Need a break from DC? Consider These Weekend Getaways
On the one hand: a terrible and pressing need to get out of town for a few days. On the other: a car that unfortunately refuses to run on a viscous liquid that costs less than $5 a gallon.
With these twin considerations in mind, we’ve put together five trips that shouldn’t require more than a single tank of gas—they’re all within 150 miles of DC. The round trip is 300, which means you’ll even have fuel to spare.
Dive into our full list below and plan your next weekend getaway.
Virginia’s capital offers more than history: with a vibrant food and drink scene, one can easily bar-hop all around W Broad Street, brewery after brewery. These are all best enjoyed after getting a taste of the city’s thriving art scene – start your visit at Carrefour Art Centerwhich is currently presenting an exhibition-competition at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. And if that doesn’t offer enough greenery, keep going until Maymonta 100-acre historic estate and garden.
There are lots of kitschy things to do in Luray – the famous Luray Caverns are certainly the city’s main attraction — but those looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of DC will likely appreciate the city’s decidedly low-key nature. Luray’s walkable town center is full of shops and tasty local restaurants. Its proximity to majestic Shenandoah National Park makes for great day hikes or even overnight; Skyline Drive is well worth a drive for its overwhelming beauty and panoramic views.
President Biden’s hometown evokes a sense of Old Town Alexandria thanks to its sprawling waterfront, but there’s plenty to do even if they can seem familiar, no shortage of museums, restaurants, water activities, gardens, etc. The Delaware Museum of Art has a large collection as well as solid exhibits, including one throughout the summer on “The Native Faces of Wilmington.” If you fancy a Union Market type experience, the Food hall DE.CO features live music on Thursday nights and offers pizza, Southern-style fare, sushi and more. bonus: the Longwood Gardens worth crossing the border into Pennsylvania – the stunning 1,000-acre landscape is a must-see.
Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia
Much like Richmond, Harper’s Ferry has made a name for itself with its history-rich attractions, making it well-suited to families looking to get out of the city and learn a bit along the way. But the area surrounding Chronic Downtown offers tons of scenic trails for those who want to get out and about. Hikes around the Maryland Heights Trail offer plenty of stunning views, and the Potomac River has plenty of room and excitement to make tubing or whitewater rafting/kayaking a blast. Those really looking to get started can venture the West Virginia portion of the Appalachian Trail. And if you’re the spooky type, the city is full of night ghost tours.
St. Michaels, MD
Located on Maryland’s east coast, the seaside town of St. Michaels offers plenty of excitement for lovers of sea and land; the beautiful harbor scene gives way to plenty of outdoor activities, including your choice of water sports, biking and walking trails, and more. St. Michaels is no slouch when it comes to its food scene either; the town is full of great seafood options and even has a local rum distillery: Rum from Lyon. Those looking for a slightly different approach to museums will definitely want to visit the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, which includes a restored lighthouse, rotating exhibits, and more boats and ships than you might imagine. And just south along Route 50 you’ll find the new Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historical Park.
Ocean City, MD
If you’d rather indulge in some shenanigans, you can literally go to shenanigans in Ocean City. If you’re making the drive to East Coast OC, you’re probably there to hold your party on the boardwalk itself. But if you do decide to venture off the boardwalk, North side park offers a large recreation area for picnics or long walks off the beach. And if you’re heading out on the water, you’re spoiled for choice: parasailing, sunset cruises, happy hours on a boat, and even discovery tours. Assateague Island – which, if you’re lucky, might give you a glimpse of the ponies.
This article was published in the InsideHook DC newsletter. Register now to learn more about the Beltway.