DC

Go Birding on the Huntley Meadows Boardwalk

Best time to go: 03/01 - 11/15  

Huntley Meadows is one of my favorite bird sanctuaries, and it is less than half an hour’s drive from most of the DC area. Skip to: Trailmap | Hours | Mansion One of the most interesting parts of the park is where the park opens onto the marshland just beyond the visitor center. If you …

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More information: fairfaxcounty.gov

Take your sweet time at Frying Pan Park

Best time to go: 08/01 - 11/15  

Frying Pan Park is an exhibition farm in Fairfax County, VA. Although it is best known as the location of the annual 4-H Fair in mid-summer, there’s plenty to do year-round. The antique carousel and live animals are both a short walk from the parking lot. We always enjoy peeping in the henhouse, and the …

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More information: fairfaxcounty.gov

Meander through the Oatlands Plantation and Gardens

Best time to go: 03/30 - 12/30  

A 40 minute drive from DC will take you to a Revolutionary War era plantation in Virginia’s Hunt Country. Established in 1798 by a grandson of Robert “King” Carter, a major land baron of the Colonial Virginia lowlands, Oatlands Plantation originally consumed over 5 square miles of fertile Virginia farmland. Oatlands’ operation depended on more …

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More information: oatlands.org

Hike the Gathland State Park trails

Best time to go: 05/01 - 10/31  

In 1884, the war correspondent George Alfred Townsend, known by his pen name “Gath” visited Crampton’s Gap for the first time. Weeks later, he purchased the land that straddles the pass and began building his baronial summer retreat. Gath wrote for the both The Philadelphia Inquirer and The New York Herald before becoming washington correspondent …

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Is Kent Island the best beach destination that you’ve never heard of?

Best time to go: 05/15 - 09/15  

Directly across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, less than an hour’s drive from Washington, DC, is a hidden gem of a beach. We visited recently on a lark after finding that a closer park was fenced off due to the pandemic. Not so with Terrapin Nature Park on Maryland’s Kent Island, in the middle of the …

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Hike Sky Meadows State Park

Best time to go: 03/01 - 09/30  

Virginia has 63 State Parks, and Sky Meadows is the jewel in the crown. Gifted to the state in 1975 by philanthropist Paul Mellon, the thousand acre park earned its name from a former owner who likened his farm to Scotland’s Isle of Skye. It’s also a fitting name for a park dominated by mountain …

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More information: dcr.virginia.gov

Beach Barbecue at Freestone Point, Leesylvania State Park

Best time to go: 05/01 - 09/30  

Never heard of Freestone Point? Welcome to the club. I’d never heard of it either, but it’s now my favorite place in the DMV for a cookout barbeque. The picnic area stretches along nearly 1000′ of shoreline, with open access barbeque pits and trees that are perfectly positioned for hammocks. Nature enthusiasts will enjoy the …

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More information: dcr.virginia.gov