn Show hours are slightly different -- open until 6:00 when there is a Barn Show.   Guided tours are available upon request.  A retail gallery is located on the lower level.   Wheelchair accessible, public restrooms, gift shop.

There are many wineries (we have a coupon for free wine tastings at one of them) to visit throughout the Shenandoah Valley and others are just across the mountain in Central Virginia.

Beautiful caves and caverns are located throughout the Shenandoah Valley.  Luray Caverns is open every day in the year and their website is www.LurayCaverns.com.  Shenandoah Caverns is open every day except for December 25th.  Their website is www.shenandoahcaverns.com.   Grand Caverns' website is www.grandcaverns.com.

Drive along the Skyline Drive and/or The Blue Ridge Parkway (about 20 - 30 minutes from Staunton).

There are hiking trails along the parkways (with beautiful vistas and lovely waterfalls).

     

Monticello is about a 45-minute drive (Charlottesville).

The Virginia Horse Center is about a 30-minute drive (Lexington).

Enjoy the annual Maple Festival in Monterey, VA which is quite special.  Stay with us in Staunton and enjoy the beautiful drive over the mountain to the Festival.

Take a step back in time to Highland County, "Virginia's Switzerland." Travel back roads and mountain byways to the annual Highland Maple Festival.  Held on the 2nd and 3rd weekends of March, the Maple Festival has been an annual event in Highland County, Virginia since 1958.

Each year, thousands of visitors are drawn to this unspoiled, rural region of Virginia to celebrate the "opening" of the trees and observe the process of maple syrup-making.  Sugar camp tours provide a unique and educational experience that portrays a rapidly vanishing way of American life.

The Virginia Safari Park is a 180-acre drive-through adventure located in the town of Natural Bridge, VA which is about 40 minutes south of Staunton.  Have a special time driving through the Safari Park, walking around the Petting Zoo, and exploring the incredible beauty of the "natural bridge."

                            Natural Bridge is spectacular.  Walk beneath this amazing natural wonder.

There are many colleges and universities in all the towns and cities nearby.  Staunton is centrally located between Harrisonburg and Lexington, with Charlottesville to the east, and Monterey to our west.  Mary Baldwin College is just 3 blocks from our B&B.

Go to The Virginia Christian Retreat website:

www.VirginiaChristianRetreat.com

e-mail for Christian Retreat:  [email protected]

(special retreat rates for longer stays)

B&B Accommodation and Vacation Rentals:

www.StauntonBedandBreakfast.com

e-mail for the B&B:  [email protected]

 call:  (540) 885-6556 for inquiries and/or reservations.

Enjoy our B&B and our two vacation rental house, as shown below:

    

The Craftsman-Style (a vacation rental house);  Traveler's Rest, the Carriage House (a B&B accommodation)

The Gilpin Willson House, an historic home in Downtown Staunton; A back view of The Gilpin Willson House

(This beautiful home is the ideal setting for a small wedding in Staunton, VA -- in our gardens or in the main inn.)

 

More Information

"About Historic Staunton, Virginia"

Staunton has five beautiful historic neighborhoods that are listed in the National Register of Historic Places:

There is a rich history not only in Downtown Staunton but throughout the area:

Visit The Frontier Culture Museum where working "farms" demonstrate how the lifestyles of England, Ireland, and Germany came together to create the rural life of the 1800's that shapes so much of today's culture.  The newest addition is The African Village.  Enjoy walking through the "farms" where volunteers speak in the first person as if they lived there, telling you about their family, the belongings in their home, and their lifestyle.  Thatched roofs, huts, gardens, and even the clothing of the volunteers are some of the experiences you'll enjoy.

At The Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library you'll take a look at the life and times of one of the nation's great leaders.  You can visit the Presidential Library, the birthplace, and a museum dedicated to the Pierce Arrow driven by President Wilson.

The Museum of Bank History at Sun Trust Bank adjoins the handsome 1930's Beaux-Arts style banking hall of Sun Trust Bank.  It has a display of objects that were once used by The Valley National Bank as well as memorabilia associated with the banking industry.  When the bank was known as The Valley National Bank, Gilpin Willson, Jr. was president of the bank for several years.  He lived at 216 West Frederick Street, which is now set up as a vacation rental home and the carriage house is booked as a B&B accommodation.  The house was built for him when he got married.  The heavy old safe still remains in the entry hall wall although now it is stocked with brochures instead of money.  It is said that Gilpin Willson, Jr. gave loans (on a handshake) from his home, and that is why we have the heavy old black and gold safe built right into the house, a wonderful reminder of the way things used to be done.

Trinity Episcopal Church, the first Augusta Parish Church, was built on the site where the church stands today in 1763.  The present church, a distinguished example of early Gothic Revival architecture, was begun in 1855.  It boasts an extraordinary collection of stained glass windows, including many by Tiffany Studios.  You can enjoy the carillon four times a day while sitting in the gardens at The Gilpin Willson Home and Traveler's Rest.  The carillon plays a hymn at 9:00 a.m., noon, 3:00 p.m., and 6:00 p.m.  You can hear the hymns softly playing since the church is only a block for the B&B.

SMA VWIL Museum, established by the Staunton Military Academy (SMA) Alumni Association and the Virginia Women's Institute for Leadership (VWIL), is a museum and memorial to SMA and its cadets.

The "Jumbo" antique fire engine is a 1911 Robinson Chemical Fire Engine completely restored by the City of Staunton Volunteer Fire Department.  It is the only surviving fire truck of its kind in existence.  This truck was the first motorized fire truck of its kind to be used in the State of Virginia.

The R.R. Smith Center is a collaboration of three leading cultural organizations:  Augusta County Historical Society, Historic Staunton Foundation, and the Staunton-Augusta Art Center.  The center was designed in 1893 by noted local architect T. J. Collins.  The Smith Center houses exhibit galleries, a lecture hall, classrooms, archival areas, a library and reading room, conference facilities, and offices for the three non-profit organizations.

 Hours: Galleries open 10:00 am - 5:00 pm Monday - Friday   AND 10:00 am  - 2:00 pm Saturday.   1:00 pm - 4:00 pm on Sunday.

Free.   Wheelchair accessible.   Public restrooms.

 

 

"Lists of Some of Our Local Attractions"

 

Performing Arts:

 

The American Shakespeare Center (Blackfriars' Playhouse)

Staunton, Virginia (Downtown)  540-851-1733

 

Staunton Music Festival

Staunton, Virginia  540-569-0267

 

Staunton Performing Arts Center

Staunton, Virginia  540-885-3211

 

Oak Grove Theater

Verona, Virginia  540-248-5005

 

Shenarts

Staunton, Virginia  540-248-1868

 

The Dixie Movie Theater

Staunton, Virginia (Downtown) 540-885-8445

 

The Visulite Cinema

Staunton, Virginia (Downtown) 540-885-9959

 

 

Visual Arts (galleries in Staunton):

 

Studio 234

 

The Frame Gallery

 

Kronos Gallery

 

Passionate Stone Studio

 

Krescent Moon Gallery

 

Co-Art Gallery

 

The Beverley Street Studios

 

White Swan Gallery

 

SunSpots Glass Blowing Studio

 

Middlebrook Gallery

 

Staunton-Augusta Art Center at Gypsy Hill Park

 

Painted Thunder Studio

 

The Brownstone Gallery

 

 

Vineyards:

Barren Ridge Vineyards

Fishersville, Virginia  540-248-3300

 

Flying Fox Vineyard

Afton, Virginia  www.flyingfoxvineyard.com

Veritas Winery

Afton, Virginia  540-456-8000

 

Afton Mountain Vineyard

Afton, Virginia  540-456-8667

 

Rockbridge Vineyards & Winery

Raphine, Virginia  888-511-wine

 

White Hall Vineyards

White Hall, Virginia  434-823-8615

 

Wintergreen Vineyard and Winery

Nellysford, Virginia  434-361-2519

Villa Appalaccia Winery & Vineyards

(540) 593-3100

 

 

 

Miscellaneous:

 

Wade's Mill

Raphine, Virginia  540-348-1400

 

Green Valley Book Fair

Mt. Crawford, VA

 

Go to the website for Traveler's Rest and The Craftsman House: www.StauntonBedandBreakfast.com

e-mail for the B&B:  [email protected]

 call:  (540) 885-6556 for inquiries and/or reservations.

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