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“Another great trip to Douthat!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Douthat State Park

Douthat State Park
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Visitors to this colorful state park will view rolling hills, birds and a beautiful lake.
Northern Virginia
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Another great trip to Douthat!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 27, 2013

Spent a week at the Whispering Pines campground at Dothat state park- our 2d visit. We have a pop up and we like Whispering Pines- it's a good mile or so outside the park, but it's quiet, the sites are big and it's right near the creek. My kids spend hours wading in the creek looking for critters. The lake is nice - friendly lifeguards, a dock in the deep part with a diving board and slide. There's a small store and a restaurant (restaurant open Wednesday- Sunday). Service is slow but friendly and food is fine. Sit outside for a beautiful lake view. We walked some trails which are well marked. Some are strenuous with great views, others easy and pretty. Only negatives were annoying gnats at the beach and on the trails, but that's the great outdoors! Already planning when to return.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
4 Thank kkfriend
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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149 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Waiheke Island, New Zealand
Level Contributor
23 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Camping: great spot, spotty facilities.”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 21, 2013

We stayed a the White Oak campground, adjacent to the park office. There are numerous trails for hiking, mountain biking and horses. We had a great time on those, including a nice trail around the nearby lake. Note: lots of harmless northern water snakes around the dam water release area at the base of the dam.
We were originally going to the new, lower Whispering Pines site, but its 3+ miles up to the camp store for ice, so we went to White Oak. Nice setting, hip from the stream that leaves the dam. Trout fishing available. Looked like a nice modest restaurant overlooking the lake.
The bathrooms were the worst we have encountered in any VA state park. Hopelessly outdated, smelly, despite daily cleaning, and dirty. Mould in the showers, bad, so we used our own bleach.
What is perplexing, and we also noticed this at Holliday Lake, was that perfectly situated original campgrounds were being let go, and then new ones were built (with very nice bathrooms) near by. Timber retaining walls on camp sites were crumbling, roads and paths shabby.
Most of this was somewhat superficial, in that a few guys and some 6 x 6s would have sorted it.
Deferred maintenance will catch up, though, and I predict will result in further decline, resulting in an expensive re-do. It's not like we noticed a shortage of DCR staff, either. Lots of them.
Perhaps some could be directed to do some heavy lifting?
Otherwise, nice place.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
5 Thank Grovelled
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lexington, Virginia
Level Contributor
32 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Fantastic Campground”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 28, 2013

Over the past nine years that our family has lived in Lexington, Virginia we have camped at Douthat State Park at least twice a year...sometimes in the campgrounds, other times in the cabins. The tent sites are well-maintained and all have water & electric hook-ups as well as a central bathroom facility. The cabins vary according to when they were constructed (some originally by the CCC in the 30s) but all have been up-dated with modern amenities.

Douthat State Park.boasts many miles of superior hiking trails with difficulty ratings ranging from easy to strenuous. Some of the more difficult hikes are loops around the high edges of the park and offer fantastic views. The Park Rangers are especially helpful, describing the trails and various wildlife that you might expect to encounter.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Oilman65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlottesville, Virginia
Level Contributor
110 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Our Yearly Camping Trip Destination”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 13, 2013

We have camped at Douthat State Park at the Lakeside Campground for the past 7 years. It is by a wide margin the best campground we have ever used, and will keep coming back. The Lakeside sites are great. Campsites within 50 feet or so from the lake, which is really fantastic for fishing, fun, and just sitting by a fire marveling at the wonderful view. The staff at the park are all very friendly and helpful, This includes a "camp host" family that are always very friendly and helpful, including giving everyone warnings about impending thunderstorms or information about the area. One minor downside to the Lakeside campground is the bathroom facilities. Build in the 1930s, they are, well, a bit "rustic". It would be great if the state could replace these facilities with a new bathhouse (like the one in the adjoining Beaver Dam campground for horse enthusiasts). Definitely recommend this park for a great camping experience.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
6 Thank Jeff M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC
Level Contributor
122 reviews
59 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
“A beautiful park and a wonderful place to relax!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 5, 2013

This is a nice park especially for families. We did not stay there but we plan on going back to stay in one of the cabins. We did stay for the day and swim in the lake. It was wonderful. There is a nice sandy beach with lifeguards. There is a little snack bar in the main building along with bathrooms that have showers. There is also a nice little restaurant with a nice view within walking distance. They have canoes, kayaks, rowboats and motorized boats for fishing. There are lots of trails and horse trails. I noticed the have stalls for rent so you can bring your horses. How cool.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank MeEncantaTravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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