Things to Do

Attractions
Outdoors
Arts and Culture
Food and Drink
History
Getting Here

Alexandria

Step into Old Town Alexandria, a National Historic Landmark District that has also been recognized by Livability as the "Best Downtown in America." At the heart of it all is bustling King Street, with over a mile of independent shops and restaurants set amidst early-American architecture. Explore the intimate Museums on Market Square, such as Carlyle House and the Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum. As you approach the Potomac River at the end of King Street, stop in to the Torpedo Factory Art Center, the nation's largest collection of working artists' studios in America. What's more, Alexandria is a perfect home base just minutes from all the world-class attractions of the DC region.

Learn more »


Arlington

Arlington is where history and fun intersect. And while we’re proud to have some of our nation's most impressive and monuments and memorials, Arlington's neighborhoods are also home to countless special spots and experiences: intriguing, off-the-beaten-path, and perhaps unexpected. Set out by foot, Metro or bike for car-free fun in Arlington and the nation's capital! To help plan your visit, or for recommendations on attractions and itineraries, stop by Arlington's Mobile Visitors Center or call (800) 677- 6267.

Learn More »


Fairfax County

Home to George Washington’s Mount Vernon, the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts, Great Falls National Park, and many other national treasures, Fairfax County invites you to explore the attractions that allow you to “Connect With America” during your visit to Northern Virginia.

Also, be sure to leave ample time for shopping! Fairfax County offers some of the best shopping on the East Coast - with over 450 stores and restaurants in the Tysons Corner shopping area and boutique and one-of-a-kind shops found throughout our other historic towns.

Learn More »


Loudoun

From the bike trail to the ale trail, to scenic vineyard views and historic small towns, discover how Loudoun is a must visit destination for lovers of artisanal, epicurean, and culturally rich experiences. Located in Northern Virginia just 25 miles outside Washington D.C., Loudoun County is rich in attractions for outdoor enthusiasts, foodies, beer and wine aficionados and history buffs alike.

Loudoun shopping opportunities offer something for every taste. Discover unique gifts at locally owned boutiques in historic towns and villages. Secure a special souvenir in a restored carriage house gift shop and find forgotten treasures tucked away in antique emporiums. Or browse world-famous labels at Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets and Dulles Town Center and bring home the American brands you know and love.

Learn more »


Prince William

Prince William, Virginia is renowned for its historic American Battlefields, vibrant shopping destinations such as Potomac Mills, IKEA, Manassas Mall, and Cabela’s, its rocking outdoor music concert venues such as Farm Brew Live and Jiffy Lube Live, and the largest collection of outdoor hiking and recreation space in all of Northern Virginia. From charming historic American towns, to the iconic National Museum of the Marine Corps – Prince William, Virginia is ideal for finding things to do when visiting Northern Virginia.

Learn more »

Alexandria

Alexandria is an active community that offers visitors a chance to escape to the great outdoors without leaving town. AAA named Alexandria one of the "Ten Most Walkable Cities" in the country, but if a walk isn't enough exercise, hiking and biking trails wind along the waterfront with breathtaking views of the Potomac River, guiding you through nearby George Washington's Mount Vernon and Civil War sites. While you're riverside, enjoy a boat cruise on the Potomac to DC or nearby National Harbor. Prefer a plunge? Alexandria can take you there: Cameron Run Regional Park's waterslides and wave pool bring a family-friendly oasis to Virginia.

Learn more »


Arlington

With over 75 miles of trails and 1,100 acres of park and open space, Arlington is an urban area with outdoor appeal.

  • BikeArlington provides everything you want to know about biking in Arlington: maps, brochures, event listings, and more!
  • Arlington Trails features information on 36 miles of multi-use trails and 50 miles of connecting bike routes courtesy of Arlington County Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources.
  • Washington & Old Dominion Trail: The 100-foot wide park is one of the skinniest in Virginia, but also one of the longest - 45 miles in length.
  • WalkArlington provides maps and information to promote walking in Arlington.

Learn More »


Fairfax County

Fairfax County is home to almost 400 different parks and 30,000 acres of green space, so if you enjoy Mother Nature, then you’re looking in the right place! There are seemingly endless things to do in the great outdoors in Fairfax County. Rent a canoe or kayak at one of several boat shops. Hike, bike, or horseback ride on our nature trails. Or just sit back and witness the mighty power of the Great Falls Rapids.

Some of our more popular outdoor sites include Great Falls Park, Mason Neck State Park, Burke Lake Park, and Meadowlark Botanical Gardens. National Parks, Regional Parks, and local parks can all be found here, so whatever you want to do to connect with nature, you’ll find it here.

Learn More »

Loudoun

Loudoun is a perfect place to enjoy Mother Nature’s natural wonders with outdoor adventures that can be enjoyed by land, by air or by water. Hike a portion of the Appalachian Trail or enjoy a bike ride down the Washington & Old Dominion trail. Get a bird’s eye view of the countryside as you tackle the new aerial adventure course at Harpers Ferry Adventure Center or zipline through the treetops with Empower Adventures. Water lovers can whitewater raft down the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers or relax with friends while tubing.

Learn more »


Prince William

Prince William, Virginia boasts the largest collection of outdoor hiking, recreation, and outdoor adventure hot spots in all of Northern Virginia. From the many historic trails within Manassas National Battlefield Park to the hike up the Bull Run Mountains Conservancy near I-66 to the many sites within Prince William Forest Park and Leesylvania State Park near I-95 – outdoor explorers won’t miss out on taking a deep breath of fresh air. For water & other outdoor activities, choose from fishing or stand-up paddle boarding along the Potomac, or enjoy your first Goat Yoga experience in Prince William, Virginia.

Learn more »

Alexandria

Named one of America's Top Art Places, Alexandria is nationally recognized as a community with a "backbone of creative culture." The city's visual arts hub is the world-famous Torpedo Factory Art Center, a former munitions factory transformed into an artistic powerhouse with three floors of artist studios and galleries. The legendary Birchmere music hall hosts some of the biggest names in country, folk and rock in an intimate setting, while MetroStage performs innovative productions of contemporary plays and musicals. From theater to cozy jazz clubs, printmaking classes to comedy nights, Alexandria's art scene buzzes with life.

Learn more »


Arlington

Arlington's arts scene has been called "a hotbed of cultural abandon" by The Washington Post, and described as "...one of the hippest local jurisdictions at attracting adventurous arts and artists."

In the capital region, Arlington is second only to Washington, D.C., in its abundance of arts events, with more than 1,500 annually. Check out Arlington's galleries and theaters, and you’ll find original works, world-renowned artists and critically acclaimed performances just about any time.

Learn More »


Fairfax County

Fairfax County is home to an exceptional collection of venues showcasing music, the arts, and cultural attractions. From the incredibly unique prison-turned-artists’ studio Workhouse Arts Center to the country’s only National Park dedicated to the performing arts, Wolf Trap – our venues offer unique ways to showcase the talent of an amazing array of artists and performers.

Learn More »


Loudoun

Art lovers will enjoy the boutique studios scattered throughout Loudoun’s towns and villages. The Loudoun County Artisan Trail brings marketing and tourism connections to arts, agriculture, and cultural spots throughout Loudoun County. The Trail includes more than 150 sites spread across the County. Enjoy a show by Stagecoach Theatre Company, a traveling theatre troupe specializing in murder mysteries and dinner theater or visit the National Sporting Library & Museum, sharing the literature, art and culture of equestrian, angling and field sports.

Learn More »


Prince William

Prince William, Virginia features a ‘who’s who’ when it comes to music, arts, & culture. Home to the stunning Hylton Performing Arts Center that features worldly performing acts, the many art clusters full of creative art boutiques and galleries, and rocking live music sites such as Farm Brew Live and Jiffy Lube Live of which is home to major national and regional music acts in state of the art music venues.

Learn More »

Alexandria

Discover a booming culinary scene praised by Food & Wine, Bon Appetit and The New York Times. Minutes from Washington, DC, Alexandria has served US presidents and Washington DC elite, as well as couples and families seeking a dining experience away from the norm. Old Town Alexandria is known for its 100+ independently owned eateries, where you can find the freshest catch at waterfront seafood restaurants or creative comfort food served in historic buildings. Dine al fresco in dozens of restaurants along historic King Street or the scenic waterfront.

Step off the beaten path and find eclectic or international fare in the Del Ray neighborhood. Don't forget dessert - Alexandria is home to over 20 irresistible sweet spots, from homemade gelato to out-of-this-world donuts. And check out Port City Brewery in the city's West End, where you can have a drink and take a tour of the 2015 Great American Beer Festival's Best Small Brewery in America.

Learn more »


Arlington

Arlington's array of global cuisines rivals that of many much-larger cities, and its options for fun after dark serve up local flavor with a dash of international spice.

From live comedy to salsa dancing, hookah lounges to live Irish music, sports bars to wine tastings, and so much more, there's plenty to do on a typical night in Arlington. Best of all, you're just minutes by foot, cab or Metro to fun throughout our lively neighborhoods. So many choices of where to dine!

Learn More »


Fairfax County

There are two kinds of dining experiences Fairfax County loves to recommend: the legendary spots everyone knows and wants to try, and the unexpected gems you may need a local to help you find. We suggest a weekend stay to fit them all in for a foodie foray you (and your impeccable palate) will never forget!

Fairfax County is also home to seven craft breweries, two historically significant wineries, and George Washington’s Distillery - which produces limited edition whiskey based on Washington’s original recipe from the 18th century. So make a date for a tour of our county and be prepared to find your new favorite wine, beer, or whiskey!

Learn More »


Loudoun

Ignite your culinary senses in Loudoun, which prides itself on farm-to-table cuisine and unique dining experiences. For a distinctive Loudoun experience, visit one of our many restaurants featuring locally grown produce and Loudoun craft beverages. Known as DC’s Wine Country®, Loudoun is home to more than 40 wineries and tasting rooms. Intimate and boutique in design, our wineries offer tastings and tours.

The craft beer scene is exploding in Loudoun, with more than 20 breweries offering everything from classic hand-crafted beers to experimental small batches.

Learn More »


Prince William

From crabs to local seafood, to BBQ to crafty cocktails and brew, Prince William, Virginia continues to showcase local and American tastes that visitors keep returning to enjoy. The local dining and drinks scene features eclectic seafood and crab houses like Tim’s Rivershore, Blue Ridge Seafood and Out of the Blue, several smoking BBQ restaurants, and a thriving craft brewery, winery, and distillery collection that is sure to please any appetite.

Learn More »

Alexandria

Founded in 1749, Alexandria has more than 140 locations with ties to the nation's first president, George Washington, along with a host of intimate museums highlighting the beginnings of America. Several sites work to weave the rich tapestry of the city's history from the 18th-century to the present, like Gadsby’s Tavern which hosted each of the first five American Presidents, and the Alexandria Black History Museum, which details the city's strong African-American leaders from the Civil War to civil rights and beyond. And just nine miles south of Old Town Alexandria you can continue exploring America's first president's story at George Washington's Mount Vernon in Fairfax County.

Alexandria also nods to its vast creative history at the Torpedo Factory Art Center, a former World War II munitions factory turned 82 artist studios and six galleries, and the National Inventors Hall of Fame at the US Patent and Trademark Office, whose interactive exhibits celebrate modern innovation. Explore Alexandria with the "Key to the City" museum pass, which grants visitors access into eight historic sites.

Learn more »


Arlington

A trip to the nation's capital lets you discover the USA's past, present and future. Arlington, Virginia was once part of the nation's capital when it was founded in 1790. You can still see some of the 200-year-old “boundary stone” markers showing Arlington was once part of the original Federal City designed by Pierre L'Enfant. This connection to the nation's capital remains today in our history, attractions and everyday life.

Arlington's most famous historical site is arguably Arlington National Cemetery. The grounds of Arlington National Cemetery honor U.S. service members. Visitors can see the time-honored ceremonies, take in the scenic landscapes, and wander through the monuments.

Learn More »


Fairfax County

Revolution. Government. Innovation. Civil War. Fairfax County played a unique and powerful role in some of the most defining moments in U.S. history. For an authentic look into that past, look no further than our historic sites and museums as we open up a living history book for you to browse while walking in the footsteps of American legends.

We’re home to two Founding Fathers’ estates - George Washington’s Mount Vernon and George Mason’s Gunston Hall. We also showcase the history of flight at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, where you can walk amongst hundreds of iconic aircraft and spacecraft including the Space Shuttle Discovery, the SR-71 Blackbird, the Enola Gay, an Air France Concorde, and more. We're not just the stewards of America's story. We're where much of it was written, so plan your visit today for a first-hand master class in the scenarios and events behind the creation of our nation!

Learn More »


Loudoun

Come to Loudoun and experience the same historic vistas as President John F. Kennedy, First Lady Jackie Kennedy and George C. Marshall, who created The Marshall Plan. Explore Civil War battlefields, breeding grounds of Kentucky Derby winners and old fashioned country stores. Discover centuries old charming towns, including the circa 1758 Leesburg and Middleburg, the capital of Virginia horse country.

Learn More »


Prince William

When it comes to history in Northern Virginia, no one destination has more history to showcase than Prince William, Virginia. Prince William was the site of the Battles of Bull Run/Manassas, two of the most known battles of the American Civil War. From the stunning sights and history of the National Museum of the Marine Corps to exploring where today’s CIA got its start within Prince William Forest Park, history enthusiasts find something to learn in Prince William, Virginia.

Learn More »

How to get here

Northern Virginia is located adjacent to Washington, D.C. – the Capital of the United States. The two main airports serving Washington, D.C. are located here in Northern Virginia – they are Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) and Washington Reagan National Airport (DCA). We’re also located immediately off of Interstate 95 (the main American transportation corridor that stretches from Maine to Florida). For those who prefer to travel by rail, we’re also accessible via Amtrak® or  the Washington Metrorail system.We’re closer than you think:
  • Baltimore to Northern Virginia: 60 Miles (96.5 Kilometers)
  • Philadelphia to Northern Virginia: 160 Miles (257.5 Kilometers)
  • Virginia Beach to Northern Virginia: 215 miles (346 Kilometers)
  • New York City to Northern Virginia: 250 Miles (402 Kilometers)
  • Boston to Northern Virginia: 460 Miles (740 Kilometers)
  • Toronto to Northern Virginia: 475 Miles (764 Kilometers)
  • Montréal vers le nord Virginie: 600 Miles (965.6 Kilometers)
  • Québec vers le nord Virginie: 750 Miles (1207 Kilometers)

Climate and General Location

Located in the Mid-Atlantic United States, Northern Virginia is home to five eclectic destinations including Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax County, Loudoun County, and Prince William County. The climate in Northern Virginia has a temperate maritime climate. Winters are usually chilly with light snow, and summers can be hot and humid. Spring and Fall are mild to warm.