Alexandria

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Arlington

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Fairfax County

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Loudoun County

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Prince William & Manassas

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The finer things in life are all yours in Virginia's Cultural Region, where culinary experiences, shopping and history pave the way for indulgence that's just right.

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Home to an energetic mix of history, culture, dining and shopping, Virginia’s Cultural Region brings together Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax County, Loudoun County, Prince William County and Manassas for a vacation experience like no other. Take some time to appreciate the celebration of diversity that is uniquely Virginia’s Cultural Region, where every satisfying moment is right within your reach. When it comes to a region this rich and full of pleasures, seeing is believing. Take a look at this video to experience it for yourself.

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Alexandria


Enchanting Old Town Alexandria – a waterfront city and where locals and travelers wander cobblestone streets lined with romantic sidewalk cafes, stylish boutiques, historic sites and treasure-filled galleries.

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Arlington


The walkable town that feels monumental, with spectacular Capitol views and honor-filled hills of green.

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Fairfax County


Witness the nation’s roots at George Washington’s Mount Vernon and international artistry at Wolf Trap.

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Loudoun County


If fine wine is an art form, then Loudoun County is a gallery of world-class proportions.

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Prince William & Manassas


Listen for echoes of history on the battlefields and sighs of delight in shops and restaurants.

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Go With The Flow: Explore The Waterfronts, Waterparks, And Historic Waterways Of Virginia’s Cultural Region

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Go With The Flow: Explore The Waterfronts, Waterparks, And Historic Waterways Of Virginia’s Cultural Region

FAIRFAX COUNTY:

  • GREAT FALLS PARK
    Take a walk on the wild side of Virginia’s Cultural Region, and discover an incredible destination for recreation within the great outdoors of Fairfax County. Aptly named, Great Falls Park features a stunning collection of cascading rapids and several sparkling waterfalls, marking the Potomac River’s 76-foot drop into the narrow Mather Gorge. With over 800 acres of scenic forests, rocky terrain, and abundant native wildlife, Great Falls Park boasts incredible natural beauty and unlimited outdoor adventure. The park’s winding trails stretch across 15 miles of forested landscape and preserved historic structures, offering hikers, bikers, and horseback riders access to some of the most unique and breathtaking views in the area. For families seeking kid-friendly adventure, the park’s Junior Ranger Program offers an exciting, self-guided scavenger hunt throughout the park with a booklet of activities and attractions to discover along the way. Children who complete the booklet earn a Junior Ranger Badge to honor their accomplishments. Great Falls is also pet-friendly, and allows leashed pets on all park trails and picnic areas.

ALEXANDRIA:

  • POTOMAC RIVERBOAT CRUISES
    Board a riverboat on the banks of Old Town Alexandria for a scenic sail through Virginia’s Cultural Region. From narrated sightseeing tours, to private charters, to water taxis, Potomac Riverboat Company (PRC) offers a collection of cruises perfect for any outdoor summer adventure. Explore a network of notable sites, and enjoy expansive panoramic views along the Potomac River. The eight-vessel PRC fleet features a range of riverboats, each with its own route and unique tour option. Visit Washington DC’s most iconic monuments, discover Old Town Alexandria’s storied Seaport, and take a trip to explore early American history at the home of George and Martha Washington, Mount Vernon. For a fun, pet-friendly way to experience Virginia’s Cultural Region, Potomac Riverboat Company offers its seasonal Canine Cruise, featuring an hour-long river ride and the perfect way to spend time with your pup. If you’re planning a romantic retreat or exclusive event, enjoy a private charter on one of the nation’s last-remaining working sternwheelers, Cherry Blossom. No matter which on-the-water adventure you choose, Potomac Riverboat Company cruises promise stunning riverfront views, spectacular sunsets, and the rich American history of Virginia’s Cultural Region.

ARLINGTON:

  • UPTON HILL REGIONAL PARK AND OCEAN DUNES WATERPARK
    Access all the ingredients for a great summer getaway, and enjoy a ton of outdoor adventure fit for the whole family at Upton Hill Regional Park. Explore miles of scenic hiking trails, or practice your putt on the Upton Hill’s meticulously landscaped mini-golf course. Strengthen your swing at the custom-pitch batting cages, or take a break, grab a bite, and relax in the shade under one of the park’s giant picnic pagodas. Oh, and don’t forget to bring a bathing suit. Ocean Dunes Waterpark, part of Upton Hill’s impressive collection of outdoor entertainment options, is the perfect place to kick back, cool off, and enjoy a day at the beach. Grab an inner tube and relax in the pool; join the kids and explore a beach-themed playground of water jets, splash zones, and fountains; or take a turn on the park’s 230-foot open waterslide. Sun, soak, or slide, Upton Hill Regional Park and Ocean Dunes Waterpark each promise family fun for any vacation style and a summer adventure that always beats the heat.

LOUDOUN COUNTY:

  • HARPERS FERRY ADVENTURE CENTER
    If you’re looking for action and adventure in the great outdoors, look no further than Harpers Ferry. Boasting a collection of excursions sure to satisfy even the most fearless outdoor champions, Harpers Ferry Adventure Center (HFAC) offers an impressive range of activities fit for adventurers of all ages, skill levels, and terrain preferences. Guests can choose from a number of attractions and experiences such as tubing, whitewater rafting, ziplining, ropes-coursing, canoeing and kayaking, fishing, hiking, camping and more— all along the scenic shores of the Shenandoah and Potomac rivers. Visitors simply searching for a relaxing retreat, stunning natural views, and some fresh-air can kick back with a cookout in one of HFAC’s multiple picnic areas complete with tables, charcoal grills, and lazy day hammocks. With warm-weather on the rise, HFAC is gearing up for its summer performance season. During the summer months, guests can rock-climb, river-raft, and rock out with live weekend performances from a variety local bands and regional music artists. Take on the great outdoors at HFAC, and experience one of the most unique mountain adventures of Virginia’s Cultural Region.

PRINCE WILLIAM & MANASSAS:

  • LEESYLVANIA STATE PARK
    Explore thousands of years of Native American history, and experience the story as America’s past comes to life on the banks of the Potomac. Nestled along the shores of the Potomac River, Leesylvania State Park offers guests a peaceful getaway along the tranquil, natural riverbanks of Prince William County. Follow the footsteps of Captain John Smith on his voyage of discovery, and explore the historic, nationally landmarked, ancestral home of Virginia’s legendary Lee and Fairfax families. The park’s five trails pass through the area’s rich natural features and also include a scenic overlook of the Potomac River from the remains of a Civil War Confederate gun battery at Freestone Point. Visitors can also enjoy a variety of land and water related activities such as hiking, picnicking, fishing, and boating. Spend an afternoon soaking up the summer sun with a kayaking journey down the Potomac River, cast your line from the fishing pier, or explore the park’s environmental education center.

Enjoy A Wealth Of Adventure — And A Worry-Free Wallet: Free Attractions In Virginia’s Cultural Region

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Enjoy A Wealth Of Adventure — And A Worry-Free Wallet: Free Attractions In Virginia’s Cultural Region

 

FAIRFAX COUNTY:

  • THE SMITHSONIAN’S NATIONAL AIR AND SPACE MUSEUM STEVEN F. UDVAR-HAZY CENTER Explore the history of flight in Fairfax County. The Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is the companion facility to Washington, DC’s National Air and Space Museum, and the perfect addition to a family visit to Virginia’s Cultural Region. Explore the enormous Boeing Aviation Hangar and James S. McDonnell Space Hangar, and experience an impressive collection featuring thousands of aviation and space artifacts — including a Lockheed SR-71 “Blackbird,” a Concorde, and the Space Shuttle, Discovery. Climb to the top of the Donald D. Engen Observation Tower for an incredible 360-degree view of the surrounding area, or head to the glass-contained mezzanine at the Mary Baker Engen Restoration Hangar, and experience the Center’s current restoration projects. Enjoy a selection of daily tours, educational activities perfect for any age, and a variety of lectures and events scheduled throughout the year. Admission is free with a $15 parking fee until 4pm. The parking fee does not apply to cars arriving after 4pm or local shuttles (accessible from Silver Line metro stations, Dulles International Airport, and area hotels).
 

ARLINGTON:

  • THE UNKNOWN SOLDIERS Here rests in honored glory an American soldier known but to God. The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery sits at the top of a hill, silently overlooking a scenic view of Washington, DC. An acclaimed tribute to the individual soldiers and the many other undocumented American lives lost throughout World Wars I and II, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is a solemn, yet striking representation of national history and American heroism. An intricate white marble sarcophagus marks the burial place of an unidentified American soldier from World War I. To the west lie the crypts of Unknowns from World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, marked by white marble slabs flush with the surrounding plaza. Arlington National Cemetery Tours, Inc., provides tour bus service with weekday stops at the Ord & Weitzel walking gate to see the U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial, the gravesite of President John F. Kennedy, the U.S. Coast Guard Memorial, the gravesite of U.S. Army Gen. John J. Pershing, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and the Arlington House (The Robert E. Lee Memorial). Weekend service also includes stops near Section 55 and 60 and the Sept. 11 Memorial.
 

ALEXANDRIA:

  • THE TORPEDO FACTORY ART CENTER Constructed in 1918, this former naval munitions plant once created torpedoes during WWII, before its eventual conversion into a multi-purpose storage facility for congressional documents, Smithsonian dinosaur bones, and Nazi trial records. In 1974, the complex transformed, opening its doors to visitors from across the country and inviting the global community to experience art in person— and in progress. Today, Alexandria’s Torpedo Factory Art Center is home to the largest collection of publicly accessible, working artists’ studios in the nation. The Torpedo Factory is a regional landmark and the highlight of the local, creative community, attracting approximately 500,000 visitors annually to its scenic vantage point on the Potomac Riverfront, anchored to the cobblestone streets of Old Town Alexandria. With 82 artists’ studios and 6 public galleries, visitors can enjoy personal access to 165 artists, with the unique opportunity to watch them work, discuss their inspirations and creative process, and purchase original work straight from the studio. Visit three floors of diverse, individual studio spaces and experience creative expression across a range of media including ceramics, collage, fiber, glass, enamel, jewelry, mixed media, painting, photography, printmaking, and sculpture. The Target Gallery, the Torpedo Factory's contemporary exhibition space, features acclaimed work from high-caliber national and international artists on a rotating schedule.
 

PRINCE WILLIAM & MANASSAS:

  • THE MANASSAS NATIONAL BATTLEFIELD PARK On July 21, 1861, two armies clashed for the first time on the fields overlooking Bull Run. Heavy fighting swept away any notion of a quick war. In August 1862, Union and Confederate armies converged for a second time on the plains of Manassas. The Confederates won a solid victory, bringing them to the height of their power. Manassas National Battlefield Park extends across 40 miles of hiking trails, traversing key areas of the Civil War’s first major battlefield, The Battle of Bull Run, and the equally important Second Battle of Manassas. With interactive electronic battle maps, detailed displays of Civil War memorabilia, along with professional presentations and reenactments, those seeking a true glimpse into the history of the American Civil War will find an immersive educational experience among the many significant sites and attractions found throughout the park. Journey through the battlefield on a walking or driving tour, visit the storied, gruesome grounds of the infamous Stone House, once used as a Civil War hospital, and listen for echoes of cannon fire and the resounding cry of the Civil War’s very first rebel yell.
 

LOUDOUN COUNTY:

  • THE WESTERN LOUDOUN ARTISTS STUDIO TOUR This June, enjoy a weekend of inspiration, education, and one-on-one interaction with Loudoun County’s vibrant, local Arts community. The 2017 Western Loudoun Artists Studio Tour presents some of the most unique, creative, and expressive talent in the region. Featuring a vast selection of 62 artists and stops at 34 locations across Loudoun County, the Tour explores a wide range of artistic media such as painting, digital art, pottery, wood, jewelry, photography, metal sculpture, wearable art, and more. Visitors will experience Loudoun’s two major art hubs; the Franklin Park Performing and Visual Arts Center and the Round Hill Arts Center, along with rare, behind-the scenes access to local studios. Throughout the tour, artists will demonstrate their creative processes in addition to sharing artwork available for purchase. Wind through Loudoun’s scenic countryside, explore quaint, small towns, and step into the working studios of the artists and craftspeople of Virginia’s Cultural Region. The Western Loudoun Artists Studio Tour is a free event, open to the public from Saturday, June 3rd through Sunday, June 4th, 2017.

PARTY ON AND ROCK OUT AT THE BEST SUMMER CONCERT VENUES IN VIRGINIA’S CULTURAL REGION

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PARTY ON AND ROCK OUT AT THE BEST SUMMER CONCERT VENUES IN VIRGINIA’S CULTURAL REGION

 

LOUDOUN:

THE TALLY HO 19 West Market Street is home to Leesburg’s most visually arresting concert venue. The Tally Ho Theater, a 1932 Art Deco concert hall is a downtown Leesburg landmark. The Tally Ho has operated continuously through generations as a first-run movie house and performing arts venue. Now, the Tally Ho will open primarily for live performances. The incredible, 9000 square-foot building boasts a collection of new renovations and amenities, including a 2000 square-foot dance floor, two-level seating, multiple cocktail bars, a full service restaurant: Tally Ho Taco, a variety of exclusive VIP areas, and a 600 square-foot stage— just to name a few. Whether it’s comedy, theater, or rock and roll, the Tally Ho promises entertainment for all audiences, and offers a timeless venue for guests to explore. OPEN AIR CONCERTS AT TARARA Dance the night away under the stars, or just lay back and take in the fantastic view of Tarara's Shadow Lake Stage. The Saturday-Night Summer Concert Series at Tarara Winery is the perfect way to enjoy live music and soak up some sun in Loudoun’s scenic wine country. Tarara’s concert series includes a diverse lineup of performances, so you can enjoy music that’s just your style and relax to a beat that’s just your speed. For an interactive experience, paddle along the Potomac River on a scenic, guided kayaking and canoeing tour. Throughout the summer, River and Trail Outfitters offers guided tours that float straight to Tarara, just in time to catch a concert and enjoy a glass of your favorite wine.  

FAIRFAX COUNTY:

WOLF TRAP & THE FILENE CENTER Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts has the distinction of being the only national park dedicated to promoting and protecting creative expression, and features an incredible lineup of over 100 performances year-round,. Each summer, Wolf Trap welcomes visitors to the architecturally stunning Filene Center, the Park’s acclaimed summer performance venue. Boasting an impressive selection of over 80 performances, rare access to internationally recognized artists, and a diverse range of talent across every genre, Wolf Trap’s Summer Concert Series promises a diverse, legendary lineup fit for all audiences. From rocking out with returning artists to discovering new, exciting, creative experiences, Wolf Trap invites guests from across the country and around the globe to enjoy an amazing array of live music against the backdrop of the Park’s beautiful natural stage.  

ARLINGTON:

CLARENDON BALLROOM From the Art Deco Moderne Woolworth Building, a collapsing monument to the region’s history, anchored to Clarendon’s city streets, came the Clarendon Ballroom. After a $2 million dollar modernization project, the Woolworth Building welcomed a new era, and the Clarendon Ballroom emerged as one of the area’s most unique venues. The original maple floors, pressed tin ceiling, and expertly restored crown molding showcase the building’s heritage with a subtle, visually striking nod. The addition of its massive rooftop pavilion, masterfully designed 80-foot bar, and chic cocktail lounge positioned Clarendon Ballroom as a lively, inviting venue for events and performances of all types. The Ballroom regularly hosts Thursday-night rooftop parties and sports a stylish nightclub, complete with exclusive DJ lineups and a sprawling, 300-person dance floor. ARTS AL FRESCO AT LUBBER RUN If you are searching for the perfect picnic location, look no further than Lubber Run. Presented by Arlington Arts, Lubber Run Amphitheater hosts the fully staged, open-air Arts al Fresco production event, free to guests during the summer months. With a lineup of international and local music artists, Lubber Run’s Arts al Fresco welcomes visitors to enjoy a selection of live performances ranging from familiar tunes to unique, fresh, expressive sound. As a summer staple for locals and tourists alike, the venue accommodates 1,100, with outdoor bench seating available for about 700 guests, and additional space for lawn chairs and blankets.  

PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY AND MANASSAS:

JIFFY LUBE LIVE In 1995, a performance by The Village People marked the opening of the largest, outdoor music venue in the region. Jiffy Lube Live Amphitheater boasts a total capacity of 25,000 guests, including 10,000 in reserved seating, and is widely known for the stage that has hosted generations of legendary performances. Nationally acclaimed artists such as Iron Maiden, The Dixie Chicks, Ozzy Osbourne, Green Day, Slipknot, Dave Matthews, Pearl Jam, and Jimmy Buffet are among the incredible collection of talent that, following in the footsteps of its 1995 opening act, has graced the Jiffy Lube Live stage over decades of summer performances. Currently, the amphitheater’s summer lineup features a diverse selection of popular artists such as Train, Lady Antebellum, Chance The Rapper, John Mayer, Future, OneRepublic, Cheap Trick, Foreigner, Zac Brown Band, and many more.  

ALEXANDRIA:

BIRCHMERE MUSIC HALL The legendary Birchmere Music Hall holds its title as Alexandria’s world-famous concert venue. Known for its nightly line-up of classic and contemporary Jazz, Country, R&B, Folk and Bluegrass artists, the Birchmere offers guests historically American sound with a side of traditional, American cuisine. Its inviting and relaxed setting keeps the audience close; nestled just two feet away from the stage, making it incredibly difficult to find a “bad spot” anywhere within the intimate 500-seat music hall. With a collection of notable performances spanning over 50 years, the Birchmere is globally recognized as a host to acts such as Johnny Cash, Lyle Lovett, Shawn Colvin, Dave Matthews, Vince Gill, Linda Ronstadt, k.d. Lang, Melissa Etheridge, Esperanza Spalding, and Ray Charles. OLD TOWN ALEXANDRIA, LIVE AND LOCAL Along the cobblestone streets of Old Town Alexandria, you’ll find dozens of restaurants boasting vibrant lineups of live, local performances. From Blackwall Hitch's unique, common-ground for lasting connections and prime Potomac River waterfront location, to the colorful, flavorful celebrations of Irish heritage at Daniel O’Connell’s, to live Jazz and Blues in 219 Restaurant’s Basin Street Lounge or dancing to beats dropped by 219’s Bayou Room DJ, visitors can catch a variety of live performances and enjoy a diverse selection of culinary specialties every night of the week.

CRAVE-WORTHY CULTURE: EXPLORE THE LOCAL, CULINARY CRAFT OF VIRGINIA’S CULTURAL REGION

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CRAVE-WORTHY CULTURE: EXPLORE THE LOCAL, CULINARY CRAFT OF VIRGINIA’S CULTURAL REGION

 

FAIRFAX CO

The French Evolution: Experience Fairfax County’s Contemporary Take On Classic French Cuisine
  • L’AUBERGE CHEZ FRANÇOIS When François Haeringer fulfilled his long-time dream of opening a traditional French auberge— a family inn serving the native flavors of his hometown and upbringing in the Alsatian countryside, he created a local staple for expertly prepared, classic French fare. Currently run by son and Chef de Cuisine, Jacques Haeringer, L’Auberge Chez François retains its historic appeal as a family-run tribute to tradition, humbly inspiring heartfelt loyalty among locals and visitors alike. L’Auberge Chez François offers the full embodiment of François Haeringer’s fierce love for heritage with the authentic, simple spirit and undeniable craft of artisanal French cuisine.
  • 2941 RESTAURANT 2941 is one of the most celebrated restaurants in the metropolitan area. The restaurant is nestled in the Falls Church section of Fairfax County surrounded by lush landscaping, koi ponds, waterfalls, world-class artwork, and a lakeside view. Executive Chef Bertrand Chemel presents bold French flavors accented by contemporary American cuisine. Named by numerous area publications as a top Washington-Area restaurant, 2941 continues to charm gourmands with its sophisticated yet relaxed ambiance, outstanding service, and inventive cuisine.
  • REQUIN In partnership with chef and restaurateur Mike Isabella, chef Jennifer Carroll welcomes visitors to Requin, a culinary celebration of the savory, artfully-crafted seafood and classic flavors of France’s Mediterranean coast. From meticulously detailed small plates to sharable, family-style dishes, Requin’s menus serve up a full-course selection guaranteed to satisfy appetites of all sizes. Chef Carroll brings years of expertise to the Requin kitchen, along with her celebrity status as a contender and guest on a variety of cooking programs such as Bravo’s Top Chef, Top Chef: All-Stars, and many others.
  • CREPE AMOUR Caught a case of crepe-love? So have the culinary craftsmen at Crepe Amour. Take a bite of the sweet and savory selection from this friendship-founded tribute to their favorite French classic. With freshly-made crepes folded in full view of the café’s customers, Crepe Amour puts France’s staple snack right in the spotlight, with a mouth-watering supporting act of equally-delicious dessert waffles, ice cream, and a variety of other European baked goods.
 

PRINCE WILLIAM CO & MANASSAS

On The Waterfront: Enjoy The Crave-Worthy Coastal Flavors of Prince William County and Manassas
  • TIM’S RIVERSHORE Tim’s Rivershore restaurant rests on one of the widest points of the Potomac River, offering panoramic views from both the indoor dining room and outdoor, riverside deck. Visitors can enjoy an entire waterfront experience from fresh crabs, oysters, scallops, shrimp, mussels, and fish, to American classics such as steaks, burgers, pulled pork and chicken sandwiches, to full-moon bonfires and live music on the restaurant’s torch-lit tiki bar and beach.
  • BLUE RIDGE SEAFOOD Showcasing signature “crab-shack” décor, the seafood hideaway is identified by its blue tin roof and white Christmas lights that shine all year round. Experience an eclectic selection of southern fare with alligator bites, crawfish, and fried frog legs, or try more traditional seafood staples such as fresh crabs, seasonal fish, and hush puppies. Live music on the backyard bar is the perfect happy hour setting, and their menu offers a variety of options available to share at home.
  • MADIGAN’S WATERFRONT Located in a historic American small town with cascading views of the Occoquan River Madigan’s Waterfront encourages guest to dine al fresco on the deck while watching the sunset. Whether it’s the romantic glow of candlelight or the fresh open air of dinner under the stars, Madigan’s Waterfront offers a shining local experience with signature seasonal plates, scenic riverside views, outdoor bar with live music, and inviting dance floor.
  • BLU 1681 Savor the rich cultural history of Northern Virginia’s Potomac riverfront. With beautiful contemporary waterfront seating, guests can enjoy freshly popped popcorn and the uniquely inspired tastes of Native American history. The head chef’s unforgettable menu and fresh take on traditional seafood dishes receives regular national attention, resulting in several invitations to join the Food Network’s “Chopped” team.
 

LOUDOUN CO

Plates With Personality: Get Fresh With Loudoun County’s Creative Cuisine
  • DELIRIUM CAFÉ If you’re planning a visit to Virginia’s Cultural Region this May, look for the Pink Elephant. Explore the flavors of Belgium’s storied history with recipes spanning centuries of Belgian craft and culture. Offering a menu of small bites, lunch, and dinner options, along with a list of artfully crafted Belgian brews, Delirium Café intends to become an international destination for gastro-tourism, inviting locals and travelers from around the world to experience new flavors of the first Delirium Café in the United States. Delirium opens its doors to the public May 2017.
  • THE RESTAURANT AT PATOWMACK FARM As one of the first farm restaurants in the U.S., The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm presents a unique dining experience straight from the heart of Northern Virginia’s wine country. The venue includes a glass conservatory, gazebo and open-air tent, and provides the perfect frame for one of the most spectacular views in Loudoun County. The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm welcomes guests to enjoy unforgettable organic, local, progressive cuisine while taking in the surrounding fields and rolling hills. Enjoy fresh flavors, straight from the farm, made with seasonal, earth-to-table, local ingredients.
  • SEÑOR RAMON If you’re looking for a Taqueria with a twist, then you mustache about Señor Ramon’s on your next visit to Virginia’s Cultural Region. Señor Ramon offers a menu of traditional and Argentinian interpretations of South American favorites, and has captured the attention of local and regional attention for its signature beef empanadas. Catch a cold beer in Señor Ramon’s beer garden, or explore a selection of handcrafted tacos on the outdoor patio. As Señor Ramon simply states, “If you like tacos, this is your place to be.”
  • MOKOMANDY Despite its classification as a self-proclaimed casual fine-dining experience, there’s nothing casual about the intense flavors of Mokomandy’s modern infusion of Korean, Cajun, and American flavors and the translation of those flavors into expertly paired cocktails. From the restaurant’s signature Kimchi to its expertly crafted, in-house prepared Tasso ham, smoked bacon, and sausage, Mokomandy delivers unique, award-winning flavor, cementing its position among the top restaurants recommended with a visit to Virginia’s Cultural Region.
 

ARLINGTON

Culinary Connection: Explore The Community, Heritage, And Fierce Friendship That Inspires Arlington’s Incredible Eats
  • AMBAR Experience the best of the Balkans with Ambar’s unique blend of tradition, heritage, creativity, and modern design. Visitors are invited to enjoy unforgettable food, unbelievable drinks and an atmosphere that combines comfort comfort and high style in Ambar’s new Clarendon location. From rich food reflecting the finest Balkan fare, to first-class service, every detail is meticulously woven into a unique, and memorable experience of the New and Old World cultural flavors of the Balkans.
  • HULA GIRL BAR & GRILL From food truck to four walls, chef Mikala Brennan enjoyed an evolutionary culinary career as both Virginia’s and Washington, D.C.’s only location for traditional Hawaiian cuisine. Carrying the flavors of her Hawaiian home, Hula Girl Bar & Grill now rests in a brick-and-mortar location after years on the road as a local food truck and instant favorite. Guests are encouraged to relax in the approachable, laid-back atmosphere of Hula Girl’s bright and inviting space. Enjoy weekly live Hawaiian music, sip some colorful cocktails, and explore the tropical flavors of Brennan’s easy, breezy, take on her Hawaiian heritage.
  • GAIJIN RAMEN SHOP Translating to The Outsider’s Ramen Shop, this local hotspot opens its doors to all, and is the embodiment of Arlington’s #friendshipgoals. Founded and run by best friends Nicole and Tuvan, Gaijin Ramen Shop extends a warm welcome to anyone seeking a diverse gastronomic experience. A menu of self-identified Asian-fusion fare includes handmade ramen noodle and caters to palates of all preferences, offering some of the region’s only gluten-free ramen dishes. Gaijin Ramen Shop’s cool, colorful environment promises commitment to craft, serving cuisine carried straight from the heart to the bowl.
  • PALETTE 22 Welcome to your adventure in artful dining. Palette 22 is a gastronomical gallery, celebrating creative community and international culture under the roof of a 1943 original Art Deco building. The restaurant features interior design reflecting elements of industrial artist’s studio. Formed by a diverse team including chefs, scientists, artist, and mathematicians, with rotating gallery shows and programs, and with fantastic food reflecting a range of creative cultural fusion, Palette 22 provides an immersive, sensory culinary experience inspired by the coming-together of the whole community.
 

ALEXANDRIA

National Treasures: Discover How Old Town Alexandria’s Historically-Inspired Plates Preserve The Flavors of The Past
  • VIRTUE FEED & GRAIN Reclaiming the building of a historic feed house from the 1800s, Virtue Feed & Grain is just as much a culinary destination as it is an effort to protect and preserve the region’s past. Constructed from the remains of multiple historic sites throughout the neighborhood, this modern American tavern invites visitors to experience the evolution of Alexandria trough a contemporary American-style menu and incredibly detailed, rustic, restored interior that gives a respectful nod to the region’s storied past.
  • COLUMBIA FIREHOUSE At the heart of Old Town Alexandria, Columbia Firehouse is heating things up with a stunning collection of comfort food, combining familiar flavors with the palatable surprise of refined skill. Columbia Firehouse pays homage to its 19th- century namesake through a brilliant revival featuring four levels of fine dining, a meticulously reconstructed atrium, and a lamp-lit outdoor patio. Pay a visit to Alexandria’s past through the exquisite brass railing, floor-to ceiling dark wood, and subdued stained glass of the Firehouse barroom — complete with a list of 25 classic cocktails, a roster of regional craft beers, and a dozen compelling wines available by the glass.
  • GADSBY’S TAVERN Host to each of the nation’s first five presidents, and national site for the socialites of its era, Gadsby’s Tavern is a historical and national staple of Virginia’s Cultural Region. Experience the high-class, all-American menu, offering a range of traditional recipes generationally preserved over the course of America’s history. Enjoy an immersive meal in one of Gadsby’s Tavern’s elegant colonial dining rooms, and discover the flavors of a location successfully in operation since its debut in 1770.
  • THE MAJESTIC Established in 1932, The Majestic has been an important landmark of Old Town dining for over 80 years. This historic spot and its iconic neon sign have beckoned visitors for generations, welcoming guests to explore its colorful story and enjoy a great meal. The Majestic offers a fresh, vibrant dining experience under the culinary and service direction of Corporate Executive Chef Graham Duncan. Contemporary bistro-style menus offer an array of seasonal selections that are carefully composed, with a rustic simplicity that showcases the authentic flavors of expertly balanced plates.

Virginia’s Cultural Region: Craft Brew Experiences Too Good To Keep To Yourself

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Virginia’s Cultural Region: Craft Brew Experiences Too Good To Keep To Yourself

Explore What’s On Tap For 2017 While visiting your favorite brewery can be a relaxing solo experience, Virginia’s Cultural Region invites you and your crew to share some high-quality beer and high-quality company. Here are a few of the Region’s latest local craft-brew experiences that are just too good to keep to yourself:  

Prince William County & Manassas:

Farm Brew Live With warm weather on the rise, Virginia’s Cultural Region is rapidly approaching the summer unveiling of the latest colossus in the craft beer community. In addition to an overwhelmingly enthusiastic local response, the Farm Brew Live campus is quickly generating international excitement, becoming the Region’s most anticipated attraction of 2017. As an all-in-one craft beer destination, Farm Brew Live features 5 massive venues, each expressing a unique celebration of craft-culture.
  • 2 Silos Brewing Co. With an estimated production rate of over 3.5 million farm-to-fist, quality-crafted pints per year, 2 Silos Brewing Company is essentially the beating heart of the Farm Brew Live operation. The 14,000 square foot facility welcomes eager guests from around the globe to enjoy daily brewery tours along with a few flights in the taste room or open-air patio.
Farm to City Brew Trail Prince William & Manassas boasts over 10 craft breweries sprawling from the foot hills of the Bull Run Mountain to the shoreline of the Potomac River. Spend a long weekend sampling brews at The Farm Brewery at Broad Run to take in the scenic countryside of Virginia’s Cultural Region. Work your way into the charming downtown district, The City of Manassas where you will find Sinistral Brewing and BadWolf Public House nestled among unique artisan shops and restaurants. Wrap up your brew trail adventure just minutes from the Potomac River at the newly opened, comic book themed Heroic Aleworks!  

Loudoun County:

LoCo Ale Trail Ready for a taste trek? Lace up, and grab a growler. Thanks to the rapid and continuous growth of its craft beer scene, Loudoun County is hailed as a trailblazer in the local craft community. Featuring seven new breweries on the map, the LoCo Ale Trail now boasts a craft collection of over 21 breweries, brewpubs, taverns, and tap houses for beer lovers to explore. If you’re feeling the need for speed, choose a route from one of the LoCo Ale Trail’s bikeable brew tours. Dirt Farm Brewing Tucked along the winding roads of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Loudoun County’s Dirt Farm Brewing originally began as a 400-acre family farm. After the addition of a 13-acre hops and barley extension, Dirt Farm Brewing was born. Guests can indulge in variety of homegrown seasonal and staple beers, ranging from the award-winning Red Merl Irish Red Ale to the Som Peach Summer Seasonal, a fruity marriage of freshly farmed peaches and carefully selected hops. Vanish Farmworks Brewery With a name like Vanish, you might not expect this brewery to be so visible; however, it is actually an extension of the largest fresh hops production that Virginia has to offer. Vanish Farmworks Brewery resides on Loudoun County’s Black Hops Farm, an impressive, 53-acre slice of Loudoun’s scenic countryside, dedicated to handpicked hops and home to Virginia’s very first hops processing facility. Visitors to Vanish can enjoy one-of-a-kind brews, weekend offerings of smoked-on-site barbecue, and a diverse line-up of live music.  

Fairfax:

Living Large: Mustang Sally and Fair Winds Brewing Company Among the 9 quality craft breweries based in Fairfax County, Mustang Sally Brewing Company and Fair Winds Brewing Company hold local titles as the two largest craft-beer production breweries in the county. Both breweries offer award-winning beer, expansive taprooms, and regular tours of their impressive production facilities. Whether you’re filling your sails with the fresh flavors of Fair Winds or exploring the art and science behind Mustang Sally’s classically sophisticated craft-culture, these two breweries promise hops with heart and brews that shine with expertly considered detail— down to the last drop. Seasonal Showcase: The Northern Virginia BrewFest If you enjoy seasonal selections, you won’t want to miss the Northern Virginia BrewFest; a craft-community celebration featuring the best brews in the region and over 50 of Northern Virginia’s finest craft breweries. Enjoy two full days of your favorite seasonal flavors along with live music and local eats. Relax with crisp, refreshing, sun-kissed seasonals at the Northern Virginia Summer BrewFest in June, or if you’re pining for pumpkin ales, craft ciders, and colorful cool-weather brews, check out the Northern Virginia Fall BrewFest in October. The Northern Virginia BrewFest promises something for every season and tastes that are always worth the trip. Board the Brew Bus Not feeling the footwork of an ale trail? Reston limousine is more than happy to give brew-bound visitors a luxury lift. Board the Fairfax County Brew Bus for a tour of breweries across the Cultural Region and throughout DC’s Metropolitan Area. Brew Bus tours vary regularly, but each itinerary promises an even mix of up-and-coming breweries and local staples. If you’re feeling especially crafty, customize your cruise for a personal route that includes each of your favorite destinations.  

Arlington:

New District Brewing Company Last year, Arlington welcomed its first full distribution brewery since 1916. Today, New District Brewing Company is in full swing, crafting a variety of staple and seasonal beers from carefully selected, locally-sourced ingredients. With weekly trivia nights and growler discounts that are too good to ignore, New District Brewing Company is quickly becoming a local staple in Arlington. The recommendation? Try the 1821; a Belgian-style Saison that comes with its own, very loyal group of fans. Market Common: A Cross-Craft Combination Thanks to overwhelming support from Arlington’s craft-beer community, Heritage Brewing Company’s newest project, Market Common, will open its doors this spring. Featuring a taproom constructed from repurposed brewing material, such as fixtures built from aging barrels; Market Common exemplifies a cyclical, sustainable approach to contemporary crafting— right down to its foundation. Guests can enjoy the unique blend of brewery, roaster, and restaurant with Market Common’s fully-functional, three- tap, nitro-brew coffee bar, exclusive selection of cold-pressed and pour-over craft coffee, and classic, barrel-aged craft beer.  

Alexandria:

#ALXBrewTour Alexandria has squarely cemented itself as a prominent player in Northern Virginia’s craft beer community, and invites visitors to share its spotlight with a new walking tour of its beer history. The ALXBrewTour showcases 15 of the city’s select pubs and taverns—each complete with its own unique character and charm. Whichever direction you choose, Alexandria’s Historic Brew Tour promises something new down every path, and boasts a satisfying collection of the tried and true tastes of the city’s past. Portner Brewhouse Along the way, perhaps you’ll find yourself lifting a pint of history itself at the new Portner Brewhouse. Pioneered by sisters Catherine and Margaret Portner, Portner Brewhouse pays tribute to family legacy and offers a unique selection of carefully reconstructed family recipes. The historic list of libations dates back over 100 years to Robert Portner Brewing Co., the largest pre-Prohibition brewery in the South. Visitors can enjoy these historic brews with a bit of contemporary German-American cuisine or rate Portner Brewhouse’s home-brewed recipes in the Craft Beer Test Kitchen™. Port City Brewing If you are looking for pints with prestige, perhaps you’ll stop at Port City Brewing, Alexandria’s international claim to fame. Receiving over 50 awards, including 2015’s Small Brewery of the Year and 2016’s European Beer Star Silver Medal, Port City Brewing offers visitors craft beer and bragging rights with a welcome side of tastings and tours. True to their tagline, Port City Brewing “puts the ‘Ale’ in Alexandria.” Whether you’re discovering new breweries or returning to your favorite flavors, Virginia’s Cultural Region welcomes beer lovers of all kinds to experience the adventures within its internationally coveted craft-brew community.

What’s New?

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What’s New?

Whether you’re new to the region or a longtime fan, there’s always something to discover in Virginia’s Cultural Region.

New Brews. Find new ways to enjoy your favorite pint in the Cultural Region.

  • The LoCo Ale Trail makes it easy to let your palate be your guide through Loudoun County’s 17 breweries, leading you to small batch, hand-crafted brews with itineraries that highlight everything from bike-able to pet-friendly options.
  • Sehkraft Brewing in Arlington’s Clarendon is a 9,000 square-foot brewpub housing a 10-barrel brewhouse, a 200+ seat restaurant, a live music stage and its own butcher shop.
  • New District Brewing Company in the Shirlington neighborhood welcomed its first guests in January as Arlington’s first truly local package brewery in a century, providing seasonal craft beers made with an emphasis on locally sourced and quality imported ingredients.
  • Forge Brew Works and Fair Winds Brewing Co. comprise the “Lorton Beer Trail” in South Fairfax County – meet the friendly brewers, plan on a tour of the facilities, or just belly up to the bar.
  • Fairfax County’s Town of Vienna welcomed its own farm-to-table brewery and restaurant this year when Caboose Brewing Co. opened at a location off the popular Washington & Old Dominion Trail.
  • It’s a brewery boom in Fairfax County: Herndon saw Aslin Beer Co. open this past summer, Reston welcomes the Lake Anne Brew House this year and Chantilly welcomes Mustang Sally Brewing Co. this spring.
  • Alexandria’s Port City Brewing Co.was named the Best Small Brewery in the U.S. at the 2015 Great American Beer Festival, considered the Oscars of the beer world. Port City offers tours, tastings of its award-winning brews and quirky events like Beer Yoga and Pedals & Pints.
  • An historic Virginia brewery is revived 100 years later at Portner Brewhouse, a pre-Prohibition-inspired brewery, restaurant and Craft Beer Test Kitchen™. Opening in the summer of 2016, the Robert Portner Brewing Company founder’s great-great-granddaughters Catherine and Margaret Portner will be serving reconstructed historic recipe beers and contemporary seasonals alongside German and contemporary American cuisine.
  • Keep an eye on the growing excitement at Brew Republic Bierwerks brewpub in Prince William and Manassas, offering craft brews in a friendly taproom atmosphere in spring 2016.

Winery expansions. The wine industry continues to thrive as some of the region’s wineries expand with new tasting rooms and facilities.

  • Breaux Vineyards welcomes visitors to their new facility’s spacious rooms and small, intimate nooks for an experience that’s easy to enjoy. Offering numerous outdoor patios with sweeping views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the main tasting room gives a nod to the owner’s Louisiana roots with French Quarter details.
  • Stone Tower Winery’s new state-of-the-art facility invites you to stay a while in a new tasting room and numerous spaces decorated with plush couches and modern décor with rustic touches. Enjoy a special tasting in the barrel room or a glass of vino by the roaring fireplace.
  • The expansion of Chrysalis Vineyards connects visitors to Loudoun’s rich agricultural scene with a new “Ag District” spanning 400 acres. Working with Locksley Estate Farmstead Cheese Company, Chrysalis will soon include a cheese production facility and a tech-savvy tasting room that connects visitors with digital information about the wines.
  • Fabbioli Cellars now offers a new circular, two-level tasting room built around a unique central structure: a tree of lighted vines that were sourced from the property.

Spring temptations. Spring’s allure is in full force in Virginia’s Cultural Region, with outdoor beauty, fine spirits and the open water calling your name.

  • Along with the 2016 National Park Service Centennial, Prince William Forest National Park celebrates 80 years of service this year. Don’t miss a chance to visit the largest green space in the DC Metropolitan area, where hiking and biking trails give you access to 15,000 beautiful acres.
  • Educate your palate at Murlarkey Distilled Spirits, which opened its doors in Manassas for tours and tastings of handcrafted small-batch selections early this year.
  • Whether it’s street performers, art, music, al fresco drinks and dining in a beautiful setting, or launching an exploration of the region via water taxis and river cruises by Potomac Riverboat Company, there’s always something new to experience at Alexandria’s historic waterfront.

Entertainment central. The Cultural Region adds games, brews and high-flying fun this spring, along with inspired celebrations and learning opportunities.

  • Big fun and games come to Northern Virginia as Dave & Buster’s brings its popular restaurant fare and hundreds of arcade games, sports and activities to the newly revamped Springfield Town Center in Fairfax County, promising “the most fun you can have all under one roof.”
  • Thrill seekers can test their driving skills soon in Manassas at Autobahn Indoor Speedway, the largest go-kart facility this side of Washington, D.C.
  • Cirque du Soleil brings internationally acclaimed acrobatics and theatrical wonder to Fairfax County this summer, presenting Kurios – Cabinet of Curiosities under a 62-foot high big top at Lerner Town Square in Tysons, VA, from July 21 to August 21, 2016.
  • As the National Park Service turns 100 in 2016, you’re invited to be inspired with special events and activities in all National Parks, including Fairfax county’s own Wolf Trap, Great Falls Park and many other stops along the George Washington Memorial Parkway.
  • The Children’s Science Center Lab is Northern Virginia’s first interactive children’s museum, giving kids, families and school groups access to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) concepts through engaging hands-on exhibits, activities and programs. The Lab’s Experiment Bar, Inspiration Hub, Tinker Shop and Discovery make for inspired learning for children aged two through 12. The Lab is located within Fair Oaks Mall in Fairfax, VA. A full-scale museum arrives in 2019 to Dulles, VA.

5 Days in the Cultural Region

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5 Days in the Cultural Region

You could spend years exploring Virginia’s Cultural Region and never tire of the journey. Here are a few suggestions for discovering its riches one day at a time.

DAY 1: Pleasures of Field and Farm

You’re in for a day of relaxation enjoying Loudoun County’s scenic landscape, the fruits of its vineyards and the harvest of its fields. Explore some of the 40-plus wineries and tasting rooms that are intertwined along country roads here, nestled between horse farms and historic estates. Try a crisp Viognier while overlooking the mountains. Take a vineyard tour and meet winemakers crafting award-winning wines.

Stop for lunch in a circa 1905 restored mill or enjoy farm-to-table cuisine at Market Table Bistro, where the menu changes seasonally to offer only the freshest ingredients.

DAY 2: Get a Feel for History

Looking back is no eye-rolling academic exercise in Virginia’s Cultural Region, where hands-on history experiences feel more like outdoor adventure. Spend some time at the Manassas National Battlefield Park to explore the 5,000-acre site of the first and second battles of the American Civil War. It’s not just a budget-friendly way to learn more about history; standing in the mist is a foolproof way to feel its power.

You’ll learn more about uncommon valor than you ever imagined at the National Museum of the Marine Corps, where exhibits cover more than 237 years of inspiring American history – from earliest recruitment efforts during the American Revolution to photographic exhibits that capture the strength and courage of today’s Marine force.

DAY 3: Ready for a Big Rush?

You’ll expand your horizons on a day spent in Fairfax County. Whether you experience the earthly natural rush of Great Falls Park, the goosebumps you get while walking in the same steps of America’s first president at George Washington’s Mount Vernon or the wonders of space exploration at the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, there’s a thrill in the air.

There’s inspiration in the air, too. Take in an outdoor concert and picnic on the grounds of Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts. Check out the galleries and studio spaces of the Workhouse Arts Center, where you can take a guided tour, sit in on a workshop or learn of the history of this former historic prison campus at the Workhouse Prison Museum. 

DAY 4: Why Does This Seem So Familiar?

There are certain images in our national consciousness that just seem like something we all should know. The iconic figures striving to raise the American flag in battle. A young soldier making precise steps as he faithfully stands guard. White markers stretched across green hills in heartbreakingly long, tidy rows.

A visit to Arlington National Cemetery makes it all very real, with stories of sacrifice, honor and steadfast resolve. In this one historic place, generations of the nation’s fallen are honored, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is guarded without ceasing and the Eternal Flame burns at the gravesite of President John F. Kennedy. The nearby Marine Corps War Memorial captures the dramatic Iwo Jima moment we all recognize.

Take advantage of the spectacular views of the D.C. skyline while you’re in Arlington’s Rosslyn district, where you can raise a pint to history at Heavy Seas Alehouse. Check out the gourmet brews at Caffe Aficionado and explore Arlington’s public art offerings, including performances at the Signature Theatre. 

DAY 5: Is Cobblestone Cosmopolitan a Thing?

Maybe it’s the unexpected pairing that makes Alexandria so extraordinary, from acclaimed dining to compelling history and dynamic arts. Old Town Alexandria hums with a cosmopolitan vibe that’s lasted centuries – along with the 18th and 19th century architecture and cobblestone streets still intact from its days as George Washington’s hometown. A stroll down King Street offers boutique shopping and numerous ways to enjoy the city’s food culture.

Alexandria’s waterfront is your portal to exploration, whether it’s on a Potomac Riverboat Co. cruise or the galleries and studio spaces of the Torpedo Factory Art Center. For a look into the past, the Key to the City Museum Pass gives you access to historic homes, sites and museums. Top off your day at the Best Small Brewery in the U.S., Port City Brewing Co. or by enjoying live music at one of Alexandria’s intimate venues like Blackwall Hitch.

Activities That Won’t Break The Bank

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Activities That Won’t Break The Bank

Rich experiences that don’t strain your wallet? Virginia’s Cultural Region is the answer you’ve been looking for.

Scenic rides and vineyard picnics. It costs nothing to enjoy the region’s beautiful landscape and charming streets.

  • Take a bike ride down the 45-mile Washington & Old Dominion trail to enjoy the scenic beauty of the region. You’ll pass through historic towns on this car-free path, with stops for refreshing craft beer along the way at numerous breweries just minutes off the trail.
  • Stop at South Street Under café or Stoneybrook Farm Market to pick up sandwiches and snacks for a picnic in the vineyard. Many Loudoun wineries offer free live music, so sing along as you enjoy lunch and delicious Virginia vino.
  • Hop on the free King Street Trolley to find chef-driven restaurants, bustling boutiques and intimate museums tucked into 18th and 19th century architecture of Old Town Alexandria.

Pay tribute, not entry fees. American history is always within your budget in Virginia’s Cultural Region.

  • Free parking and admission to the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Prince William County are an added bonus – this fully immersive tribute using sight, sound, touch and movement is a truly valuable experience. Housing a massive Leatherneck Gallery, displays depicting pivotal conflicts and vital contributions to the preservation of America’s freedom, the museum’s magnificent architectural design rises 210 feet at a tilted angle inspired by the flag raisings at Iwo Jima.
  • Visit the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial in Arlington to honor those who lost their lives on one of America’s most fateful days. Admission is free.
  • From the opium wars of the 1850s to fighting current day drug trafficking, you’ll learn about the history of the war on drugs at Arlington’s DEA Museum and Visitors Center, where admission is free.
  • Take a scenic horseback ride or join the park historian for a guided hike along the trails where the first and second battles of the American Civil War were fought at Manassas National Battlefield Park. The park now offers free entry to all visitors as of January 1, 2016. Whether you want to pack a relaxing picnic to enjoy among the bluebells or plan a fun-filled afternoon orienteering, this is a must see on your next visit.

Big experiences, little prices. From the first presidential home to the first journeys into space, there’s major history ahead.

  • It only takes a few bills with his portrait on them to walk in the shoes of the first president of the United States at George Washington’s Mount Vernon. Admission ranges from $9 to $17.
  • Picnic and hike at Great Falls Park, the beautiful National Park Service destination that overlooks the falls of the Potomac River. Admission is a bargain at $10 per car.
  • Marvel at the largest collection of original air and space craft in the world at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. Museum admission is free, but parking runs $15 per car.
  • For only $10, nine historic sites are yours to explore. Alexandria’s Key to the City Museum Pass gives you access to unique history remarkably preserved by a city dedicated to its past, with insight into Civil War, civil rights, founding fathers and more.

Exercise your freedom of expression. In a region that’s as dedicated to new ideas as it is to preserving its past, creative pursuits are a bargain.

 
  • Join a myriad of local artists for gallery viewings, performances and art demonstrations at a restored historic prison, now known as the Workhouse Arts Center in Fairfax County. Admission is free.
  • Immerse yourself in art among the 82 artist studios at the Torpedo Factory Art Center, where the creativity is priceless but admission is free.
 

Only in NOVA

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Only in NOVA

There’s not another place on the planet with the unique spirit of Northern Virginia. It’s a blend of artistic independence and appreciation for the journey that gives the Cultural Region its special sauce.

Feel that American pride. Whether you’re standing at a memorial or witnessing a heroic run, Virginia’s Cultural Region is full of heart-swelling moments.

  • Understand the challenges and experience of valor on a fully immersive visit to the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Prince William County. Sight, sound, touch and movement reveal the story of the U.S. Marines like never before.
  • Cheer on the participants (or become one) in Arlington as the Marine Corps Marathon takes place October 30, 2016. Known as “The People’s Marathon,” it’s one of the largest in the world.
  • Take a leisurely horseback ride where courage was tested: Manassas National Battlefield Park, where the first two battles of the American Civil War were fought.

There’s only one. You won’t want to miss the Cultural Region’s singular distinctions.

It’s not what you think. From repurposed arts venues to speakeasy hideouts, Virginia’s Cultural Region is full of surprises.

  • Tap into the Cultural Region’s arts scene with unexpected visual arts centers, including a former torpedo factory in Alexandria, a candy factory in Prince William County and even a former prison in Fairfax County.
  • Up for Beer Yoga, Pedals and Pints or Joggers and Lagers? The Best Small Brewery in the U.S. puts the fun in fitness: Alexandria’s Port City Brewing Co.
  • Sneak into Captain Gregory’s, a cocktail lounge/speakeasy hidden inside Sugar Shack donut shop in Alexandria.
  • View Washington, D.C. monuments from a unique vantage point: onboard a Potomac Riverboat Co. narrated boat cruise.

Have some wine with that view. Unique ways to experience the Cultural Region’s stellar wine and craft brew offerings make for unforgettable journeys.

  • Take a guided kayak tour down the scenic Potomac River to Tarara Winery in Loudoun County, where you can enjoy live music in their outdoor pavilion, delicious food and fine Virginia wine. The four-and-a-half to seven-mile tour is offered throughout the summer.
  • Beer and wine lovers unite! In Loudoun, winery and brewery sit side-by-side, sharing sweeping views of the countryside. Travel 951 feet up the mountain to enjoy Bluemont Vineyard and Dirt Farm Brewing to try the peach wine or the pumpkin ale, featuring ingredients taken right from the neighboring Great Country Farms.

Chef-Inspired Cuisine

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Chef-Inspired Cuisine

This is more than just dining. Thanks to the passion of talented chefs, a trip through Virginia’s Cultural Region is a foodie adventure.

Comfort food for all! Find out how celebrated chefs and popular eateries put a new twist on the classics in Virginia’s Cultural Region.

  • Known for his appearances on the hit television shows Top Chef and Top Chef Masters, Chef Bryan Voltaggio brings a new approach to classic favorites in Loudoun County with his restaurant Family Meal. Featuring a modern take on familiar family dishes like shrimp and grits and fried chicken, the menu is full of surprises.
  • Indulge in sweet simplicity at Dairy Godmother Frozen Custard and Nostalgic treats, an Obama family favorite in Alexandria’s Del Ray.
  • Bobby Flay’s Bobby’s Burger Palace in Woodbridge is for true burger lovers, featuring a new creation every month. Will the Burger of the Month feature red hot sauce and spicy rémoulade or goat cheese and Meyer lemon honey mustard sauce? Who knows!
  • Head to Alexandria’s Del Ray and Arlington’s Shirlington or (coming soon) Ballston neighborhoods for what Food and Wine deems the Best Mac and Cheese in the U.S at Cheesetique.
  • Have a Grandma appreciation moment with buttermilk biscuit everything at Stomping Ground in Alexandria’s Del Ray.

Get it while you can! Pop-up cuisine and street food concepts brings new flavors to the Cultural Region.

  • Chef and restaurateur Mike Isabella has collaborated with his fellow Top Chef finalist Jen Carroll to create a new French Mediterranean dining concept called Requin, currently “popped up” for an extended run in Fairfax County’s trendy Mosaic District through mid-2016. Beginning this summer, Isabella’s popular Greek concept, Kapnos Kouzina, takes over the space with a focus on rustic dishes and shareable platters. You can also enjoy Isabella’s creations at Kapnos Taverna, Pepita or Yona, all in Arlington’s Ballston neighborhood.
  • Award-winning chef Victor Albisu is expanding his popular Taco Bamba Taqueria standup takeout counter concept, serving tacos in both traditional and chef-driven styles for just $3 or $4 each. The Falls Church eatery will open two additional locations this year, one in early 2016 in Springfield, VA, and another in summer 2016 in Vienna, VA.

Translation: delicious. From distant cultures to your plate, you’re about to speak the language of international cuisine.

  • Renowned Chef José Andrés shares a different side of his native country’s classical and contemporary Spanish cuisine, including tapas, savory paellas, superb sangrias and more at Arlington’s Jaleo.
  • Experience a little piece of Europe at Columbus Grill in Manassas, where Chef Nuno Duerte will take you right back to his homeland of Portugal with each authentic dish. The wine list is unlike any other.
  • Taste the global culinary creations of Chef Tim Ma at Water & Wall in Arlington, featuring contemporary French, Asian and American cuisine or at his new gourmet sandwich shop in Fairfax County, Chase the Submarine

Fresh, fancy and fabulous. Once-forbidden cocktails and sophisticated farm fare elevate dining to an art in Virginia’s Cultural Region.

  • Savor the creations of acclaimed chef Cathal Armstrong at his restaurants including Society Fair, an “epicurean emporium” in Alexandria featuring a wine bar, coffee bar, baker and demo kitchen; and PX Lounge, an elegant 1920s-inspired speakeasy cocktail lounge.
  • Enjoy fine dining in a glass-enclosed atrium overlooking the Potomac River at The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm, on one of the first certified organic farms in Virginia. James Beard nominee Chef Tarver King creates three innovative menus that each focus on ingredients sourced on the farm: Grown, Raised and Found.
  • Make a reservation at one of Alexandria’s latest hot spots, including chef Brian Rowe’s Southern immersion cuisine at Magnolia’s on King and exquisitely crafted cocktails at the cozy Palm Lounge upstairs.

5 Greatest Places for Shopping Therapy

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5 Greatest Places for Shopping Therapy

  You’ve got an eye for style and can sniff out a bargain like nobody’s business. So it’s only natural you’ve found yourself here in Virginia’s Cultural Region, where shopping is an art form. Here are some of our top recommendations to put you on the trail of amazing finds.  

King Street, Alexandria

You’re surrounded by small town charm, but the style is strictly cosmopolitan. The merchants of King Street in Old Town Alexandria are known for offering unique finds and stylish fashions – nearly 80 percent of the restaurants and retailers here are independently owned, earning stellar reputations for their style-making influence. Whether you’re on the hunt for to-die-for details or classic lines that always work, King Street doesn’t disappoint. Not far away in Alexandria’s Del Ray neighborhood, Mount Vernon Avenue offers its own spin on must-have selections, with eclectic, locally owned storefronts offering gourmet goods and making an artful statement.  

Tysons Corner Center, Fairfax County

When you never tire of a great deal and dream of endless selection, Tysons Corner is your kind of place. In fact, it’s one of the top 10 shopping centers in the nation, regularly drawing shoppers from miles away for an unbeatable mix of more than 300 department and specialty stores. Celebrated restaurants, entertainment, fashion, technology, home and beauty – if you can’t find it here, you just need to turn another corner ‘til you do.  

Lee Heights Shops, Arlington

Visiting the friendly merchants of Lee Heights Shops is like having a trusted friend take all the guesswork out of shopping in Arlington for you. Curated selections make shopping a pleasure, whether you’re finding a recommendation at Arrowine Cheese and Spirits, or taking your pick of popular must-have accessories at Lemon Twist and Lemon Chiffon. Needlepoint and toy specialties, fine jewelry and home furnishings – you’ll even find a bistro with New Zealand flair, Cassatt’s, under the colorful awnings of Lee Heights.  

Old Town Manassas and Historic Occoquan, Manassas

You won’t find a specialty shopping experience like this in every city or county – but here there are two. Main Street browsing is irresistible along the quaint streets of Historic Occoquan and Old Town Manassas, making for the perfect way to spend a few hours before a delicious meal. Antiques, jewelry, books, puzzles, coins, art – there’s no shortage of thought-provoking finds here, tucked in alongside clothing boutiques and pet bakeries. In fact, character just might be the most widely available treasure you’ll find here, whether you’re eyeing exclusive jewels at Lil’ Bit of Posh or checking out the elite craftsmanship on display at Hatfields Gunsmiffin’.  

Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets, Loudoun County

You’re feeling the unmistakable tingle on the back of your neck that alerts you to the presence of the shopping trifecta: brand names, great deals, tons of selection. Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets has all that and more, with 110 upscale designer and brand name outlet stores and savings of 25-65%. Whether you’re stocking up on basics or splurging on something extravagant at an unbeatable price, this outlet outing might be just the kind of retail therapy you need, with selection that’s a cut above most others.

10 Favorite Wine and Craft Beer Tasting Rooms

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10 Favorite Wine and Craft Beer Tasting Rooms

Whether you’re quaffing an IPA or sipping chardonnay, the tasting is elevated from everyday to extraordinary when you’re in the right setting. With landscapes that make you want to cultivate the good life, Virginia’s Cultural Region seems tailor-made for careful production of fine wines, spirits and craft beer. Enjoy it all with a view in our favorite tasting room experiences.  

Historic Breweries Walking Tour and Pub Guide, Alexandria

Pick up a guide from the Alexandria Visitors Center and take this self-guided tour of 15 pubs and restaurants. With beer as a staple of 18th-century life, Alexandria’s Old Town has long been a brewing mecca and home to the largest pre-prohibition brewery in the south. The city’s rich beer history reveals itself along the way at local favorites like award-winning Port City Brewing Company, Union Street Public House and Columbia Firehouse, along with “Hops Stops” at top places to pause for a brew or snack. To help you drink responsibly, the free King Street Trolley runs seven days a week.  

Port City Brewing Company, Alexandria

When you see the pineapple on top of Port City’s sign, it’s a signal that the brewing geniuses inside are ready for you and open for business. Take a tour of this award-winning craft brewery to learn how its artisanal, hand-made, high-quality beers continue to elevate Alexandria’s brewing scene. Learn about the Hopzooka first hand, breathe in the unmistakable aroma of brewing magic going on and meet the experts. Find out which seasonal brews are on tap and sample your way through a flight menu that includes stouts, porters, pale ales, Belgian whites and more. Whether you leave with a six-pack or a growler, you’re sure to find a favorite.  

The Winery at Bull Run, Fairfax County

Take a trip into the best of the 19th century world of gentle Virginia living and finely crafted wines. The Winery at Bull Run sits in the spectacular 5,000-acre countryside setting of the Bull Run Battlefield Park, a working farm vineyard with views that seem unchanged by time. The preserved 19th century farmland gives you a heritage view of winemaking techniques from the Civil War era, giving the secrets of the past a chance to live on in award-winning Nortons, Viogniers, Petit Verdots and more created onsite. Enjoy a tasting in the Main Barn or take advantage of vistas from the front porch, the vineyard or the Stone Mansion House Ruins patio.  

Mad Fox Brewing Company, Fairfax County

English, German, Belgian and American brews are on tap at this English-style gastro brewpub, home to upscale casual dining. The Mad Fox bar is 63 feet long and the rotating selection of seasonal beers is equally impressive. True aficionados will appreciate the cask-conditioned proper Real Ales served through water-jacketed Angram beer engines. The rest of us will just enjoy every pint at the perfect temperature.  

Capitol City Brewing Company, Arlington

It took a long time after prohibition for brewing to return to the nation’s capitol, but it was worth the wait. Pay a visit to the downtown Arlington location of the first brewpub to open in D.C. since prohibition was repealed, the Capitol City Brewing Company. At this location, you’ll have a view of the pedestrian promenade and a large patio to enjoy craft brews and chef-created regional cuisine. Whether you’re into beer-battered onion rings or Prohibition Porter-infused chili, you can’t beat hearty fare in a lively atmosphere – especially when you have a choice of signature, core and seasonal brews year round.  

Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery, Arlington

Great food and real beer are Rock Bottom’s stock in trade, offering an unpretentious experience that you can raise a pint to. Try award-winners like Devil’s Thumb Strong Ale, Baltic Gnome Porter, Rudolph’s Red or the Naked Oatmeal Stout. From barrel-aged Sarah’s Two Headed Buffalo to coffee-flavored Dude! Where’s My Vespa, there’s nothing ordinary about Rock Bottom’s seasonal offerings.  

Winery at La Grange, Manassas

Head over to Prince William County for year-round tours, seasonal events and wine tastings in the barrel room and 18th century manor house of the Winery at La Grange. The vineyards at the foot of Bull Run Mountain grow Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Mensang grapes to create part of this winery’s stellar collection of wines. Your tasting experience might only be rivaled by a visit to the restored 1790 manor house, where tales of ghostly apparitions and mysterious piano music fill the air. The winery provides plenty of ideas for nearby outdoor adventures and park destinations to help you make a day of it.  

Tin Cannon Brewing Company, Prince William

More intimate and specialized than even a micro brewery can claim, this nano brewery creates, kegs and serves craft beers on premise, blending traditional styles and experimental brews for a totally unique experience. Tin Cannon’s Belgian Judy, Busted Pipe Black IPA, Unkel Dunkel, seasonals and experimentals always make it worth the visit. Notice a hint of chipotle peppers and bacon? Tin Cannon calls that Breakfast of Champions – check and see what’s brewing now.    

Hillsborough Vineyards, Loudoun County

Along the hills and ridges of Loudoun County, winemakers have found fertile ground not just for their grapes, but for the total departure from routine that wine lovers find when they visit. Peace and tranquility set the stage for Hillsborough Vineyard’s old world, French country charm. Promising the sweet smell of roses and lavender, the gentle sound of trickling koi ponds, verandas adorned with wisteria, old stone barns, 36 acres of vineyards and spectacular views of distant mountains, your tasting experience will be one for all the senses.  

Breaux Vineyards, Loudoun County

Overlooking the valley between the Blue Ridge and Short Hill Mountains, the setting of Breaux Vineyards is enough to capture your heart, even if the winemaking operation weren’t winning raves for impressive results. One of Virginia’s largest growers, Breaux Vineyards encompass 104 acres of a 404-acre estate, giving you both expansive views and an intimate tasting room experience that reveals a passionate commitment to quality. Tour the winemaking facility and sample award-winning varieties and you’ll be convinced that the Breaux family is on the right track.

5 Places to Eat Like a Local

Learn More

5 Places to Eat Like a Local

Virginia’s Cultural Region is home to a number of inventive chefs and kitchen masters who have put down their culinary roots, giving you a wide selection of flavors to choose from. Find your way to the head of the table at favorite local restaurants ranging from casual fare to fine dining.  

Del Ray Café, Alexandria

In Alexandria, you’ll truly eat local, as the majority of restaurants are independently owned. Creative individualism leaves a savory taste throughout the city, and Del Ray Café is a shining example of the local movement. Serving French country cuisine made with locally sourced organic and natural products, the setting is a refurbished 1925 home that feels like an old Virginia farmhouse. It’s a great option for breakfast, lunch or dinner, with weekend brunch especially popular. Must be the crêpes. Or the roasted pork belly with polenta. Or maybe it’s the lump crabmeat eggs Benedict. You’ll have to decide.  

Mike’s American Grill, Fairfax County

You just can’t beat the classic steakhouse experience of Mike’s American Grill in Springfield, where the motto is “be nice or get out.” Home of the Drunken Ribeye, the much coveted Black Angus Prime Rib and the “now famous” Ozzie roll, Mike’s serves up hearty fare in a fun warehouse atmosphere filled with vintage baseball memorabilia, local photos and glowing neon.  

Whitlow’s on Wilson, Arlington

Voted Virginia’s most popular bar by Buzzfeed, Whitlow’s on Wilson has been an unmistakable Arlington landmark for more than 25 years. Today, the daily deals, craft beer night every Wednesday and seasonal rooftop tiki bar explain its enduring appeal. Funky charm is the vibe Whitlow’s is aiming for, with live music and special events.  

Malone’s of Manassas

Located in the Gothic Revival structure that was once Manassas Presbyterian Church, frequent award winner and local favorite Malone’s brings a contemporary twist to fine dining in ManassasIn the heart of Old Town Manassas, the menu reveals Chef Scott Bilstad’s playful approach, from Pork and Beans 2.0 to Truffle Mac N’ Cheese and Dirty Chicken Bites. Find out why his locally grown fresh, seasonal food creations are earning rave reviews.  

Carolina Brothers Pit Barbeque, Loudoun County

Traditional southern charm is hot stuff in the hands of the Carolina Brothers, whose pit barbeque is worthy of the name. Sauced with subtle spiciness and slow-cooked to exacting standards, the pork and beef barbeque here is born of owner Danny Hurdle’s North Carolina boyhood in the restaurant his daddy won in a poker game. If that’s not enough to qualify this as real BBQ, the taste definitely is. Stop by this Ashburn locals’ favorite and see for yourself.

5 Must-See Landmarks of Virginia's Cultural Region

Learn More

5 Must-See Landmarks of Virginia's Cultural Region

There are few places in America encompassing important moments in the nation’s history quite like Virginia’s Cultural Region. From colonial times to current events, this has been the home of leaders and renegades, movers and shakers, all leaving behind plenty of evidence of the American spirit for you to explore.  

MOUNT VERNON

It’s been a running bit since the dawn of the nation that any establishment claiming that “George Washington slept here” was worthy of the first presidential endorsement. But nowhere else on earth welcomed, soothed and inspired George Washington like his riverfront home, Mount Vernon. Today, it’s the most visited historic estate in America, giving you the chance to know America’s first president a bit better. The mansion is beautifully restored, along with four gardens and a working farm. There’s more to discover here than his famous dentures, which are, in fact, on display in the museum. You’ll get a glimpse of his habits, check out Martha’s jewelry, walk the grounds and hear the Potomac drift by just as they did.  

GEORGE WASHINGTON MASONIC NATIONAL MEMORIAL

Just a few miles from Mount Vernon, Alexandria is known as George Washington’s hometown. Towering 333 feet high on a hill above the cobblestone streets of Alexandria is the George Washington Masonic National Memorial, an impressive construction dedicated to Washington’s history as a Freemason. A visit to the Memorial takes you into a realm of great respect for this founding father, honoring his virtues and character as the highest example of what Freemasons aspire to be. Take a guided tour to view a famed bronze figure of Washington along with many artifacts, murals and dioramas, and experience a diagonally ascending elevator ride through the eight floors of the ornate tower. Even if you don’t come away with all your questions answered about the Masonic organization, the view from the ninth-floor observation deck will have you feeling uplifted.  

MARINE CORPS WAR MEMORIAL

Though they may not be able to come up with its correct name as a Jeopardy question, it’s an image familiar to many. The U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial depicts a brief moment that happened in the Pacific in the last months of World War II. The raising of the flag by five marines at Iwo Jima on the morning of February 23, 1945 is captured in this 78-foot tall memorial that features a 60-foot flagpole, 16-foot rifle and a canteen that would hold 32 quarts of water. Even more impressive than its statistics is the spirit of heroism and camaraderie it memorializes, expanding beyond WWII and that single moment in time to include names and dates of every principal Marine Corps engagement since the founding of the Corps at its base. Located outside Arlington National Cemetery, just across the Potomac River from D.C., the Memorial is dedicated to all Marines who have given their lives in defense of the United States since 1775. No matter what time of day you pay a visit, it’s a moving and spectacular sight – daytime views include the Washington Memorial and Capitol Rotunda in the distance, while at night the Memorial is lit in dramatic fashion.    

MANASSAS NATIONAL BATTLEFIELD PARK

When Union forces met Confederate troops along the stream named Bull Run here in July of 1861, no one realized the years of conflict that would follow. In fact, citizens and congressmen brought wine and picnic baskets to observe the military maneuvers, soon realizing the serious nature of the event, one of the earliest battles of the Civil War. It was here on the grounds of Manassas National Battlefield Park that a young general named Jackson, from Virginia, held his troops in position by standing “like a stone wall.” A year later, this was the scene of a more famed battle – the details of Robert E. Lee’s Second Manassas campaign come to life on a visit here. Even if you’re not a Civil War buff, the quiet and reverie of these grassy fields and wide vistas have timeless appeal.    

MORVEN PARK

Near Leesburg in Loudoun County, you’ll find a thousand acres of beauty in Morven Park. Once home to Virginia Governor Westmoreland Davis, Morven Park is home to the Davis Mansion, a carriage museum, a hounds and hunting museum, spectacular woodlands and a mountainous ridge, along with formal gardens. In addition to its historic ambiance, the park keeps it current with a full calendar of equestrian events and field athletics including soccer, field hockey, lacrosse and Frisbee. You’ll also find more than two miles of hiking trails, including the Ridge Top Trail leading to the park’s highest elevation and scenic overlook.

10 Favorite Wine and Craft Beer Tasting Rooms

Whether you’re quaffing an IPA or sipping chardonnay, the tasting is elevated from everyday to extraordinary when you’re in the right setting. With landscapes that make you want to cultivate the good life, Virginia’s Cultural Region seems tailor-made for careful production of fine wines, spirits and craft beer. Enjoy it all with a view in our favorite tasting room experiences.  

Historic Breweries Walking Tour and Pub Guide, Alexandria

Pick up a guide from the Alexandria Visitors Center and take this self-guided tour of 15 pubs and restaurants. With beer as a staple of 18th-century life, Alexandria’s Old Town has long been a brewing mecca and home to the largest pre-prohibition brewery in the south. The city’s rich beer history reveals itself along the way at local favorites like award-winning Port City Brewing Company, Union Street Public House and Columbia Firehouse, along with “Hops Stops” at top places to pause for a brew or snack. To help you drink responsibly, the free King Street Trolley runs seven days a week.  

Port City Brewing Company, Alexandria

When you see the pineapple on top of Port City’s sign, it’s a signal that the brewing geniuses inside are ready for you and open for business. Take a tour of this award-winning craft brewery to learn how its artisanal, hand-made, high-quality beers continue to elevate Alexandria’s brewing scene. Learn about the Hopzooka first hand, breathe in the unmistakable aroma of brewing magic going on and meet the experts. Find out which seasonal brews are on tap and sample your way through a flight menu that includes stouts, porters, pale ales, Belgian whites and more. Whether you leave with a six-pack or a growler, you’re sure to find a favorite.  

The Winery at Bull Run, Fairfax County

Take a trip into the best of the 19th century world of gentle Virginia living and finely crafted wines. The Winery at Bull Run sits in the spectacular 5,000-acre countryside setting of the Bull Run Battlefield Park, a working farm vineyard with views that seem unchanged by time. The preserved 19th century farmland gives you a heritage view of winemaking techniques from the Civil War era, giving the secrets of the past a chance to live on in award-winning Nortons, Viogniers, Petit Verdots and more created onsite. Enjoy a tasting in the Main Barn or take advantage of vistas from the front porch, the vineyard or the Stone Mansion House Ruins patio.  

Mad Fox Brewing Company, Fairfax County

English, German, Belgian and American brews are on tap at this English-style gastro brewpub, home to upscale casual dining. The Mad Fox bar is 63 feet long and the rotating selection of seasonal beers is equally impressive. True aficionados will appreciate the cask-conditioned proper Real Ales served through water-jacketed Angram beer engines. The rest of us will just enjoy every pint at the perfect temperature.  

Capitol City Brewing Company, Arlington

It took a long time after prohibition for brewing to return to the nation’s capitol, but it was worth the wait. Pay a visit to the downtown Arlington location of the first brewpub to open in D.C. since prohibition was repealed, the Capitol City Brewing Company. At this location, you’ll have a view of the pedestrian promenade and a large patio to enjoy craft brews and chef-created regional cuisine. Whether you’re into beer-battered onion rings or Prohibition Porter-infused chili, you can’t beat hearty fare in a lively atmosphere – especially when you have a choice of signature, core and seasonal brews year round.  

Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery, Arlington

Great food and real beer are Rock Bottom’s stock in trade, offering an unpretentious experience that you can raise a pint to. Try award-winners like Devil’s Thumb Strong Ale, Baltic Gnome Porter, Rudolph’s Red or the Naked Oatmeal Stout. From barrel-aged Sarah’s Two Headed Buffalo to coffee-flavored Dude! Where’s My Vespa, there’s nothing ordinary about Rock Bottom’s seasonal offerings.  

Winery at La Grange, Manassas

Head over to Prince William County for year-round tours, seasonal events and wine tastings in the barrel room and 18th century manor house of the Winery at La Grange. The vineyards at the foot of Bull Run Mountain grow Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Mensang grapes to create part of this winery’s stellar collection of wines. Your tasting experience might only be rivaled by a visit to the restored 1790 manor house, where tales of ghostly apparitions and mysterious piano music fill the air. The winery provides plenty of ideas for nearby outdoor adventures and park destinations to help you make a day of it.  

Tin Cannon Brewing Company, Prince William

More intimate and specialized than even a micro brewery can claim, this nano brewery creates, kegs and serves craft beers on premise, blending traditional styles and experimental brews for a totally unique experience. Tin Cannon’s Belgian Judy, Busted Pipe Black IPA, Unkel Dunkel, seasonals and experimentals always make it worth the visit. Notice a hint of chipotle peppers and bacon? Tin Cannon calls that Breakfast of Champions – check and see what’s brewing now.    

Hillsborough Vineyards, Loudoun County

Along the hills and ridges of Loudoun County, winemakers have found fertile ground not just for their grapes, but for the total departure from routine that wine lovers find when they visit. Peace and tranquility set the stage for Hillsborough Vineyard’s old world, French country charm. Promising the sweet smell of roses and lavender, the gentle sound of trickling koi ponds, verandas adorned with wisteria, old stone barns, 36 acres of vineyards and spectacular views of distant mountains, your tasting experience will be one for all the senses.  

Breaux Vineyards, Loudoun County

Overlooking the valley between the Blue Ridge and Short Hill Mountains, the setting of Breaux Vineyards is enough to capture your heart, even if the winemaking operation weren’t winning raves for impressive results. One of Virginia’s largest growers, Breaux Vineyards encompass 104 acres of a 404-acre estate, giving you both expansive views and an intimate tasting room experience that reveals a passionate commitment to quality. Tour the winemaking facility and sample award-winning varieties and you’ll be convinced that the Breaux family is on the right track.

Last Updated 3/10/2015

5 Days in the Cultural Region

You could spend years exploring Virginia’s Cultural Region and never tire of the journey. Here are a few suggestions for discovering its riches one day at a time.

DAY 1: Pleasures of Field and Farm

You’re in for a day of relaxation enjoying Loudoun County’s scenic landscape, the fruits of its vineyards and the harvest of its fields. Explore some of the 40-plus wineries and tasting rooms that are intertwined along country roads here, nestled between horse farms and historic estates. Try a crisp Viognier while overlooking the mountains. Take a vineyard tour and meet winemakers crafting award-winning wines.

Stop for lunch in a circa 1905 restored mill or enjoy farm-to-table cuisine at Market Table Bistro, where the menu changes seasonally to offer only the freshest ingredients.

DAY 2: Get a Feel for History

Looking back is no eye-rolling academic exercise in Virginia’s Cultural Region, where hands-on history experiences feel more like outdoor adventure. Spend some time at the Manassas National Battlefield Park to explore the 5,000-acre site of the first and second battles of the American Civil War. It’s not just a budget-friendly way to learn more about history; standing in the mist is a foolproof way to feel its power.

You’ll learn more about uncommon valor than you ever imagined at the National Museum of the Marine Corps, where exhibits cover more than 237 years of inspiring American history – from earliest recruitment efforts during the American Revolution to photographic exhibits that capture the strength and courage of today’s Marine force.

DAY 3: Ready for a Big Rush?

You’ll expand your horizons on a day spent in Fairfax County. Whether you experience the earthly natural rush of Great Falls Park, the goosebumps you get while walking in the same steps of America’s first president at George Washington’s Mount Vernon or the wonders of space exploration at the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, there’s a thrill in the air.

There’s inspiration in the air, too. Take in an outdoor concert and picnic on the grounds of Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts. Check out the galleries and studio spaces of the Workhouse Arts Center, where you can take a guided tour, sit in on a workshop or learn of the history of this former historic prison campus at the Workhouse Prison Museum. 

DAY 4: Why Does This Seem So Familiar?

There are certain images in our national consciousness that just seem like something we all should know. The iconic figures striving to raise the American flag in battle. A young soldier making precise steps as he faithfully stands guard. White markers stretched across green hills in heartbreakingly long, tidy rows.

A visit to Arlington National Cemetery makes it all very real, with stories of sacrifice, honor and steadfast resolve. In this one historic place, generations of the nation’s fallen are honored, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is guarded without ceasing and the Eternal Flame burns at the gravesite of President John F. Kennedy. The nearby Marine Corps War Memorial captures the dramatic Iwo Jima moment we all recognize.

Take advantage of the spectacular views of the D.C. skyline while you’re in Arlington’s Rosslyn district, where you can raise a pint to history at Heavy Seas Alehouse. Check out the gourmet brews at Caffe Aficionado and explore Arlington’s public art offerings, including performances at the Signature Theatre. 

DAY 5: Is Cobblestone Cosmopolitan a Thing?

Maybe it’s the unexpected pairing that makes Alexandria so extraordinary, from acclaimed dining to compelling history and dynamic arts. Old Town Alexandria hums with a cosmopolitan vibe that’s lasted centuries – along with the 18th and 19th century architecture and cobblestone streets still intact from its days as George Washington’s hometown. A stroll down King Street offers boutique shopping and numerous ways to enjoy the city’s food culture.

Alexandria’s waterfront is your portal to exploration, whether it’s on a Potomac Riverboat Co. cruise or the galleries and studio spaces of the Torpedo Factory Art Center. For a look into the past, the Key to the City Museum Pass gives you access to historic homes, sites and museums. Top off your day at the Best Small Brewery in the U.S., Port City Brewing Co. or by enjoying live music at one of Alexandria’s intimate venues like Blackwall Hitch.


Last Updated 3/17/2016

5 Greatest Places for Shopping Therapy

  You’ve got an eye for style and can sniff out a bargain like nobody’s business. So it’s only natural you’ve found yourself here in Virginia’s Cultural Region, where shopping is an art form. Here are some of our top recommendations to put you on the trail of amazing finds.  

King Street, Alexandria

You’re surrounded by small town charm, but the style is strictly cosmopolitan. The merchants of King Street in Old Town Alexandria are known for offering unique finds and stylish fashions – nearly 80 percent of the restaurants and retailers here are independently owned, earning stellar reputations for their style-making influence. Whether you’re on the hunt for to-die-for details or classic lines that always work, King Street doesn’t disappoint. Not far away in Alexandria’s Del Ray neighborhood, Mount Vernon Avenue offers its own spin on must-have selections, with eclectic, locally owned storefronts offering gourmet goods and making an artful statement.  

Tysons Corner Center, Fairfax County

When you never tire of a great deal and dream of endless selection, Tysons Corner is your kind of place. In fact, it’s one of the top 10 shopping centers in the nation, regularly drawing shoppers from miles away for an unbeatable mix of more than 300 department and specialty stores. Celebrated restaurants, entertainment, fashion, technology, home and beauty – if you can’t find it here, you just need to turn another corner ‘til you do.  

Lee Heights Shops, Arlington

Visiting the friendly merchants of Lee Heights Shops is like having a trusted friend take all the guesswork out of shopping in Arlington for you. Curated selections make shopping a pleasure, whether you’re finding a recommendation at Arrowine Cheese and Spirits, or taking your pick of popular must-have accessories at Lemon Twist and Lemon Chiffon. Needlepoint and toy specialties, fine jewelry and home furnishings – you’ll even find a bistro with New Zealand flair, Cassatt’s, under the colorful awnings of Lee Heights.  

Old Town Manassas and Historic Occoquan, Manassas

You won’t find a specialty shopping experience like this in every city or county – but here there are two. Main Street browsing is irresistible along the quaint streets of Historic Occoquan and Old Town Manassas, making for the perfect way to spend a few hours before a delicious meal. Antiques, jewelry, books, puzzles, coins, art – there’s no shortage of thought-provoking finds here, tucked in alongside clothing boutiques and pet bakeries. In fact, character just might be the most widely available treasure you’ll find here, whether you’re eyeing exclusive jewels at Lil’ Bit of Posh or checking out the elite craftsmanship on display at Hatfields Gunsmiffin’.  

Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets, Loudoun County

You’re feeling the unmistakable tingle on the back of your neck that alerts you to the presence of the shopping trifecta: brand names, great deals, tons of selection. Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets has all that and more, with 110 upscale designer and brand name outlet stores and savings of 25-65%. Whether you’re stocking up on basics or splurging on something extravagant at an unbeatable price, this outlet outing might be just the kind of retail therapy you need, with selection that’s a cut above most others.

Last Updated 3/10/2015

5 Must-See Landmarks of Virginia's Cultural Region

There are few places in America encompassing important moments in the nation’s history quite like Virginia’s Cultural Region. From colonial times to current events, this has been the home of leaders and renegades, movers and shakers, all leaving behind plenty of evidence of the American spirit for you to explore.  

MOUNT VERNON

It’s been a running bit since the dawn of the nation that any establishment claiming that “George Washington slept here” was worthy of the first presidential endorsement. But nowhere else on earth welcomed, soothed and inspired George Washington like his riverfront home, Mount Vernon. Today, it’s the most visited historic estate in America, giving you the chance to know America’s first president a bit better. The mansion is beautifully restored, along with four gardens and a working farm. There’s more to discover here than his famous dentures, which are, in fact, on display in the museum. You’ll get a glimpse of his habits, check out Martha’s jewelry, walk the grounds and hear the Potomac drift by just as they did.  

GEORGE WASHINGTON MASONIC NATIONAL MEMORIAL

Just a few miles from Mount Vernon, Alexandria is known as George Washington’s hometown. Towering 333 feet high on a hill above the cobblestone streets of Alexandria is the George Washington Masonic National Memorial, an impressive construction dedicated to Washington’s history as a Freemason. A visit to the Memorial takes you into a realm of great respect for this founding father, honoring his virtues and character as the highest example of what Freemasons aspire to be. Take a guided tour to view a famed bronze figure of Washington along with many artifacts, murals and dioramas, and experience a diagonally ascending elevator ride through the eight floors of the ornate tower. Even if you don’t come away with all your questions answered about the Masonic organization, the view from the ninth-floor observation deck will have you feeling uplifted.  

MARINE CORPS WAR MEMORIAL

Though they may not be able to come up with its correct name as a Jeopardy question, it’s an image familiar to many. The U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial depicts a brief moment that happened in the Pacific in the last months of World War II. The raising of the flag by five marines at Iwo Jima on the morning of February 23, 1945 is captured in this 78-foot tall memorial that features a 60-foot flagpole, 16-foot rifle and a canteen that would hold 32 quarts of water. Even more impressive than its statistics is the spirit of heroism and camaraderie it memorializes, expanding beyond WWII and that single moment in time to include names and dates of every principal Marine Corps engagement since the founding of the Corps at its base. Located outside Arlington National Cemetery, just across the Potomac River from D.C., the Memorial is dedicated to all Marines who have given their lives in defense of the United States since 1775. No matter what time of day you pay a visit, it’s a moving and spectacular sight – daytime views include the Washington Memorial and Capitol Rotunda in the distance, while at night the Memorial is lit in dramatic fashion.    

MANASSAS NATIONAL BATTLEFIELD PARK

When Union forces met Confederate troops along the stream named Bull Run here in July of 1861, no one realized the years of conflict that would follow. In fact, citizens and congressmen brought wine and picnic baskets to observe the military maneuvers, soon realizing the serious nature of the event, one of the earliest battles of the Civil War. It was here on the grounds of Manassas National Battlefield Park that a young general named Jackson, from Virginia, held his troops in position by standing “like a stone wall.” A year later, this was the scene of a more famed battle – the details of Robert E. Lee’s Second Manassas campaign come to life on a visit here. Even if you’re not a Civil War buff, the quiet and reverie of these grassy fields and wide vistas have timeless appeal.    

MORVEN PARK

Near Leesburg in Loudoun County, you’ll find a thousand acres of beauty in Morven Park. Once home to Virginia Governor Westmoreland Davis, Morven Park is home to the Davis Mansion, a carriage museum, a hounds and hunting museum, spectacular woodlands and a mountainous ridge, along with formal gardens. In addition to its historic ambiance, the park keeps it current with a full calendar of equestrian events and field athletics including soccer, field hockey, lacrosse and Frisbee. You’ll also find more than two miles of hiking trails, including the Ridge Top Trail leading to the park’s highest elevation and scenic overlook.

Last Updated 3/11/2015

5 Places to Eat Like a Local

Virginia’s Cultural Region is home to a number of inventive chefs and kitchen masters who have put down their culinary roots, giving you a wide selection of flavors to choose from. Find your way to the head of the table at favorite local restaurants ranging from casual fare to fine dining.  

Del Ray Café, Alexandria

In Alexandria, you’ll truly eat local, as the majority of restaurants are independently owned. Creative individualism leaves a savory taste throughout the city, and Del Ray Café is a shining example of the local movement. Serving French country cuisine made with locally sourced organic and natural products, the setting is a refurbished 1925 home that feels like an old Virginia farmhouse. It’s a great option for breakfast, lunch or dinner, with weekend brunch especially popular. Must be the crêpes. Or the roasted pork belly with polenta. Or maybe it’s the lump crabmeat eggs Benedict. You’ll have to decide.  

Mike’s American Grill, Fairfax County

You just can’t beat the classic steakhouse experience of Mike’s American Grill in Springfield, where the motto is “be nice or get out.” Home of the Drunken Ribeye, the much coveted Black Angus Prime Rib and the “now famous” Ozzie roll, Mike’s serves up hearty fare in a fun warehouse atmosphere filled with vintage baseball memorabilia, local photos and glowing neon.  

Whitlow’s on Wilson, Arlington

Voted Virginia’s most popular bar by Buzzfeed, Whitlow’s on Wilson has been an unmistakable Arlington landmark for more than 25 years. Today, the daily deals, craft beer night every Wednesday and seasonal rooftop tiki bar explain its enduring appeal. Funky charm is the vibe Whitlow’s is aiming for, with live music and special events.  

Malone’s of Manassas

Located in the Gothic Revival structure that was once Manassas Presbyterian Church, frequent award winner and local favorite Malone’s brings a contemporary twist to fine dining in ManassasIn the heart of Old Town Manassas, the menu reveals Chef Scott Bilstad’s playful approach, from Pork and Beans 2.0 to Truffle Mac N’ Cheese and Dirty Chicken Bites. Find out why his locally grown fresh, seasonal food creations are earning rave reviews.  

Carolina Brothers Pit Barbeque, Loudoun County

Traditional southern charm is hot stuff in the hands of the Carolina Brothers, whose pit barbeque is worthy of the name. Sauced with subtle spiciness and slow-cooked to exacting standards, the pork and beef barbeque here is born of owner Danny Hurdle’s North Carolina boyhood in the restaurant his daddy won in a poker game. If that’s not enough to qualify this as real BBQ, the taste definitely is. Stop by this Ashburn locals’ favorite and see for yourself.

Last Updated 4/06/2015

Activities That Won’t Break The Bank

Rich experiences that don’t strain your wallet? Virginia’s Cultural Region is the answer you’ve been looking for.

Scenic rides and vineyard picnics. It costs nothing to enjoy the region’s beautiful landscape and charming streets.

  • Take a bike ride down the 45-mile Washington & Old Dominion trail to enjoy the scenic beauty of the region. You’ll pass through historic towns on this car-free path, with stops for refreshing craft beer along the way at numerous breweries just minutes off the trail.
  • Stop at South Street Under café or Stoneybrook Farm Market to pick up sandwiches and snacks for a picnic in the vineyard. Many Loudoun wineries offer free live music, so sing along as you enjoy lunch and delicious Virginia vino.
  • Hop on the free King Street Trolley to find chef-driven restaurants, bustling boutiques and intimate museums tucked into 18th and 19th century architecture of Old Town Alexandria.

Pay tribute, not entry fees. American history is always within your budget in Virginia’s Cultural Region.

  • Free parking and admission to the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Prince William County are an added bonus – this fully immersive tribute using sight, sound, touch and movement is a truly valuable experience. Housing a massive Leatherneck Gallery, displays depicting pivotal conflicts and vital contributions to the preservation of America’s freedom, the museum’s magnificent architectural design rises 210 feet at a tilted angle inspired by the flag raisings at Iwo Jima.
  • Visit the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial in Arlington to honor those who lost their lives on one of America’s most fateful days. Admission is free.
  • From the opium wars of the 1850s to fighting current day drug trafficking, you’ll learn about the history of the war on drugs at Arlington’s DEA Museum and Visitors Center, where admission is free.
  • Take a scenic horseback ride or join the park historian for a guided hike along the trails where the first and second battles of the American Civil War were fought at Manassas National Battlefield Park. The park now offers free entry to all visitors as of January 1, 2016. Whether you want to pack a relaxing picnic to enjoy among the bluebells or plan a fun-filled afternoon orienteering, this is a must see on your next visit.

Big experiences, little prices. From the first presidential home to the first journeys into space, there’s major history ahead.

  • It only takes a few bills with his portrait on them to walk in the shoes of the first president of the United States at George Washington’s Mount Vernon. Admission ranges from $9 to $17.
  • Picnic and hike at Great Falls Park, the beautiful National Park Service destination that overlooks the falls of the Potomac River. Admission is a bargain at $10 per car.
  • Marvel at the largest collection of original air and space craft in the world at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. Museum admission is free, but parking runs $15 per car.
  • For only $10, nine historic sites are yours to explore. Alexandria’s Key to the City Museum Pass gives you access to unique history remarkably preserved by a city dedicated to its past, with insight into Civil War, civil rights, founding fathers and more.

Exercise your freedom of expression. In a region that’s as dedicated to new ideas as it is to preserving its past, creative pursuits are a bargain.

 
  • Join a myriad of local artists for gallery viewings, performances and art demonstrations at a restored historic prison, now known as the Workhouse Arts Center in Fairfax County. Admission is free.
  • Immerse yourself in art among the 82 artist studios at the Torpedo Factory Art Center, where the creativity is priceless but admission is free.
 

Last Updated 3/17/2016

Chef-Inspired Cuisine

This is more than just dining. Thanks to the passion of talented chefs, a trip through Virginia’s Cultural Region is a foodie adventure.

Comfort food for all! Find out how celebrated chefs and popular eateries put a new twist on the classics in Virginia’s Cultural Region.

  • Known for his appearances on the hit television shows Top Chef and Top Chef Masters, Chef Bryan Voltaggio brings a new approach to classic favorites in Loudoun County with his restaurant Family Meal. Featuring a modern take on familiar family dishes like shrimp and grits and fried chicken, the menu is full of surprises.
  • Indulge in sweet simplicity at Dairy Godmother Frozen Custard and Nostalgic treats, an Obama family favorite in Alexandria’s Del Ray.
  • Bobby Flay’s Bobby’s Burger Palace in Woodbridge is for true burger lovers, featuring a new creation every month. Will the Burger of the Month feature red hot sauce and spicy rémoulade or goat cheese and Meyer lemon honey mustard sauce? Who knows!
  • Head to Alexandria’s Del Ray and Arlington’s Shirlington or (coming soon) Ballston neighborhoods for what Food and Wine deems the Best Mac and Cheese in the U.S at Cheesetique.
  • Have a Grandma appreciation moment with buttermilk biscuit everything at Stomping Ground in Alexandria’s Del Ray.

Get it while you can! Pop-up cuisine and street food concepts brings new flavors to the Cultural Region.

  • Chef and restaurateur Mike Isabella has collaborated with his fellow Top Chef finalist Jen Carroll to create a new French Mediterranean dining concept called Requin, currently “popped up” for an extended run in Fairfax County’s trendy Mosaic District through mid-2016. Beginning this summer, Isabella’s popular Greek concept, Kapnos Kouzina, takes over the space with a focus on rustic dishes and shareable platters. You can also enjoy Isabella’s creations at Kapnos Taverna, Pepita or Yona, all in Arlington’s Ballston neighborhood.
  • Award-winning chef Victor Albisu is expanding his popular Taco Bamba Taqueria standup takeout counter concept, serving tacos in both traditional and chef-driven styles for just $3 or $4 each. The Falls Church eatery will open two additional locations this year, one in early 2016 in Springfield, VA, and another in summer 2016 in Vienna, VA.

Translation: delicious. From distant cultures to your plate, you’re about to speak the language of international cuisine.

  • Renowned Chef José Andrés shares a different side of his native country’s classical and contemporary Spanish cuisine, including tapas, savory paellas, superb sangrias and more at Arlington’s Jaleo.
  • Experience a little piece of Europe at Columbus Grill in Manassas, where Chef Nuno Duerte will take you right back to his homeland of Portugal with each authentic dish. The wine list is unlike any other.
  • Taste the global culinary creations of Chef Tim Ma at Water & Wall in Arlington, featuring contemporary French, Asian and American cuisine or at his new gourmet sandwich shop in Fairfax County, Chase the Submarine

Fresh, fancy and fabulous. Once-forbidden cocktails and sophisticated farm fare elevate dining to an art in Virginia’s Cultural Region.

  • Savor the creations of acclaimed chef Cathal Armstrong at his restaurants including Society Fair, an “epicurean emporium” in Alexandria featuring a wine bar, coffee bar, baker and demo kitchen; and PX Lounge, an elegant 1920s-inspired speakeasy cocktail lounge.
  • Enjoy fine dining in a glass-enclosed atrium overlooking the Potomac River at The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm, on one of the first certified organic farms in Virginia. James Beard nominee Chef Tarver King creates three innovative menus that each focus on ingredients sourced on the farm: Grown, Raised and Found.
  • Make a reservation at one of Alexandria’s latest hot spots, including chef Brian Rowe’s Southern immersion cuisine at Magnolia’s on King and exquisitely crafted cocktails at the cozy Palm Lounge upstairs.

Last Updated 3/17/2016

CRAVE-WORTHY CULTURE: EXPLORE THE LOCAL, CULINARY CRAFT OF VIRGINIA’S CULTURAL REGION

 

FAIRFAX CO

The French Evolution: Experience Fairfax County’s Contemporary Take On Classic French Cuisine
  • L’AUBERGE CHEZ FRANÇOIS When François Haeringer fulfilled his long-time dream of opening a traditional French auberge— a family inn serving the native flavors of his hometown and upbringing in the Alsatian countryside, he created a local staple for expertly prepared, classic French fare. Currently run by son and Chef de Cuisine, Jacques Haeringer, L’Auberge Chez François retains its historic appeal as a family-run tribute to tradition, humbly inspiring heartfelt loyalty among locals and visitors alike. L’Auberge Chez François offers the full embodiment of François Haeringer’s fierce love for heritage with the authentic, simple spirit and undeniable craft of artisanal French cuisine.
  • 2941 RESTAURANT 2941 is one of the most celebrated restaurants in the metropolitan area. The restaurant is nestled in the Falls Church section of Fairfax County surrounded by lush landscaping, koi ponds, waterfalls, world-class artwork, and a lakeside view. Executive Chef Bertrand Chemel presents bold French flavors accented by contemporary American cuisine. Named by numerous area publications as a top Washington-Area restaurant, 2941 continues to charm gourmands with its sophisticated yet relaxed ambiance, outstanding service, and inventive cuisine.
  • REQUIN In partnership with chef and restaurateur Mike Isabella, chef Jennifer Carroll welcomes visitors to Requin, a culinary celebration of the savory, artfully-crafted seafood and classic flavors of France’s Mediterranean coast. From meticulously detailed small plates to sharable, family-style dishes, Requin’s menus serve up a full-course selection guaranteed to satisfy appetites of all sizes. Chef Carroll brings years of expertise to the Requin kitchen, along with her celebrity status as a contender and guest on a variety of cooking programs such as Bravo’s Top Chef, Top Chef: All-Stars, and many others.
  • CREPE AMOUR Caught a case of crepe-love? So have the culinary craftsmen at Crepe Amour. Take a bite of the sweet and savory selection from this friendship-founded tribute to their favorite French classic. With freshly-made crepes folded in full view of the café’s customers, Crepe Amour puts France’s staple snack right in the spotlight, with a mouth-watering supporting act of equally-delicious dessert waffles, ice cream, and a variety of other European baked goods.
 

PRINCE WILLIAM CO & MANASSAS

On The Waterfront: Enjoy The Crave-Worthy Coastal Flavors of Prince William County and Manassas
  • TIM’S RIVERSHORE Tim’s Rivershore restaurant rests on one of the widest points of the Potomac River, offering panoramic views from both the indoor dining room and outdoor, riverside deck. Visitors can enjoy an entire waterfront experience from fresh crabs, oysters, scallops, shrimp, mussels, and fish, to American classics such as steaks, burgers, pulled pork and chicken sandwiches, to full-moon bonfires and live music on the restaurant’s torch-lit tiki bar and beach.
  • BLUE RIDGE SEAFOOD Showcasing signature “crab-shack” décor, the seafood hideaway is identified by its blue tin roof and white Christmas lights that shine all year round. Experience an eclectic selection of southern fare with alligator bites, crawfish, and fried frog legs, or try more traditional seafood staples such as fresh crabs, seasonal fish, and hush puppies. Live music on the backyard bar is the perfect happy hour setting, and their menu offers a variety of options available to share at home.
  • MADIGAN’S WATERFRONT Located in a historic American small town with cascading views of the Occoquan River Madigan’s Waterfront encourages guest to dine al fresco on the deck while watching the sunset. Whether it’s the romantic glow of candlelight or the fresh open air of dinner under the stars, Madigan’s Waterfront offers a shining local experience with signature seasonal plates, scenic riverside views, outdoor bar with live music, and inviting dance floor.
  • BLU 1681 Savor the rich cultural history of Northern Virginia’s Potomac riverfront. With beautiful contemporary waterfront seating, guests can enjoy freshly popped popcorn and the uniquely inspired tastes of Native American history. The head chef’s unforgettable menu and fresh take on traditional seafood dishes receives regular national attention, resulting in several invitations to join the Food Network’s “Chopped” team.
 

LOUDOUN CO

Plates With Personality: Get Fresh With Loudoun County’s Creative Cuisine
  • DELIRIUM CAFÉ If you’re planning a visit to Virginia’s Cultural Region this May, look for the Pink Elephant. Explore the flavors of Belgium’s storied history with recipes spanning centuries of Belgian craft and culture. Offering a menu of small bites, lunch, and dinner options, along with a list of artfully crafted Belgian brews, Delirium Café intends to become an international destination for gastro-tourism, inviting locals and travelers from around the world to experience new flavors of the first Delirium Café in the United States. Delirium opens its doors to the public May 2017.
  • THE RESTAURANT AT PATOWMACK FARM As one of the first farm restaurants in the U.S., The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm presents a unique dining experience straight from the heart of Northern Virginia’s wine country. The venue includes a glass conservatory, gazebo and open-air tent, and provides the perfect frame for one of the most spectacular views in Loudoun County. The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm welcomes guests to enjoy unforgettable organic, local, progressive cuisine while taking in the surrounding fields and rolling hills. Enjoy fresh flavors, straight from the farm, made with seasonal, earth-to-table, local ingredients.
  • SEÑOR RAMON If you’re looking for a Taqueria with a twist, then you mustache about Señor Ramon’s on your next visit to Virginia’s Cultural Region. Señor Ramon offers a menu of traditional and Argentinian interpretations of South American favorites, and has captured the attention of local and regional attention for its signature beef empanadas. Catch a cold beer in Señor Ramon’s beer garden, or explore a selection of handcrafted tacos on the outdoor patio. As Señor Ramon simply states, “If you like tacos, this is your place to be.”
  • MOKOMANDY Despite its classification as a self-proclaimed casual fine-dining experience, there’s nothing casual about the intense flavors of Mokomandy’s modern infusion of Korean, Cajun, and American flavors and the translation of those flavors into expertly paired cocktails. From the restaurant’s signature Kimchi to its expertly crafted, in-house prepared Tasso ham, smoked bacon, and sausage, Mokomandy delivers unique, award-winning flavor, cementing its position among the top restaurants recommended with a visit to Virginia’s Cultural Region.
 

ARLINGTON

Culinary Connection: Explore The Community, Heritage, And Fierce Friendship That Inspires Arlington’s Incredible Eats
  • AMBAR Experience the best of the Balkans with Ambar’s unique blend of tradition, heritage, creativity, and modern design. Visitors are invited to enjoy unforgettable food, unbelievable drinks and an atmosphere that combines comfort comfort and high style in Ambar’s new Clarendon location. From rich food reflecting the finest Balkan fare, to first-class service, every detail is meticulously woven into a unique, and memorable experience of the New and Old World cultural flavors of the Balkans.
  • HULA GIRL BAR & GRILL From food truck to four walls, chef Mikala Brennan enjoyed an evolutionary culinary career as both Virginia’s and Washington, D.C.’s only location for traditional Hawaiian cuisine. Carrying the flavors of her Hawaiian home, Hula Girl Bar & Grill now rests in a brick-and-mortar location after years on the road as a local food truck and instant favorite. Guests are encouraged to relax in the approachable, laid-back atmosphere of Hula Girl’s bright and inviting space. Enjoy weekly live Hawaiian music, sip some colorful cocktails, and explore the tropical flavors of Brennan’s easy, breezy, take on her Hawaiian heritage.
  • GAIJIN RAMEN SHOP Translating to The Outsider’s Ramen Shop, this local hotspot opens its doors to all, and is the embodiment of Arlington’s #friendshipgoals. Founded and run by best friends Nicole and Tuvan, Gaijin Ramen Shop extends a warm welcome to anyone seeking a diverse gastronomic experience. A menu of self-identified Asian-fusion fare includes handmade ramen noodle and caters to palates of all preferences, offering some of the region’s only gluten-free ramen dishes. Gaijin Ramen Shop’s cool, colorful environment promises commitment to craft, serving cuisine carried straight from the heart to the bowl.
  • PALETTE 22 Welcome to your adventure in artful dining. Palette 22 is a gastronomical gallery, celebrating creative community and international culture under the roof of a 1943 original Art Deco building. The restaurant features interior design reflecting elements of industrial artist’s studio. Formed by a diverse team including chefs, scientists, artist, and mathematicians, with rotating gallery shows and programs, and with fantastic food reflecting a range of creative cultural fusion, Palette 22 provides an immersive, sensory culinary experience inspired by the coming-together of the whole community.
 

ALEXANDRIA

National Treasures: Discover How Old Town Alexandria’s Historically-Inspired Plates Preserve The Flavors of The Past
  • VIRTUE FEED & GRAIN Reclaiming the building of a historic feed house from the 1800s, Virtue Feed & Grain is just as much a culinary destination as it is an effort to protect and preserve the region’s past. Constructed from the remains of multiple historic sites throughout the neighborhood, this modern American tavern invites visitors to experience the evolution of Alexandria trough a contemporary American-style menu and incredibly detailed, rustic, restored interior that gives a respectful nod to the region’s storied past.
  • COLUMBIA FIREHOUSE At the heart of Old Town Alexandria, Columbia Firehouse is heating things up with a stunning collection of comfort food, combining familiar flavors with the palatable surprise of refined skill. Columbia Firehouse pays homage to its 19th- century namesake through a brilliant revival featuring four levels of fine dining, a meticulously reconstructed atrium, and a lamp-lit outdoor patio. Pay a visit to Alexandria’s past through the exquisite brass railing, floor-to ceiling dark wood, and subdued stained glass of the Firehouse barroom — complete with a list of 25 classic cocktails, a roster of regional craft beers, and a dozen compelling wines available by the glass.
  • GADSBY’S TAVERN Host to each of the nation’s first five presidents, and national site for the socialites of its era, Gadsby’s Tavern is a historical and national staple of Virginia’s Cultural Region. Experience the high-class, all-American menu, offering a range of traditional recipes generationally preserved over the course of America’s history. Enjoy an immersive meal in one of Gadsby’s Tavern’s elegant colonial dining rooms, and discover the flavors of a location successfully in operation since its debut in 1770.
  • THE MAJESTIC Established in 1932, The Majestic has been an important landmark of Old Town dining for over 80 years. This historic spot and its iconic neon sign have beckoned visitors for generations, welcoming guests to explore its colorful story and enjoy a great meal. The Majestic offers a fresh, vibrant dining experience under the culinary and service direction of Corporate Executive Chef Graham Duncan. Contemporary bistro-style menus offer an array of seasonal selections that are carefully composed, with a rustic simplicity that showcases the authentic flavors of expertly balanced plates.

Last Updated 6/13/2017

Enjoy A Wealth Of Adventure — And A Worry-Free Wallet: Free Attractions In Virginia’s Cultural Region

 

FAIRFAX COUNTY:

  • THE SMITHSONIAN’S NATIONAL AIR AND SPACE MUSEUM STEVEN F. UDVAR-HAZY CENTER Explore the history of flight in Fairfax County. The Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is the companion facility to Washington, DC’s National Air and Space Museum, and the perfect addition to a family visit to Virginia’s Cultural Region. Explore the enormous Boeing Aviation Hangar and James S. McDonnell Space Hangar, and experience an impressive collection featuring thousands of aviation and space artifacts — including a Lockheed SR-71 “Blackbird,” a Concorde, and the Space Shuttle, Discovery. Climb to the top of the Donald D. Engen Observation Tower for an incredible 360-degree view of the surrounding area, or head to the glass-contained mezzanine at the Mary Baker Engen Restoration Hangar, and experience the Center’s current restoration projects. Enjoy a selection of daily tours, educational activities perfect for any age, and a variety of lectures and events scheduled throughout the year. Admission is free with a $15 parking fee until 4pm. The parking fee does not apply to cars arriving after 4pm or local shuttles (accessible from Silver Line metro stations, Dulles International Airport, and area hotels).
 

ARLINGTON:

  • THE UNKNOWN SOLDIERS Here rests in honored glory an American soldier known but to God. The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery sits at the top of a hill, silently overlooking a scenic view of Washington, DC. An acclaimed tribute to the individual soldiers and the many other undocumented American lives lost throughout World Wars I and II, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is a solemn, yet striking representation of national history and American heroism. An intricate white marble sarcophagus marks the burial place of an unidentified American soldier from World War I. To the west lie the crypts of Unknowns from World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, marked by white marble slabs flush with the surrounding plaza. Arlington National Cemetery Tours, Inc., provides tour bus service with weekday stops at the Ord & Weitzel walking gate to see the U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial, the gravesite of President John F. Kennedy, the U.S. Coast Guard Memorial, the gravesite of U.S. Army Gen. John J. Pershing, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and the Arlington House (The Robert E. Lee Memorial). Weekend service also includes stops near Section 55 and 60 and the Sept. 11 Memorial.
 

ALEXANDRIA:

  • THE TORPEDO FACTORY ART CENTER Constructed in 1918, this former naval munitions plant once created torpedoes during WWII, before its eventual conversion into a multi-purpose storage facility for congressional documents, Smithsonian dinosaur bones, and Nazi trial records. In 1974, the complex transformed, opening its doors to visitors from across the country and inviting the global community to experience art in person— and in progress. Today, Alexandria’s Torpedo Factory Art Center is home to the largest collection of publicly accessible, working artists’ studios in the nation. The Torpedo Factory is a regional landmark and the highlight of the local, creative community, attracting approximately 500,000 visitors annually to its scenic vantage point on the Potomac Riverfront, anchored to the cobblestone streets of Old Town Alexandria. With 82 artists’ studios and 6 public galleries, visitors can enjoy personal access to 165 artists, with the unique opportunity to watch them work, discuss their inspirations and creative process, and purchase original work straight from the studio. Visit three floors of diverse, individual studio spaces and experience creative expression across a range of media including ceramics, collage, fiber, glass, enamel, jewelry, mixed media, painting, photography, printmaking, and sculpture. The Target Gallery, the Torpedo Factory's contemporary exhibition space, features acclaimed work from high-caliber national and international artists on a rotating schedule.
 

PRINCE WILLIAM & MANASSAS:

  • THE MANASSAS NATIONAL BATTLEFIELD PARK On July 21, 1861, two armies clashed for the first time on the fields overlooking Bull Run. Heavy fighting swept away any notion of a quick war. In August 1862, Union and Confederate armies converged for a second time on the plains of Manassas. The Confederates won a solid victory, bringing them to the height of their power. Manassas National Battlefield Park extends across 40 miles of hiking trails, traversing key areas of the Civil War’s first major battlefield, The Battle of Bull Run, and the equally important Second Battle of Manassas. With interactive electronic battle maps, detailed displays of Civil War memorabilia, along with professional presentations and reenactments, those seeking a true glimpse into the history of the American Civil War will find an immersive educational experience among the many significant sites and attractions found throughout the park. Journey through the battlefield on a walking or driving tour, visit the storied, gruesome grounds of the infamous Stone House, once used as a Civil War hospital, and listen for echoes of cannon fire and the resounding cry of the Civil War’s very first rebel yell.
 

LOUDOUN COUNTY:

  • THE WESTERN LOUDOUN ARTISTS STUDIO TOUR This June, enjoy a weekend of inspiration, education, and one-on-one interaction with Loudoun County’s vibrant, local Arts community. The 2017 Western Loudoun Artists Studio Tour presents some of the most unique, creative, and expressive talent in the region. Featuring a vast selection of 62 artists and stops at 34 locations across Loudoun County, the Tour explores a wide range of artistic media such as painting, digital art, pottery, wood, jewelry, photography, metal sculpture, wearable art, and more. Visitors will experience Loudoun’s two major art hubs; the Franklin Park Performing and Visual Arts Center and the Round Hill Arts Center, along with rare, behind-the scenes access to local studios. Throughout the tour, artists will demonstrate their creative processes in addition to sharing artwork available for purchase. Wind through Loudoun’s scenic countryside, explore quaint, small towns, and step into the working studios of the artists and craftspeople of Virginia’s Cultural Region. The Western Loudoun Artists Studio Tour is a free event, open to the public from Saturday, June 3rd through Sunday, June 4th, 2017.

Last Updated 6/13/2017

Go With The Flow: Explore The Waterfronts, Waterparks, And Historic Waterways Of Virginia’s Cultural Region

FAIRFAX COUNTY:

  • GREAT FALLS PARK
    Take a walk on the wild side of Virginia’s Cultural Region, and discover an incredible destination for recreation within the great outdoors of Fairfax County. Aptly named, Great Falls Park features a stunning collection of cascading rapids and several sparkling waterfalls, marking the Potomac River’s 76-foot drop into the narrow Mather Gorge. With over 800 acres of scenic forests, rocky terrain, and abundant native wildlife, Great Falls Park boasts incredible natural beauty and unlimited outdoor adventure. The park’s winding trails stretch across 15 miles of forested landscape and preserved historic structures, offering hikers, bikers, and horseback riders access to some of the most unique and breathtaking views in the area. For families seeking kid-friendly adventure, the park’s Junior Ranger Program offers an exciting, self-guided scavenger hunt throughout the park with a booklet of activities and attractions to discover along the way. Children who complete the booklet earn a Junior Ranger Badge to honor their accomplishments. Great Falls is also pet-friendly, and allows leashed pets on all park trails and picnic areas.

ALEXANDRIA:

  • POTOMAC RIVERBOAT CRUISES
    Board a riverboat on the banks of Old Town Alexandria for a scenic sail through Virginia’s Cultural Region. From narrated sightseeing tours, to private charters, to water taxis, Potomac Riverboat Company (PRC) offers a collection of cruises perfect for any outdoor summer adventure. Explore a network of notable sites, and enjoy expansive panoramic views along the Potomac River. The eight-vessel PRC fleet features a range of riverboats, each with its own route and unique tour option. Visit Washington DC’s most iconic monuments, discover Old Town Alexandria’s storied Seaport, and take a trip to explore early American history at the home of George and Martha Washington, Mount Vernon. For a fun, pet-friendly way to experience Virginia’s Cultural Region, Potomac Riverboat Company offers its seasonal Canine Cruise, featuring an hour-long river ride and the perfect way to spend time with your pup. If you’re planning a romantic retreat or exclusive event, enjoy a private charter on one of the nation’s last-remaining working sternwheelers, Cherry Blossom. No matter which on-the-water adventure you choose, Potomac Riverboat Company cruises promise stunning riverfront views, spectacular sunsets, and the rich American history of Virginia’s Cultural Region.

ARLINGTON:

  • UPTON HILL REGIONAL PARK AND OCEAN DUNES WATERPARK
    Access all the ingredients for a great summer getaway, and enjoy a ton of outdoor adventure fit for the whole family at Upton Hill Regional Park. Explore miles of scenic hiking trails, or practice your putt on the Upton Hill’s meticulously landscaped mini-golf course. Strengthen your swing at the custom-pitch batting cages, or take a break, grab a bite, and relax in the shade under one of the park’s giant picnic pagodas. Oh, and don’t forget to bring a bathing suit. Ocean Dunes Waterpark, part of Upton Hill’s impressive collection of outdoor entertainment options, is the perfect place to kick back, cool off, and enjoy a day at the beach. Grab an inner tube and relax in the pool; join the kids and explore a beach-themed playground of water jets, splash zones, and fountains; or take a turn on the park’s 230-foot open waterslide. Sun, soak, or slide, Upton Hill Regional Park and Ocean Dunes Waterpark each promise family fun for any vacation style and a summer adventure that always beats the heat.

LOUDOUN COUNTY:

  • HARPERS FERRY ADVENTURE CENTER
    If you’re looking for action and adventure in the great outdoors, look no further than Harpers Ferry. Boasting a collection of excursions sure to satisfy even the most fearless outdoor champions, Harpers Ferry Adventure Center (HFAC) offers an impressive range of activities fit for adventurers of all ages, skill levels, and terrain preferences. Guests can choose from a number of attractions and experiences such as tubing, whitewater rafting, ziplining, ropes-coursing, canoeing and kayaking, fishing, hiking, camping and more— all along the scenic shores of the Shenandoah and Potomac rivers. Visitors simply searching for a relaxing retreat, stunning natural views, and some fresh-air can kick back with a cookout in one of HFAC’s multiple picnic areas complete with tables, charcoal grills, and lazy day hammocks. With warm-weather on the rise, HFAC is gearing up for its summer performance season. During the summer months, guests can rock-climb, river-raft, and rock out with live weekend performances from a variety local bands and regional music artists. Take on the great outdoors at HFAC, and experience one of the most unique mountain adventures of Virginia’s Cultural Region.

PRINCE WILLIAM & MANASSAS:

  • LEESYLVANIA STATE PARK
    Explore thousands of years of Native American history, and experience the story as America’s past comes to life on the banks of the Potomac. Nestled along the shores of the Potomac River, Leesylvania State Park offers guests a peaceful getaway along the tranquil, natural riverbanks of Prince William County. Follow the footsteps of Captain John Smith on his voyage of discovery, and explore the historic, nationally landmarked, ancestral home of Virginia’s legendary Lee and Fairfax families. The park’s five trails pass through the area’s rich natural features and also include a scenic overlook of the Potomac River from the remains of a Civil War Confederate gun battery at Freestone Point. Visitors can also enjoy a variety of land and water related activities such as hiking, picnicking, fishing, and boating. Spend an afternoon soaking up the summer sun with a kayaking journey down the Potomac River, cast your line from the fishing pier, or explore the park’s environmental education center.

Last Updated 6/01/2017

Only in NOVA

There’s not another place on the planet with the unique spirit of Northern Virginia. It’s a blend of artistic independence and appreciation for the journey that gives the Cultural Region its special sauce.

Feel that American pride. Whether you’re standing at a memorial or witnessing a heroic run, Virginia’s Cultural Region is full of heart-swelling moments.

  • Understand the challenges and experience of valor on a fully immersive visit to the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Prince William County. Sight, sound, touch and movement reveal the story of the U.S. Marines like never before.
  • Cheer on the participants (or become one) in Arlington as the Marine Corps Marathon takes place October 30, 2016. Known as “The People’s Marathon,” it’s one of the largest in the world.
  • Take a leisurely horseback ride where courage was tested: Manassas National Battlefield Park, where the first two battles of the American Civil War were fought.

There’s only one. You won’t want to miss the Cultural Region’s singular distinctions.

It’s not what you think. From repurposed arts venues to speakeasy hideouts, Virginia’s Cultural Region is full of surprises.

  • Tap into the Cultural Region’s arts scene with unexpected visual arts centers, including a former torpedo factory in Alexandria, a candy factory in Prince William County and even a former prison in Fairfax County.
  • Up for Beer Yoga, Pedals and Pints or Joggers and Lagers? The Best Small Brewery in the U.S. puts the fun in fitness: Alexandria’s Port City Brewing Co.
  • Sneak into Captain Gregory’s, a cocktail lounge/speakeasy hidden inside Sugar Shack donut shop in Alexandria.
  • View Washington, D.C. monuments from a unique vantage point: onboard a Potomac Riverboat Co. narrated boat cruise.

Have some wine with that view. Unique ways to experience the Cultural Region’s stellar wine and craft brew offerings make for unforgettable journeys.

  • Take a guided kayak tour down the scenic Potomac River to Tarara Winery in Loudoun County, where you can enjoy live music in their outdoor pavilion, delicious food and fine Virginia wine. The four-and-a-half to seven-mile tour is offered throughout the summer.
  • Beer and wine lovers unite! In Loudoun, winery and brewery sit side-by-side, sharing sweeping views of the countryside. Travel 951 feet up the mountain to enjoy Bluemont Vineyard and Dirt Farm Brewing to try the peach wine or the pumpkin ale, featuring ingredients taken right from the neighboring Great Country Farms.

Last Updated 3/17/2016

PARTY ON AND ROCK OUT AT THE BEST SUMMER CONCERT VENUES IN VIRGINIA’S CULTURAL REGION

 

LOUDOUN:

THE TALLY HO 19 West Market Street is home to Leesburg’s most visually arresting concert venue. The Tally Ho Theater, a 1932 Art Deco concert hall is a downtown Leesburg landmark. The Tally Ho has operated continuously through generations as a first-run movie house and performing arts venue. Now, the Tally Ho will open primarily for live performances. The incredible, 9000 square-foot building boasts a collection of new renovations and amenities, including a 2000 square-foot dance floor, two-level seating, multiple cocktail bars, a full service restaurant: Tally Ho Taco, a variety of exclusive VIP areas, and a 600 square-foot stage— just to name a few. Whether it’s comedy, theater, or rock and roll, the Tally Ho promises entertainment for all audiences, and offers a timeless venue for guests to explore. OPEN AIR CONCERTS AT TARARA Dance the night away under the stars, or just lay back and take in the fantastic view of Tarara's Shadow Lake Stage. The Saturday-Night Summer Concert Series at Tarara Winery is the perfect way to enjoy live music and soak up some sun in Loudoun’s scenic wine country. Tarara’s concert series includes a diverse lineup of performances, so you can enjoy music that’s just your style and relax to a beat that’s just your speed. For an interactive experience, paddle along the Potomac River on a scenic, guided kayaking and canoeing tour. Throughout the summer, River and Trail Outfitters offers guided tours that float straight to Tarara, just in time to catch a concert and enjoy a glass of your favorite wine.  

FAIRFAX COUNTY:

WOLF TRAP & THE FILENE CENTER Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts has the distinction of being the only national park dedicated to promoting and protecting creative expression, and features an incredible lineup of over 100 performances year-round,. Each summer, Wolf Trap welcomes visitors to the architecturally stunning Filene Center, the Park’s acclaimed summer performance venue. Boasting an impressive selection of over 80 performances, rare access to internationally recognized artists, and a diverse range of talent across every genre, Wolf Trap’s Summer Concert Series promises a diverse, legendary lineup fit for all audiences. From rocking out with returning artists to discovering new, exciting, creative experiences, Wolf Trap invites guests from across the country and around the globe to enjoy an amazing array of live music against the backdrop of the Park’s beautiful natural stage.  

ARLINGTON:

CLARENDON BALLROOM From the Art Deco Moderne Woolworth Building, a collapsing monument to the region’s history, anchored to Clarendon’s city streets, came the Clarendon Ballroom. After a $2 million dollar modernization project, the Woolworth Building welcomed a new era, and the Clarendon Ballroom emerged as one of the area’s most unique venues. The original maple floors, pressed tin ceiling, and expertly restored crown molding showcase the building’s heritage with a subtle, visually striking nod. The addition of its massive rooftop pavilion, masterfully designed 80-foot bar, and chic cocktail lounge positioned Clarendon Ballroom as a lively, inviting venue for events and performances of all types. The Ballroom regularly hosts Thursday-night rooftop parties and sports a stylish nightclub, complete with exclusive DJ lineups and a sprawling, 300-person dance floor. ARTS AL FRESCO AT LUBBER RUN If you are searching for the perfect picnic location, look no further than Lubber Run. Presented by Arlington Arts, Lubber Run Amphitheater hosts the fully staged, open-air Arts al Fresco production event, free to guests during the summer months. With a lineup of international and local music artists, Lubber Run’s Arts al Fresco welcomes visitors to enjoy a selection of live performances ranging from familiar tunes to unique, fresh, expressive sound. As a summer staple for locals and tourists alike, the venue accommodates 1,100, with outdoor bench seating available for about 700 guests, and additional space for lawn chairs and blankets.  

PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY AND MANASSAS:

JIFFY LUBE LIVE In 1995, a performance by The Village People marked the opening of the largest, outdoor music venue in the region. Jiffy Lube Live Amphitheater boasts a total capacity of 25,000 guests, including 10,000 in reserved seating, and is widely known for the stage that has hosted generations of legendary performances. Nationally acclaimed artists such as Iron Maiden, The Dixie Chicks, Ozzy Osbourne, Green Day, Slipknot, Dave Matthews, Pearl Jam, and Jimmy Buffet are among the incredible collection of talent that, following in the footsteps of its 1995 opening act, has graced the Jiffy Lube Live stage over decades of summer performances. Currently, the amphitheater’s summer lineup features a diverse selection of popular artists such as Train, Lady Antebellum, Chance The Rapper, John Mayer, Future, OneRepublic, Cheap Trick, Foreigner, Zac Brown Band, and many more.  

ALEXANDRIA:

BIRCHMERE MUSIC HALL The legendary Birchmere Music Hall holds its title as Alexandria’s world-famous concert venue. Known for its nightly line-up of classic and contemporary Jazz, Country, R&B, Folk and Bluegrass artists, the Birchmere offers guests historically American sound with a side of traditional, American cuisine. Its inviting and relaxed setting keeps the audience close; nestled just two feet away from the stage, making it incredibly difficult to find a “bad spot” anywhere within the intimate 500-seat music hall. With a collection of notable performances spanning over 50 years, the Birchmere is globally recognized as a host to acts such as Johnny Cash, Lyle Lovett, Shawn Colvin, Dave Matthews, Vince Gill, Linda Ronstadt, k.d. Lang, Melissa Etheridge, Esperanza Spalding, and Ray Charles. OLD TOWN ALEXANDRIA, LIVE AND LOCAL Along the cobblestone streets of Old Town Alexandria, you’ll find dozens of restaurants boasting vibrant lineups of live, local performances. From Blackwall Hitch's unique, common-ground for lasting connections and prime Potomac River waterfront location, to the colorful, flavorful celebrations of Irish heritage at Daniel O’Connell’s, to live Jazz and Blues in 219 Restaurant’s Basin Street Lounge or dancing to beats dropped by 219’s Bayou Room DJ, visitors can catch a variety of live performances and enjoy a diverse selection of culinary specialties every night of the week.

Last Updated 6/13/2017

Virginia’s Cultural Region: Craft Brew Experiences Too Good To Keep To Yourself

Explore What’s On Tap For 2017 While visiting your favorite brewery can be a relaxing solo experience, Virginia’s Cultural Region invites you and your crew to share some high-quality beer and high-quality company. Here are a few of the Region’s latest local craft-brew experiences that are just too good to keep to yourself:  

Prince William County & Manassas:

Farm Brew Live With warm weather on the rise, Virginia’s Cultural Region is rapidly approaching the summer unveiling of the latest colossus in the craft beer community. In addition to an overwhelmingly enthusiastic local response, the Farm Brew Live campus is quickly generating international excitement, becoming the Region’s most anticipated attraction of 2017. As an all-in-one craft beer destination, Farm Brew Live features 5 massive venues, each expressing a unique celebration of craft-culture.
  • 2 Silos Brewing Co. With an estimated production rate of over 3.5 million farm-to-fist, quality-crafted pints per year, 2 Silos Brewing Company is essentially the beating heart of the Farm Brew Live operation. The 14,000 square foot facility welcomes eager guests from around the globe to enjoy daily brewery tours along with a few flights in the taste room or open-air patio.
Farm to City Brew Trail Prince William & Manassas boasts over 10 craft breweries sprawling from the foot hills of the Bull Run Mountain to the shoreline of the Potomac River. Spend a long weekend sampling brews at The Farm Brewery at Broad Run to take in the scenic countryside of Virginia’s Cultural Region. Work your way into the charming downtown district, The City of Manassas where you will find Sinistral Brewing and BadWolf Public House nestled among unique artisan shops and restaurants. Wrap up your brew trail adventure just minutes from the Potomac River at the newly opened, comic book themed Heroic Aleworks!  

Loudoun County:

LoCo Ale Trail Ready for a taste trek? Lace up, and grab a growler. Thanks to the rapid and continuous growth of its craft beer scene, Loudoun County is hailed as a trailblazer in the local craft community. Featuring seven new breweries on the map, the LoCo Ale Trail now boasts a craft collection of over 21 breweries, brewpubs, taverns, and tap houses for beer lovers to explore. If you’re feeling the need for speed, choose a route from one of the LoCo Ale Trail’s bikeable brew tours. Dirt Farm Brewing Tucked along the winding roads of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Loudoun County’s Dirt Farm Brewing originally began as a 400-acre family farm. After the addition of a 13-acre hops and barley extension, Dirt Farm Brewing was born. Guests can indulge in variety of homegrown seasonal and staple beers, ranging from the award-winning Red Merl Irish Red Ale to the Som Peach Summer Seasonal, a fruity marriage of freshly farmed peaches and carefully selected hops. Vanish Farmworks Brewery With a name like Vanish, you might not expect this brewery to be so visible; however, it is actually an extension of the largest fresh hops production that Virginia has to offer. Vanish Farmworks Brewery resides on Loudoun County’s Black Hops Farm, an impressive, 53-acre slice of Loudoun’s scenic countryside, dedicated to handpicked hops and home to Virginia’s very first hops processing facility. Visitors to Vanish can enjoy one-of-a-kind brews, weekend offerings of smoked-on-site barbecue, and a diverse line-up of live music.  

Fairfax:

Living Large: Mustang Sally and Fair Winds Brewing Company Among the 9 quality craft breweries based in Fairfax County, Mustang Sally Brewing Company and Fair Winds Brewing Company hold local titles as the two largest craft-beer production breweries in the county. Both breweries offer award-winning beer, expansive taprooms, and regular tours of their impressive production facilities. Whether you’re filling your sails with the fresh flavors of Fair Winds or exploring the art and science behind Mustang Sally’s classically sophisticated craft-culture, these two breweries promise hops with heart and brews that shine with expertly considered detail— down to the last drop. Seasonal Showcase: The Northern Virginia BrewFest If you enjoy seasonal selections, you won’t want to miss the Northern Virginia BrewFest; a craft-community celebration featuring the best brews in the region and over 50 of Northern Virginia’s finest craft breweries. Enjoy two full days of your favorite seasonal flavors along with live music and local eats. Relax with crisp, refreshing, sun-kissed seasonals at the Northern Virginia Summer BrewFest in June, or if you’re pining for pumpkin ales, craft ciders, and colorful cool-weather brews, check out the Northern Virginia Fall BrewFest in October. The Northern Virginia BrewFest promises something for every season and tastes that are always worth the trip. Board the Brew Bus Not feeling the footwork of an ale trail? Reston limousine is more than happy to give brew-bound visitors a luxury lift. Board the Fairfax County Brew Bus for a tour of breweries across the Cultural Region and throughout DC’s Metropolitan Area. Brew Bus tours vary regularly, but each itinerary promises an even mix of up-and-coming breweries and local staples. If you’re feeling especially crafty, customize your cruise for a personal route that includes each of your favorite destinations.  

Arlington:

New District Brewing Company Last year, Arlington welcomed its first full distribution brewery since 1916. Today, New District Brewing Company is in full swing, crafting a variety of staple and seasonal beers from carefully selected, locally-sourced ingredients. With weekly trivia nights and growler discounts that are too good to ignore, New District Brewing Company is quickly becoming a local staple in Arlington. The recommendation? Try the 1821; a Belgian-style Saison that comes with its own, very loyal group of fans. Market Common: A Cross-Craft Combination Thanks to overwhelming support from Arlington’s craft-beer community, Heritage Brewing Company’s newest project, Market Common, will open its doors this spring. Featuring a taproom constructed from repurposed brewing material, such as fixtures built from aging barrels; Market Common exemplifies a cyclical, sustainable approach to contemporary crafting— right down to its foundation. Guests can enjoy the unique blend of brewery, roaster, and restaurant with Market Common’s fully-functional, three- tap, nitro-brew coffee bar, exclusive selection of cold-pressed and pour-over craft coffee, and classic, barrel-aged craft beer.  

Alexandria:

#ALXBrewTour Alexandria has squarely cemented itself as a prominent player in Northern Virginia’s craft beer community, and invites visitors to share its spotlight with a new walking tour of its beer history. The ALXBrewTour showcases 15 of the city’s select pubs and taverns—each complete with its own unique character and charm. Whichever direction you choose, Alexandria’s Historic Brew Tour promises something new down every path, and boasts a satisfying collection of the tried and true tastes of the city’s past. Portner Brewhouse Along the way, perhaps you’ll find yourself lifting a pint of history itself at the new Portner Brewhouse. Pioneered by sisters Catherine and Margaret Portner, Portner Brewhouse pays tribute to family legacy and offers a unique selection of carefully reconstructed family recipes. The historic list of libations dates back over 100 years to Robert Portner Brewing Co., the largest pre-Prohibition brewery in the South. Visitors can enjoy these historic brews with a bit of contemporary German-American cuisine or rate Portner Brewhouse’s home-brewed recipes in the Craft Beer Test Kitchen™. Port City Brewing If you are looking for pints with prestige, perhaps you’ll stop at Port City Brewing, Alexandria’s international claim to fame. Receiving over 50 awards, including 2015’s Small Brewery of the Year and 2016’s European Beer Star Silver Medal, Port City Brewing offers visitors craft beer and bragging rights with a welcome side of tastings and tours. True to their tagline, Port City Brewing “puts the ‘Ale’ in Alexandria.” Whether you’re discovering new breweries or returning to your favorite flavors, Virginia’s Cultural Region welcomes beer lovers of all kinds to experience the adventures within its internationally coveted craft-brew community.

Last Updated 6/13/2017

What’s New?

Whether you’re new to the region or a longtime fan, there’s always something to discover in Virginia’s Cultural Region.

New Brews. Find new ways to enjoy your favorite pint in the Cultural Region.

  • The LoCo Ale Trail makes it easy to let your palate be your guide through Loudoun County’s 17 breweries, leading you to small batch, hand-crafted brews with itineraries that highlight everything from bike-able to pet-friendly options.
  • Sehkraft Brewing in Arlington’s Clarendon is a 9,000 square-foot brewpub housing a 10-barrel brewhouse, a 200+ seat restaurant, a live music stage and its own butcher shop.
  • New District Brewing Company in the Shirlington neighborhood welcomed its first guests in January as Arlington’s first truly local package brewery in a century, providing seasonal craft beers made with an emphasis on locally sourced and quality imported ingredients.
  • Forge Brew Works and Fair Winds Brewing Co. comprise the “Lorton Beer Trail” in South Fairfax County – meet the friendly brewers, plan on a tour of the facilities, or just belly up to the bar.
  • Fairfax County’s Town of Vienna welcomed its own farm-to-table brewery and restaurant this year when Caboose Brewing Co. opened at a location off the popular Washington & Old Dominion Trail.
  • It’s a brewery boom in Fairfax County: Herndon saw Aslin Beer Co. open this past summer, Reston welcomes the Lake Anne Brew House this year and Chantilly welcomes Mustang Sally Brewing Co. this spring.
  • Alexandria’s Port City Brewing Co.was named the Best Small Brewery in the U.S. at the 2015 Great American Beer Festival, considered the Oscars of the beer world. Port City offers tours, tastings of its award-winning brews and quirky events like Beer Yoga and Pedals & Pints.
  • An historic Virginia brewery is revived 100 years later at Portner Brewhouse, a pre-Prohibition-inspired brewery, restaurant and Craft Beer Test Kitchen™. Opening in the summer of 2016, the Robert Portner Brewing Company founder’s great-great-granddaughters Catherine and Margaret Portner will be serving reconstructed historic recipe beers and contemporary seasonals alongside German and contemporary American cuisine.
  • Keep an eye on the growing excitement at Brew Republic Bierwerks brewpub in Prince William and Manassas, offering craft brews in a friendly taproom atmosphere in spring 2016.

Winery expansions. The wine industry continues to thrive as some of the region’s wineries expand with new tasting rooms and facilities.

  • Breaux Vineyards welcomes visitors to their new facility’s spacious rooms and small, intimate nooks for an experience that’s easy to enjoy. Offering numerous outdoor patios with sweeping views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the main tasting room gives a nod to the owner’s Louisiana roots with French Quarter details.
  • Stone Tower Winery’s new state-of-the-art facility invites you to stay a while in a new tasting room and numerous spaces decorated with plush couches and modern décor with rustic touches. Enjoy a special tasting in the barrel room or a glass of vino by the roaring fireplace.
  • The expansion of Chrysalis Vineyards connects visitors to Loudoun’s rich agricultural scene with a new “Ag District” spanning 400 acres. Working with Locksley Estate Farmstead Cheese Company, Chrysalis will soon include a cheese production facility and a tech-savvy tasting room that connects visitors with digital information about the wines.
  • Fabbioli Cellars now offers a new circular, two-level tasting room built around a unique central structure: a tree of lighted vines that were sourced from the property.

Spring temptations. Spring’s allure is in full force in Virginia’s Cultural Region, with outdoor beauty, fine spirits and the open water calling your name.

  • Along with the 2016 National Park Service Centennial, Prince William Forest National Park celebrates 80 years of service this year. Don’t miss a chance to visit the largest green space in the DC Metropolitan area, where hiking and biking trails give you access to 15,000 beautiful acres.
  • Educate your palate at Murlarkey Distilled Spirits, which opened its doors in Manassas for tours and tastings of handcrafted small-batch selections early this year.
  • Whether it’s street performers, art, music, al fresco drinks and dining in a beautiful setting, or launching an exploration of the region via water taxis and river cruises by Potomac Riverboat Company, there’s always something new to experience at Alexandria’s historic waterfront.

Entertainment central. The Cultural Region adds games, brews and high-flying fun this spring, along with inspired celebrations and learning opportunities.

  • Big fun and games come to Northern Virginia as Dave & Buster’s brings its popular restaurant fare and hundreds of arcade games, sports and activities to the newly revamped Springfield Town Center in Fairfax County, promising “the most fun you can have all under one roof.”
  • Thrill seekers can test their driving skills soon in Manassas at Autobahn Indoor Speedway, the largest go-kart facility this side of Washington, D.C.
  • Cirque du Soleil brings internationally acclaimed acrobatics and theatrical wonder to Fairfax County this summer, presenting Kurios – Cabinet of Curiosities under a 62-foot high big top at Lerner Town Square in Tysons, VA, from July 21 to August 21, 2016.
  • As the National Park Service turns 100 in 2016, you’re invited to be inspired with special events and activities in all National Parks, including Fairfax county’s own Wolf Trap, Great Falls Park and many other stops along the George Washington Memorial Parkway.
  • The Children’s Science Center Lab is Northern Virginia’s first interactive children’s museum, giving kids, families and school groups access to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) concepts through engaging hands-on exhibits, activities and programs. The Lab’s Experiment Bar, Inspiration Hub, Tinker Shop and Discovery make for inspired learning for children aged two through 12. The Lab is located within Fair Oaks Mall in Fairfax, VA. A full-scale museum arrives in 2019 to Dulles, VA.

Last Updated 3/17/2016

Select Map View

Alexandria

5 Top Stops:
  • Historic King Street
  • Hanks Oyster Bar
  • Torpedo Factory Art Center
  • Alexandria Marina & Waterfront Market
  • Old Town Boutique District
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Arlington

5 Top Stops:
  • Arlington National Cemetery
  • Fashion Centre at Pentagon City
  • Liberty Tavern
  • Signature Theatre
  • Kettler Capital Iceplex: Home of the Washington Capitals
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Fairfax

5 Top Stops: 
  • George Washington's Mount Vernon
  • Mike's American Grill
  • The Winery at Bull Run
  • Wolf Trap
  • Smithsonian’s National Air and and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center
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Loudoun

5 Top Stops:
  • Tarara Winery
  • Leesburg Premium Outlets
  • Lost Rhino Brewing
  • Harpers Ferry Adventure Center
  • Salamander Resort & Spa
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Manassas

5 Top Stops:
  • Manassas National Battlefield Park
  • Historic Occoquan
  • The Winery at La Grange
  • Historic Downtown Manassas
  • National Museum of the Marine Corp
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