Abingdon, VA in a Weekend
PHOTO CREDIT: Todd Bennett
From hiking or biking on miles of trails to relaxing in the serenity of a spa, from antique shopping along historic streets to dining in hip, trendy restaurants, and from browsing quiet galleries to watching dynamic performing arts, Washington County offers a wealth of ways to while away a weekend.
Start your weekend with lunch at Alison’s on Main Street. Savor the World Famous Baked Potato Soup or choose from meal-size salads, fish, ribs, hand-pulled barbecue or steak. The deep-fried sweet potato chips are something special.
After lunch, take time to lose that workweek tension with a visit to The Spa at the Martha Washington Inn. Pick from a full menu of luxurious pampering services. Ahhhhh. Take the time to tour this beautiful building and surrounding grounds.
Now head downtown, where Abingdon’s antique shops and art galleries await you. Stroll down West Main Street and peruse the shops. You’ll find quality furniture, jewelry, clothing, collectibles, heirloom quilts and more.
Be sure to check out the Cave House Craft Shop for select pieces created by members of the Holston Mountain Arts and Crafts Cooperative, a 120-member group of local artisans.
Get a taste of history when you dine at a restaurant that has hosted such notable guests as Henry Clay and President Andrew Jackson. The Tavern, built in 1779, is Abingdon’s oldest building. Oh, and try the herb-encrusted breast of duck with raspberry sauce.
Then, for some Friday night entertainment, enjoy the nostalgic experience of catching a movie at the Moonlite Drive-in, one of the few drive-in theaters left on the American landscape. If you prefer your movie indoors, the Cinemall offers plenty of choices.
Hope you got your rest, because a trip to this region wouldn’t be complete without a bike ride down the renowned Virginia Creeper Trail.
First, have breakfast at the Trails Café in Abingdon, and grab some trail mix for the ride. Then rent a bicycle from one of the many local outfitters, who will also transport you to the starting point at White Top. It’s all downhill from there – 17 miles of spectacular scenery riding along streams, across bridges and trestles.
Stay in Damascus, and take that appetite you just worked up over to In the Country – a combination bakery, eatery, ice cream shoppe and country store. Sample the famed chicken salad, but save room for a couple scoops of premium ice cream served in a just-baked waffle cone.
Spend the afternoon in Abingdon meandering through the Historic District where you’ll get a close look at various 18th- and 19th-century architectural styles.
Also, visit the working studios and exhibits showcasing local artists at the Arts Depot, and explore the William King Regional Arts Center and its museum-standard galleries featuring regional and world art.
Tonight, drive to Meadowview and dine at The Harvest Table, an eco-friendly restaurant that serves only locally grown foods.
Finally, add the last dramatic flourish to a super weekend by attending a live performance at the acclaimed Barter Theatre, one of the nation’s oldest professional theaters and a must-see for visitors to Washington County.
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