When John Denver sang about West Virginia being “almost Heaven” due to such natural bounty as the Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah River, he could’ve easily been talking about Virginia, which shares these natural wonders with its neighbor. Stretching from the Appalachian Mountains to the long Chesapeake coast, dotted with seaside villages and encompassing scenic routes through the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia offers a huge range of attractions if you’re a fresh air fiend. History was made here, too, and history buffs will find much to explore in one of the thirteen original colonies, from the first European settlement in Jamestown to Colonial Williamsburg, to founding father Thomas Jefferson’s plantation and Civil War battle locations. What better way to delve into the charming small towns, historic sites, cosmopolitan cities and bucolic countryside than to stay in luxurious bed and breakfasts in Virginia, easily bookable with Culture Trip.
Dinsmore House, for boutique comfort in Charlottesville
Built in 1835 by James Dinsmore, master carpenter to Thomas Jefferson, this gracious, centrally located boutique Inn offers nine individually styled en-suite rooms. Decor varies: some boast exposed brick walls and four-poster beds, while others feature clawfoot tubs and vintage coal-burning fireboxes. The Library Loft with its vaulted ceiling is the most atmospheric. Breakfast and brunch are served at the in-house Farm Bell Kitchen where the extensive menu features local produce – try the Creole shrimp ‘n’ grits or crab beignets. Chef Jabari Wadlington conjures up a fusion of Southern, Cajun, French and African dishes for dinner.
Superbly situated downtown between the Colonial Williamsburg Historic Area and the College of William & Mary, with the on-site Muscarelle Museum of Art, this Virginia bed and breakfast is steps away from top restaurants and gastropubs such as Blue Talon Bistro and the Hound’s Tale. Four-poster beds, 18th-century prints, coved windows, gingham curtains and French doors are just some of the features distinguishing each of the nine cozy rooms. Relax on the balcony at the rear of the red-brick building with a newspaper, and enjoy the lemonade and fresh-baked cookies available all day. Generous continental breakfast includes owner Sharon’s banana and blueberry muffins made according to an old family recipe.
This boutique inn in downtown Norfolk comprises just four luxe suites, all designed with great attention to detail. Each is individually decorated with eclectic wallpaper and bright pops of color in the form of a cushion, a piece of contemporary art or designer chair and supremely comfortable Paramount Sleep or Hypnos mattresses, while bathrooms feature HansGrohe rain shower heads and heated floors. Wash down Sunday brunch temptations such as zucchini waffles and avocado toast with a fancy mimosa, and make a dinner reservation to sample contemporary takes on mid-Atlantic cuisine using the best of local ingredients, such as wild-caught rockfish with bourbon glaze.
At the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Shenandoah National Park, yet only 30mi (48km) from the bright lights of Charlottesville, this Virginia bed and breakfast is the perfect base, whether you’re looking to hike a section of the Appalachian Trail, drive the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway or explore a multitude of nearby wineries and breweries. The 10 homey rooms reflect aspects of the region’s (and the property’s) history through Native American artifacts, antique furniture and English country-house stylings; the Kensington Room comes with a jacuzzi. Local fresh eggs take pride of place for breakfast, alongside homemade muffins and breads in the light-filled breakfast room overlooking the garden. Dinner is served in the Fountain Room, where you can enjoy a traditional rustic cottage pie or a filet mignon.
Less than 9mi (14km) northwest of Charlottesville, the ranch-style Foxfield makes a good base for walking in the Shenandoah Valley and exploring the many local vineyards and craft beer breweries. Guests particularly appreciate the intimate ambience of this Virginia bed and breakfast, set amidst beautifully landscaped grounds. Personalized service is ensured by the presence of just five individually decorated rooms, each with distinguishing features such as a four-poster bed or fireplace; most come with oversized jacuzzi tubs. The three-course breakfast includes homemade cakes, and the friendly owners are happy to recommend the best restaurants within driving distance.
The location of the Marl Inn is wonderful: just steps from the historic village of Yorktown, a short walk to the Battlefield Visitor Center or the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, and just eight minutes’ walk to Yorktown Beach. There are just four thoroughly contemporary suites – three with full kitchens, plus a beautiful vaulted ceiling in the Beach Suite – as well as the second-floor Butterfly Room with a skylight for stargazing. It’s all set in a large garden with mature trees shading the secluded patio, porch swing and picnic table. Fresh fruit, baked goods, eggs and cold cuts make for a hearty breakfast, while Yorktown Pub on the beach is a popular seafood joint for dinner.
This aptly named Virginia bed and breakfast in remote Essex County sits on a large plot of woodland, with trails on the property leading to the resident beaver pond and waterfall. Innkeeper Claudette presides over just two rooms – the Tranquil double with garden tub and separate shower, and the flower-printed Serene twin-bedded room overlooking the beaver pond. Then there’s the superb country-style breakfasts involving homemade breads, grits and waffles. You can enjoy horseback riding at the nearby farm, explore local wineries or just sit on the deck and gaze at the stars.
Perks at this stately 1906 Colonial-Revival home on Virginia’s Eastern Shore include a wraparound porch that’s prime people-watching territory (with a couch for napping if that strenuous activity gets too much for you). Four impeccably decorated rooms named after the family members of prominent local philanthropist James Wilson, and individual touches such as clawfoot soaking tubs and luxurious dressing gowns, make this one of the best bed and breakfasts in Virginia. If you’re a gourmand, you’ll appreciate farm-to-table breakfasts that include egg soufflés, sweet potato biscuits and candied pecans. The inn is an easy walk from the waterfront; owners can also help arrange kayak tours to coastal wineries and dolphin-watching boat trips.