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First time visitor to Virginia, Tappahannock in Sept.

Port Hope, Canada
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First time visitor to Virginia, Tappahannock in Sept.

So we have a small cottage rented for the first week in September just outside Tappahannock. So far the only thing we plan to do is drive the Skyline Drive from the south end to the North end.

Apart from that we plan to just drive around, try and find a beach or two, visit smaller towns etc.

So with that in mind, what smaller towns are there within say an hour or two of where we are staying, that have nice walking streets, craft style/individual type shops to browse.(not antiques though)

We have a small blind dog as well if that makes any difference to suggestions. My wife would like to see Virginia Beach and we thought about driving up to Arlington cemetary but that is still up in the air.

We like craft style pottery, beaches, scenic drives, small mum and dad style restaurants versus high end dining. In our 40's/50's and time isn't an issue.

Pete

Williamsburg...
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1. Re: First time visitor to Virginia, Tappahannock in Sept.

I've found a lot of things of interest in/around Fredericksburg, but I enjoy history, museums, and the like. I hope others can help you out with towns, etc., in the vicinity.

From Tappahannock to Waynesboro, VA (south end of Skyline Drive), is about 136 miles, 2 1/2 hours following the speed limits, no stops. Waynesboro to Front Royal (north end of Skyline Drive) is about 100 miles. The speed limit for most of that is 35 mph, or roughly 3 hours. Then from Front Royal back to Tappahannock is about 117 miles, or around 2 hours. That's about 7 or 8 hours without any stops. Maybe you already knew that and are OK with that much driving, but that is a trip I'd want to break up if at all possible.

Edited: 4:43 pm, July 03, 2013
Virginia Beach...
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2. Re: First time visitor to Virginia, Tappahannock in Sept.

Here are a few places to consider.....

Leesburg, nice walking town area; Kilmarnock; Westmoreland State Park; If you visit Va Beach and have time for a side trip, the Ghent area in Norfolk is well known as pet friendly and has quite a few interesting small shops and locally owned restaurants (some with outside dining to allow pets). Check out Ghent on Colley Ave between 21st St and Princess Anne Rd and 21st St between Colley Ave and Llewellyn Ave.

bringfido.com/restaurant/city/norfolk_va_us/

Also consider Richmond, Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown and Yorktown (check for pet restrictions). Smithfield has an historic walkable downtown as well as a wonderful nearby trail along the Pagan River called Windsor Castle Park.

Most of the areas mentioned have reviews on TA for additional information. Hope this helps.

Washington DC...
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3. Re: First time visitor to Virginia, Tappahannock in Sept.

I would suggest that you not try to do the ENTIRE Skyline drive. I don't really think it is necessary. Once you are up there, it is slow driving and it will take many hours. Plus, using Tappahannock as a base, you are talking ALL DAY in the car.

Look at the map and find the section you would find interesting and hop on and then off. I think the northernmost section near Front Royal is kind of boring.

Urbanna Virginia is a cute little town down the road from Tappahannock. Also, you could go across the river at Tappahannock and then make your way to Reedville. From Reedville, you can get the ferry over to Tangier Island for the day. Tangier is in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay and they have no cars over there. Lots of seafood, and the people that live there still have accents which are held-over from the first Colonial settlers.

Also, look into going to Colonial Beach. I haven't been there, but friends have been recently and liked it as a day trip. Colonial Beach is on Potomac River east of Fredericksburg. Would not be a replacement for Virginia Beach if you want to see the Ocean.

Port Hope, Canada
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4. Re: First time visitor to Virginia, Tappahannock in Sept.

Thanks so much for the really great suggestions. We were just at our local CAA office and picked up a bunch of maps so we can start going over some road trips. Im starting to like the idea of not doing all of the Skyline Drive so I will have to re-look at that and maybe do the southern portion and then detour off about two thirds of the way up.

Many thanks again, as always on Tripadvisor some great suggestions

Pete

5. Re: First time visitor to Virginia, Tappahannock in Sept.

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